Event: IPBES-1 Approaches
January 18, 2013  //  By:   //  Blog Post, Event, Featured  //  No Comment

The Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) is preparing for its very first plenary meeting from January 21st-26th in Bonn, Germany. IPBES is the first intergovernmental science-policy platform dedicated to an environmental issue area. This meeting focuses on biodiversity and ecosystem services. The platform arose out of a recognition of a gap between scientific knowledge of biodiveristy, and the information being used when formulating policy relevant to this topic. Given these sometimes separate worlds of scientific knowledge and policy-making, the IPBES aims to create an interface between the two, where collaboration and communication can facilitate the effective practice of both. The goals of the platform include:

  • Identifying and prioritizing key scientific information for policymakers, and catalyzing the generation of new knowledge through dialogue with key scientific organizations, policymakers, and funding organizations.
  • Preforming regular and timely assessments of the state of knowledge on biodiversity and ecosystem services. Assessments will be global, regional, and when necessary, sub-regional.
  • Supporting policy formulation and implementation by identifying policy-relevant science.
  • Identifying and prioritizing capacity building to improve the science-policy interface.

The IPBES is jointly hosted by UNEP, UNDP, FAO, and UNESCO and located in Bonn, Germany. This first meeting of the plenary will resolve some outstanding procedural issues, including rules of procedures for meetings of the platform. It will also hold elections for Bureau and Multidisciplinary Expert Panel members, and agree on the next steps for operationalizing a work programme. It will be preceded by a “stakeholder day” on January 20th for informal discussions of issues related to IPBES. This first meeting of the Plenary represents an important step in the continued development of IPBES, and portends the arrival of a novel model of international environmental governance.

About the Author :

Daniel Zaleznik is a Research Associate for the Center for Governance and Sustainability, and a Masters student in International Relations at the University of Massachusetts Boston. He graduated in 2008 from Vanderbilt University with his B.A. in Philosophy.

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