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1 November 2001 Enhancing Collaboration among Major IYM Global Events
Douglas McGuire
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As 2002 approaches, many events are being planned and organized to celebrate the International Year of Mountains (IYM). Several conferences will be held at the global level to address a variety of mountain themes and issues. On 19 July 2001, the IYM Coordination Unit at FAO convened a meeting of representatives of the major global events currently being planned for the IYM observance. This small gathering built on discussions that were held at the last meeting of the Inter agency Group on Mountains in Geneva in November 2000. The Swiss Government was very kind to host the present meeting at its Mission to the UN in Geneva. The list of global IYM events under discussion included the following:

  • World Mountain Symposium (Interlaken, Switzerland, Sept/Oct 2001).

  • IYM official launch (New York, Dec 2001).

  • High Summit 2002 (various venues in May 2002; Italian initiative).

  • Celebrating Mountain Women (Kathmandu, May 2002).

  • World Summit on Sustainable Development (Johannesburg, Sept 2002).

  • World Meeting of Mountain People (Quito, Ecuador, Sept 2002).

  • Banff Mountain Summit 2002 (Banff, Canada, Oct/Nov 2002).

  • Bishkek Global Mountain Summit (Kyrgyzstan, Oct/Nov 2002).

The purpose of the meeting was to explore ways for closer collaboration among the event organizers in order to achieve maximum coherence and synergies among the major IYM events being planned. This is particularly important given the relatively large number of events to be held leading up to and during 2002. Holding discussions early on among those responsible for each event was seen as a good opportunity to minimize the risk of sending mixed or conflicting messages about mountains and the IYM, particularly regarding the international media that may be covering several or all of the planned events. Closer collaboration should also help ensure that the various outputs of each event are fed into a common stream and are fully considered in both subsequent discussions and the development of the final outputs and conclusions of the IYM, which are likely to be a primary focus of the Bishkek Global Mountain Summit in late 2002.

Representatives of the major global events were encouraged to maintain contact and inform one another as the planning process unfolds. Formation of a subgroup of those responsible for communications aspects of each event was proposed and FAO agreed to provide support and guidance in the area of communications planning to all major IYM events. Follow-up to this meeting is expected to be done mainly through email and telephone or video conferencing, although future meetings could be convened if opportunities, time, and budgets permit.

More detailed information on each of the events mentioned above and/or links for further information can be found on the official IYM Internet site at

Douglas McGuire "Enhancing Collaboration among Major IYM Global Events," Mountain Research and Development 21(4), 394, (1 November 2001).[0394:ECAMIG]2.0.CO;2
Published: 1 November 2001
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