New deadline for application submission: 31 December 2020

The GGN Executive Board at its 78th meeting on 8th July 2020 and in close collaboration with UNESCO Section on Earth Sciences and Geo-Hazards Risk Reduction and taking into account the decision for shifting all the physical conferences and events for the period 2020-2022 to the period 2021-2023 decided that the 10th International Conference on UNESCO Global Geoparks will take place in September 2023.

It also decided to extend the deadline for application submissions till the 31st of December 2020. 

If your organization or country is interested in hosting the 2023 Conference, you are kindly invited to submit a well-developed technical proposal specifying the offer. 

This bid is addressed to countries and regions which already have UNESCO Global Geoparks, and whose contribution will be essential for the success of the event.

Your bid should contain information on the following components:

 1) Technical 

• The conference has to be hosted and organized by an efficient and experienced team, including UNESCO Global Geopark specialists and geoscientists, communication experts, administration support team and tourism specialists. 

• UNESCO Global Geoparks and Global Geopark Network (GGN) members (in the country and within the region) should actively participate and provide their expertise. The conference is the most important event for UNESCO Global Geoparks staff and GGN members to meet and exchange knowledge and experiences on Geopark building and operation 

• The venue of the meeting should be big enough to accommodate 800 – 1000 delegates and should provide easy access for international participants. 

• Representatives proposed by the GGN Executive Board should be nominated to the Conference Organizing Committee.


 2) Financial 

• The conference and the preparations need to be financed by the organizers who, if necessary, should seek private and public funding. The financial statement should be clear and based on realistic estimates and feasible plans.

• The candidate should present a proposal for the conference budget including data on the financial resources, possible sponsor contribution, participant’s fees and grant policy.

• The budget should include the cost of hosting the meeting of the UNESCO Global Geoparks Council (UGGpC – 16p) and GGN Executive Board (13p), including travel, hotel and subsistence allowance for three days.

• The participant’s registration fee should be ‘reasonable’ taking into account that UNESCO Global Geoparks are present in all regions of the globe, including the developing world, and people sometimes travel long distances.

• The organizers must provide a fee to GGN in accordance to the 2016 GGN General Assembly decision on the GGN budget (September 19th, 2016). This amount will be equivalent to 50 Euro per participant.

3) Organization

• The past conferences in Beijing 2004 (China), Belfast 2006 (Northern Ireland), Osnabrűck in Tera Vita UGGp 2008 (Germany), Langkawi UGGp 2010 (Malaysia), Shimabara in Unzen Volcanic Area UGGp 2012 (Japan), Saint John, in Stonehammer UGGp 2014 (Canada), Torquay in English Riviera UGGp 2016 (UK), Madona di Campiglio in Adamello Brenta UGGp – 2018 (Italy) had strong local, governmental and ministerial support and extensive media coverage. The organization team is advised to include governmental entities as well as a broad spectrum of other groups like Tourism Boards, Councils of towns, counties, Geological Surveys, Universities etc..

• The bid should foresee logistic arrangements for several other open and closed business meetings, workshops and events will run both in advance and during the conference in addition to the earlier mentioned UGGp Council meeting (16p. + 50-100p. observers) and GGN Executive Board meeting (15p.), these include the GGN General Assembly (220 p.), the GGN Advisory Board Meeting (60p.), GGN Youth Forum Meeting (60p.), the Regional Geopark Networks Advisory Committees (APGN 15p., EGN 15p., GeoLAG 10 p.) and the Coordination Committee Meetings (APGN 70 p., EGN 170 p., GeoLAG 30 p). The bid should duly anticipate and accommodate these meetings.

• The Conference schedule should also include special sessions for GGN Working Group Workshops, Thematic workshops as well as the UNESCO Global Geoparks Evaluator’s Seminar (120p).

• It is a prerequisite that the country where the conference is proposed already hosts UNESCO Global Geoparks.

 4) Content

• The Conference theme must be closely related to the core topics of the UNESCO Global Geoparks.

• Each organizer will put the focus on specific themes of their interest, which are not preliminarily fixed, but will be discussed in more detail with UNESCO and the Global Geoparks Network during the preparation and planning phase.

 5) Carbon Footprint Mitigation Initiative

Since UGGps are propagating environmentally friendly tourism, the conference organizer may want to propose ways/projects to reduce the carbon footprint of such big gathering.

 6) Timing

Please ensure that your full bid is submitted electronically by December 31, 2020. to: GGN ( and UNESCO (

The above list is not exhaustive and aims only to provide some first guidance. 

Please note that we strive to rotate the hosting of the International Conference to different regions of the world.