About the IPMG

The Indigenous Peoples’ Major Group for Sustainable Development

Indigenous peoples have been engaging in relevant processes on sustainable development since the Earth Summit (Rio Conference) in 1992. The main advocacy agenda of indigenous peoples in these processes are the respect, protection and fulfillment of the rights of indigenous peoples as affirmed by the UN Declaration on the Rights of indigenous Peoples; as well as the full and effective participation of indigenous peoples in the development, implementation, monitoring and review process of actions plans and programmes on sustainable development at all levels. 

The main mechanism of engagement is the Indigenous Peoples Major Group (IPMG) which is a forum for coordination and planning.

The IPMG sustained its engagement in the Post-2015 Development Agenda. This was coordinated officially by two Organizing Partners (OPs) accredited by UNDESA as part of the nine recognized Major Groups that can officially participate in the SDG processes at the global level.

These organizations are Tebtebba Foundation (Indigenous Peoples International Centre for Policy Research and Education) and the International Indian Treaty Council (IITC), both of which also act as the facilitators/co-convenors. The IPMG maintains a global list-serve and the regional OP focal points.

Information sharing, feedback and recommendations are forwarded to the global IP-OPs for consideration on proposals and position papers submitted by the IPMG to the Sustainable Development Goals and the Post-2015 Development Agenda processes.

After a two-year process of consultations and negotiations, the UN General Assembly adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in 2015 with 17 Goals and 169 Targets.

Indigenous peoples are mentioned six times in the 2030 Agenda, and most of the goals and targets are relevant for indigenous peoples.  

The implementation of the 2030 Agenda at the national, regional and global levels is very critical for indigenous peoples.  It provides opportunities, as well as threats for the respect, recognition and protection of indigenous peoples, as well as in pursuing their self-determined development. The sustained engagement of indigenous peoples to the 2030 Agenda at all levels is therefore important for indigenous peoples to not be “left behind.”

Based on the above, it is crucial to strengthen the Indigenous Peoples Major Group (IPMG) as the main mechanism for coordination and concerted efforts to advance the rights and development priorities of indigenous peoples at all levels.

In this context, the IPMG in April 2017 formally established the Global Coordinating Committee (GCC) as the mechanism for global coordination, composed of seven regional focal organizations with designated focal persons and representatives of indigenous women and youth and the two convenors of the IPMG. It has also reached out to indigenous peoples’ organizations to become as affiliate members of the IPMG. As of June 2017 there are 50 affiliate members.

In addition to this, the IMPG also established its Technical Secretariat to support the work and programme implementation of the IPMG, including in ensuring sustained communication and information sharing to indigenous organizations across the globe. 

The two co-facilitators/co-convenors of the IPMG are Ms. Joan Carling for Tebtebba and Roberto Borrero of the International Indian Treaty Council. They are responsible in coordinating with the UN Division on Sustainable Development, the IPMG Global Coordinating Committee, other global Majors Groups, as well as in developing partnerships and collaboration with other institutions.

The co-convenors also take the lead in organizing and coordinating the participation and engagement of indigenous peoples in global processes relating to the 2030 Agenda, such as the annual High Level Political Forum (HLPF) as the global review process of the 2030 Agenda. 


Janene Yazzie - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Joan Carling - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Detailed functions and roles of co-facilitators and co-convenors

Although the focus of the IPMG is on global engagements relating to sustainable development, it endeavors to generate all forms of solidarity support and assistance for indigenous peoples at the national level in relation to sustainable development. These include awareness-raising, capacity building, support for lobby, advocacy and community mobilizations, among others.

The GCC is set to develop the IPMG Strategic plan in July 2017 during the High-Level Political Forum of the 2030 Agenda.

The IPMG has several partner-organizations and institutions. It seeks to broaden this further, based on the principles of solidarity, respect for human rights and protection and fulfillment of indigenous peoples rights and aspirations; and support to indigenous peoples’ initiatives for self-determined development among others.



This initiative is being implemented with funding by the European Union.