Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES)

One of the major challenges for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services is in ensuring that decisions and policies are made with the best available scientific information. Until today, there was no ongoing global mechanism recognized by both the scientific and policy communities to gather, synthesize and analyse information for decision making in a range of policy fora such as the global environmental conventions and development policy dialogues.

An Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) has been proposed as a mechanism to build on these various processes, and strengthen the science-policy interface relating to biodiversity and ecosystem services. IPBES will be an interface between the scientific community and policy makers that aims to build capacity for and strengthen the use of science in policy making. UNESCO is working jointly with UNEP, FAO, UNDP and other relevant organizations to fully operationalize the IPBES platform.

UNESCO’s envisioned involvement in IPBES will provide a strengthened enabling intergovernmental framework for the Platform. It will enhance the scientific credibility of the process, as UNESCO is the specialized agency of the UN system in charge of science. In light of its mandate in the area of culture, UNESCO will ensure that evaluations under IPBES also take into account cultural services and the influence of human factors on biodiversity. UNESCO will also contribute in IPBES to generate knowledge and assess the status and trends of biodiversity and ecosystem services, identify possible policy responses and build capacity at the biodiversity science-policy interface.

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