Appointment of experts to Scientific and Technical Subsidiary Bodies

CMS and some of its instruments establish a number of subsidiary bodies to which Member States are invited to appoint expert members to provide technical and scientific advice. In the case of ASCOBANS members of the Advisory Committee have a double function.

In some instances each Member State is requested to appoint an expert on the species or group of species covered by the instrument, while in others, specific indications on the required expertise are given for the members of the body concerned. In contrast, the membership of some instruments’ scientific and technical subsidiary bodies is limited and based on geographical representation.

NFPs can play an important role in facilitating the selection of the experts and arranging for their appointment. The appointment process therefore varies according to the composition of these bodies.


Appointment of Members to Bodies that provide Intersessional policy and Administrative Guidance (Representatives to Standing Committee)

Since the Standing Committees carry out the functions of the decision-making bodies inter-sessionally, it is recommended that the members should have some expertise in policy and administrative matters. Standing Committees’ membership is normally determined on a geographically balanced representation of the Parties { see Table 3.2 and Practical Example 3.1}. Depending on the instrument, at COPs or MOPs the regions or sub-regions meet to propose the Parties that will represent them, and the Conference or Meeting then formally endorses the choice. It is for the Parties elected to the Standing Committee to decide which individual(s) will attend.

NFPs of each instrument are therefore reminded to liaise with NFPs of other countries in their own region or sub-region, as appropriate, in order to influence the decision on the appointment of these representatives, prior to meetings of decision-making bodies.


Appointment of Members to Working Groups

The criteria and procedures by which these Working Groups are established and the expertise of their members, may vary depending on the nature and scope of the Working Groups. Taking part in these formal or informal mechanisms can be of great advantage for any Member States wanting to bring forward their views and position on a certain issue. Good communication between Secretariats and Coordinating Units and NFPs is needed to facilitate this process.