Sustainable Development Goals

Main SDG introduction

World leaders adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at a historic UN conference in September 2015. The SDGs call for action by all countries to promote prosperity while protecting the planet, thereby recognizing that ending poverty must go hand-in-hand with strategies to build economic growth, address social needs, tackle climate change and ensure environmental sustainability.

It is becoming increasingly clear that the sustainable management of productive forests in the tropics, and a sustainable tropical timber trade, can help in meeting future wood demand and achieving the SDGs. ITTO is empowered to promote the expansion of international tropical timber trade from legal and sustainable sources. It is perfectly placed, therefore, to assist countries in their efforts towards all the SDGs, especially SDG 1 (“No poverty”), SDG 12 (“Responsible consumption and production”), SDG 13 (“Climate action”) and SDG 15 (“Life on land”). Some of the ways it is doing this are outlined below.

Select one or multiple SDGs below to see ITTO’s contributions towards achieving them.

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Photo: G. Sanchez-Vigil

Forests can be places of learning about the importance of nature in our lives. Education and training on forest management is also crucial to ensure forest sustainability and productivity into the future.


  • Builds human resource capacity and strengthens professional expertise in tropical forestry through its Fellowship Programme.
  • Supports projects aimed at strengthening forest-related education institutions.
  • Publishes the quarterly newsletter, Tropical Forest Update, to promote understanding on the conservation and sustainable use of tropical forests.
  • Raises awareness through lectures in its host country, Japan, of the value of tropical forests. Many ITTO-funded projects in the tropics have also run awareness-raising campaigns.
  • Supports events related to forest education, including for children.
  • Works with members of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests to foster forest education through the creation of a global forest education platform.

Related ITTO contributions for the selected Sustainable Development Goal(s)
(6 results found)


ITTO and IUFRO release learning modules to encourage forest landscape restoration

Quality education Sustainable cities and communities Climate action Life on land Partnerships for the goals
ITTO and the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) have released a free series of learning modules for high-school and university students to guide further understanding on forest landscape restoration (FLR). More

Forest education needs strengthening to meet global challenges—survey

Quality education Climate action Life on land
Forest education at all levels—from primary schools to universities—is insufficient in many countries, according to the results of a global survey led by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), ITTO and the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO), with the support of other international and regional partners. More

ITTO launches e-course on legal, sustainable timber supply chains

Quality education Industry, innovation and infrastructure Responsible production and consumption Life on land
A free online learning course launched by ITTO as part of a global effort to improve forest education will assist entrepreneurs, forestry professionals, government officials and students in understanding legal and sustainable timber supply chains, thereby supporting businesses to meet market requirements for legality and sustainability and improve their forest practices. More

International Conference on Forest Education kicks off

Quality education Climate action Life on land
The International Conference on Forest Education held in June 2021 is a three-day event to shine a light on the important role forest education plays in maximizing the contributions of forests and trees to the Sustainable Development Goals and in overcoming the growing disconnection between people, nature and forests. More

Advancing forestry education in the Congo Basin

Quality education Gender equality Industry, innovation and infrastructure
Mastering forestry to meet the needs of sustainable development is an increasingly complex task. An ITTO study in the Congo Basin concluded there was insufficient human capacity there to ensure sustainable forestry. A subregional ITTO project encompassing seven education institutions in five countries sought to address this and contribute to Sustainable Development Goal 4 ("quality education"). More

When micro businesses have macro impact

No poverty Quality education Gender equality Decent work and economic growth Industry, innovation and infrastructure Sustainable cities and communities Responsible consumption and production
In many countries, micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) are the largest collective source of employment, and they are vital for national economies. In Guatemala, it is a government priority to support MSMEs and, as part of this, an ITTO project known as the Forest MSME Management Project encouraged informal businesses to become part of the country’s formal economy. More