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SBSTTA 5 Recommendation V/14
Retired sections:

Ad hoc technical expert groups: terms of reference, and roster of experts and proposal on a uniform methodology for their use

The Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice,

Recognizing the instrumental role to be played by the experts in the rosters in order to assist in the implementation of the Convention,

Stressing that ad hoc technical expert groups should be established only where there is a significant assessment need, with due regard to geographical representation and to the special condition of least developed countries and small island developing States,

Noting recommendation 1 C of the Inter-Sessional Meeting on the Operations of the Convention to the fifth meeting of the Conference of the Parties on the improvement in the operations of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice,

1. Requests the Executive Secretary to further develop the methodology for the use of rosters of experts and ad hoc technical expert groups, taking into consideration the modus operandi of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, recommendation 1 C of the Inter-Sessional Meeting on the Operations of the Convention, the report of the brainstorming meeting on scientific assessment held in Oslo in November 1999 (UNEP/CBD/COP/5/INF/1), the guidance provided in annex I to the present recommendation, and the views expressed at the fifth meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice;

2. Recommends that the Conference of the Parties:

(a) Approves the terms of reference and the duration of work specified for the ad hoc technical expert groups on marine and coastal protected areas and mariculture, as contained in annex II to the present recommendation;

(b) Establishes the ad hoc technical expert group on forest biological diversity and approve the terms of reference as contained in annex II to the present recommendation, taking into account the outcome of the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests and other relevant international processes;

(c) Encourages Parties, other Governments and relevant bodies when nominating their experts for inclusion in the roster to consider:

(i) Gender balance;

(ii) Involvement of indigenous people and members of local communities;

(iii) Range of relevant disciplines and expertise, including, inter alia, biological, legal, social and economic sciences, and traditional knowledge;

3. Requests the Conference of the Parties to address the budgetary matters related to annex I to the present recommendation, noting in particular that the cost of participation in expert groups may affect the ability of experts to participate.

Annex I

PROPOSAL ON A UNIFORM METHODOLOGY FOR THE USE OF ROSTERS OF EXPERTS

Basic principles

1. The Executive Secretary will seek input from relevant national focal points and relevant organizations for the rosters of experts covering the fields of expertise required for the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity, including, inter alia, biological, legal, social and economic sciences, and traditional knowledge.

2. The rosters of experts will be compiled by the Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity on the basis of input from Parties, Governments and relevant bodies.

3. The rosters of experts will be accessible through the clearing-house mechanism of the Convention, and other mechanisms as appropriate, and be linked through it to other relevant rosters of experts at the national, regional, and international level.

4. For rosters to be created for specific expert groups with specific terms of reference, the Executive Secretary will solicit input from national focal points and relevant organizations on each such occasion with the intention of using such rosters only for that purpose.

5. In administering the rosters of experts, the Executive Secretary will endeavour to use innovative and efficient means of communication and ensure transparency through the issuance of notifications.

6. The Executive Secretary through the national focal points and relevant bodies will update the rosters of experts regularly and will endeavour to ensure representation from all geographical regions and gender balance.

7. The Secretariat will notify the work currently being carried out by it through the clearing-house mechanism and will invite input to it by mail or e-mail or other cost-effective means from members of the relevant roster of experts who have experience or information to share, who have not been selected for meetings, or who do not currently contribute to listserv discussions.

Functions of the roster of experts

1. To perform specific tasks as requested by the Conference of the Parties and its subsidiary bodies, in particular SBSTTA, including, inter alia, involvement in the activities of ad hoc technical expert groups and liaison groups.

2. To provide the Executive Secretary and, as appropriate, Parties, Governments and relevant bodies with substantive contributions including, inter alia, peer reviews 8/ on matters relating to the Convention on Biological Diversity by drawing from a wide range of disciplines and expertise available at the national, regional and international levels.

Ways and means to contact/communicate with the experts 9/

1. Clearing-House mechanism of the Convention, and other mechanisms as appropriate.

2. Periodic newsletters (electronic and other forms) produced by the Secretariat, to be distributed to all experts on the roster, to communicate general information on activities - planned or undertaken - of the Secretariat, with a view to keeping the experts involved, well informed, and connected to the process. General information should preferably reach the experts on certain fixed intervals of, for instance, three months.

3. Direct contacts by e-mail, fax, letter, telephone or in person with all the experts or experts on specific themes/issues.

