Education for sustainable development (ESD) takes its cue from the international agreement adopted at the World Summit on Sustainable Development (2002, Johannesburg) and is promoted by the "Austrian Strategy for Sustainable Development" and Agenda 21.
The Federal Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism (BMNT), in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research (BMBWF), created the education platform FORUM Umweltbildung (FUB), setting it up as an innovation and project agency tasked with putting the substance of these strategies into practice. Its previous work in nature conservation education – subsequently, environmental education – and ecological education make Forum Umweltbildung perfectly suited to accomplish an integration of sustainable development into Austria's education landscape.
The purpose of the FORUM is to establish "education for sustainable development" in the primary target groups in the faculty of teachers and among multipliers in adult education and in teacher training and continuing education but also at general universities and universities of applied sciences.
The activities of the FORUM are inspired by the current state of the international debate and build on an interactive development and reflection process. The portal is operated on the basis of close collaboration with representatives from thematically relevant educational organisations and institutions, the administration, NGOs, extramural youth education and the media. The activities of FORUM Umweltbildung consists mainly of project implementations for the Federal Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism and the Federal Ministry of Education, Art and Culture and of other projects initiated in consultation with the two ministries.