ICSU mobilises knowledge and resources of the international scientific community to strengthen international science for the benefit of society.

ICSU’s activities are organised into a number of themes. Historically the Council has had a strong commitment to safeguard the freedom and responsibilities of scientists. For more than three decades it has been involved in sponsoring research programmes on global environmental change which have broken new ground in our understanding of the Earth system and this has driven its role in the policy domain, to ensure that policymakers at the international level are acting on the basis of the latest and best evidence.

Another area of work is policy for science, which relates to agenda setting for the scientific community. For all of these areas, ICSU is able to mobilise its global network of scientists across a range of disciplines to conduct international research projects and programmes, to advocate for evidence-based decision making at the national and international level, to convene expertise for specific United Nations process such as sustainable development and to advocate for research funding priorities around areas of international concern. Much of this work is carried out in partnership with ICSU’s existing constituents – its membership, its inter-disciplinary bodies – and implemented at the regional level via our Regional Offices.