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About Major Groups Sectors

Broad public participation in implementation is a fundamental prerequisite of sustainable development. Agenda 21 recognizes nine major groups of civil society, and stipulates the need for new forms of participation at all levels to enable a broad-based engagement of all economic and social sectors in making sustainable development happen.

This may include, but is not limited to, participation in identifying problems, designing and applying solutions, and monitoring results, as well as having access to information on all types of sustainable development issues and activities.

Since the creation of the UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) in 1992, major groups have been given important roles to play as partners in sustainable development. The CSD meetings have provided innovative spaces for the participation of non-governmental actors with the overall purpose of informing decisions related to sustainable development taken by Member States at the CSD.

Major groups continue to infuse the CSD with new ideas, information and present challenges that enrich the inter-governmental debate. Major groups participate in interactive dialogues, develop coordinated statements for each sector; and lobby for particular initiatives that they feel should be supported. They also contribute significantly to partnerships for sustainable development and related activates.

Participation by non-governmental actors in the CSD is subject to the rules of participation of the UN Economic and Social Council and coordinate through the Organising Partners.