IUCN World Parks Congress in Sydney, Australia in November 2014 and the Outcome: the Promise of Sydney

By Magdalena A K Muir

The IUCN World Parks Congress, which takes place once a decade, was held in Sydney, Australia, in November 2014.  Over 6000 participants from more than 170 countries took part.  This Congress was a turning point for the marine community and marine protected areas (MPAs). There were 226 ocean and ocean-related sessions and numerous other marine-focused events.  Marine publications, technologies tools and approaches were launched.  Most significantly, MPAs were addressed in all the plenaries and in the more general thematic sessions, and have now been mainstreamed.

Captured from the thinking of governments, international organisations, communities, civil society leaders and indigenous peoples, the four pillars of the Promise of Sydney are the collective outcomes of the IUCN World Parks Congress.  These pillars – a core Vision for the future, a set of Innovative Approaches to solve the world’s  marine challenges, commitments to advancing change for people and MPAs, and solutions that illustrate this change is within reach.

All the measures contained in the IUCN World Parks Congress’ Promise of Sydney represent the next decade’s direction and blueprint for marine protection.

Further information:

IUCN World Parks Congress 2014


Promise of Sydney ; Vision



Promise of Sydney: Innovative Approaches for Change


Promise of Sydney:Commitments to Action


Promise of Sydney: Inspiring Protected Areas Solutions


 CCF Marine Roundtable discussion on the World Parks Congress. Thurs Feb 5th 5.20-6.30pm. There will be a brief overview of some the main marine outcomes and recommendations from the Congress including:Mark Spalding – controversial targets, and roles of MPAs in ecosystem management; Hannah Thomas – progress in protecting the High Seas, and other contributions from UNEP-WCMC; and Sue Wells – ensuring MPAs are effectively managed – assessments and incentives. ocation: The talk will be in HB101 in the William Hardy Building, Downing Site, off Downing Street, Cambridge. Please arrive by 5:20 as the doors lock automatically at 5:30. Map here  https://map.cam.ac.uk/Sir+William+Hardy+Building#52.201656,0.123116,18