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Working Group and a Survey on the Regional Imbalance of Accredited NGOs

By September 2, 2020September 21st, 2020No Comments
Invitation for a New Working Group and a Survey on the Regional Imbalance of Accredited NGOs under the 2003 Convention

This initiative came from the Finnish Folk Music Institute represented by Matti Hakamäki, and has been endorsed by the ICH NGO Forum Steering Committee. We have prepared a background note on the problem of imbalance in geographical representation of accredited non-governmental organizations (NGOs) under the 2003 Convention. It provides an overview of what is an NGO and the challenge of getting a balanced representation of accredited NGOs under the 2003 Convention. It serves as background for starting an ICH NGO Forum working group on how we can overcome the ongoing imbalance.

1. New working group of the ICH NGO Forum

We invite for a new working-group-in-the-making to work on how to overcome the ongoing imbalance in NGO representation in the ICH NGO Forum and the UNESCO 2003 Convention. According to the ICH NGO Forum Bylaws, article 33, “New Working Groups may be recognized by signed petition of five or more accredited NGOs submitted to and confirmed by the Steering Committee”.

If you are motivated to join the working groups discussions, please let us know via the survey. To overcome the challenge of few NGOs in some regions, the invitation to the working group also goes to experts of ICH or other relevant individuals from the underrepresented regions. Please forward the invitation to relevant persons in your networks.

The working group is suggested to have regular online discussions throughout the year, and report back to and discuss with the ICH NGO Forum members at the COM sessions.

If many NGOs are interested, there could be regional discussions groups with e.g. maximum 1-2 representative NGOs from each region taking part in the working group. All Forum members will be invited to take part in the discussions at the COM meetings.

To ease the challenge of languages, we will try to organize some discussion groups with different languages, if needed. Multilingual persons are encouraged to join, to help with translations.

2. Survey for all stakeholders of the 2003 Convention

To give the working group a starting point of ideas to reflect upon, we invite all accredited NGOs and other stakeholders of the 2003 Convention to take part in a survey to:

• share thoughts/suggestions regarding measures of how to reach out to relevant NGOs in the underrepresented regions of the world, to improve the representation of each region among accredited NGOs

• to suggest ICH NGOs and individual ICH experts belonging to the underrepresented parts of the world who could be willing to be included in the ICH network under the Convention

Please forward the invitation to relevant persons in your networks. The survey is open until 30 September 2020.

If you have any questions, please contact Matti Hakamäki at


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