Dr. Calestous Juma is Executive Secretary of the Biodiversity Convention Secretariat and former director of the African Centre for Technology Studies in Nairobi, Kenya, an international non-profit organization he founded in 1988 to promote policy research, undertake training and disseminate information on the application of science and technology to sustainable development. He has also directed a variety of international research programmes and projects, with emphasis on biotechnology.
On 21 June, 1996, in Leizpig, Germany at the Fourth International Technical Conference on Plant Genetic Resources, ENB and Linkages WWW site writers D�sir�e McGraw and Ian Fry spoke at length with Executive Secretary of the Secretariat to the Convention on Biological Diversity, Dr. Calestous Juma. This interview is available in two RealAudio formats: for 28.8 or better connections and 14.4 connections. In this interview, Juma discusses:
The morning after the second Conference of Parties to the Biodiversity Convention concluded, Juma visited the ENB office in Jakarta and spoke with ENB editors Aarti Gupta, D�sir� McGraw, Daniel Putterman, Lynn Wagner, and Steve Wise. Their wide-ranging discussion touched on the COP's decisions on marine and coastal biodiversity, developing the Secretariat as a knowledge intensive, transparent new agency for 21st century, the role of the private sector and NGOs in Convention negotiations, implementation and financing, and the significance of the COP taking a broad views in the areas of biodiversity and forests, and concerning indigenous peoples, not just indigenous knowledge. (total length 18:23)
Jos� Esquinas Alcazar is Secreatry to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization's Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. The Commission is reviewing its International Undertaking on Plant Genetic Resources in the first half of 1996. Esquinas spoke Tuesday 14 November with Earth Negotiations Bulletin Editor Steve Wise about the history of the Commission, the upcoming negotiations and the distinct nature of biodiversity and genetic resources in food and agriculture and their relationship with principles of the Biodiversity Convention. Esquinas spoke in both Spanish (total length 11:09) and English (total length 6:29).
Hector Torres es consejero a la Mission Permanente de Argentina en Geneva, Switerland. Torres fue delegado a la segunda conferencia de los partes del Convenio de Biodiversidad y tambi�n es participante en el Comit� sobre Comercio y Ambiente de la Organizaci�n Mundial de Comercio (World Trade Organization - WTO). Torres habl� con ENB redactor Steve Wise durante de la COP sobre las relaciones entre los provisiones del Convenio sobre derechos de propiedad intellectual (IPR) y los del acuerdo de TRIPS (Trade-related Intellectual Property Rights) de WTO/GATT, sus compatibilidades y incompatibilidades. Las opiniones son los personales de Sr. Torres. No representan posiciones officiales del gobierno de Argentina. (total length 6:09)
Jannie Lasimbang is a Kadazan, one of 38 indigenous groups in Sabah, Malaysia. She is an organizer with Partners of Community Organizations (PACOS) in Sabah, which works on land issues, capacity building and community organizations. She is part of the Indigenous Peoples' Biodiversity Network, a coalition of 30 indigenous peoples groups from around the world.
Lasimbang spoke with ENB editor Steve Wise Friday 10 October after delegates heard a proposal by Canada to add a staff person to the Biodiversity Convention Secretariat to help prepare consideration of indigenous peoples' issues. Lasimbang talked about the Indigenous Peoples' Biodiversity Network and its priorities, described the differences in indigenous perspectives on intellectual property rights, and potential for action on indigenous rights under the Biodiversity Convention and elsewhere in the UN system.
Dr. Sukyono Moeljopawiro is head of the Molecular Biology and Genetic Engineering Lab at the Central Research Institute for Food Crops under the Indonesian Agency for Agricultural Research and Development. He has conducted research in rice genetics in Indonesia and the United States. He was vice chair of the Open-ended ad hoc Group of Experts on Biosafety held in Madrid Spain on 24-28 July 1995.
Moeljopawiro spoke Thursday 9 November with ENB editor Steve Wise about the work of the experts group, the concerns that are driving the biosafety debate and regional strategies for dealing with biosafety in similar ecoregions. (total length 6:18)
The Experts Group meeting gathered about 200 representatives from 83 countries, the EU and various other governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations. The report of the group's first session is available from the Biodiversity Convention Secretariat.
Mario Ramos is with the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and has worked in the Environment Department at the World Bank.. He spoke Thursday 9 November with ENB editor Steve Wise about the relations between the Biodiversity Convention and GEF and the current negotiations over GEF's interim status as the institutional structure of the Convention's financial mechanism. (total length 9:23)
Avrim Lazar of Canada is Chair of the Committee of the Whole of the Second Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity. Lazar is head of the Biodiversity Directorate of Environment Canada. He spoke Wednesday 8 November with Earth Negotiations Bulletin editors Steve Wise and D�sir� McGraw about the background, goals and expectations of the Conference of Parties after the first three days of debate.
Lazar explains the machinery that the delegates are trying to build, financial and substantive matters and procedure for completing negotiations. He also talks about a maturation of the process at Jakarta. (total length 6:12)