Sustainable Development Networking Programme - India

a gateway to information on
environment and
sustainable development

a joint programme of the United Nations Development Programme, the International Development Research Centre, Canada and the Ministry of Environment & Forests (India).


Over the last decade, concern about environment and development have become a central feature of development ideologies and debates in developing and industrialised countries. People and nations are beginning to realise that there is a need to play a more pro-active role in the development process. Information and knowledge sharing becomes a key requirement to this process and each country and community must address this challenge in its own way, taking into account the many ways in which knowledge is acquired, adapted and disseminated.

Sustainable Development Networks

The concept of global information networks evolved during the preparatory sessions for the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) or the Earth Summit in 1992, to encourage deliberate sharing of information and expertise between and within nations to ensure a sustainable future for the planet. Towards the end of the Earth Summit, these global networks or Sustainable Development Networks as they came to be known became a catalytic initiative to implement the Capacity 21 programme of the United nations Development Programme to fulfill the resolutions made at the conference.

Sustainable Development Networking Programme was launched in 12 countries in 1992, and is today operational in over 80 developing countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America.


Sustainable Development Networking Programme (India) exists to facilitate the process of the sustainable development by disseminating solutions, promoting good practices and strengthening democratic processes through a mechanism of information exchange between NGOs, government and UN bodies, research organisations, business establishments and sections of the civil society.

Gateway to Information

SDNP-India has created a gateway to information on environment and sustainable development as a planned step to achieve the programme vision. The gateway hosted at provides updates on latest sustainable development related global events, access to online national and international databases and libraries, references to case studies, publications and articles, and links to all major developmental organisations. Information relevant to India is available on over 25 subject areas ranging from agriculture to climate change to health and human rights. The site is extensively cross-linked with over 10000 resources on the web.

How does SDNP function?

SDNP-India works in collaboration with the Environmental Information System (ENVIS) of the Ministry of Environment & Forests (India) to gain access to information on specialised issues relating to the environment. It is in the process of creating its own partner nodes which would generate and collate information on subject areas relating to sustainable development. The information compiled from the SDNP partner nodes would be hosted on the SDNP website to make it available in the public domain. SDNP aims to make use of hybrid technologies and generic Indian languages to disseminate information available with it.

Countries and international organisations should review and strengthen information systems and services in sectors related to sustainable development. Special emphasis should be focussed on the transformation of existing information into forms more useful for decision making and on targeting information on different user groups.

Information for Decision-Making
Agenda-21 Chapter 40 of the Earth Charter

Sustainable DevelopmentNetworking Programme (India) is jointly funded by the United Nations Development Programme, the International Development Research Centre, Canada and the Government of India. The Programme id hosted by the Ministry of Environment and Forests.

Broad Activities

Building Bridges

An initiative to keep track of development issues through scanning of newspapers and websites and sending them to users everyday over e-mail.

Opportunities Digest

A popular service which advertises and keeps track of national and international job opportunities in the development field.

Query Desk Service

SDNP makes use of its centralised resources and the support of ENVIS and its partner organisations to answer individual queries on environment and sustainable development.


A pioneering concept to enable oraganisations and individuals put research papers and publications on-line on the internet.

Web-space to Organisations

SDNP-India provides web-space on its servers to give a catalytic start to developmental organisations working to have their own website.

Event Reporting Service (ERS)

SDNP-India has in the pipeline a "for hire" reporting service to highlight the outcomes of key conferences and make them widely available through objective and immediate coverage to target groups worldwide.

For information:

Mr. Harjit Singh
Senior Advisor and Director (SDNP)
Ministry of Environment & Forests
1023, Paryavaran Bhawan
CGO Complex Lodi Road
New Delhi, INDIA 
Phone: +91 11 436 4687, 436 2140
Fax: +91 11 436 1147,
mirror site: