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Communication, Education and Public Awareness (CEPA)

9-12 March 2009, Nairobi, Kenya

“Getting the message across: Crafting ’CEPA’ approaches to promote successful negotiation and implementation of ABS”.


The main objectives of this workshop were:

  • Promote mutual understanding and cooperation between ABS and communication experts
  • Develop recommendations for communicating ABS on the political and administrative level
  • Develop an action plan for ABS CEPA in preparation for the meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (COP-10) in Nagoya.


Workshop participants developed a series of important and useful recommendations.

Attendees felt that the answer to complexity is differentiation: Communication approaches need to be specifically tailored to each 'sending' and 'receiving' group. Most target groups require clear and simple messages which connect to their specific reality. Selection of information ("not everyone needs to know about everything") is one way to approach this challenge.

Crafting communication approaches to individual target groups requires clear definition of the specific communication objective with this particular group: What is the desired impact of the communication, on the knowledge, attitudes and/or actions of this group?

ABS communication requires more than "broadband" public campaigns, but must be complemented with a variety of communication channels and media, from conversations or letters, via workshops or trainings, to conferences or the media – always depending on the target group and the communication objective at hand.

This event was organised by the ABS Capacity Development Initiative for Africa and UNEP.