Who we are:

The Third World Institute (ITeM) is a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), not affiliated to any religious group or political party, and headquartered in Montevideo, Uruguay. ITeM was formally created as a non-profit Civil Association on July 7, 1989, recognized as a legal person by Uruguay’s Ministry of Education and Culture (MEC) and exempted from national taxes by a 1994 Presidential decree. As of 1996, ITeM is a Non-Governmental Organization in special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

ITeM aims to*:

* Contribute to the construction of democracy, placing civil society organizations as key agents in this process. ITeM primarily supports organizations from Third World countries, and focuses its solidarity in furthering the interests and hopes of the world’s poor, of women and of oppressed minorities. By promoting networks and the socialization of information and knowledge, ITeM contributes to the construction of democratic, equitable and environmentally sustainable societies.

* Promote respect for human rights, in particular freedom of speech and free access to information. ITeM has pioneered the use of electronic networks as ideal tools for these purposes.

* Promote national and international networking among citizen organizations, for the exchange of experiences and the design and implementation of common interest actions.

* Contribute to study, assess and solve the problems affecting the Third World. ITeM conducts research, disseminates its findings and furthers the adoption of policies aimed at implementing solutions.

* Extracted from the ITeM’s charter and its programs of action.

What we do:

The Third World Institute performs information, communication and education activities on an international level, concerning development and environment-related activities. It is a civil society organization, working for civil society, which encourages citizen involvement in global decision-making processes.

Citizen education:

ITeM’s first activity was the publication of the The World Guide (formerly the “Third World Guide”), a reference book conceived as an educational resource. Its second activity was researching and developing electronic communication networks (through the Chasque Network). All other projects launched since then have revolved, in one way or another, around information and communications as the basis of education and democracy.

Products and services:

The books and magazines published by ITeM are sold throughout the world. Originally published only in printed format, they are now available in CD-ROM and on the Web. However, not everything produced by ITeM are tangible or can be purchased. A great deal of its activities are dedicated to promoting citizen organization networks on an international level, advocating in favor of the environment, promoting social development-oriented policies, or training groups and people with special needs.

All these initiatives are made possible through the contributions of individuals and institutions from around the world, such as the International Labour Organization (ILO), the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the Coalition of the Flemish North South Movement – 11.11.11. from Belgium among others.


According to the members’ assembly of November 30, 2012, ITeM’s authorities are:

Executive Board:
– Cecilia Fernández  – President
– Carlos Abin – Secretary

Fiscal Commission:
– Celia Eccher
– Álvaro Padrón