Chair's Corner: IUCN CEC Newsletter, April 2010

07 May 2010 | News story

Keith Wheeler, CEC Chair, introduces the April 2010 newsletter with a brief report on the CEC Steering Committee Meeting. In this newsletter are the results of a survey of CEC members in South America, essential reading from Futerra Sustainability Communications, and a variety of courses and resources and calls for papers. The Chair also notes the appointment of Grace Mwaura, a young CEC member, to the IUCN Council. View full newsletter >
 

A productive CEC Steering Committee meeting in Aviemore, Scotland, yielded concrete action plans for the coming year. Also productive was the volcanic eruption beneath Iceland's Eyjafjallajokull glacier, which yeilded an ash cloud that forced airspace closures across northern Europe. Travel delays affected many CEC members, all now safely home.

Our 2010 meeting provided an opportunity for face-to-face collaboration between two groups of leaders in the Commission – Regional Vice-Chairs and our new Specialty Group Leaders. The next issue of this newsletter will include a full report of the meeting. To recap briefly, however, the group worked together April 14 to 16 to identify strategies and outcomes related to the International Year for Biodiversity, the 2012 IUCN World Conservation Congress, and how to manage conservation knowledge to achieve results for IUCN.

At this meeting, knowledge management entered into nearly every area of CEC planning. Demand for informal learning, social media, online libraries like WCLN, and the CEC web presence all require a systematic approach (and technological capacity) to manage knowledge. Questions ranged from "How can IUCN capture know-how, skills and experiences to inform conservation action?" to "How can CEC Steering Committee members exchange materials electronically?"
 
CEC is pushing against the limits of information technology available through IUCN. It is moving from a centralized IT structure to a decentralized yet integrated, networked system of online services. CEC is advocating for rapid innovation and adoption of networked services to support knowledge management, as part of IUCN's overall knowledge management policy and strategy.

I look forward to sharing a more complete report on specific plans and issues raised. One of my particular concerns, for example, is the need to acknowledge that demand for the expertise of CEC members is shifting away from traditional education towards strategic communication and networking, and this may call for a rebranding and even renaming of the Commission to attract the kind of members that can advance the IUCN vision.

Following the CEC Steering Committee Meeting, I joined several CEC members at the IUCN UK National Committee meeting in Edinburgh, where CEC offered a CEPA workshop on Communication, Education and Public Awareness. I would like to thank Chris Mahon and the UK Committee for extending hospitality to CEC members delayed in Scotland.

In this newsletter are the results of a survey of CEC members in South America, essential reading from Futerra Sustainability Communications, and a variety of courses and resources and calls for papers. And please take a moment to meet Grace Mwaura, a young CEC member who has been appointed as a Member of the IUCN Council.
 
With best regards,

Keith Wheeler, CEC Chair


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