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International Conference on Population and Development

International Conference on Population and Development

What is ICPD?

The International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) was held in Cairo, 1994. It was a milestone in the history of population and development. The result was an impressive and ambitious set of goals for improving sexual health and reproductive rights all over the world.

These goals are known as the ICPD Programme of Action. Its focus is wider than sexual and reproductive health. It links the interrelationships between population, sustained economic growth, health, education, economic status and empowerment of women. Remarkably, it was the first time world leaders agreed to invest in people, not demographic targets. 179 countries committed to implement this by 2015. It will be reviewed in 2014. IPPF is convening civil society.

At ICPD+5 the review showed that the Programme of Action has resulted in significant changes to health policies in many countries. By 2004 evidence from the previous 10 years indicated that with adequate funding the Programme of Action could save lives.

2012: Global survey

The global survey was the largest assessment the Programme of Action ever conducted. Once compiled, it will assess the implementation of ICPD plan within each country. It will also identify challenges based on the changing needs of society. The survey aims to determine new implementations for countries and communities based on the vision of the ICPD

2013: conferences and thematic meetings

Governments from 5 regional economic commissions will review the evidence gathered in the global survey. They will negotiate an outcome document focussing on next steps. These regional conferences are:

  1. United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia/ League of Arab States (UNESCWA/LAS), 24- 26 June, Cairo
  2. United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), 1-2 July, Geneva
  3. United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (UNECLAC), 12-15 August, Montevideo
  4. United Nations Economic and Social Commission of Asia Pacific (UNESCAP), 16-20 September, Bangkok
  5. United Nations Economic Commission for Africa/ African Union (UNECA/ AU), 30 September- 4 Ocotber (new date) Addis Ababa

 In addition there will be a series of thematic conferences:

  • Youth – Indonesia, November 2012
  • Human rights – The Hague, July 7-9 
  • Women’s Health – Mexico, 30 September - 2 October
  • Monitoring and Indicators, China, 12- 14 November

 2014: review

  • The outcomes of all 2013 activities will feed into the Secretary General’s index report. UNFPA will review and accelerate the progress of the ICPD Programme of Action. It will then report to the UN Commission on Population and Development (CPD) in 2014.

 2015 and beyond

Alongside ICPD there are a number of concurrent policy processes:

The purpose of these is to identify where work still needs to be done to eliminate poverty and poor reproductive health. This will identify priorities for the next development framework. The ICPD is an opportunity to offer new evidence for why  sexual and reproductive health and rights is key to poverty elimination.


IPPF and civil society

IPPF has the role of ensuring that civil society is represented, able to influence and to hold governments accountable for commitments made.

Ahead of each of the regional population conferences IPPF is working with a diverse range of partners to convene a civil society forum. These include regional, youth, sexual and reproductive health, women’s and development networks. IPPF will use build networks and messages during the ICPD regional processes. These will bring the national and regional voices to the global policy processes around the ICPD and post 2015.

IPPF is helping to mobilize civil society with a funding facility: ICPD Small Grants. This is open for civil society organizations working at national or regional levels in South, East, and South East Asia, Africa including North Africa, and the Middle East, and Central Asia. The maximum grant amount for all grants is $9,500. For civil society organizations based in Central Asia it is $10,900. All grantees must provide 10% match funding. Multi- partner applications are welcome. The deadline for submissions is 4 August.