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Summit Declaration

Initial drafts of The Eye on Earth Declaration were developed by the Eye on Earth Community including the Working Groups (Policy, Governance and Institutional Networking; Content and User Needs; Technical Infrastructure; Capacity Building, Education and Awareness and; Applications Showcase), Framework Committee; and Executive Advisory Board; as well as Environment Agency Abu Dhabi as the Eye on Earth Summit hosts; United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) as the partners; and AGEDI as the facilitators.

In addition, in the lead-up to the Eye on Earth Summit a number of activities were undertaken with the wider environmental and societal data community as well as other intergovernmental institutions and supporters to both socialise AGEDI’s intention to deliver the Eye on Earth Summit Declaration, and adhere to the UNCSD Rio + 20 mandatory procedures. This included:

  • Socialisation of the intent of the Eye on Earth Summit Declaration to the United Nations Permanent representatives in Geneva, Nairobi and New York by both the United Arab Emirates Permanent Representatives to the United Nations and the United Nations Environment Programme;
  • Submission of the Eye on Earth Summit Declaration as part of the Rio + 20 Preparatory Process in response to the invitation from the Second Preparatory Committee “for inclusion in a compilation document to serve as basis for the preparation of zero draft of the outcome document.”
  • The dissemination of the drafted declaration to the worlds 193 Environment Ministers for review and comment with a view to final endorsement by the Executive Director of UNEP;
  • Publishing of the Draft Eye on Earth Declaration on the Eye on Earth Summit website and the collation of comments by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP);
  • Socialisation amongst the UN Major Groups and Civil Society and the development of an official response to the Declaration as an outcomes of their Forum on 11th December 2011;

The outcome of this post-Summit has been the recognition by UNCSD Rio + 20 of the Eye on Earth Summit as a Member State preparatory meeting for Rio + 20.


A key consideration in the formation of the Summit Governing bodies was establishing balanced representation, including consideration of geographic distribution, the inclusion of diverse audience segments and close cooperation and integration with the United Nations Environment Programme, the UN and UN Major Groups, which themselves include a broad range of international stakeholders.

Executive Advisory Board

Responsible for the ratification of the recommended content of the Summit and Exhibition, including the Summit’s direction, areas of focus and speakers as well as the review and input to the draft thematic White Papers.

EAB Chair:

  1. E. Mohammed Al Bowardi, Secretary General, The Executive Council of Abu Dhabi

EAB Co-Chairs

H.E. Razan Kahlifa Al Mubarak, Secretary General, Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi

Mr. Achim Steiner, Executive Director, United Nations Environment Programme

2011 EAB Members

Prof. Jacqueline McGlade , Executive Director, European Environment Agency

Mr. John Matuszak, Division Chief, Sustainable Development and Multilateral Institutions US Dept of State

Mr. Warren Evans, Director of Environment, The World Bank

Mr. Russ Mittermeier, President, Conservation International

Prof. Jose Achache, Director, Group on Earth Observations Secretariat

Mr. Jack Dangermond, President, Environmental Systems Research Institute (Esri)

Framework Committee

Defined the Summits overarching conceptual framework including the program design for the plenary and session talks as well as input to the Exhibition and edutainment venues and the definition of the Special initiatives and other outcomes.

2011 FC Members


Cathrine Armour, Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi

UNEP Secretariats

Adel Abululkader, United Nations Environment Program

Peter Gilruth, United Nations Environment Program

2011 Members

Jeff Huntington/ David Stanners, European Environment Agency (EEA)

Michael Williams, Group on Earth Observations (GEO)

Aart van Wingerden, Env. Systems Research Institute (ESRI)

Felix Dodds, Stakeholder Forum

Basanta Shrestha, Int’l Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD)

Steven Ramage, Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC)

Abbas Rajabifard, Global Spatial Data Infrastructure (GSDI)

Mark Sorensen, Geographic Planning Collaborative, Inc. (GPC)

Ed Parsons, Google, Inc.

Michael Goodchild, UC Santa Barbara

Nick King/Tim Hirsch, Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF)

Jeremy Wates, European Environmental Bureau

Phyllis Johnson, SARDC-IMERCSA

Ghulam Malikyar, Afghanistan NEPA

William Sonntag, US EPA

Working Groups

Convened to identify and frame the most challenging environmental data and information issues. Each working group comprises through leaders in their respective fields and represents a variety of sector as well as geographical interests. The Working Groups were:

Working Group 1: Policy, Governance and Institutional Networking

Working Group 2: Content and User Needs

Working Group 3: Technical Infrastructure

Working Group 4: Capacity Building, Education and Awareness Raising

Working Group 5: Applications Showcase

White papers demonstrating the key

Issues, challenges, opportunities and way forward produced from all 5 Working Groups can be accessed here.

Working Group 1: Policy, Governance and Institutional Networking

Focussed on the policy , governance, institutional arrangement and other high level issues that are involved in the development of sustain environmental information federation.

