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BOTSWANA ENVIRONMENT & DEVELOPMENT FORUM - to be launched in autumn 2006

The Forum is a Seminar series convened by IUCN Botswana and The Department of Environmental Science, University of Botswana.

Botswana faces major environment and development challenges of an arid country such as land degradation, climate change, water scarcity and pollution, along with the lack of institutional capacity to implement sound policies and strategies. Communication, dialogue and collaboration have been identified as important management tools to address environmental issues. IUCN Botswana is together with the Department of Environmental Science at the University of Botswana - an IUCN member, launching an Environment & Development Forum in the form of a Seminar Series, where there will be opportunities to listen to and discuss a variety of relevant topics with experts, researchers, practitioners, policy and decision-makers. The Forum is designed to act as a platform for information sharing, dialogue and networking to improve policy-making, planning and management of Botswana's natural resources for sustainable development.

Botswana Environment & Development Forum - enabling Communication, dialogue and networking


The mission of the Environment & Development Forum is to: "Provide a platform for information exchange and dialogue to address key environmental challenges and thus facilitate communication and collaboration between all stakeholders involved". The achievement of this mission will bring about the improved awareness of environmental issues and ongoing projects, as well as an increased understanding amongst stakeholders of existing and emerging environmental policies, and how these could be further improved. In addition to that, an increase in networking and collaboration can build capacity and generate processes to encourage and enable good environmental management in Botswana for sustainable development.

Design of the Seminars

The Seminars will be designed to facilitate communication, dialogue and networking.

Communication - Information sharing, advising and raising awareness

The Forum will communicate, among other things, the activities that IUCN and its members are carrying out. This includes presentations of local, national and regional programmes that have implications or opportunities for Botswana. Information will be provided of what environmental networks exist and are ongoing, and what organisations are active. As different stakeholders will be invited under the same theme or topic, a diverse range of information will be shared and exchanged that can serve as advice for policy makers or other interested professionals.


The Forum will be a meeting point for experts, researchers, practitioners, policy and decision-makers coming into the dialogue with different expertise. By inviting representatives from different sectors and disciplines there is an opportunity to discuss a topic from different viewpoints that will inform issues from many different perspectives, identify areas for integration and gaps in understanding. The Seminars could in that way identify further needs for communication and collaboration between different sectors.

Networking - for collaboration

The Forum will provide a useful opportunity to meet and network under specific topics. The Seminars would provide a way for people to meet and share information and update each other on upcoming initiatives and proposals and this will facilitate the building of partnerships and collaboration. Innovative partnerships will be encouraged through actively involving stakeholders in the Seminars such as private sector, economic and social disciplines and professionals.

Content of the Seminars

The themes and topics covered below are listed to provide a framework for the contents of the Seminars. However, they are flexible and will be adapted from time to time to suit current environmental & developmental debates.

Overall themes

q Environmental conservation & management q Sustainable livelihoods q Trade and Environment q Policy & Legislation q Biodiversity and Governance q Gender issues and HIV and Aids q Valuation of ecosystem goods & services q Tourism and Biodiversity q Climate change and adaptation q Dryland challenges

Suggested topics

Economic valuation of the ecosystem goods and services in the Okavango Delta Presenting the ODMP - Okavango Delta Management Plan What are the IUCN Programme areas in Southern Africa? The World Conservation Learning Network The Johannesburg Action Plan - Are we doing enough and where are we? . Vision 2016 and the Environment: What are the challenges and opportunities? Developing markets for Veldproducts The IUCN Drylands Programme Medicinal Plants / ABS issues Status of CBNRM in Botswana Impact of HIV and Aids on CBNRM


For the Launching of the Forum, UB-DES and IUCN Botswana will host a Seminar with a keynote address by a prominent speaker from the Government of Botswana and IUCN. The speakers would also present the idea behind the Seminar Series and Forum to the audience. The first Seminar is likely to take place in late September - first week of October.


University of Botswana will host the venue, which will be announced with the particular seminar.

Please e-mail comments & questions to IUCN Botswana
























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