The Initiative

A bold, human-centered agenda for climate and employment


The 2015 Paris Agreement highlights a just transition and decent work as essential elements to responses to climate change. The Guidelines for a just transition towards environmentally sustainable economies and societies for all, adopted by ILO constituents in 2015, offer a framework to guide this transformation.

At the 2019 United Nations Climate Action Summit, 46 countries committed to place jobs at the heart of ambitious climate action and to promote a just transition.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres launched the Climate Action for Jobs Initiative, spearheaded by the ILO, to help foster concrete measures. The initiative brings together governments, workers’ and employers’ organizations, international institutions, academia and civil society to deliver change.

Main goals

  • Enable climate action with decent jobs and social justice.
  • Support countries in a transition that is just and founded on broad-based support.
  • Facilitate an inclusive recovery from COVID-19.

What to expect

  • HIGHER CUMULATIVE IMPACT through coordinated environmental, employment, and social policies.
  • BROAD-BASED SUPPORT mobilized around bold climate action and a job-rich transition to environmental sustainability.
  • STRONGER NATIONAL CAPACITY to address skills gaps and supply the skills needed for employment opportunities in ambitious climate action.
  • PUBLIC AND PRIVATE INVESTMENT AND BUSINESS MODELS oriented towards a carbon-neutral economy with decent work.
  • SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC RISKS OF CLIMATE CHANGE AND RESPONSES ADDRESSED through effective social protection measures.

COVID-19 response

As countries around the world plan for recovery, there is a unique opportunity to build back better, fostering economies and societies that are more inclusive, resilient and environmentally sustainable. The response to the COVID-19 crisis has highlighted the need for coherent responses across economic, social and environmental spheres. The initiative offers a roadmap and tailored country assistance for a climate-positive recovery that creates jobs. It provides countries with tools for devising and assessing investment and policy options to maximize win-wins from ambitious actions.


The governance structure of the Initiative comprises:

  • International Advisory Board: The Board provides strategic direction and counsels on key developments and trends. It comprises one representative from each of the following: an international workers’ organization, an international employers’ organization, governments, the United Nations Executive Office, and ILO senior management. The high-level members of the Advisory Board include Ministers of environment, labour and planning, leaders of employers’ and workers’ organisations and senior officials of the United Nations and development finance institutions.
    Members of the International Advisory Board
  • Donor Group: The Donor Group provides input to the Board and the Secretariat on funding opportunities, mobilizes contributions among members, and facilitates linkages with financing facilities. It comprises representatives from governments, foundations, and other bilateral and multilateral institutions proposed by the International Advisory Board.
  • International Technical Group: The Technical Group provides technical insights and makes recommendations to the Advisory Board on the overall direction of the initiative. It also informs strategies and planning processes, supports coordination across agencies, and discusses technical issues that may arise in implementation. It comprises representatives of international agencies (including UN agencies), multilateral and regional development banks, and research and civil society organizations.
    Members of the International Technical Group
  • National Steering Committees: The Committees are established in countries that benefit from the initiative’s support. The Committees provide strategic direction on country-level implementation. They comprise representatives of governments, social partners, and other relevant actors.
  • Secretariat: The Secretariat coordinates the Initiative and oversees its operations. The scope includes global facilities on research, innovation, advocacy for monitoring the implementation of the initiative, as well as financial and administrative reporting. The Secretariat services meetings of the Advisory Board, Donor Group and Technical Group. It is hosted by the ILO Green Jobs Programme.

This initiative is powered by countries and institutions committed to a just transition.