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Information Clearinghouse: US Citizens' Network on UNCED
A Preliminary Concept Paper - November 1990

Overview: The Information Clearinghouse of the US Citizens' Network on UNCED will coordinate the compilation and dissemination of information concerning the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). The focus of the Clearinghouse will be on making information available to U.S. organizations, however, information will be shared, and efforts coordinated, with parallel efforts in other countries and with the work of international coordinating bodies.

Problem: The UNCED agenda is large and complex, with many separate but related facets, and there is a large and growing amount of information pertaining to the issues on the agenda. Although the conference itself is more than a year and a half away, most key decisions will be made well in advance of June 1992. The ability to make effective contributions to these decisions will depend on timely awareness of the UNCED process; ready access to pertinent information, and the ability to alert appropriate networks of people and organizations.

The Citizens Network comprises a broad-based and diverse group of organizations, reflecting the breadth of issues relating to the UNCED agenda. Many of these organizations have not addressed their issues in the context of an international environment and development arena, and many have no previous experience with UN conferences.

Needs: There is a broad range of needs for information relating to UNCED and to environment and development, ranging from overview materials on each to access to specialized in-depth reports; from a schedule of events to identification of key people and organizations in each of a variety of substantive areas. Access to the information needs to be well organized to avoid the dual problems of information overload and inability to know about and access vital information.

Objectives: The Clearinghouse will compile and organize information on:

  • Official documents -- governmental & intergovernmental -- concerning UNCED
  • Reports, papers & articles concerning the UNCED process & issues related to UNCED;
  • UNCED-related legislation in the U.S.
  • Information on parallel intergovernmental proceedings
  • Events & conferences related to UNCED
  • Organizations & individuals actively involved in UNCED issues
The Clearinghouse will make the UNCED-related information available via:
  • Newsletter/bulletins for network members
  • Calendar of events
  • Indexed, cross-referenced guide to documents
  • Database/directory of organizations & people, indexed by interest & expertise
  • Distributing copies of documents
  • Electronic conferencing & electronic mail
  • News service, via fax, to environment & development organizations, publications and news services, and to the general media
  • Referral to sources of detailed information/expertise
Wherever practical, the Clearinghouse will support the dissemination of UNCED related information by, and in the publications of, the participating organizations in the Citizens' Network, rather than developing separate publications.

US Citizens' Network on UNCED, Information Committee

unced participation | information ecology | information habitat

Web page updated: 1998.04.26