The second round of training courses under the InWEnt programme “Regional Environmental Policy in the South Caucasus” was held from 25 November to 09 December 2009 in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. The IUCN Environmental Law Programme and the Programme Office for the Southern Caucasus jointly conducted the trainings in collaboration with Adelphi Research. The objective of this series of training courses is to contribute to the further development of the region's nature conservation policies and legislation in order to support approximation to the EU Aquis Communautaire.
The training courses focused on “Ecological networks: Design, legal basis, institutional framework and implementation in practice”. During 3-days staff members from the Environment Ministries as well as other ministries and NGOs were trained on how to engage in the creation of effective ecological networks in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia.
The courses provided understanding and knowledge of basic design principles and methodologies for ecological networks, key international and European concepts and approaches to ecological networks. Participants also learned about general requirements and practical approaches to adjustments of the legal framework and institutional arrangements as well as tools and methods for the regional integration of ecological networks.
The trainings included a variety of case studies from Europe and participatory planning exercises. Following presentations by national experts on the existing situation in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia, participants also discussed their own activities in relation to the creation of national ecological networks.
The courses, taught by Mr. Thomas Greiber, Legal Officer at the IUCN ELC in Bonn, and Dr. Tobias Garstecki, Biodiversity Conservation Expert, were received well by the participants. “We have to focus more on connecting protected areas, therefore the training was indeed very useful for me”, one participant in Armenia said.
Within the current series of trainings one more module for national courses will follow in May 2010. An international seminar is planned to take place in autumn 2010. The training series is implemented on behalf of InWEnt Capacity Building International, Germany.