Sydney Opera House. Photo World Park Congress
@Copyright IUCN
Photo: Tracy Ryan
@Copyright IUCN
@Copyright IUCN

The IUCN World Parks Congress and The Promise of Sydney

The main outputs from the World Parks, the Promise of Sydney, are online! 

The IUCN World Parks Congress takes place approximately once every ten years. The IUCN World Parks Congress is the world’s premier global forum for setting the agenda for protected areas. Since 1962, previous Congresses have had a significant impact in assisting national governments to create new protected areas, and direct more resources towards biodiversity conservation.

The sixth IUCN World Congress on Protected Areas, or World Parks Congress (WPC), convened in Sydney, Australia, from 12-19 November 2014. More than 5,000 participants attended the meeting, representing governments and public agencies, international organisations, the private sector, academic and research institutions, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and community and indigenous organisations. IUCN organises the Congress once each decade to take stock of the state of protected areas (PAs) worldwide, appraise progress and setbacks, and define the agenda for PAs for the next decade. The theme of the IUCN World Parks Congress 2014 was “Parks, people, planet: inspiring solutions.”

During the eight days of plenary and workshop sessions, side events and field trips, participants addressed ways to: reach conservation goals; respond to climate change; improve health and well-being; support human life; reconcile different development challenges; enhance diversity and quality of governance; respect indigenous and traditional knowledge culture; and inspire a new generation to prioritise conservation. In addition to these, policymakers, practitioners, CEOs, activists and indigenous leaders focused on strategic issues related to PAs, conservation and sustainable development in a series of seven moderated public debates, termed “World Leaders’ Dialogues.”

The principal outcome document of the IUCN World Parks Congress 2014, the Promise of Sydney, captures the main outcomes of the Congress and started an ongoing dialogue sharing solutions. The objective of the Promise of Sydney is to demonstrate that PAs are one of the best investments people can make for the future of their planet and themselves, and also accelerate implementation of innovative approaches to ensure that these investments are successful.

This site collects the meetings and events that took place during the IUCN World Parks Congress 2014. Get involved and be part of a decade of change!