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The Marketplace as a UNCCD Process Cornerstone


The creation, expansion, correct application and sharing of knowledge, skills and techniques is essential to the result oriented implementation of the UNCCD and its 10-year strategy and the achievement of achieve land degradation neutrality (LDN).

For the UNCCD implementation to succeed, organizational and institutional capacities in the following areas must be created, addressed and strengthened:

  • science
  • technology
  • human resources

Capacity building and the Convention

Capacity building has been a key element in the UNCCD process from its very beginning.

Article 19 of the Convention points to the importance of addressing this issue by stipulating:

“The Parties recognize the significance of capacity building -- that is to say, institution building, training and development of relevant local and national capacities -- in efforts to combat desertification and mitigate the effects of drought. They shall promote, as appropriate, capacity building: ...”

And the Regional Annexes I, II and III which are integral part of the Convention proper, call for the issue of capacity building needs to be appropriately addressed.

Capacity building and the COP

From the very beginning of the UNCCD process, Parties identified the lack of capacity as a major stumbling block to effectively implementing the Convention. Over the years the Conferences of the Parties (COP) has reinforced this idea by calling for the development and strengthening of capacity to ensure meaningful implementation, in particular at the grassroots levels. The COP has adopted many decisions concerning capacity building and the 10-Year Strategy emphasized capacity building as a key UNCCD operational objective.

Capacity building and the secretariat

The secretariat has a mandate to facilitate the implementation of the Convention including providing opportunities for targeted capacity building. In doing this the secretariat not only collects the needs identified by Parties, but also collects and transmits opportunities offered by Parties and all other partners. This is how and why the Marketplace was created to bring needs and possible solutions together at a common place and time.

As is recognized by the COP itself, the pursuit of capacity building in this process is multifaceted, complex, and demands various resources. It is therefore important that this pursuit is done through partnership building and harnessing available resources. It is also crucial that required resources are mobilized and that all stakeholders play their roles so that there is a comprehensive and all-inclusive approach to the process of capacity building. This is the task of the secretariat as facilitator of the implementation of the UNCCD.

The Marketplace is constructed with the vision, flexibility and ambition to allow for all of these requirements to be met. It is an international public space where everything is brought together in one location to work toward implementing the Convention.


Building partnerships is essential in the UNCCD capacity building process. The secretariat therefore collaborates with partners at all levels to create linkage and identify synergies. Consequently, the secretariat collaborates with its partners and stakeholders in research, education, awareness raising, knowledge sharing and promoting relevant fellowships.

These partners include:

  • UNDP
  • IUCN
  • UNEP
  • UN Water
  • The World Bank
  • CBD
  • Civil Society Organizations (CSOs)
  • Regional and sub-regional organizations
  • Educational institutions.

The inputs and results from such a broad-based and varied partnership could only help in making this Marketplace more universal in its ability to help meet the UNCCD capacity building needs.