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Representatives of African States Members of ISA and their nominated experts/practitioners with an interest in contributing to the objectives of this webinar are invited to register as soon as possible and no later than 3 June 2022. The maximum number of representatives from each Member States will be limited to three for logistical reasons related to the online meeting platform.
Relevant observers of ISA, regional organizations and non-governmental organizations are also invited to register. In total, participants will be limited to 120 to enable effective engagement and discussion. Participants will be selected based on their relevant experience and expertise relating to the objectives of this webinar. Geographic representation within the Africa region and gender balance will also be taken into consideration. Selected participants will be notified in due course, no later than 8 June 2022.
For ISA members in other regions, please note that the MSR Information Webinar Series can be organized, tailored to the context of the different regions, upon the indication of interest by the representatives of ISA members in respective regions, with priority to be given to developing countries.
Building on the activities of the ADSR project and the identification of specific capacity-building and development needs by African country members of ISA, the ISA Secretariat is convening a series of webinars on marine scientific research focusing on a wide range of topics, such as mineral resources assessments, data management, and environmental management. Representatives of ISA member States in Africa and their experts and practitioners in the relevant fields will be actively engaged.
The first webinar in the series took place in September 2021 and focused on mineral resources and technologies, providing the important opportunity to discuss the status of an Africa’s strategy for advancing research on deep-sea mineral resources and mining technologies.
Following the successful results of the first webinar, the ISA secretariat is now convening a second webinar, which will address the field of data management. This webinar will present ISA’s data management strategy and its DeepData database, including various data flows from sources to users. The webinar will also focus on different types of data analytics and their use for marine scientific research in the Area. Finally, the webinar will close by identifying Africa’s priorities, challenges, and future areas of collaboration for facilitating access to and sharing of data on the marine environment in the Area, as well as for advancing the development of DeepData.
In accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), all States have the right to conduct marine scientific research in the Area (Article 256). Pursuant to Article 143 of UNCLOS, States Parties shall promote international cooperation in marine scientific research (MSR) in the international seabed area (the Area) by participating in international programmes and encouraging cooperation in MSR by personnel of different countries and of the International Seabed Authority (ISA). The same article also mandates ISA to promote and encourage the conduct of marine scientific research in the Area and to coordinate and disseminate the results of such research and analysis when available.
ISA’s commitment to successful achievement of these mandates and responsibilities is well reflected in the ISA Strategic Plan for period 2019-2023 and its High-Level Action Plan, adopted by the Assembly in 2018 and 2019 respectively, as well as through the six strategic research priorities identified by Members of ISA in the ISA Action Plan in support of the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development adopted by the Assembly in 2020.
Advancing marine scientific research in the Area and Africa’s capacity to participate in such research have been recognized as fundamental elements to develop Africa’s blue economy. The African Union, through its Agenda 2063: The Africa we want and the Africa Blue Economy Strategy (2019) have identified exploitation and beneficiation of deep-sea mineral resources as a key driver in the development of a sustainable and inclusive blue economy for Africa. In the Agenda 2063: The Africa we want, expansion of African knowledge society through transformation and investments in science and research has been recognized as a key strategy for inclusive growth and sustainable development. Furthermore, the Africa Blue Economy Strategy (2019) identified education and research as key pillars of the development of Africa’s blue economy, recognizing the gap of expertise and growing demand for knowledge, particularly related to the exploitation of deep-seabed mineral resources. The 2019 Strategy also highlighted development of innovative database and information dissemination mechanism as key objectives of Africa’s efforts to enhance blue economy through empowered communities and sustainable governance of mineral resources.
It is in this context that at the 2017 Ocean Conference, ISA, in partnership with the African Minerals Development Centre of the African Union, registered a Voluntary Commitment to foster international and regional cooperation in support of Africa’s blue economy. This led to the creation of the Africa’s Deep Seabed Resources (ADSR) project, which is being implemented by ISA, in collaboration with the African Union and the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD). The goal of the ADSR project is to provide the enabling conditions for African counties to fully benefit from the blue economy through sustainable development of their deep-seabed resources.
For enquiries, please contact:
Changsung Lim (Associate Programme Officer), Office of Environmental Management and Mineral Resources, ISA (firstname.lastname@example.org)