IIED at the COP18 UN climate summit

Article, 20 December 2012

Qatar hosted the 18th Conference of the Parties (COP18) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). IIED researchers attended the talks and supported negotiators from the Least Developed Countries. We also participated in numerous side events.

A delegate at COP18 in Doha  (Photo:  N. Palmer/CIAT, Creative Commons via Flickr)

COP18 took place in Doha from November 26 to December 7, 2012. This page brings together some of IIED's activities for the Doha summit. 

We published interviews and blogs analysing progress at the Doha summit, including:

Video updates

Watch Saleemul Huq's video updates from COP18
IIED senior fellow Saleemul Huq provided daily video updates from the climate talks in Doha


IIED organised and participated in a range of events at COP18:

What does it take to achieve pro-poor REDD+?

Forestry image by Mike GoldwaterDate: 29 November

National approaches to Reducing emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD+) are currently favoured as a way of scaling up projects and of cutting down on project management costs and minimising financial spending. But they also raise challenges for ensuring the equitable distribution of costs and benefits. There are many concerns about how REDD+ will play out nationally and locally, with fears that it will lead to elite capture, corrupt practices and exclusion of weaker or vulnerable groups, such as women, landless, migrants in the communities.

The workshop examined how and to what extent REDD+ governance can go beyond ‘doing no harm’ to improving the livelihoods of forest-dependent communities. It also looked at what contribution bottom-up approaches could make to ensuring a more equitable distribution of the costs and benefits of REDD+

The workshop programme featured research by IIED and Norwegian University of Life Sciences and and partners in Brazil, Ghana, Tanzania, Uganda and Vietnam. Some partners presented their findings and experience.

Keynote speaker: Ms. Mette Loyche Wilkie, Interim Head of UN-REDD Programme Secretariat.

Related reading

REDD+ related publications

Development & Climate (D&C) Days: Innovative approaches and incisive dialogue for climate-smart development

Development and climate daysDate: December 1-2nd 2012

The 2012 D&C Days event was organised in a new partnership between the Red Cross/Red Crescent Climate Centre, the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) and the Climate and Development Network (CDKN).

2012 marked the 10th anniversary of D&C Days, an event which brings together policymakers, scientists and development practitioners to debate the central theme of climate change adaptation (CCA). Sessions at COP 18 focused on learning-by-doing, featuring innovative dialogues between negotiators and policy makers, knowledge centres and practitioners on innovative approaches to climate-smart development.

The Adaptation Practitioners Days looked at the question: “what is adaptation in practice?” by sharing climate adaptation examples and experiences and lessons learned from over 10 years of adaptation financing under the UNFCCC Climate Change Funds – the Least Developed Countries Fund and the Special Climate Change Fund.

IIED/Gambia side event:  National Adaptation Planning Processes in Least Developed Countries

Bangladeshi woman collecting fresh water from a pond in Nildumur village. She has to take the boat from their homes on Gabora island, because they have no access to fresh water on the island. PHoto: Espen Rasmussen/PANOS Date: 30th November 2012

How are Least Developed Countries (LDC) mainstreaming climate adaptation in their development planning while factoring in climate change mitigation and climate change adaptation?

This joint  IIED/ Gambia side event focused on answering that question, drawing on research by IIED and LDC countries.

The challenges countries encounter in mainstreaming climate change include securing financing for funding climate adaptation work and developing the appropriate technologies and skills. IIED shared findings from a study-in-progress of a pilot programme for climate resilience (under the Climate Investment Funds) and a cross-country workshop in Tanzania on mainstreaming climate change in development planning.

LDC representatives presented their experiences of national adaptation planning processes with a view to assessing their effectiveness and future needs.

The chair of the Least Developed Countries Group (LDC, Pa Ousman Jarju, chaired the event.

Governance frameworks for REDD+: IIED at CIFOR’s forest day

ForestDate: 2 December 2012

IIED researchers and partners spoke at the CIFOR Forest day Issues marketplace, looking at the design of equitable Reducing emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD+) governance frameworks at national and local levels. Particular consideration was given to the interplay between the bottom-up approaches of REDD+ pilot projects and the national approaches to REDD+ that are increasingly favoured. Different options for designing benefit distribution systems were explored, taking lessons from the local level into account.


Low income settlement near Kurasini, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Photo by Diana Mitlin

Tanzania: What’s needed to make REDD pro-poor?

Date: 3 December 2012

This official UNFCCC side event explored the socio-economic dimensions of REDD+, specifically pro-poor models and the private sector’s role. Speakers share lessons from Tanzanian pilot projects testing out pro-poor models and benefit mechanisms, as well as on private sector engagement with REDD.

Speakers: Maryanne Grieg-Gran (Chair), Peter Ndunda, Isilda Nhantumbo and Geofrey Mwanjela.

Google earth

Climate Communications Day

Date: 4 December 2012

Twitter hashtag: #CCommsDayTwitter hashtag: #CCommsDay

The 2nd Annual Climate Communications Day examed new approaches to communicating climate change to both new and existing audiences. The free event was co-hosted by Internews’ Earth Journalism Network and the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED).

The sessions covered:

  • Findings from Climate Asia – Asia’s largest ever public survey on public understandings of climate change.
  • New mapping and visualization tools being developed by Google Earth, Ushahidi and others to make it easier than ever for journalists and communicators to display scientific data in an appealing and meaningful way.
  • Communicating climate change with games
  • Climate comedy: We will view, laugh at and discuss climate comedy in a range of media.

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