March 2013

Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore: Twenty-fourth session
22-26 April 2013 (Geneva, Switzerland)

At its 24th session, the Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore (IGC) of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) will continue negotiations on an international instrument/instruments. The session will focus on traditional knowledge. A number of meeting documents, including the draft programme for the session, information on the WIPO Voluntary Fund for indigenous and local communities, the draft articles for the protection of traditional knowledge and information on the panel of indigenous and local communities, have been already posted on the meeting’s website. The theme of the panel of indigenous and local communities will be: “Indigenous Peoples’ Perspectives on “… the right to maintain, control, protect and develop their intellectual property over … traditional knowledge…” (Article 31, UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples). Visit the meeting’s website … Online registration …

Preparing for the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples
Dina Gilio-Whitaker, Indian Country Today Media Network, 26 March 2013

NEW YORK, USA: The World Conference on Indigenous Peoples will be held on 22-23 September 2013 at the UN Headquarters in New York, and will consist of two days of plenary sessions and informal roundtable and panel discussions with whatever state governments are participating; any actual participation of indigenous peoples themselves will be at the invitation of states. A total of 200 indigenous participants from seven global regions will be invited. To prepare for the Conference, each of the seven regions are holding preparatory meetings to develop agendas which will then be shared at one meeting of all the regions in Alta, Norway in June 2013. The North American region, consisting of Canada and the United States, held its preparatory conference (called the North American Indigenous Peoples Caucus, or NAIPC) from 1-3 March 2013, hosted by the Sycuan Band of Kumeyaay Indians in Southern California.  The bulk of the time was spent in Caucus among the hundred or so participants hammering out agenda items, choosing representatives for the Global Coordinating Committee (essentially the leadership of the seven regions) and determining delegates for the Norway meeting. Read the article …

Manual on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Indigenous Populations/Communities through the African Human Rights System
Korir Sing Oei
African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights, International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs, December 2012 | ISBN: 978-87-92786-29-6

Designed as a training tool for indigenous rights activists in Africa, as well as a practical instrument for use in the training of judicial officers, lawyers, media activists and government officials on indigenous rights in Africa, this manual overviews the African human rights instruments; presents the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights; and analyzes advocacy as a tool for indigenous rights. It aims to address the lack of information that hinders indigenous peoples from taking advantage of the new opportunities in the African human rights system. Further information … Download the manual [pdf] …

Community Biodiversity Management: Promoting resilience and the conservation of plant genetic resources
Walter Simon de Boef, Abishkar Subedi, Nivaldo Peroni, Marja Thijssen and Elizabeth O’Keeffe (eds)
Routledge, March 2013 | ISBN: 978-0-415-50220-7

Community biodiversity management (CBM) contributes to the empowerment of farming communities to manage their biological resources and make informed decisions on the conservation and use of agrobiodiversity. This book sets out a clear overview of CBM as a methodology for meeting socio-environmental changes. CBM is shown to be a key strategy that promotes community resilience, and contributes to the conservation of plant genetic resources. The authors present the underlying concepts and theories of CBM as well as its methodology and practices, and ideas for the implementation of farmers’ rights, and introduce case studies primarily from Brazil, Ethiopia, France, India, and Nepal. Contributors include farmers, leaders of farmers’ organizations, professionals from conservation and development organizations, students and scientists. Chapters illustrate the efforts made by communities throughout the world to cope with change while using diversity and engaging in learning processes, and link grassroots efforts with debates in policy arenas. They are organized under the following sections: Community biodiversity management and in situ conservation; Practices contributing to community biodiversity management; People, biodiversity and landscapes; Agrobiodiversity, livelihoods and markets; Participatory crop improvement in a context of community biodiversity management; Community biodiversity management, genetic resource policies and rights; and Community biodiversity management and resilience. Further information …

New technology maps Inuit knowledge
Nunatsiaq online, 20 March 2013

OTTAWA, CANADA: About 25 kilometres southeast of Arctic Bay, on the northern shore of Adams Sound, there is a place called Qajuutinnguaq. It means “Hill shaped like a chisel.” You wouldn’t find it on most official maps because official maps of Nunavut contain huge swaths of unnamed land. And most of the place names that do exist were given by colonial explorers to honour foreign kings and dignitaries. But a geographer from Carleton University in Ottawa is trying to decolonize those maps by helping Inuit officially name the places around their community with traditional, Inuktitut names using free software that he invented. Read the article …

IPBES Workshop on working with different knowledge systems
9-11 June 2013 (Tokyo, Japan)

Organized by UNESCO, UNU and the Ministry of Environment of Japan, on behalf of the Multidisciplinary Expert Panel of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), the primary objective of this workshop is to identify procedures and approaches for building synergies between indigenous and local knowledge and science. Nominations by relevant experts and stakeholders should be submitted by 28 March 2013. The completed forms, accompanied by the CV of the nominee, are to be submitted before the deadline to ipbes.unep(at)  Further information … View the table of IPBES intersessional activities … Download the nomination form [doc] …

Inscriptions in 2014: the deadline is approaching
UNESCO release, February 2013

PARIS, FRANCE: Nominations for possible inscription in 2014 under the UNESCO Convention on Intangible Cultural Heritage must be submitted before 31 March 2013. As this date falls on Sunday and 1 April is a public holiday at UNESCO Headquarters, files will be accepted before 5 pm on Tuesday, 2 April 2013 at the latest. All nominations must be submitted using the forms for the 2014 cycle as made available online, and all the required documentation needs to be received before the deadline. States Parties should keep in mind that, as in previous cycles, around 60 files will be treated. The Committee will try to process at least one file by submitting State. Read the release … Download the forms for nominations …

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