The vision of ISD is to "Contribute towards an Ethiopia that is free from hunger and poverty by combining the best in modern and traditional knowledge."
Ecilogicalagriculture team
Who we are

ISD's Background

The Institute for Sustainable Development (ISD) is a registered Ethiopian residents’
civil society organization established in 1996 by Dr. Tewolde Berhan Gebre Egziabher and his wife, Sue Edwards following a workshop held in Mekelle, the capital of Tigray Region, in May 1995. Read more


Objectives of ISD

The objectives of ISD are to:

Carry out research to speed up development by bringing together the best in traditional knowledge and modern science.


Promote activities focused on the link between cultural diversity and biodiversity, also called bio-cultural diversity, with the youth to raise the appreciation of indigenous knowledge for sustainable livelihoods and a better future.


Support and organize meetings and exchange visits which promote dialogue and information exchange on issues related to biodiversity, sustainable development and the assertion of the livelihood rights of the poor majority of the South.


Publish books, manuals and other information materials on biodiversity, natural resources, indigenous knowledge and related issues to provide technical information for development for workers and educators at all levels and


Share information through print and electronic media to create awareness among development workers in government and the public at large on issues that promote the sustainable uses


The ethical values of ISD

Respect the knowledge, practices and cultures of local communities with regard to natural resources management, and learn from them


Believe in equity and solidarity.


Provide an equal employment opportunity regarding sex, religion.


political outlook and physical condition.


Respect the laws and regulations of the country.


Use transparency and accountability in all relationships.


Respect each other and work together.


Make effective and efficient use of resources and give high commitment to the organization and its work; and


Believe in and practice comprehensive participation with all stakeholders.


Meet the staff



Operational focus

The programme activities of ISD’s work is focused on the following thematic areas:


1. Sustainable community development programme

This is the very first of the ISD programmes with the objective of Promoting ecological organic agriculture with farmers, local extension personnel (development agents and experts), local administrators and regional officers to carry out and document on-farm research to improve productivity, particularly for:


Making and using compost, including the use of bioslurry from biogas digesters, and other forms of organic fertilizer;


The system of crop intensification (SCI) for better field management of crops through row ‘planting with space’;


Integrated pest management (IPM) particularly for controlling stem borer pests and parasitic weeds, such as through the ‘push-pull’ system, and use of other biological pest and disease control methods;


Agroforestry for livelihood diversification using trees to produce fruits, animal forage and other useful products;


Innovative social and technical methods for raising productivity and rehabilitating the environment;


Documenting and publishing manuals in English and the main languages of Ethiopia to promote improved technologies and good practices as well as using digital media to share information as widely as possible; and


Developing value chains and local markets for producers of organic products to be linked with consumers.


2. Youth groups capacity development programme

This is the biggest of the ISD programmes in terms of budget and is guided by
the following objective:

Working with school environment clubs and youth groups for them to grow and market organically produced agricultural products to improve their nutrition, earn an income, and provide social and environmental services for their local communities.


The programme activities of Youth capacity development programme are organized to focus in two areas:


1. In school/Cultural biodiversity, i.e. support to school environmental clubs
2. Out-of-school Youth, i.e. support to small groups of youth for their
“environmentally-based income generating and/or service giving




ISD Strategic Plan 2011-2015 .pdf

Who we work with

ISD works incolaboration with local and international organizations to meet its goal and ISD's source of funding is grants from national and international donors. As of January 2011, ISD's donors and partners included the following:

The Founders

ISD was founded in 1996 when Dr. Tewolde Berhan Gebre Egziabher and his wife, Sue Edwards, were asked by the Ethiopian Government to come up with alternatives for expensive external inputs, particularly chemical fertilizers, in order for smallholder farmers to make their land productive. Read more



Our Strategic Plan


ISD in the next five year strategic plan period will achieve the following programmatic and organizational objectives.

Read more



Addis Ababa office

P.O.Box 171,Code 1110

Addis Ababa,Ethiopia

Tel:- +251-116-186774

Fax:- +251-116-186769


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