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Italy’s re-election to the MAB Council

On the occasion of the 42nd session of UNESCO’s General Conference, Italy has been re-elected to the International Coordination Council (ICC) of UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere programme (MAB)

The MAB programme’s International Coordination Council is composed of 34 State Members elected by UNESCO’s General Conference, held every other year. Between meetings, the Council’s authority is delegated to its Bureau, whose members are nominated by each one of UNESCO’s geopolitical region (Africa, Arab States, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and North America, Latin America and the Caribbean).

Over the last years, the MAB Council has been meeting every other year. The sessions usually take place at UNESCO’s headquarters in Paris or in one of the ICC’s Member States.

Each Member State has one vote but has the possibility to send as many experts and consultants as they wish to the Council’s sessions. UNESCO’s Member States that are not members of the Council can send representatives as observers.

Two other bodies advise the MAB programme: the International Advisory Committee for biosphere reserves, which gives scientific and technical advice to UNESCO’s Director-General and to the Coordination Council as regards the international network of biosphere reserves and the International Support Group (ISG), which advises the MAB Secretariat on the implementation of the Madrid Action Plan (MAP) and other relevant aspects of the MAB programme.

Moreover, National Committees appointed by single governments play a key role in the implementation of the MAB programme. Each Member State is requested to set up a permanent and entirely functioning national committee in order to guarantee the widest national participation to the international programme.

During each ordinary session of UNESCO’s General Conference, which usually takes place every other year, half of Council members reach the end of their mandate and new Council members are elected. Outgoing members are replaced by members from the same regional group. Council members can be re-elected.

Italy’s recent re-election highlights our country’s commitment in promoting UNESCO’s precious intergovernmental scientific initiative. The MAB programme’s goal is in fact to enable the improvement of the relationship between Man and the environment through several projects that aim at the rational and sustainable management of Biosphere reserves. This means working in order to improve the human capacity to use natural resources efficiently, with a stress on biodiversity preservation and the adoption of sustainable practices, which take into consideration the impact of Man on the environment.