Co-sponsored by United Nations Organizations (UNDP and UNIDO) and the Chinese government in 1994, after the multilateral negotiations among member organizations, the International Network on Small Hydro Power was created. The headquarters building for IN-SHP was constructed and inaugurated for use in 1998, with funding from the Chinese government. The approval of State Council of China, the hosting country of INSHP in 1999, made INSHP as the first international institution to have ever been established in China. The following year, the legal status of the International Center on Small Hydropower was approved by the Central Institutional Commission and, with an official Trust Fund agreement between the government of China and UNIDO, a new part of INSHP, the International Center on Small Hydro Power (ICSHP) came under the auspices of UNIDO.
The network has more than 400 Members all over the world, it is lead by the International Coordinating Committee, and its the Headquarters Office (the International Center of Small Hydropower or ICSHP) is based in China.
Through technical and economical cooperation, INSHP has strengthened its relations worldwide with its Members. By sharing the know-how and resources of the Network, INSHP will continue to provide contacts, information and support among its members to further promote the global SHP development. Due to the effective work of its headquarters staff, INSHP enables close cooperation between governments, public utilities, research institutes, independent power producers (IPPs) and private companies.
The Coordinating Committee
The Coordinating Committee (CC) of IN-SHP is an international governing body that serves as the policy and decision maker in the network. It is responsible for the examination and approval of the Network's plan, financial arrangement and enlisting of membership.
The institution of the CC is composed of Chair, Vice Chairs and members. In addition, Honorary Chair(s) will be chosen to oversee the work of IN-SHP. The Honorary Chair(s), Chair and Vice Chairs are all nominated by IN-SHP members and elected by the CC members at their annual meeting. Each position has a term of office of 3 years.