Promoting action to build resilient and sustainable island communities

About our Global Island Partnership

What The Partnership Does

Led by the Presidents of Palau, Seychelles and the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Prime Minister of Grenada and Premier of the British Virgin Islands, our mission is to promote action to build resilient and sustainable island communities by inspiring leadership, catalyzing commitments and facilitating collaboration for all islands.

How We Achieve Our Mission

  • We mobilize high level political will for island commitments and action on resilience and sustainability.

  • We build and strengthen partnerships that implement global resilience, conservation & sustainability goals on islands, especially the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

  • We help our members strategize to bring global attention to and support for island solutions and initiatives, especially through major international meetings & conferences.


Since launch in 2006, the Partnership has engaged high-level leaders to catalyze US$150 million for island action and assisted 35+ countries to launch or strengthen major sustainable island commitments. We now have more than 30 members and 37 friends as part of our island resilience movement. See our Impact Dashboard:


We welcome any interested individual, country or organization interested in supporting its mission to apply to become a Global Island Partnership Member or Friend. Learn more here:


Current Members Membership Application Form Impact Dashboard Case Study Deck

2030 Strategy


To promote action to build resilient and sustainable island communities by inspiring leadership, catalyzing commitments and facilitating collaboration for all islands


  • Equality - all members are equal regardless of size, political status, sector or role

  • Trust - we are transparent in our interactions and always assume good intent

  • Collaborative - we are open, inclusive and respectful in approach

  • Solution-focused - we seek impact through all our actions

2030 Goals

  • Inspire leadership and catalyze commitments to address critical island issues

  • Accelerate implementation of sustainable island commitments

  • Ensure a sustainable partnership to achieve 2030 Strategy

2020 Priorities

  1. Ensure GLISPA is a financially sustainable partnership to achieve its 2030 Strategy

  2. Launch one new high-level and visionary sustainable island commitment each year

  3. Accelerate implementation of sustainable island commitments launched and strengthened through GLISPA

  4. Kick start one high impact demonstration activity from each of: 

    • Innovative financing for a blue/green economy in islands

    • Sustainable Coastal Fisheries

    • Building Resilience (Ecosystem Based Adaptation/Disaster Risk Reduction

How We Work

The GLISPA 2030 Strategy is guided by a Board and Council of dedicated island champions and supporters that create a unique network able to mobilize significant action. In 2016, an annual fee was introduced to become a member of the Partnership and join the Board or Council. The Board is responsible for matters on governance, membership, sustainability and strategy implementation matters. The Council meets biennially to guide strategy and priority setting. The Partnership employs a Coordination Team (see Bios) to support the day to day functions of the partnership. The Team includes: 

Kate Brown, Executive Director, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Vacant, Operations Manager

Jenny Hawes, Support, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Görkem Hayta, Communications, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Importance of Islands

  • Earth's 175,000 islands are home to more than 600 million inhabitants

  • Islands and their oceans represent one sixth of Earth's total area

  • Islands support many of the most unique and isolated natural systems including more than half the world's marine biodiversity

    • 7 of the world's 10 coral reef hotspots and

    • 10 of the 34 richest areas of biodiversity in the world

    • 64% of recorded extinctions are on islands

  • Over two thirds of the world's countries include islands

Islands are unique, diverse and vulnerable.  They are important early indicators of the common challenges facing our global community. Island communities feel the impacts from natural disasters, climate change, overconsumption and other global changes more intensely, as these changes jeopardize their food, water, health and economic security.  Today, many islands are demonstrating global leadership and rapid progress in addressing these challenges and inspiring others around the world.

Island Biodiversity Source: SIDS in Numbers - UNOHRLLS Report 2015

Infographic: SIDS in Numbers, UNOHRLLS. 2015. 

Programme of Work on Island Biodiversity

To significantly reduce the loss biodiversity on islands, the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) adopted the programme of work on island biodiversity (PoWIB) at the eight meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP-8) in 2006 (decision viii/1). The PoWIB applies to island Parties and Parties with islands and has been critical to bringing global attention to the specific challenges and vulnerabilities faced by islands, particularly Small Island Developing States (SIDS). It is based on the reality that healthy ecosystems underpin sustainable livelihoods, health and poverty eradication.

The Partnership responds directly to paragraph 16 of decision VIII/1, which "encourages Parties to establish national, sub-regional, regional and international island partnerships that bring Governments and civil society organizations together to increase political, financial and technical support to accelerate the implementation of the programme of work on island biodiversity".

The Partnership has supported the implementation of the Convention by supporting the CBD Secretariat to coordinate successful collaboration between the parties to showcase their biodiversity achievements, disseminate new projects and initiatives, and highlight the ongoing vulnerabilities and challenges. In 2008, during CBD COP-8 the Partnership was recognized as one of the mechanisms to implement the island biodiversity programme of work (decision ix/21)