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Major Groups

Major Groups logo"One of the fundamental prerequisites for the achievement of sustainable development is broad public participation in decision-making"

Agenda 21, Chapter 23

About Major Groups

Since the creation of the CSD in 1992, civil society organisations, including business and industry, have been represented by nine major group sectors (MG) and have been given important and increasing 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 the Commission’s decision-making processes.

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 MG sector, and lobby for particular initiatives that they feel should be supported. They also contribute significantly to partnerships for sustainable development and related activities.

Participation by non-governmental actors in the CSD is subject to the rules of participation of the UN Economic and Social Council and it is coordinated through sector specific Organising Partners (OP).

About the CSD Major Groups Programme

The Major Groups Programme of the Division for Sustainable Development is responsible for engaging and liaising with major groups sectors and for enhancing your participation in the work of CSD and in its intersessional processes.

  • We disseminate CSD-related information to major groups networks.
  • We issue annual guidelines for the participation of major groups and make them available on-line.
  • We consult with major groups organizations and research and analyze trends on the participation of major groups.
  • We provide timely input when opportunities for participation and for providing analytical input to official reports arise
  • We receive extra budgetary funds from donors, mainly to support the participation of major groups from developing countries and countries with economies in transition. These limited funds are allocated to representatives identified in close consultation with the Organizing Partners.
  • We have access to limited financial resources, and can receive additional ones, to support major groups–related work, including research and publications.