The paperless policies of the UN present both challenges and opportunities for delegates from poor countries.

The paperless policies of the UN present both challenges and opportunities for delegates from poor countries.

Image by CGIAR (flickr)

What did we do?
OneWorld has pioneered new media solutions at UN climate conferences since 2007. During the COP18 Talks in Doha, CDKN asked OneWorld to conduct a scoping study into technologies that poor country negotiators could use to improve their knowledge, confidence and effectiveness. This included a baseline analysis of existing technologies and a needs assessment which engaged more than seventy delegates via interviews and a survey.

What did we find?
Research conducted over the last two decades into the efficacy of multilateral negotiations is consistent in asserting that injustice springs from four core deficiencies – inadequate size of delegations, inadequately qualified individual negotiators, disproportionate demands of the process, and language barriers.

OneWorld's face-to-face investigation into the needs of climate negotiators from the poorest and most vulnerable countries concludes that these four core deficiencies remain firmly entrenched. Considerable efforts by donors and civil society to level the playing field have been outpaced by contrary forces. For example, the notorious multiplicity of negotiating tracks increased to seven at COP18.

We learned how the combined force of these four challenges bears down at the most crucial moments in the proceedings – when new negotiating text is circulated or aired in discussion. Only the most confident deployment of legal and technical skills can thrive in this cut throat environment of power politics.

Delegates are increasingly experimenting with new technologies in their search for support and expressed desire for expert advisory services to be better structured and more real-time.

Contact: adam.groves@oneworld.net

 

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