Participation in the International Network of Climate Change Centres of Excellence and Think Tanks for Capacity Building (INCCCETT 4CB) will facilitate SEI’s collaboration with other major global organizations in the field. The aim is to develop good practices for and enhance the impact of capacity-building activities under the Paris Agreement. The signing of the memorandum underscores SEI’s commitment to capacity building as a tenet of sustainable development worldwide. SEI is also a member of the network’s steering committee.
“The network aims to work as a global platform to share best practices, learn from each other and develop case studies or projects. Ultimately the aim is to foster exchange and strengthen global knowledge in climate change for better policies,” said Måns Nilsson, Executive Director at SEI.
INCCCETT 4CB, an outcome of the Conference of the Parties (COP22) in 2016, is designed to comply with the Paris Agreement, Article 11, which states that “All Parties should cooperate to enhance the capacity of developing countries and enhance support for capacity-building actions… through regional, bilateral and multilateral approaches.”
The MoU signing ceremony took place at the UN Climate Conference in Bonn on 7 May 2018, as part of the side event, “The role of networks in accelerating NDC implementation through south/south and triangular cooperation”, hosted by the German Development Institute (DIE). Approximately half of the thirteen network members signed on-site, and the remaining members are expected to do so in the coming weeks to underline their commitment to enhance global climate competence.
Cooperation beyond the North-South divide
When the network was established the emphasis was on creating sustainable knowledge networks and developing proposals for south-south, south-north and triangular cooperation. During the side event in Bonn, Holger Hoff, Senior Research Fellow at SEI, highlighted SEI’s role as a knowledge broker and convener for south-south-north learning.
“As a ‘knowledge broker’, SEI wants to support policy-makers to make use of evidence-based research findings and at the same time encourage policy-relevant research” Holger Hoff explained.
Knowledge is crucial for climate action, hence building capacities to produce, understand and use knowledge is essential. SEI is doing this for example through its Initiative on Climate Services (CSI), which aims to promote better designed, user-orientated climate services that enable vulnerable communities to better understand how climate variables such as temperature and rainfall are changing and may change in future, so they can adapt to protect themselves.
“In the context of climate services, it is a balancing act to provide relevant, timely, user-oriented, participatory, and tailored information, while at the same time developing partnerships, competencies, and innovative methods,” says Sukaina Bharwani, co-leader of CSI. “The key deliverable of the initiative, the SEI Climate Services Framework, offers a standardized but context‐specific approach to design climate services that catalyze actionable learning, and support the coordination between climate service providers, intermediaries, and users to support climate action.”
The Climate Services Initiative is just one example of SEI’s many projects and initiatives that support capacity building.
SEI’s climate capacity building competence mapped out
To support the identification of INCCCETT 4CB’s strengths and capacities under the Paris Agreement, SEI has carried out a mapping of the Institute’s competencies with regards to climate change and capacity building. The work, which is being continuously assessed, based on developments across all SEI centres, is a cornerstone in the development of SEI’s capacity development strategy.
The mapping is intended to support network members in joint collaborations and fundraising efforts under the Paris Committee on Capacity Building. It complements a separate first mapping, coordinated by the Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3), which indicated that SEI undertakes activities that span across most of INCCCETT’s key action areas. As such, SEI is well positioned to support INCCCETT in its aims to promote capacity building and supporting countries in addressing their nationally determined contributions (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement.
“Essentially it all comes down to building knowledge and becoming effective agents in helping our boundary partners to develop these capacities in climate change action”, said Åsa Gerger Swartling, Capacity Development Director at SEI, who serves as the SEI representative on the network’s steering committee.
SEI is particularly well-positioned regarding the platforms, and tools and methods it can provide and tailor to stakeholders’ capacity building needs. As Julia Barrott, weADAPT Knowledge Manager at SEI pointed out: “SEI has platforms such as weADAPT, which can support capacity building and peer-to-peer learning on climate change in developing country contexts. SEI has done this through its global weADAPT network for many years both online and with complementary face-to-face capacity building courses and workshops.”
weADAPT is an online ‘open space’ on climate adaptation issues (including the synergies between adaptation and mitigation) which allows practitioners, researchers and policy makers to access and discuss credible, high quality information and to share experiences and lessons learnt.
Current members of INCCCETT 4 CB are: Centre de Compétences Changement Climatique (4C Maroc), Inter American Institute for Global Change Research (IAI), Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3), Institut du Développement Durable et des Relations Internationales (IDDRI), Brazilian Research Network on Climate Change (Rede Clima), Center for Climate and Resilience Research of Chile (CR2), International Research Institute for Climate and Society of Columbia University, German Development Institute/Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE), Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI), International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS), International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD), and Centre for International Sustainable Development Law (CISDL).
Launch of INCCCETT 4CB at COP22.