Mr. Chair, Distinguished Delegates and Observers,
On behalf of the Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research, we wish to express our thanks for the opportunity to attend the Second Meeting of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity & Ecosystem Services.
The IAI is an intergovernmental organization of 19 member countries in the Americas in which scientists and decision makers jointly address critical cross-border issues associated with global change. The IAI is recognized for facilitating high-quality research and making valuable contributions to the international global change community. Our funded-research programs have played a key role in building scientific capacity of young scientists in the region. The IAI synthesizes knowledge generated by its multinational, multidisciplinary research networks, convenes policy dialogues and identifies knowledge gaps. We strive to provide guidance to decision makers at all levels, from high-level government agencies to local stakeholders.
Mr. Chairman, Ecosystem Services and Biodiversity are part of IAI´s thematic scope. Over the past 8 years, our research projects on these topics involved 114 investigators, 74 institutions, in 13 countries – and produced 172 peer-reviewed publications. This output is at IPBES´s disposal as it begins its assessment work, and we look forward to working with you in defining future priorities in these areas.
Capacity-building is one of the main requirements in all IAI research networks and these projects alone involved 415 students, with 257 scholarships. Again, we look forward to discussing ways in which our networks and capacity-building activities can be beneficial to IPBES.
Mr. Chairman, we have reviewed with great interest, the 2014-2018 Draft Work Programme, which presents several areas for potential collaboration with IPBES. We are looking forward to working with all member and non-member countries in the Americas, to engage ministries and sectors with interest in global change issues and identify knowledge gaps to advance areas of mutual interest to IAI and IPBES.
In that regard, Mr. Chairman, distinguished delegates, the IAI would like to cordially invite all here to attend our side-event, which will be held on Wednesday, December 11th, from 1-2pm. At this side-event, we will introduce you to the IAI, present insights from our collaborative research networks and discuss potential areas for collaboration.
Thank you for your attention, Mr. Chair, we wish you a productive meeting.