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Access and Benefit-Sharing (ABS)

The Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit-sharing

The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) adopted the Nagoya Protocol at its tenth meeting on 29 October 2010 in Nagoya, Japan. The Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization of the Convention on Biological Diversity (in short, Access and Benefit-sharing-ABS) aims at regulating the access to genetic resources and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits derived from their utilisation. The fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilisation of genetic resources is one of the three objectives of the CBD.

More on the Nagoya Protocol.

Nagoya Protocol text.


Project on Access and Benefit-sharing in Latin America and the Caribbean: A science-policy dialogue for academic research

Project's partners: DIVERSITAS, ICSU Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean (ICSU ROLAC), International Unions of Biological Sciences (IUBS), Swiss Academy of Sciences (SCNAT)

The Article 8a of the Nagoya Protocol stipulates special considerations for the implementation of ABS regulations and calls for facilitated access for non-commercial biodiversity research. Currently, biodiversity scientists face many barriers when accessing and storing biological samples for their research. In many cases this is due to a lack of understanding of the respective concerns and needs of researchers and policy-makers.

The project focuses on academic research in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) and the implications of ABS policies and regulations. It is endorsed by the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (S-CBD). The project brought together researchers and policy-makers from LAC to engage in an insightful dialogue in order to discuss challenges and opportunities regarding facilitated access to biological material, clarify the needs of Academia and government agencies, and build mutual trust. They elaborated joint recommendations to support the implementation of national and/or regional ABS regulations that suit the needs of users and providers of biological material with a view to better conserve and sustainably use biodiversity, while allowing the generation of urgently needed biodiversity knowledge for the benefit of society.

The project is based on the work undertaken by the Swiss Academy of Sciences (more) and undertaken in collaboration with the GEF UNEP IUCN-Sur Regional Project ABS LAC and the University of Bonn-DFG ABS Project.

It is funded by DIVERSITAS, ICSU (granted in March 2013), and ICSU ROLAC.


A set of documents was produced by this project - they are accessible below:

  • 2-page key messages: Implementing Access & Benefit-Sharing (ABS) & Ensuring Academic Non-Commercial Research for the Conservation & Sustainable Use of Biodiversity. PDF in English, in French, in Spanish and in Portuguese


  • A 25-page document that compiles all project's findings: Access and Benefit-Sharing in Latin America and the Caribbean: A science-policy dialogue for academic research.   PDF in English and in Spanish
  • The annexes in PDF to the long document that encompass descriptions of ABS or ABS-related national implementation systems and case studies of academic research and ABS.



Meeting on non-commercial, academic research in LAC, Montevideo, Uruguay, 11-12 June 2013

Meeting co-organised by DIVERSITAS and ICSU-ROLAC and funded by CONACYT and the Mexican Academy of Sciences (AMC). Collaboration with IUBS and SCNAT.

A small group of experts discussed challenges and opportunities to set up simplified ABS procedures for academic, non-commercial research in LAC. The meeting also included discussions on non-commercial research with a change of intended use towards commercialisation. Participants represented seven LAC countries (Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Mexico, Peru) and discussed the development of background information and case-study analysis to prepare for a larger event: a Science-Policy workshop on ABS in LAC in November 2013.


Science-Policy Workshop on Access and Benefit-Sharing for Non-commercial Academic Research , Lima, Peru, 20-22 November 2013

The workshop was focused on ABS issues in regards in the LAC region and gathered 40 participants from various countries. The workshop represented research and policy actors from nine LAC countries, namely Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, Mexico and Peru.

The workshop was launched by a cocktail on the evening of 19 November, with a welcome speech from Fabiola Munhoz, General Director of Forestry and Wildlife (DGFF), Ministerio de Agriculura y Riego of Peru.

The workshop discussions were rich and addressed the identification of benefits from non-commercial, academic research; challenges and opportunities for implementing access and benefit-sharing in the LAC region; and compared the different legal processes of access and benefit-sharing of the countries represented.

The event was successful and constructive at initiating a science-policy dialogue. All participants concluded by expressing their wish that this workshop should be the first step in a longer-term process of discussing and facilitating ABS for academic research in LAC on the basis of a science-policy dialogue.

The workshop was jointly organised by DIVERSITAS, ICSU ROLAC, SCNAT, IUBS, the University of Bonn (Uni-Bonn), and the German Research Foundation (DFG), with the participation of the GEF UNEP IUCN-Sur Regional Project ABS LAC.


Partner project

Visit the portal of our partner project, the GEF UNEP IUCN-Sur Regional Project ABS LAC, for further information on ABS in LAC here.

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