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Call for hosts of the 12th International Conference on UNESCO Global Geoparks in 2027

Deadline for application: 31 January 2025

Organized every two years, this conference brings together UNESCO Global Geoparks staff and Global Geopark Network (GGN) members to exchange knowledge and experiences on geopark building and operation.

If your organization or country is interested in hosting the 2027 conference, you are kindly invited to submit a well-developed technical proposal specifying the offer. This bid is addressed to countries and regions that already have UNESCO Global Geoparks, and whose contribution will be essential for the success of the event.

The venue of the 12th International Conference on UNESCO Global Geoparks will be decided during the 11th International Conference on UNESCO Global Geoparks in Kütralkura UNESCO Global Geopark, Chile in 2025.

Details of the call

1) Technical details

  • The conference must 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 – 1 000 delegates and should provide easy access for international participants. Τhe conference venue should have the ability to host 10 parallel sessions, as well as side events and geoparks exhibitions. 
  • Representatives proposed by the GGN Executive Board should be nominated to the Conference Organizing Committee. 

2) Financial details

  • 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 (16 persons) and GGN Executive Board (13 persons), 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 euros per participant. 

3) Organization

  • The past conferences 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 UNESCO Global Geopark Council meeting (16 persons + 50 to 100 observers) and GGN Executive Board meeting (15 persons), these include the GGN General Assembly (300 persons), the GGN Advisory Board Meeting (80 persons), GGN Youth Forum Meeting (60 persons), the Regional Geopark Networks Advisory Committees (Asia Pacific Geoparks Network, 15 persons; European Geoparks Network, 15 persons; Latino American and Caribbean Geoparks Network, 10 persons; and African UNESCO Global Geopark Network, 5 persons) and the Coordination Committee Meetings (Asia Pacific Geoparks Network, 100 persons; European Geoparks Network, 200 persons; Latino American and Caribbean Geoparks Network, 50 persons; North American Geoparks 20 persons; African UNESCO Global Geopark Network, 20 persons). The Geoparks Exhibition and the Geoparks Film Festival should also be hosted during the conference.  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 (120 persons).
  • 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 UNESCO Global Geoparks are promoting 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 31 January 2025 to: GGN (secretariat@globalgeoparksnetwork.org) and UNESCO (k.vandenberghe@unesco.orgiggp@unesco.org).

  • The candidates will then have an opportunity to reply to comments on their application by the UNESCO Secretariat and GGN Executive Board until 20 June 2025.
  • The candidates will have the opportunity to present a final version of their bid (10-15 min) at the GGN Executive Board at its meeting during the 11th International Conference on UNESCO Global Geoparks in Chile in September 2025.

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 on UNESCO Global Geoparks to different regions of the world.

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