4. Establishment of a listserv to allow and foster discussions by electronic mail between the experts themselves following a specific request from the Executive Secretary. Listservs should run for a fixed period of time, and should preferably be chaired by one or two experts. The lead expert(s) is/are in charge of the discussion on the server, and report to the Secretariat with the results. For such a system to be fruitful, several conditions may apply:

(a) The number of experts involved in a listserv discussion should not exceed 20;

(b) The Executive Secretary should strictly define: (i) the requests; (ii) the type of expected outputs; and (iii) deadlines.

5. Convene expert group meetings.

Annex II*

PROPOSED TERMS OF REFERENCE AND DURATION OF WORK FOR THE AD HOC TECHNICAL EXPERT GROUPS ON MARINE AND COASTAL PROTECTED AREAS, MARICULTURE AND FOREST BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY

A. Ad hoc technical expert group on marine and coastal protected areas

Terms of reference 10/

1. Identify pilot research and monitoring projects, based on current proposals and ongoing projects aimed at assessing the value and effects of marine and coastal protected areas or similarly managed areas on sustainable use of marine and coastal living resources.

2. Review the desk-study called for in the operational objective 3.1, activity (c), of the programme of work on marine and coastal biological diversity (decision IV/5, annex). The desk-study to be conducted by the Executive Secretary consists of gathering and assimilating information relevant to the value and effect of marine and coastal protected areas on sustainable use of marine and coastal biodiversity.

3. Identify linkages between marine protected areas and sustainable use of marine and coastal biodiversity.

4. Prepare recommendations on types of research to be carried out to understand the effects of marine and coastal protected or closed areas on population size and dynamics, subject to national legislation.

Duration of work

The ad hoc technical expert group on marine and coastal protected areas should start its work immediately after approval by the Conference of the Parties of the terms of reference and shall endeavour to complete the work not later than the eighth meeting of SBSTTA, at which "protected areas" will be an item for in-depth consideration (see the SBSTTA programme of work in recommendation IV/1 C), and the seventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties at which "protected areas" will be an item for in-depth consideration. Items 1, 3 and 4 can be undertaken immediately, but item 2 will start when the desk-study is complete.

B. Ad hoc technical expert group on mariculture

Terms of reference 11/

1. Evaluate the current state of scientific and technological knowledge on the effects of mariculture on marine and coastal biodiversity.

2. Provide guidance on criteria, methods and techniques that avoid the adverse effects of mariculture, and also subsequent stock enhancement, on marine and coastal biological diversity and enhance the positive effects of mariculture on marine and coastal productivity.

Duration of work

The ad hoc expert group on mariculture should start immediately after the approval on the terms of reference by the Conference of the Parties. The time for the completion of these activities so that their output can be considered in depth by SBSTTA will depend on the time when SBSTTA might be requested by the Conference of the Parties at its fifth meeting to report or advise on aspects relating to sustainable use of biodiversity or when the Conference of the Parties might decide to review the Jakarta Mandate programme of work.

C. Ad hoc technical expert group on forest biological diversity

Terms of reference

1. Provide advice on scientific programmes and international cooperation in research and development related to conservation and sustainable use of forest biological diversity.

2. (a) Carry out a review of available information on the status and trends of, and major threats to, forest biological biodiversity, to identify significant gaps in that information.

(b) Identify options for the conservation and sustainable use of forest biological diversity applying the principle of ecosystem approach and sustainable forest management, taking into account proposals for action agreed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests (IPF) and the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF) as well as the work of other relevant international processes and organizations including the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, processes related to criteria and indicators, the International Tropical Timber Organization, and the Centre for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), through activities such as:

(i) Identifying new measures and ways to improve the conservation of forest biological diversity in and outside existing protected areas;

(ii)Identifying practical measures to mitigate the direct and underlying causes of forest biodiversity loss;

(iii) Identifying tools and mechanisms to implement the identified measures and actions;

(iv) Identifying measures for the restoration of degraded forest; and

(v) Identifying strategies for enhancement of collaborative management with local and indigenous communities.

(c) Prepare advice, in collaboration with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, in order to integrate biodiversity considerations, including biodiversity conservation, in forest carbon sequestration projects;

(d) To identify innovative, efficient and state-of-the-art technologies and know-how relating to assessment, planning, conservation and sustainable use of forest biodiversity and provide advice on ways and means of promoting the development and transfer of such technologies.

3. On the basis of case-studies, assess the effects of types of forest-related measures taken in accordance with Convention.

Duration of work

The work on forest biodiversity should be initiated immediately after approval by the Conference of the Parties at its fifth meeting of the terms of reference, and completed not later than the seventh meeting of SBSTTA, in time for the sixth meeting of the Conference of the Parties, which will consider forest biodiversity as one of the main priority issues.

