The Rio+20 Conference

At the Rio+20 Conference, world leaders, along with thousands of participants from governments, the private sector, NGOs and other groups, will come together to shape how we can reduce poverty, advance social equity and ensure environmental protection on an ever more crowded planet to get to the future we want.


The History of Sustainable Development in the United Nations

In 1972, the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment held in Stockholm brought the industrialized and developing nations together to delineate the ‘rights’ of the human family to a healthy and productive environment. The recognition to revitalize humanity’s connection with Nature, led to the creation of global institutions within the UN system.  more[...]  login_required

Commenting the Outcomes
  • Make Rio+20 Count

    The UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) provides an exceptional opportunity for swift policy action to accelerate and scale business solutions so 9 billion people can live well and within the limits of one planet by 2050. The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) today pressed governments to overcome their differences and to take decisive action now.  more[...]  login_required

    The Author
  • A Future We Want? Lessons of Rio+20

    Dr. Elmer Lenzen

    It was the absence of disputes that probably provoked the biggest dispute: The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20 summit) ended with a concordant final resolution of 190 participating countries. The outcome document, titled “The Future We Want,” had already been published and enacted by the beginning of the conference, which led to controversies and the disappointment of many – mainly nongovernmental – participants. However, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called the summit a success: “Rio+20 has given us a solid platform to build on. And it has given us the tools to build with. The work starts now.”  more[...]  login_required

    The Author
    Dr. Elmer Lenzen
  • Recapping Rio+20 - Highlights and takeaways for business leaders


    In June, several senior leaders and practitioners from Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited and its member firms attended Rio+20 (formally called the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development), the UN Global Compact's Corporate Sustainability Forum, Business Action for Sustainable Development 2012's Business Day, and various side meetings for business and civil society.  more[...]  login_required

    The Author

Rio+20 Corporate Sustainability Forum

By United Nations Global Compact (UNGC)

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon accepted the full set of outcomes from the Rio+20 Corporate Sustainability Forum, including a listing of more than 200 business commitments. The Forum brought together 2,700 business leaders, investors, academics, government officials, environmentalists, and grassroots activists.  more[...]  login_required


Road to Rio

Rio-Jean Jaques/Fotolia

Results and Observations from the Official and Civil Society Preparatory Processes

By Felix Dodds (Stakeholder Forum )

Stakeholders have been working on Rio+20 since the Group of 77 developing countries tabled the original resolution for the summit on November 4, 2008. To help in that process, the Stakeholder Forum launched the website on January 1, 2009.  more[...]  login_required

Rio+20 Logo

Institutional Challenges for a Green Economy

By Prof. Dr. Adil Najam (Lahore University of Management Sciences - LUMS), Dr Henrik Selin (Boston University)

What if the world could actualize its finest visions of a “green economy”? What sorts of institutions would we need to manage it? What sorts of institutional innovations will lead us to such a destination? Those are some of the questions that should be at the forefront of our thinking as we think about what Rio+20 can achieve.  more[...]  login_required


Two Decades of UN Earth Summits

By Judith Bomholt

The United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) was a milestone in international environmental policy when it took place in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. The main incentive for this conference was the Brundtland Report that had been published by the World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED) in 1987.  more[...]  login_required


The Rio+20 Topics

By Judith Bomholt

Twenty years after the first international Conference on Environment and Development was held there, the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) has again taken place in Rio de Janeiro. Over 50,000 participants took part what is known as the Rio +20 Conference, including more than 100 world leaders and heads of government. This new conference should ensure continued political commitment to sustainable development, help to take stock of previous advances, and reveal the gaps in sustainability involvement.  more[...]  login_required

  • Andrei Galaev

    Andrei Galaev, Sakhalin Energy Investment Company Ltd.

    Decisions made at global conferences have great effects on CSR and sustainable development progress and concept advancement. I believe that the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development will be the next milestone in international efforts to accelerate progress toward achieving sustainable development globally. It is an opportunity for participants to honestly and openly discuss what has been achieved in the last 20 years since Agenda 21 at the Earth Summit in Rio; what the biggest challenges and issues have been; and whether governments, business, the UN system, and other parties have managed to address them effectively.  more[...]  login_required

    The Author
    Andrei Galaev, Sakhalin Energy Investment Company Ltd. 
  • Douglas Tompkins

    Douglas Tompkins

    The Rio+20 conference in June 2012 has been generating concern and a lack of confidence on the part of many environmentalists and conservationists I know and work with. Although the first Rio conference ignited hopes for millions and was in fact an historical launching point for united government action on environmental issues, it still fell far short of expectations. Those with optimistic visions – and what I consider to be often Pollyanna characterizations of these unwieldy and multination world conferences – perhaps can see it in a positive light. One hears all the excuses that this or that was better than nothing, or that “perfection is the enemy of the good” and similar aphorisms.  more[...]  login_required

    The Author
    Douglas Tompkins
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