Q&As with the Thematic Working Bodies

For the second time during the Swiss Presidency of the Alpine Convention, all Thematic Working Bodies of the Alpine Convention met online for an interactive workshop. Individually, the bodies have met more than 30 times since the start of the Presidency.

The joint workshop on 25 January 2022 was the last one before the XVII Alpine Conference in September 2022. It was organised by the Permanent Secretariat together with the Swiss Presidency to provide a platform for discussion and exchange between the ten Thematic Working Bodies as well as EUSALP Action Group 6, and to give a broad circle of participants a chance to find out more about the current work.

To this end, the workshop was organised as a series of short interviews with the Chairs of the bodies, who were arranged in panels. They were each asked a series of questions relating to their current work and activities, what results they hoped to submit at the Alpine Conference, and the key challenges for the future in their area of expertise. The Chairs of each Thematic Working Body also asked a question to their counterpart in the panel, creating an atmosphere of constructive conversation between the different groups. For the first time, the workshop was also accompanied by a graphic recorder, whose drawings (below) give an at-a-glance picture of the topics discussed.

All groups are on track and a range of important results can be expected at the Alpine Conference. The workshop wrapped up with a look to the future with the Ad-hoc Working Group for the preparation of the Multi-Annual Work Programme (MAP) 2023-2030. In the next years, the work of all bodies of the Alpine Convention is expected to contribute to three priority areas: Biodiversity and ecosystems, Climate action, and Quality of life.

Alenka Smerkolj, Secretary General of the Alpine Convention, concluded the workshop by thanking “all the Chairs, their teams, and all members of the Boards and Working Groups for their good work!” She praised the cooperation of the Working Bodies and the “wealth of expertise and the diversity of topics and approaches within the Alpine Convention” they represent and heartedly wished them to be able to meet in presence for the conclusion of their mandates.

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