Annex II

PROVISIONAL AGENDA FOR THE SIXTH MEETING OF THE SUBSIDIARY BODY ON SCIENTIFIC, TECHNICAL AND TECHNOLOGICAL ADVICE

1. Opening of the meeting.

2. Organizational matters:

2.1. Election of officers;

2.2. Adoption of the agenda;

2.3. Organization of work.

3. Reports:

3.1. Marine and coastal biological diversity;

3.2. Inland water biological diversity.

4. Priority issue: Alien invasive species.

5. Draft provisional agenda for the seventh meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice.

6. Dates and venue of the seventh meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice.

7. Other matters.

8. Adoption of the report.

9. Closure of the meeting.

Annex III

DRAFT PROVISIONAL AGENDA FOR THE SEVENTH MEETING OF THE SUBSIDIARY BODY ON SCIENTIFIC, TECHNICAL AND TECHNOLOGICAL ADVICE

1. Opening of the meeting.

2. Organizational matters:

2.1. Election of officers;

2.2. Adoption of the agenda;

2.3. Organization of work.

3. Reports:

3.1. Biological diversity of dryland, arid, semi-arid, Mediterranean, savannah and grassland ecosystems;

3.2. Agricultural biological diversity.

4. Priority issue: Forest biological diversity.

5. Draft provisional agendas for the eighth and ninth meetings of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice.

6. Dates and venue of the eighth and ninth meetings of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice.

7. Other matters.

8. Adoption of the report.

9. Closure of the meeting.

____________

8/ Peer reviews allow for a small group of experts to provide input, thereby broadening the perspective of, and participation in, the final product (reports, draft pre-session documents, etc.). Peer reviews may be used to analyse products of listserv discussions, ad hoc technical expert groups, meetings of experts as well as draft documents. Requests for peer reviews should be accompanied by clear terms of reference from the Secretariat.

9/ As necessary, the Secretariat will copy to the focal points its communications with the experts.

* To recommendation V/14.

10/ In accordance with programme element 3, operational objective 3.1, of the Jakarta Mandate programme of work.

11/ In accordance with programme element 4 of the Jakarta Mandate programme of work.

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Ad hoc technical expert groups: terms of reference, and roster of experts and proposal on a uniform methodology for their use

The Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice,

Recognizing the instrumental role to be played by the experts in the rosters in order to assist in the implementation of the Convention,

Stressing that ad hoc technical expert groups should be established only where there is a significant assessment need, with due regard to geographical representation and to the special condition of least developed countries and small island developing States,

Noting recommendation 1 C of the Inter-Sessional Meeting on the Operations of the Convention to the fifth meeting of the Conference of the Parties on the improvement in the operations of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice,

1. Requests the Executive Secretary to further develop the methodology for the use of rosters of experts and ad hoc technical expert groups, taking into consideration the modus operandi of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, recommendation 1 C of the Inter-Sessional Meeting on the Operations of the Convention, the report of the brainstorming meeting on scientific assessment held in Oslo in November 1999 (UNEP/CBD/COP/5/INF/1), the guidance provided in annex I to the present recommendation, and the views expressed at the fifth meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice;

2. Recommends that the Conference of the Parties:

(a) Approves the terms of reference and the duration of work specified for the ad hoc technical expert groups on marine and coastal protected areas and mariculture, as contained in annex II to the present recommendation;

(b) Establishes the ad hoc technical expert group on forest biological diversity and approve the terms of reference as contained in annex II to the present recommendation, taking into account the outcome of the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests and other relevant international processes;

(c) Encourages Parties, other Governments and relevant bodies when nominating their experts for inclusion in the roster to consider:

(i) Gender balance;

(ii) Involvement of indigenous people and members of local communities;

(iii) Range of relevant disciplines and expertise, including, inter alia, biological, legal, social and economic sciences, and traditional knowledge;

3. Requests the Conference of the Parties to address the budgetary matters related to annex I to the present recommendation, noting in particular that the cost of participation in expert groups may affect the ability of experts to participate.

Annex I

PROPOSAL ON A UNIFORM METHODOLOGY FOR THE USE OF ROSTERS OF EXPERTS

Basic principles

1. The Executive Secretary will seek input from relevant national focal points and relevant organizations for the rosters of experts covering the fields of expertise required for the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity, including, inter alia, biological, legal, social and economic sciences, and traditional knowledge.

