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ecbi - The European Capacity Building Initiative

The Fellowship Programme

At the heart of the is an Oxford-based Fellowship Programme for climate negotiators and other stakeholders directly involved in the UNFCCC process from the participating developing countries. Its primary purpose is to build trust and exchange procedural and institutional knowledge both among the Fellows ('South-South trust-building'), and between them and their European colleagues ('North-South trust-building').

Oxford Fellowships and Seminar

South-South relations and trust building are often of at least equal importance in supporting the international negotiations. The trust building activities are carried out during the Fellowship Colloquium in Oxford, where the Fellows have the chance to exchange views and experiences among themselves in 'closed session'. In light of their considerable existing negotiating capacities, the participating large developing countries are primarily involved in the trust-building activities of the Oxford Fellowship Programme.

Oxford Seminar

The Seminars provide an opportunity to exchange views in an informal and non-confrontational setting. They also enable the European partners to discover and better understand the situation of their developing country colleagues - one of the reasons why the is not just a capacity-building initiative by Europeans, but also for the benefit of Europeans. The Seminar is an annual, three-day event hosted in the academic setting of Oxford University and usually takes place in the first week of September. Participation is by invitation only.

Bonn Seminar

To maintain the momentum of these trust-building activities, the Fellowship Programme also organizes an annual one-day Bonn Seminar during the intersessional Subsidiary Bodies meetings in Bonn/Germany. European Partners have the opportunity to engage with senior developing country delegates particularly from Least Developing Countries (LDCs) - some of whom are past Fellows.

Recent Fellowships News

2015 Oxford Fellowship and Seminar

The eleventh ecbi Oxford Seminar was held on 10 & 11 September 2015 at Trinity College and the Examination Schools in Oxford, UK. A three-day Fellowship Colloquium took place before the Seminar, from 7-9 September, in Merton College. The Colloquium was attended by 16 Fellows (senior negotiators from developing countries, including the chairs of the LDC Group, the African Group and AOSIS), who were joined by 10 negotiators from Europe for the Oxford Seminar.

On the first day of the Seminar, in Trinity College, participants addressed legal issues and process; adaptation and loss and damage; and mitigation and transparency of action. On the second day, in the Examination Schools, they discussed climate finance; time frames and cycles; and the process/way forward.

Participants also celebrated the launch of the Enhanced Direct Access (EDA) pilot by the Green Climate Fund (GCF) at a dinner on 10 September at Blenheim Palace. A brief introduction to EDA, a new funding modality under the GCF, which focuses on promoting national and sub-national decision-making by ecbi Director Benito Müller was followed by a statement by Ambassador Jan Cedergren, GCF Board Member from Sweden, read out by Ambassador Bo Kjellén, ecbi Advisory Committee co-chair.

Apologising for his absence due to an emergency, Cedergren said: “I would like to leave with you a few words regarding a very important achievement in the Green Climate Fund Board where the host of this seminar, Benito, and ecbi have played a decisive role”. He noted that successful implementation of the EDA Pilots will promote the overall ambitions of the GCF and show the way on how to provide climate finance in a sustainable and innovative way.

This was followed by an after dinner speech by one of the Fellows, Dr Prodipto Ghosh, former Secretary to the Government of India, Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, who has been very supportive of EDA in India, not only by co-authoring the Delhi Vision Statement [] with Dipak Dasgupta (another ecbi Fellow), but also by co-facilitating the New Delhi Consultation on Consolidation and Devolution of Climate Finance in India.

2014 Oxford Fellowship and Seminar

The 2014 ecbi Oxford Seminar took place on 28 and 29 August 2014 in the University of Oxford Examination Schools. The ecbi celebrated its tenth anniversary during the Seminar.

A three-day Fellowship Colloquium took place before the Seminar, from 25-27 August, in Merton College, Oxford. The 15 senior negotiators from developing countries who participated in the Fellowship Colloquium were joined by 18 senior negotiators from Europe during the Oxford Seminar. The discussions focused on the general architecture of the 2015 Paris Agreement, mitigation, adaptation and finance.During the Fellowship, developing country negotiators also came up with a "contribution cycle" for the 2015 Paris agreement, which was discussed with European colleagues during the Seminar. An agreement on these issues will be a keystone in Paris Agreement architecture.

2013 Oxford Fellowships and Seminar

The 2013 ecbi Fellowship Colloquium took place from 5-7 August in Merton College, Oxford, followed by the Oxford Seminar on 8 and 9 August. During the Fellowship Colloquium, 17 senior negotiators from developing countries discussed key areas of concern in under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). They were joined by 13 senior negotiators from Europe during the Oxford Seminar, and discussed contentious issues such as the legal form of a future outcome, equity, mitigation, adaptation, technology transfer, finance, and the governance and accountability of operating entities (including the Green Climate Fund, or GCF).

As the participants at the Seminar this year, the ninth in the series, included a number of key office holders in the UNFCCC process, a discussion on the priorities for the next conference of parties in Warsaw, Poland also took place. Participants included the COP Presidency's special envoy for climate change; the developing country co-chair of the Ad-Hoc Group on the Durban Platform (ADP); the Chairs of the G77+China Group and Africa Group; lead negotiators from Europe; senior representatives from Least Developed Countries (LDCs); and key office holders in UNFCCC bodies, including the developing country Co-chair and members of the Standing Committee on Finance, and members of the GCF Board and the Advisory Board of the Climate Technology Centre and Network.

ecbi Fellowship and Oxford Seminar 2012

The eight annual round of the ecbi Oxford Fellowships and Seminar took place from 8-14 July 2012, and was attended by 12 Fellows from developing countries (LDC, AOSIS, ALBA, Africa, BASIC) and 14 Seminar participants from Europe and the European Commission. The discussion focused on the implementation of the Bali Road Map; the post-2020 regime under the Durban Platform on Enhanced Action, in particular on CBDR and RC; long-term finance, in particular the use of innovative sources of finance; and support for adaptation pre-2020, in particular NAPAs and NAPs.

ï Feedback from the Seminars

ecbi Fellowship and Oxford Seminar 2011

At the 2011 ecbi Fellowship and Seminar held in early September, senior developing country negotiators and their European colleagues discussed the importance of a mutually agreeable action 'sequence', in order to overcome the lack of trust on both sides. An innovative 'Annex C' to the Kyoto Protocol was discussed as a way of addressing concerns on both sides.