The launch of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014) marks the beginning of a worldwide movement which seeks to improve opportunities and quality in environment and sustainable development. The international community requires education sectors to reorient their activities towards sustainable development and to play a leading role in championing change.
Under this background, Mr. Wang Guangtao, Chairman of the Advisory Board of IESD, former Minister of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of PRC and Director of the Resources Conservation Committee of the 11th NPC, proposed to provide the platform for discussion and exchange upon major environmental problems for youth talents from different countries, enhance youth’s ability to deal with practical problems, and finally contribute to sustainable development of human society. International Student Conference on Environment and Sustainability(ISCES) is hosted by United Nations Environment Programme, Tongji University, Beijing Environment Foundation for Young Talents and Xinhua News Agency since 2011.
By the end of 2019, IESD has successfully held ISCES for nine years. Nearly two thousand and seven hundred international students from more than 50 countries gathered on the World Environment Day in Tongji, focusing on different themes of environment and sustainable development, which makes ISCES one of the most influential youth summit on environment and sustainability in the world. Discussions upon those themes greatly promoted information sharing of environmental and sustainable development, improved students' ability to analyze and solve problems, and aimed to nurture future global leaders.