2. The rosters of experts will be compiled by the Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity on the basis of input from Parties, Governments and relevant bodies.

3. The rosters of experts will be accessible through the clearing-house mechanism of the Convention, and other mechanisms as appropriate, and be linked through it to other relevant rosters of experts at the national, regional, and international level.

4. For rosters to be created for specific expert groups with specific terms of reference, the Executive Secretary will solicit input from national focal points and relevant organizations on each such occasion with the intention of using such rosters only for that purpose.

5. In administering the rosters of experts, the Executive Secretary will endeavour to use innovative and efficient means of communication and ensure transparency through the issuance of notifications.

6. The Executive Secretary through the national focal points and relevant bodies will update the rosters of experts regularly and will endeavour to ensure representation from all geographical regions and gender balance.

7. The Secretariat will notify the work currently being carried out by it through the clearing-house mechanism and will invite input to it by mail or e-mail or other cost-effective means from members of the relevant roster of experts who have experience or information to share, who have not been selected for meetings, or who do not currently contribute to listserv discussions.

Functions of the roster of experts

1. To perform specific tasks as requested by the Conference of the Parties and its subsidiary bodies, in particular SBSTTA, including, inter alia, involvement in the activities of ad hoc technical expert groups and liaison groups.

2. To provide the Executive Secretary and, as appropriate, Parties, Governments and relevant bodies with substantive contributions including, inter alia, peer reviews 8/ on matters relating to the Convention on Biological Diversity by drawing from a wide range of disciplines and expertise available at the national, regional and international levels.

Ways and means to contact/communicate with the experts 9/

1. Clearing-House mechanism of the Convention, and other mechanisms as appropriate.

2. Periodic newsletters (electronic and other forms) produced by the Secretariat, to be distributed to all experts on the roster, to communicate general information on activities - planned or undertaken - of the Secretariat, with a view to keeping the experts involved, well informed, and connected to the process. General information should preferably reach the experts on certain fixed intervals of, for instance, three months.

3. Direct contacts by e-mail, fax, letter, telephone or in person with all the experts or experts on specific themes/issues.

4. Establishment of a listserv to allow and foster discussions by electronic mail between the experts themselves following a specific request from the Executive Secretary. Listservs should run for a fixed period of time, and should preferably be chaired by one or two experts. The lead expert(s) is/are in charge of the discussion on the server, and report to the Secretariat with the results. For such a system to be fruitful, several conditions may apply:

(a) The number of experts involved in a listserv discussion should not exceed 20;

(b) The Executive Secretary should strictly define: (i) the requests; (ii) the type of expected outputs; and (iii) deadlines.

5. Convene expert group meetings.

Annex II*

PROPOSED TERMS OF REFERENCE AND DURATION OF WORK FOR THE AD HOC TECHNICAL EXPERT GROUPS ON MARINE AND COASTAL PROTECTED AREAS, MARICULTURE AND FOREST BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY

A. Ad hoc technical expert group on marine and coastal protected areas

Terms of reference 10/

1. Identify pilot research and monitoring projects, based on current proposals and ongoing projects aimed at assessing the value and effects of marine and coastal protected areas or similarly managed areas on sustainable use of marine and coastal living resources.

2. Review the desk-study called for in the operational objective 3.1, activity (c), of the programme of work on marine and coastal biological diversity (decision IV/5, annex). The desk-study to be conducted by the Executive Secretary consists of gathering and assimilating information relevant to the value and effect of marine and coastal protected areas on sustainable use of marine and coastal biodiversity.

3. Identify linkages between marine protected areas and sustainable use of marine and coastal biodiversity.

4. Prepare recommendations on types of research to be carried out to understand the effects of marine and coastal protected or closed areas on population size and dynamics, subject to national legislation.

Duration of work

The ad hoc technical expert group on marine and coastal protected areas should start its work immediately after approval by the Conference of the Parties of the terms of reference and shall endeavour to complete the work not later than the eighth meeting of SBSTTA, at which "protected areas" will be an item for in-depth consideration (see the SBSTTA programme of work in recommendation IV/1 C), and the seventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties at which "protected areas" will be an item for in-depth consideration. Items 1, 3 and 4 can be undertaken immediately, but item 2 will start when the desk-study is complete.

B. Ad hoc technical expert group on mariculture

Terms of reference 11/

1. Evaluate the current state of scientific and technological knowledge on the effects of mariculture on marine and coastal biodiversity.

