Iran 2002 : Meeting of TPN3 – Demonstration site for best practices of sand dune fixation
Photo WVC 2002-12-20 – TPN3-05- Rui ZHENG, Representative of the UNCCD.jpg
PEOPLE FOR ACTION, an electronic network for combating desertification
by Prof. Dr. Willem Van Cotthem (University of Ghent, Belgium).
Originally published at:
At the end of 2002, I launched an electronic network for people interested in all aspects of desertification and poverty. In 2006, this network had already more than 1000 members. On the demand of the UNCCD, it has been taken over by the Secretariat of the Committee on Science and Technology (CST), but only for a period of 6 months (until the end of 2006).
In March 2007, trying to keep this network alive and looking for opportunities to network organisations and individuals with interest in desertification, I used my desertification blog (https://desertification.wordpress.com/) to collect information and make the data available over the internet.
This blog aims at bringing all these people closer to one another, as they all have the same attention for combating desertification and alleviating hunger and poverty.
In the coming period, I will try to compose a sort of historical review of the most important contributions to the PEOPLE FOR ACTION-network. I am convinced that, looking back at the last period (1994-2007), we will find a lot of data to be reviewed in the light of recent events, particularly the successes booked and the best practices documented.
IRAN 2002: Representatives of different countries inspecting field work for the demonstration of best practices and success stories for sand dune fixation in TPN3 countries
Photo WVC Dec 2002 TPN3-11a—Iran.jpg
A NICE START IN 2002
One of the important messages and conclusions of UNCCD’s CRIC1 in Rome (11-22/12/02) was that there is an urgent need for exchange of information within a network of individuals interested in the desertification problems. Many of us enjoyed in Rome very much the presentations of case studies and the ensuing discussions, although seemingly there was no time left for in-depth analysis or exchanges of views on the situation in other countries than those who presented the case studies. Nevertheless, CRIC1 was a real success!
Most of the participants will remember that single sentence, repeatedly coming up in different interventions from the podium and the floor : “There is no more time for talking, only time for action !“.
I had a couple of times the privilege and the pleasure of reminding my colleagues in Rome that “REAL ACTION” should be launched by selecting a small number of success stories (best practices) and applying these in small scale projects, but in a large number of countries in all regions.
The TPNs (Thematic Program Networks) seem to be an excellent forum for setting up such comparative initiatives (see the pilot projects of the Asian TPN3 on sand dune fixation and rangeland management to be launched in Iran 2002). It goes without saying that we still need to exchange a lot of ideas on the way such actions could be optimally planned.
In order to enable a large number of colleagues and friends to participate in this exchange, I take today, March 26th, 2007, the liberty of sending this message to a list of email addresses stocked in my computer, asking first of all if you are interested in receiving from time to time my messages concerning desertification aspects. IF NOT, PLEASE SEND ME A SHORT NOTE TO TAKE YOU OFF MY NETWORK LIST.
In Aleppo (Syria) 2002-05: TPN4, fraternising with the Chinese delegation
Photo WVC 2002-05-UNCCD-TPN4b.jpg
Maybe you have from time to time some interesting information for our network? Please do not hesitate to send it to me and I will forward it to all the members of the network. It is my intention to create in this way a functional network of individuals interested in desertification under the umbrella of the UNCCD. Through our exchanges we will be gradually in a better position to bridge the intersessional periods of COPs and CRICs. I hope you will contribute to it in a very effective way, by sending comments on former messages, by sending important information yourself and especially by promoting the real CCD-family spirit. Success stories and best practices: that’s what we need to apply at the largest scale. Let’s go for it !
Today, Feb. 23, 2016, this blog registered 1,997,548 hits. Not bad, don’t you think ?