The Memorandum of Understanding, dated on April 24, 2020, and an extendable extension of five years, has the central objective of promoting collaboration in activities and initiatives to strengthen capacities in science, technology and innovation within the Latin American region.
Through this agreement - signed by the executive directors of IAI and RedCLARA, Dr. Marcos Regis da Silva and Luis Eliécer Cadenas, respectively - both institutions commit to join efforts to improve the exchange of information and collaboration. To do this, they have defined their action in the following points:
The Inter-American Institute for Research on Global Change (IAI - http://www.iai.int/es) is a regional intergovernmental institution, made up of 19 countries, that promotes scientific research and the development of capacities to provide information about climate change to decision-makers from the continent and the entire world. Its mission is "to pursue the principles of scientific excellence and integrity, international cooperation, science outreach and capacity building, and the full and open exchange of scientific information relevant to global change to reach the vision of a sustainable Americas." It is currently an intergovernmental observer organization (IGO) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
RedCLARA and IAI agree with the principle of cooperation for the promotion, dissemination and development of scientific, technological and innovative capacities in the region. They agree to promote the integration of academic and research organizations, and serve as a link for cooperation, exchange of experiences and information among them, by establishing alliances with intergovernmental organizations, non-governmental organizations, research institutions, associations and civil society, as well as multilateral forums in support of the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the area of climate change. Additionally, both organizations promote the development of Open Data policies and protocols, which can be considered a potential thematic area for the design of cooperation actions.
RedCLARA is confirmed as a GEO member: The announcement was made by Gilberto Camara, Director, GEO Secretariat, during the opening remarks at the Sixteenth Plenary Session – GEO-XVI Canberra, that has been held in Australia from 6-7 November 2019.
GEO, the Group on Earth Observations, is an intergovernmental partnership of 105 Member governments, 127 Participating Organizations and thousands of individuals and businesses, looking after the improvement of the availability, access and use of Earth observations for a more sustainable planet.
GEO promotes open, coordinated and sustained data sharing and infrastructure for better research, policy making, decisions and action across many disciplines. The GEO community focuses on three global priority engagement areas: the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Paris Agreement and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.
The announcement of the acceptance of RedCLARA as a member of GEO, was made during the opening session of GEO’s Sixteenth Plenary Session, carried out in Canberra, Australia, during the morning of Wednesday, 6 November 2019, by the Director of GEO Secretariat, Gilberto Camara, who said that RedCLARA “is a very important academic network, in Latin America”. During his presentation, Gilberto Camara announced the new country members -Guatemala, El Salvador, Sierra Leone and Tonga-, the new associates -Acclimatise Group Ltd., the Centre for Ecological Research and Forestry Applications (CREAF), Beijing Piesat Information Technology Co. (Piesat), and Environment Systems Research Institute Inc. (Esri)-, and the new participant organizations: RedCLARA, the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), World Food Programme, Economic Community of West African States Commission (ECOWAS), Mercator Ocean International, OpenGEOHub Foundation (OpenGeoHub), African Smart Cities Foundation, Conflicts and Environment Observatory (CEOBS), and the Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology (CIMH).
RedCLARA is the third regional Research and Education Network accepted as a participant organization, following the Pan-European network, GÉANT, and the Arab States Research and Education Network, ASREN.
Angelica Gutierrez of AmeriGEO also highlighted new official incorporation of RedCLARA in GEO, during session 5 of the GEO-XVI Plenary: “Broadening the Impact of Earth Observation and GEO” on Thursday 7 November 2019, as part and key element of the overall GEO strategy to maximise the impact of Earth observation on regional level.
GEO provides a unique forum where governments, businesses, the research community, non-profits and all other groups and stakeholders come together to create solutions, share, and cooperate. In addition to over 70 Work Programme activities and initiatives that address global needs, coordination and knowledge gaps, the GEO community is building the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS) and has already made more than 400 million open Earth observation data and information resources accessible via www.geoportal.org.
Since the inception of GEO in 2005, as a result of its work, open data policy has gone from the exception to the global norm, and following work by organizations including the G20 and the OECD. This is reinforced as a growing number of GEO Member governments adopt and purse broad open data sharing practices. With the corresponding increase in available open Earth observations, end-user oriented initiatives developed through the GEO Work Programme are creating real impact on a wide range of global challenges.