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The aim of the Conference is to contribute to transforming political commitments into concrete actions by developing recommendations towards effectively integrating biological and cultural diversity into development cooperation strategies and programmes. The Conference is therefore not an event by environmental specialists for environmental specialists, but rather aspires to bring together civil society, interested citizens, representatives of local populations, politicians, development cooperation agencies and environmentalists to jointly pave the way forward and enhance the conservation of biological and cultural diversity as a key basis for sustainable development.

Main Objectives

• bring together civil society, representatives of indigenous and local populations, policy makers, scientists and intergovernmental and development cooperation agencies to exchange knowledge and practices linking biological and cultural diversity.
• provide elements for a programme of work to be jointly implemented by UNESCO, the CBD and other partners.

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Period [08/06/2010 - 10/06/2010]
Event location Montréal, Canada. Montréal, Canada.
Host UNESCO & Canada Research Chair in Ethnoecology and Biodiversity Conservation
See the agenda
Event URL http://www.
Contact person Mrs. Thora Martina Herrmann
Email address:
Phone: +1-514-343-8044
Fax: +1-514- 343-8008
Target group(s)
Type Meeting (seminar / conference / symposium / festival) Meeting (seminar / conference / symposium / festival)

The General Assembly of the United Nations declared 2010 as the International Year of Biodiversity (IYB) to further emphasize the importance of biodiversity and efforts to reduce its loss and degradation for the well being of human populations worldwide. The IYB provides an effective framework for reinforcing the implementation of the three objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity, but also to highlight the linkages between biodiversity and human well being, thus explore innovative solutions to address the social, economic, environmental and cultural implications of the loss of biodiversity in view of achieving the objectives of sustainable development.

Such a holistic approach to biodiversity debate enhanced the recognition of the inextricable links existing between biodiversity and cultural diversity, which together hold the key to sustainable development. The importance of the tight relationship between our planet’s interconnected diversity and human development have been acknowledged by both UNESCO and the CBD. The resulting Joint Initiative on the Links between Biological and Cultural Diversity was launched in May 2008 during the CBD COP9 supported by the relevant decision of the CBD COP requesting “the Executive Secretary to continue to liaise with the conventions, organizations and initiatives with which the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity has already signed or is in the process of signing memoranda of cooperation, including in particular the UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (2003) and the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, with a view to advancing implementation of the Convention in accordance with the decisions of the Conference of the Parties, including the development of joint activities as appropriate.” Objectives of the Conference In this context, UNESCO together with the CBD Secretariat and the Canada Research Chair in Ethnoecologie and Biodiversity Conservation(University of Montreal) plan to jointly organize the International Conference on Cultural and Biological Diversity “Diversity for Development-Development for Diversity” from 8 to 10 June 2010. The Conference aspires to bring together civil society, representatives of local populations, policy makers, scientist and intergovernmental and development cooperation agencies to jointly pave the way forward and enhance the efforts on the interlinked biological and cultural diversity as key basis for sustainable development.

The main objective of the Conference is to promote the dialogue on the links between biological and cultural diversity as key basis for sustainable development and develop an action plan/ set of recommendations that would enable policy makers to take into consideration both cultural and biological diversity and the links between them in the sustainable development decision-making process at all levels.

Particular attention will be given to three thematic areas (knowledge systems and diversity; integrated and participatory management of diversity; governance of diversity and diversity of governance) and the cross-cutting themes including climate change, provision of ecosystem services, agriculture and food security, water supply, population growth and poverty alleviation in order to demonstrate the importance of integrating diversity in sustainable development strategies and implementation plans.

Expected outcomes: This Conference represents an excellent opportunity to raise awareness on the importance of the interlinked diversity for sustainable development within the framework of the 2010 International Year of Biodiversity and the Joint programme between the CBD and UNESCO on the links between biological and cultural diversity.