The core underlying belief behind the concept of sustainable development is that future generations have as much of a claim over the earth and its resources as present generations do. While this concept of trans-generational equity usually refers to the unborn millions who will inherit this planet, the pace of environmental degradation and exploitation of natural resources have reached such a pace that there is a danger that many of the youth today would not be able to enjoy the same opportunities we do today.  Therefore, as those who, in the future, will bear the consequences of our actions today the youth must have an important voice in how development and policy planning take place.

However, this important stakeholder is often not given any voice. The 3rd Indian Himalayan Youth Summit will bring together youth from across all Indian Himalayan states to voice and share their concerns, priorities suggestions. While it shall be facilitated by the IMI with SDFU and other partners, the event will be driven by the youth through a process of self-selected responsibilities and coordinated leadership.


The conference will have participation of youth from all the 10 states, Union territory of Ladakh, Kashmir and the 2 hill districts of West Bengal that constitute the IHR and the sessions will strive to:

  • Develop a shared understanding of sustainable development from the perspective of youth in the Himalayas.
  • Identify and deliberate upon the specific challenges and aspirations – especially in the post-COVID19 scenario – of youth from mountain states.
  • Collectively formulate recommendations and ways forward for the development of the Indian Himalayan region.
  • The outputs this youth programme would feed into IMI’s Sustainable Mountain Development Summit

The Structure

The online summit will be delivered in a workshop mode through a series of plenary sessions, panel discussions, and break-away groups. Each session will be designed to ensure maximum participation and facilitated to ensure that the voices from each state is heard, documented, and analysed.

Input session on Mindfulness

This special session will be conducted by IMI institutional member, LEAD India (www.leadindia.org). LEAD (Leadership for Environment and Development) is a unique, live, ever growing, national and international network of professionals, known as 'fellows' committed to development that is environmentally sustainable, socially equitable and economically viable. With over 3000+ fellows, LEAD’s purpose is to create leaders who become the catalyst for change.

Plenary session will be the Inauguration Session where inputs from experts, development strategists and youth representatives will share their general concerns and issues. This session will set the overall tone for the deliberations during the various sessions of the Youth Summit.

Breakaway thematic sessions on selected themes.

Each thematic session will start with a brief input by a select speaker who will give a broad understanding about the Sector and how it impacts development in context of Mountains. This input will be followed by group discussions around key issues where participants will be expected to share their perspectives, priorities, and recommendations for policy makers. If need be, several of break-away groups will be formed even within themes. Unlike other formats, there will be no subject specialist to tell the youth what is happening but the youth will be asked to reflect on what’s happening and to deliberate on their experiences and come up with collective recommendations.


Thematic groups will all come together and present their recommendations during the Valediction Session so as to share and seek inputs from participants. The plenary will debate and adopt the recommendations/Declaration and after finalization by a Youth Drafting Team present it during the Opening Plenary of the 9th Sustainable Mountain Development Summit (SMDS).

Thematic Issues

Youth from every member state have been asked to self-organise with the help of state chapters. The themes selected by the youth for the summit are Skills and Entrepreneurship; Sustainable Resource Management; Migration, Politics and Policy; Sustainable Development Goals and Sustainable Tourism. The cross-cutting theme shall be the Post COVID-19 scenario – Challenges and Opportunities.

NEW Youth Summit Agenda