2011 Working Group 1 Members:


Ivar A. Baste, Consultant/Senior Advisor to UNEP Executive Director

Lalanath de Silva, World Resources Institute (WRI)


Barbara Clark, European Environment Agency (EEA)

Ahmed Abdelrehim, Centre for Environment and Development for the Arab Region and Europe (CEDARE)

Yonglong Lu, Scientific Committee on Problems of the Environment (SCOPE); Chinese Academy of Sciences

Daniel Magraw, Centre for International Environmental Law

Magdolna Toth Nagy, The Regional Environment Centre for Central and Eastern Europe (REC)

Alex de Sherbinin, CIESIN, The Earth Institute at Columbia University

Somrudee Nicro, Thailand Environment Institute

Fernando Ramos, Brazil National Institute for Space Research

Irene Lungu, Environment Council of Zambia

Csaba Kiss, Environmental Management and Law Association

Keith Nichols, Organization of Eastern Caribbean States

Bruce McCormack, European Umbrella Organization for Geographic Information (EUROGI)

Michael Williams, Group on Earth Observations (GEO)

Fernando Echavarria, Bureau of Oceans, Environment and Science, U.S. Department of State

Paula Martins, Article 19

Working Group 2: Content and User Needs

Addressed the content that is expected through an environmental information sharing network as well as identifying the user needs for global environmental information systems. Consideration was also be given to specific data and information needs across environmental issue themes and user profiles.

2011 Working Group 2 Members:


Marc Levy, CIESIN, The Earth Institute at Columbia University

Ndey Sireng Bakurin, National Environment Agency, The Gambia


Peter Viet, World Resources Institute (WRI)

David Stanners / Chris Steenmans, European Environment Agency (EEA)

Jonathan Smith, UNEP – World Conservation Monitoring Center (WCMC)

Sascha Gabizon / Hala Yousry, Women in Europe for a Common Future

Marwan Mohammed Dimashiki, Environmental Monitoring Information System of Kuwait (eMISK)

Paul Bartel, US Department of State

Nikanth Ghosh, Ministry of Environment and Forestry, India

Sandra de Carlo, Ministry of Planning,


Asma Ali Abahussain, Arabian Gulf University

Gary Foley, US EPA

Geoff Wade, ESRI

Peter Kawenhoven, University of Waikato, NZ

Simon Stuart, IUCN

Working Group 3: Technical Infrastructure

Focused on the technical components of the environmental information federation frameworks, addressing information and communications technology interoperability, connectivity, data standards, data format and content standards, and other such issues.

2011 Group 3 Members


Harlan Onsrud, Global Spatial Data

Infrastructure (GSDI)

Hossam Allam, CEDARE


Eric van Praag, Program GeoSUR

Suha Ulgen, UN Geographic Information Working Group

Ed Parsons, Google, Inc.

Stefan Jensen, European Environment Agency (EEA)

Kate Krukiel, Microsoft

Emil Cherrington, CATHALAC

Rob Atkinson, CSIRO

Nadine Alameh, Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC)

Sunil Abraham, Centre for Internet and Society

Paul Smits, Joint Research Centre

Fahad Al-Awadi, Regional Organization for the Protection of Marine Environment (ROPME)

Wim Hugo, South African Environmental

Observation Network

Maria Cristina Bueti, International Telecommunication Union (ITU)

Gail Hodge, Information International Associates (IIA)

Pornsook Chongprasith, Air Quality and Noise Management Bureau

Rick Ziegler, US EPA

Jay Pearlman / Steve Browdy, EIEE, GEOSS

Luc Boerhoom, ITC

Dozie Ezigbalike, UNECA

Working Group 4: Capacity Building, Education and Awareness Raising

Addressed the full range of related matters relevant to environmental awareness building, education at all levels, and various types and capacity building.

2011 Group 3 Members:


William Sonntag, US Environment Protection Agency (EPA)

Sives Govender, Environment Information Systems (EIS) Africa


Karolina Slowinska, European Environment Agency (EEA)

Daniel Edelson, National Geographic Society

Claire Brown, UNEP – World Conservation Monitoring Centre (WCMC)

Jonathan Allotey, Ghana EPA

Lucy Waruingi, Africa Conservation Center

Carol Excell, World Resources Institute (WRI)

Rob Barnes, UNEP GRID-Arendal

Victor Lagutov, Central European University

Olimpia Castillo Blanco, Communication and Education – Mexico

Marcos Regis Silva, CITES

Mazen Bader Ahmad Al-Malkawi, WHO

Andrew Skidmore, ITC

Jacques Andre Ndione, Centre du Suivi Ecologique

Working Group 5: Applications Showcase

Evaluated real examples of existing networks and technology for Environmental Information Networking (EIN) and related purposes to develop “quick win” scenarios as proof of concepts. It aimed to identify applications that can be leveraged to connect on-going efforts in various countries such that commitments are made for the sharing of data, content and standards.

2011 Group 5 Members:


Bert Jansen, European Environment Agency (EEA)

Kate Chapman, Humanitarian Open Streetmap


Lawrence Hislop, UNEP GRID-Arendal

Kate Krukiel, Microsoft

John Calkins, Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI)

Morton Saulo, Kenya National Environment Management Authority

Lauretta Burke, World Resources Institute (WRI)

Ahmed Talaat, Kuwait NEPA

Elizabeth Barry, Public Laboratory for Open Technology and Science

Craig Mills, UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre (WCMC)

Johnathan Eyler-Werve, Global Integrity


White papers demonstrating the key issues, challenges, opportunities and way forward produced from all 5 Working Groups can be accessed here.