January 2010

Equator Prize 2010
Equator Initiative, January 2010

The Call for Nominations for the Equator Prize 2010 officially opened on 11 January 2010. The Equator Prize is awarded biennially by the UNDP Equator Initiative for outstanding local, indigenous and community efforts to reduce poverty through the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity. Twenty-five winners will be selected to receive the Equator Prize 2010 and US$5,000 each. Five of these communities will receive special recognition and an additional US$15,000. “Special recognition” will be awarded in each region of prize eligibility (Africa, Asia and the Pacific, and Latin America and the Caribbean), one for indigenous peoples’ use of traditional knowledge, and one for ecosystem-based adaptation to climate change. Equator Prize winners are selected on the principal criteria of impact, partnerships, sustainability, innovation and transferability, leadership and community empowerment, as well as gender equality and social inclusion. Nominations must be received by 28 February 2010. Visit the Equator Initiative website … View the online nomination form …


Call for nominations for members of the Permanent Forum 2011-2013
PFII Secretariat, 19 January 2010

The current membership of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues is due to expire at the end of 2010. Nominations are now requested for the three-year period from January 2011 until December 2013. Current members who have served the maximum of two terms (6 years) as Permanent Forums members cannot be nominated for a further term. It is recalled that eight members, nominated by governments, will be elected by ECOSOC and eight members, nominated by indigenous peoples’ organizations will be appointed by the ECOSOC President. The deadline for submissions from indigenous organization is 10 February 2010. Visit the UNPFII Members webpage …

Research fellow in innovation systems and local knowledge
CIRAD, 6 January 2010

CIRAD is seeking a highly qualified and motivated professional in the field of agriculture and rural development to become a full-time research fellow within the context of the EC-funded JOLISAA (Joint Learning on Innovation Systems in African Agriculture) project it coordinates. JOLISAA, an interdisciplinary project implemented by an international consortium including European and African partners, focuses on identifying, assessing and sharing lessons learnt about past and on-going experiences with innovation systems and local knowledge in three African countries. The main role of the research fellow will be to contribute to developing and applying an analytical framework to selected innovation case studies. The successful candidate will be stationed in Montpellier (France), with short-term stays in Wageningen (Netherlands), and will travel periodically to Africa over the duration of his/her tenure. The contract will have duration of 30 months. The deadline for applications is 5 February 2010. Read the position description …


Access and Benefit-sharing Friends of the Co-Chairs Meeting
26 January – 29 January 2010 (Montreal, Canada)

This meeting, organized in the framework of the CBD negotiations for an international regime on access and benefit-sharing (ABS), will address key issues with a view to identifying possible solutions that will facilitate and advance the negotiations. A key issue identified by the Working Group Co-Chairs with regard to TK, is how to ensure that the benefit-haring arising out of the utilization of TK associated with genetic resources is subject to prior informed consent of, and mutually agreed terms with, indigenous and local communities. Visit the meeting website, including selected key issues submitted by the Co-Chairs and list of participants …

Selected indigenous and local community representatives to receive funding for the LAC indigenous and local community third capacity building workshop on the CBD: Cone Sur Region
4 February- 6 February 2010 (Buenos Aires, Argentina)

The CBD Secretariat has circulated the list of beneficiaries of financial assistance to participate in the Latin American and Caribbean indigenous and local community third capacity building workshop on the CBD, including issues relevant to Article 8(j) traditional knowledge, and access and benefit-sharing. Download the CBD notification [pdf] …

Latin American and Caribbean indigenous and local community fourth capacity building workshop on the CBD: Mesoamerican Region
4 March – 6 March 2010 (Guatemala, Guatemala)

This fourth capacity building workshop for indigenous and local community representatives on effective participation in the CBD processes, with a focus on Article 8(j) (traditional knowledge) and access and benefit-sharing, aims specifically at building and strengthening capacity for indigenous and local community women. Indigenous and local community organizations are invited to nominate representatives to the CBD Secretariat by 8 February 2010. Participants will be selected on the basis of a fair and equitable sub-regional selection from: Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama. Download the CBD notification [pdf] …

Access and Benefit-sharing: Co-Chairs Informal Inter-regional Consultation
16 March – 18 March 2010 (Cali, Colombia)

Each of the UN regions is invited to identify a total of eight representatives amongst CBD parties. In addition, there will be three representatives each from indigenous and local communities, industry, public research institutions and civil society. Indigenous and local communities are invited to provide to the Secretariat the names of their representatives by 20 February 2010. Based on nominations received, the Executive Secretary in consultation with the Co-Chairs will select the three representatives. It is recalled that the consultation is held back to back with the ninth meeting of the ABS Working Group, to be held from 22 March – 28 March 2010, in Cali, Colombia. Download the CBD notification [pdf] …

Submission of views and proposals for the ninth meeting of the ABS Working Group
22 March – 28 March 2010 (Cali, Colombia)

In connection with the elaboration and negotiation of the international regime on ABS, and in preparation for the ninth meeting of the ABS Working Group, governments, indigenous and local communities and others are invited to submit views and proposals, including operational text, in respect of preambular text, definitions and text for inclusion in annex II (proposals for operational texts left in abeyance). The deadline for submissions is 15 February 2010. Download the CBD notification [pdf] …


Biodiversity “EcoChic” at UN: “Organic, Fair Trade, and Damn Sexy”
IP Watch, 22 January 2010

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND: Attendees of an “EcoChic” event at the Palais de Nations strategized about how the spirit of fashion might be harnessed to support the CBD’s access and benefit-sharing regime and sustainability goals. The event was co-organized by UNCTAD and EcoChic, a Hong Kong-based environmental charity. Many of the designs paraded down the runway make use of traditional knowledge. Paquocha, an Ecuadorian-based company, makes use of long-held techniques for spinning wool of Andean Alpacas, and Royah, an Afghanistan-based company makes coats from locally-made fabrics and incorporates embroidery inspired by traditional Persian work. “Traditional knowledge is part of these products that are being used increasingly in the fashion world,” said Lucas Assuncao of UNCTAD. “There’s a lot of value when you say this is a traditional African texture or a traditional Latin American way of dying” a textile. Using traditional knowledge also carries responsibilities, said Assuncao. You cannot go “to a remote village in Africa… find this great textile… and sell it in Milan for 1000 times more. You make sure that those who make this technique get compensated somehow,” he added, and as such the access and benefit-sharing regime under negotiation at the CBD is very important. Read the article …


Peru: Rural Wisdom against Climate Change
IPS, 21 January 2010

LIMA, PERU: Recording the information and observations from rural communities is necessary for fighting this serious problem that all humanity faces, according to the Citizens Movement Against Climate Change (MOCICC for its Spanish initials), made up of 15 civil society groups. The movement’s platform is laid out in a document it sent to the Environment Ministry. It promotes a “social system of climate and biological records at the local level,” in order to collect information from the affected farmers as they talk about their traditional knowledge of climate variability and the modification of biological indicators or other signs from nature. Read the article …


Digital scribes transfer ancient words into bits and bytes
NunatsiaqOnline, 20 January 2010

NUNAVUT, CANADA: Leah Otak, manager of Inuit Qaujimajatuqangiit and oral history research at the Igloolik Research Centre, and assistant William Qamukaq, work to digitize hundreds of taped interviews conducted with Igloolik elders as far back as 1986. The tapes contain a huge store of vanishing traditional knowledge and language, covering everything from shamanism and kinship to traditional navigation methods and hunting and sewing techniques. Read the article …


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