Notable Organizations

The Security and Sustainability Guide

All of the organizations described in the S&S Guide are engaged in important and interesting activities related to security and/or sustainability.  But some appear more important or interesting than others. The Guide tries to identify centers of expertise and leading-edge thought and action in all areas of security and sustainability.  This is no easy matter, and opinions will surely differ as to which organizations deserve highlighting.  Still, as an initial introduction to the organizations covered in the Guide, most of the following selections should be of interest to most users.  Emphasis has been given to those organizations emphasizing security and sustainability, and/or taking a broad systems approach to global concerns.

 

 

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A global network of >2000 organizations in > 90 countries working for a treaty to eliminate nuclear weapons within a time-bound framework. The Global Council (governance) and the Coordinating Committee...
A bipartisan non-profit alliance composed of business, government, environmental and consumer leaders advocating for enhanced energy productivity to achieve economic growth, a cleaner environment, and greater energy security, affordability and...
A "nonpartisan organization created to educate the American public and the world about the changing nature of national security in the 21st Century." Their goal is to "forge bipartisan consensus...
Represents more than 150,000 members of the civil engineers in 177 countries. It's committed to planning, designing, constructing, and operating the built environment while protecting and restoring the natural environment....
It seeks to “empower higher education to lead the sustainability transformation” by enabling institutions “to model and advance sustainability in everything they do, from governance and operations to education and...
Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
A research center that assesses pressing threats to US national interests and international security in the quarter-century ahead.  "We define international security broadly to include the full array of factors...
A coalition of America’s largest labor unions and its most influential environmental organizations to solve today’s environmental challenges in ways that create and maintain quality jobs and build a stronger,...
A global network of large mega cities taking action to address climate change by developing and implementing policies and programs that generate measurable reductions in both greenhouse gas emissions and...
Founded by Thomas Homer Dixon based on the fact that "humanity now occupies or exploits most of Earth’s productive surface area, creating a single, tightly linked social, economic, and ecological...
This non-partisan institute is part of the Council on Strategic Risks. Its vision is to create  “a climate-resilient world…which recognizes that climate change risks are unprecedented in human history, and...
Chicago Council on Global Affairs (1922; Chicago; 80+ staff and fellows; thechicagocouncil.org ) This independent, nonpartisan membership organization provides insight – and influences the public discourse – on critical global...
A network of global partners working to create a thriving global market for cleaner, more modern household cooking solutions.The initiative is hosted by the United Nations Foundation to mobilize high-level...
A global forum striving to promote policies and programs that advance clean energy technology, to share lessons learned and best practices, and to encourage the transition to a global clean...
A non-profit environmental law group pressing "for strong action from governments, shifting financial flows, changing markets, trade, and business practices" to protect people and the planet. Client Earth works in...
A  collaboration of 30 climate scientists, economists, computational experts, researchers, analysts, and students from some of the nation’s leading research institutions (largely from the University of Chicago and the UC-Berkeley)...
An informal association of ~100 invited Members, independent leading personalities from politics, business, and science. They are interested in contributing in a systemic, interdisciplinary, and holistic manner to a better...
A non-partisan think tank. It works towards "the use, reuse, and misuse of resources" employing a mixed approach that gathers "data, integrated analysis, and strategic outreach" with an international scope...
The Desert Research Institute is a major research organization, which focuses on basic and applied environmental research. "investigating the effects of natural and human-induced environmental change and advancing technologies aimed...
A project based on the book Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming, edited by project director Paul Hawkin, which describes and ranks 100 solutions to...
It consists of individuals and organizations that predominantly act independently and occasionally collaborate. It is comprised of the ECI Secretariat, its Education Center and the ECI Council. The secretariat is...
A research institute that was founded to advance the basic understanding of earth science and apply that knowledge to decisions made by governments and businesses around the world. They aim...
Earth System Governance Project
A global research alliance exploring political solutions and novel, more effective governance mechanisms to cope with the current transitions in the biogeochemical systems of the planet. Developing integrated earth system...
A global standard guided by the belief that a country’s natural resources belong to its citizens, to promote the open and accountable management of oil, gas and mineral resources. Ignited...
A platform for forest owners, timber industries, social groups and environmental organizations to promotes environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial, and economically viable management of the world's forests. The FSCI encourages forest...
It promotes a culture of collaborative dialogue between multiple stakeholders and sectors to encourage the search for innovative solutions. It also looks to generate new capacities, strengthen the process of...
Future Earth
Future Earth (2012; Paris; ~50 staff; futureearth.org) A global research platform providing knowledge and support to accelerate transformations to a sustainable world. The organization is rooted in the work of...
Formally the Wissenschaftlicher Beirat der Bundesregierung: Global Umweltverandereungen, the WBGU is an independent, scientific advisory body set up by the German government in the run-up to the 1992 Rio Earth...
An interdisciplinary research and policy advisory organization that supports a global public welfare policy geared towards the concept of sustainable development through multidisciplinary research, impact-oriented policy advice, and internationally oriented...
Global Challenges Foundation
Aims to reduce the main global challenges and risks that threaten humanity. Their work is based on the risk analysis ideas central to the success of Laszlo Szombatfalvy. Seeks to...
The urban component of the United Nations Global Compact (GC), the world’s largest corporate responsibility initiative. The program aims to provide a framework for cities to advance the GC’s Ten...
A research project funded by the Family Erling-Persson Foundation, to address the economic dynamics of global change and the challenge of considering how to manage economic development and use of...
An independent, non-profit think tank that brings together policy-makers, scholars, and practitioners from the world’s leading institutions in order to devise, strengthen and improve forward-looking approaches to global governance. They...
Seeks integration of economic growth and environmental sustainability, seen as essential for the future of humankind. Promotes a new model of economic growth known as “green growth,” that simultaneously targets...
