Strategy 2017-2021

Geology for Global Development (GfGD) is a registered charity. Here we present a summary of our strategy (2017-21), with the full document available to download here. We have also launched a crowdfund campaign to build a strategy implementation fund.

Our Purpose

GfGD exists to champion the role of geology in sustainable development, mobilising and reshaping the geology community to help deliver the UN Sustainable Development Goals (2015–2030).

Our Vision

We see a world where:
  • Every geologist is equipped with the skills and understanding required to make a positive contribution to sustainable development.
  • The geology community is actively engaged in the design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of international development activities.
  • Organisations, governments and individuals have equal access to, and an understanding of, the geological science required to ensure sustainable development.

Our Values

The values that underpin all aspects of our work are helpfully articulated by the Cape Town Statement of Geoethics.

Strategic Objectives

In 2015, the international community agreed the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These goals aim to eradicate global poverty, promote sustainable consumption patterns, and facilitate sustained and inclusive economic growth, social development and environmental protection. Geology can play a vital role in addressing these challenges, but that requires enhanced knowledge, new skills, and strengthened links across charities, governmental bodies, and the academic and industrial geology community. 

In this context, we seek to mobilise and equip the geology community to engage in a full, positive and effective manner, preventing and relieving poverty, and encouraging sustainable development. We have agreed four strategic objectives to do this:

1. INSPIRATION. Promote the value of geology in supporting sustainable development. 
Many people are unaware of the role geology can play in supporting sustainable development. We will work towards greater recognition for, and understanding of, the role of geology in tackling significant global challenges (e.g., water security, food security, resilience to natural hazards, natural resource management, urbanisation, and climate change).

2. EDUCATION. Equip geologists to engage positively in sustainable development.
The skills and knowledge required to make an effective and positive contribution to sustainable development are often missing from the traditional education and continued professional development of geologists. We will provide opportunities for geologists to develop these essential skills to best serve the communities that we engage with.

 Enhance the application of geology to international development.

We will make a high-quality contribution to practical development projects. We will develop and support poverty-fighting programmes in collaboration with other UK-based and international organisations. By the end of 2021 we envisage our work having helped to address six of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, across five different countries.

4. LEADERSHIP. Exercise international leadership on matters relating to geology and sustainable development.
We seek to be a recognised and trusted voice on ‘geology and sustainable development’, helping to reshape the global geology community to better serve society. We will grow in our international influence, and reputation for excellence in all we do.

Organisational Development

To support the delivery of these four strategic objectives, we recognise the need to develop the following aspects of our organisation: 
  • Finance: We will seek a consistent income stream from multiple, diverse sources to promote greater financial resilience. 
  • Personnel: We will grow our Board of Trustees to ensure access to relevant experience and professional skills. We will grow our volunteer executive committee to ensure reliable, professional delivery of these strategic objectives. By 2021, we anticipate having transitioned to a paid staff team, working with a growing volunteer community. 
  • Infrastructure: We will explore the benefits and costs of operating out of a permanent headquarters, such as a host geological organisation.

Support Our Work

Over the next five years we’ll be working to implement this strategy, striving towards our vision, and supporting the UN Sustainable Development Goals. We believe that our work can help to reshape the geology community, building a sector equipped to serve communities around the world. We’d love your support. 

If our vision and strategy excites you, please join us. 
  • Share: We would like the global geology community to be aware of our work. Please share this strategy and our work with your colleagues, students, and friends. 
  • Join In: You can get involved in our work by going to University Group events, our conferences and workshops, or supporting our ongoing practical projects. Keep an eye on our social media (Facebook and Twitter) for new opportunities in the coming months.
Together we can build a geology sector with sustainable development at its heart, equipped to make a positive difference and better serve society.


To help communicate our strategy, we have developed the following resources:
  • Full Strategy Document. An A5-sized booklet, giving full information about our strategy (2017-21), including example initiatives to support each strategic objective. Download here. 
  • Promotional Booklet. An image-rich A6-sized booklet outlining our strategic objectives. Download here. 
  • PowerPoint Slides (coming soon).
These will be printed and made available at GfGD events, sent to University Groups, and used to promote our work.