The Geneva World Wildlife Day 2024 Celebration will highlight the role of Geneva in bridging conservation and digital technology, and advancing digital innovation in the field of conservation and trade.

About this Event

On 20 December 2013, at its 68th session, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 3 March as World Wildlife Day to celebrate and raise awareness of the world’s wild fauna and flora. This date is also the day of the adoption in Washington of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in 1973, which plays an important role in ensuring that international trade does not threaten the survival of species listed in the CITES Appendices.

The theme of the United Nations World Wildlife Day 2024, “Connecting People and Planet: Exploring Digital Innovation in Wildlife Conservation”, aims to raise awareness about the latest applications of digital technologies in wildlife conservation and trade and about the impact of digital interventions on ecosystems and communities around the world. The celebrations will explore digital innovation and highlight how digital technologies and services can drive wildlife conservation and human-wildlife coexistence, now and for future generations in an increasingly connected world.

In recent years, important leaps in technology have allowed information and communication technologies (ICTs) not solely to have a negative impact on the environment but to become powerful instruments for tackling illegal wildlife trade and supporting conservation. Since 2020, the International Union for Conservation of Nature leads the Tech4Nature, a global partnership to scale up success in nature conservation through digital technology innovation developed together with Huawei. In 2023, the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) launched an AI for Biodiversity series exploring the role of AI to monitor biodiversity and support conservation actions. From satellite images for monitoring to AI technologies to enhance understanding, identification, and protection, digital innovation can strengthen the sustainability and traceability of trade and combat illegal trade in wildlife.

Digital solutions can support the automate National laws for implementing the Convention and relevant parts of Legal Acquisition Findings (LAFs). Therefore, the CITES Secretariat, in collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), has developed CITES-LEX, a new information system that provides national catalogues and comprehensive search capabilities of legislation and policies relevant to the implementation of the Convention, to be launched on World Wildlife Day.

In line with the World Wildlife Day 2024 United Nations event taking place in New York, the CITES Secretariat, ITU and the Geneva Environment Network are organizing a celebration that will highlight the role of Geneva in making advances in the field as host of both the CITES Secretariat and ITU, frontrunners in bridging conservation and digital technology, as well as to many other actors engaged in advancing digital innovation in the field of conservation and trade.

The event will be followed by a light reception.

Speakers

 Additional speakers to be confirmed.

Doreen BOGDAN-MARTIN

Secretary-General, International Telecommunication Union (ITU)

Mathias LÖRTSCHER

Head, Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) Management Authority, Switzerland

Dao NGUYEN

Senior Programme Manager, Conservation Action, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)

John DAVID

Information Systems Officer, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development Automated System for Customs Data (UNCTAD-ASYCUDA)

Simone HAYSOM

Director, Environmental Crime and Head, ECO-SOLVE, Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime

Esther GITHINJI

Conservation Technology Coordinator, WILDLABS East Africa

Jean-Manuel CANET

Senior Manager Sustainable Development, Orange Consulting | Vice-chair of ITU-T SG5 “Environment, EMF and Circular Economy”

Swabir ABDULREHMAN

Technical Director, Connected Conservation Foundation

Bertrand von ARX

Director, Biodiversity, Canton of Geneva

Julia NAKAMURA

Legal Officer, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)

Juan Carlos VASQUEZ

Chief, Legal Affairs and Compliance, Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) | Moderator

Registration

This event will take place in person in Room C1 of the International Telecommunication Union Headquarters. To register, please use Forms. We kindly request those requiring assistance to access the venue (e.g. wheelchair users) to contact us at gensecretary@un.org.

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