2. Provide guidance on criteria, methods and techniques that avoid the adverse effects of mariculture, and also subsequent stock enhancement, on marine and coastal biological diversity and enhance the positive effects of mariculture on marine and coastal productivity.

Duration of work

The ad hoc expert group on mariculture should start immediately after the approval on the terms of reference by the Conference of the Parties. The time for the completion of these activities so that their output can be considered in depth by SBSTTA will depend on the time when SBSTTA might be requested by the Conference of the Parties at its fifth meeting to report or advise on aspects relating to sustainable use of biodiversity or when the Conference of the Parties might decide to review the Jakarta Mandate programme of work.

C. Ad hoc technical expert group on forest biological diversity

Terms of reference

1. Provide advice on scientific programmes and international cooperation in research and development related to conservation and sustainable use of forest biological diversity.

2. (a) Carry out a review of available information on the status and trends of, and major threats to, forest biological biodiversity, to identify significant gaps in that information.

(b) Identify options for the conservation and sustainable use of forest biological diversity applying the principle of ecosystem approach and sustainable forest management, taking into account proposals for action agreed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests (IPF) and the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF) as well as the work of other relevant international processes and organizations including the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, processes related to criteria and indicators, the International Tropical Timber Organization, and the Centre for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), through activities such as:

(i) Identifying new measures and ways to improve the conservation of forest biological diversity in and outside existing protected areas;

(ii)Identifying practical measures to mitigate the direct and underlying causes of forest biodiversity loss;

(iii) Identifying tools and mechanisms to implement the identified measures and actions;

(iv) Identifying measures for the restoration of degraded forest; and

(v) Identifying strategies for enhancement of collaborative management with local and indigenous communities.

(c) Prepare advice, in collaboration with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, in order to integrate biodiversity considerations, including biodiversity conservation, in forest carbon sequestration projects;

(d) To identify innovative, efficient and state-of-the-art technologies and know-how relating to assessment, planning, conservation and sustainable use of forest biodiversity and provide advice on ways and means of promoting the development and transfer of such technologies.

3. On the basis of case-studies, assess the effects of types of forest-related measures taken in accordance with Convention.

Duration of work

The work on forest biodiversity should be initiated immediately after approval by the Conference of the Parties at its fifth meeting of the terms of reference, and completed not later than the seventh meeting of SBSTTA, in time for the sixth meeting of the Conference of the Parties, which will consider forest biodiversity as one of the main priority issues.

Annex II

PROVISIONAL AGENDA FOR THE SIXTH MEETING OF THE SUBSIDIARY BODY ON SCIENTIFIC, TECHNICAL AND TECHNOLOGICAL ADVICE

1. Opening of the meeting.

2. Organizational matters:

2.1. Election of officers;

2.2. Adoption of the agenda;

2.3. Organization of work.

3. Reports:

3.1. Marine and coastal biological diversity;

3.2. Inland water biological diversity.

4. Priority issue: Alien invasive species.

5. Draft provisional agenda for the seventh meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice.

6. Dates and venue of the seventh meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice.

7. Other matters.

8. Adoption of the report.

9. Closure of the meeting.

Annex III

DRAFT PROVISIONAL AGENDA FOR THE SEVENTH MEETING OF THE SUBSIDIARY BODY ON SCIENTIFIC, TECHNICAL AND TECHNOLOGICAL ADVICE

1. Opening of the meeting.

2. Organizational matters:

2.1. Election of officers;

2.2. Adoption of the agenda;

2.3. Organization of work.

3. Reports:

3.1. Biological diversity of dryland, arid, semi-arid, Mediterranean, savannah and grassland ecosystems;

3.2. Agricultural biological diversity.

4. Priority issue: Forest biological diversity.

5. Draft provisional agendas for the eighth and ninth meetings of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice.

6. Dates and venue of the eighth and ninth meetings of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice.

7. Other matters.

8. Adoption of the report.

9. Closure of the meeting.

____________

8/ Peer reviews allow for a small group of experts to provide input, thereby broadening the perspective of, and participation in, the final product (reports, draft pre-session documents, etc.). Peer reviews may be used to analyse products of listserv discussions, ad hoc technical expert groups, meetings of experts as well as draft documents. Requests for peer reviews should be accompanied by clear terms of reference from the Secretariat.

9/ As necessary, the Secretariat will copy to the focal points its communications with the experts.

* To recommendation V/14.

10/ In accordance with programme element 3, operational objective 3.1, of the Jakarta Mandate programme of work.

11/ In accordance with programme element 4 of the Jakarta Mandate programme of work.

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