Ramsar Convention governance and processes at the international level

Royal C. Gardner, Erin Okuno, Dave Pritchard

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter

1 Citation (Scopus)


Various players participate in the governance of the Ramsar Convention. The Conference of the Parties (COP), which typically meets every 3 years, consists of the Convention’s Contracting Parties and holds ultimate decision-making authority. At each COP, Resolutions are adopted, providing instruction and guidance regarding the Convention’s implementation. Between COPs, the Standing Committee, consisting of Contracting Parties based on regional representation, exercises decision-making authority. The Convention’s Secretariat, which is located in Switzerland, provides administrative support, while the Scientific and Technical Review Panel is the Convention’s scientific advisory body. The Convention is further supported by International Organisation Partners, which are intergovernmental and non-governmental organisations. Ramsar operates largely through consensus and collaboration. Much of the Convention’s first 50years focused on building institutional structures and developing technical guidance. Yet, as the Global Wetland Outlook indicates, the Contracting Parties have thus far failed to halt wetland loss and degradation.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRamsar Wetlands
Subtitle of host publicationValues, Assessment, Management
Number of pages31
ISBN (Electronic)9780128178034
ISBN (Print)9780128178041
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jan 2023


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