Many countries, including Denmark and Belgium, mentioned that the Convention should use a bottom-up approach. Italy, Tanzania, Australia, Canada, and Finland emphasized the roles of local communities and NGOs. Bolivia and Australia specifically mentioned the role that NGOs can play in the negotiations.
Chad, Ghana and Jordan cited the importance of local communities and local knowledge. The Netherlands, Canada, Finland, Australia, Sweden and Madagascar all stressed the role of women in combatting drought and desertification. Australia and Bolivia mentioned the role of indigenous technologies and practices. Lesotho, Kenya and Burkina Faso stressed the importance of popular participation at all levels and that the best way to empower people is through decentralization. The NGOs emphasized the need for community-led programmes, particularly targeting women, supported by multi-level programmes, and appropriate technology developed from indigenous knowledge systems and science.