Training Workshop on Negotiation Skills and Techniques for National Focal Points of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety

The African Union’s Department of Human Resources Science and Technology (HRST) and the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency’s African Biosafety Network of Expertise program (AU-NEPAD-ABNE), in partnership with the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) organized a training Workshop on Negotiation Skills and Techniques from 5-6 September, 2018 in Addis Ababa.
This training workshop was in preparation for the upcoming Ninth Conference of the Parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) serving as the meeting of the parties to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (COP-MOP 9) in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt from November 17th to 29th, 2018.
In his opening remarks, Dr Mahama Ouedraogo, Director of AU-HRST, affirmed that “this training workshop is being organised at a critical time, as COP/MOP 9 is nearing and as this time the COP/MOP is happening on our continent. It is important for African delegates to get the necessary skills to be able to make useful contributions on the part of Africa”

From left to right: Dr Jeremy Ouedraogo, Director of AU-NEPAD-ABNE, Dr Mahama Ouedraogo Director of AU-HRST and Dr. Joshua N. Weiss, Co-founder of the Global

Representatives from thirty-one (31) AU Member States who are mainly national focal points of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety attended the training. It was facilitated by Mr. Rabih El-Haddad, Manager of the Multilateral Diplomacy Programme at UNITAR and Dr. Joshua N. Weiss, Co-founder of the Global Negotiation Initiative at Harvard University and Senior Fellow at the Harvard Negotiation Project.
The training covered key elements of negotiations skills and techniques, including the mindset of a successful negotiator, negotiation myths and barriers, introduction to two models of negotiation (positional approach and collaborative framework), challenging negotiation dynamic, and toolkit for efficient negotiations. In addition to formal presentations, participants were taken through various practical exercises that contributed to effectively improve their understanding of negotiations art in a concrete setting.

Group photo of participants

At the end of the training, participants expressly thanked AU-HRST, AU-NEPAD-ABNE and UNITAR for putting together their efforts to make this training possible to enhance the capacity of such a significant number of African delegates to the upcoming COP/MOP 9 in Egypt.