The initiative is an online forum of ideas and an international network for the critical exploration of concepts, strategies, and visions for a transition to a future of enriched lives,...
An international organization that responds to challenges of security, poverty and environmental degradation to ensure a sustainable and secure future. Promotes legal, ethical and behavioral norms that ensure basic changes...
The best-known environmental activist group in the world, bases its work on the belief that the "fragile earth deserves a voice. It needs solutions. It needs change. It needs action."...
A multidisciplinary research institute, which aims “to develop transformative knowledge which is needed to pave the way towards sustainable societies through transdisciplinary research."  In this context, they work towards aligning...
Institute for Future Initiatives
An organization integrated by the Policy Alternatives Research Institute (PARI) and UTIAS Integrated Research System for Sustainability Science (IR3S). It "makes policy and social recommendations on future society issues and...
The Intergovernmental Panel was established by the United Nations Environment Programme and the World Meteorological Organization as the leading international body for scientific assessment of the current state of knowledge...
An independent intergovernmental body that aims to strengthen the science-policy interface for biodiversity and ecosystem services, and for conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, long-term human well-being, and sustainable development. ...
The IASC is devoted to bringing together multi-disciplinary researchers, practitioners and policymakers for the purpose of improving governance and management, advancing understanding, and creating sustainable solutions for commons, common-pool resources,...
International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (2007; Geneva; 10 staff; www.icanw.org) Encourages people in all countries to inspire, persuade and pressure their governments to initiate and support negotiations for a...
An autonomous body within the OECD framework, seeking “to ensure reliable, affordable and clean energy” for all. The International Energy Agency examines the full spectrum of energy issues including oil,...
An independent, international research institute with National Member Organizations in 22 countries in Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe. It seeks to become “the world leader in systems analysis to...
International Institute for Strategic Studies
International Institute for Strategic Studies(1958; London + Bahrain, Singapore, Washington; ~60 staff; iiss.org) A non-partisan institute to advance a wider understanding of critical 21st-century security issues and their potential resolution. ...
An independent think tank championing sustainable development solutions to 21st-century problems.  Their goal is a “Better living for all—sustainably.” It conducts research to foster innovation enabling societies to live sustainably....
International Resource Panel (2007; Paris UNEP, unep.org/resourcepanel) A group of about 40 scientists skilled in sustainable resource management issues, and governments from both developed and developing regions, as well as...
“The world’s oldest and largest global environmental organization,” and “the largest professional global conservation network,” with 1300+ member organizations (governments and NGOs), and almost 11,000 voluntary scientists and experts, grouped...
The JRC is the European Commission's in-house science and knowledge service and advisory with six locations in five European Union countries (Brussels, Geel, Ispra, Karlsruhe, Petten, Seville). They work to...
Munich Security Conference
A leading forum for debating international security policy. Aims to address the most pressing security concerns. Strives to be a hub between "heads of state and government, ministers, leading figures...
The OECD is arguably the world’s largest think tank produces 250+ reports per year on ‘what works’ and databases with societal and developmental indicators. It promotes policies that improve the...
A "global water think tank that combines science-based thought leadership with active outreach to influence local, national, and international efforts to develop sustainable water policies." They believe that " identifying...
A non-profit organization funded by the Federal Republic of Germany and the Federal State of Brandenburg. “PIK” addresses crucial scientific questions in the fields of global change, climate impacts, and...
An independent nonprofit that encourages efficient and restorative use of resources. Aims to transform global energy use to create a clean, prosperous, and secure low-carbon future. They push for the...
The principal international source of public information on all aspects of small arms and armed violence, serving as a resource for governments, policy-makers, researchers, and activists. Their work is based...
An "independent international institute dedicated to research into conflict, armaments, arms control and disarmament. They provide data, analysis and recommendations, based on open sources, to policymakers, researchers, media and the...
A world-leading science center for addressing the complex challenges facing humanity. Their vision is “a world where social-ecological systems are understood, governed and managed, to enhance human well-being and the...
An independent, research network of more than 1,500+ international scholars interested in sustainability transitions. Sustainability transitions are long-term transformation processes of established industries, socio-technical systems and societies to more sustainable...
An organization that envisions an investment universe where a shared understanding of companies’ sustainability performance enables companies and investors to make informed decisions that drive improved sustainability outcomes and thereby...
The Millennium Project
An independent non-profit “global participatory think tank” of futurists, scholars, business planners, and policy makers” that collects and assesses judgments on 15 Global Challenges, presented in its bi-annual State of...
Corruption is a major barrier to security and sustainability. This global movement shares one vision: a world in which government, business, civil society and the daily lives of people are...
The "leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system, and serves as...
SDSN seeks to mobilize scientific and technical expertise from academia, civil society, and the private sector in support of sustainable development problem-solving at local, national, and global scales.  The network’s...
A platform associating the UN and the financial sector globally “to bring about systemic change in finance to support a sustainable world”. Over 200 members have signed the Statement of...
The USGCRP is "mandated by Congress to coordinate Federal research and investments in understanding the forces shaping the global environment, both human and natural, and their impacts on society." It...
WAVES is a global partnership launched in Nagoya, Japan, aiming to promote “genuine green growth and long-term advances in wealth and human well-being.” It is a global coalition of UN...
Wilson Center
Also known as the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Looks into issues like environmental security and peacebuilding, sustainable development and climate resilience, as well as population and environmental dynamic....
Also known as the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the World Bank has 188 Member Countries. It is a "unique global partnership", with "five institutions working for sustainable...
The economic forum is committed "to improving the state of the world by engaging business, political, academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas.” Best-known...
WWF
It's one of the “world’s leading conservation organizations,” best known for its panda logo. Their mission is to “conserve nature and reduce the most pressing threats to the diversity of...