The WABES project is an initiative with the objective to facilitate networking and capacity-building across West Africa to support the Work Programme of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), and in particular its scientific assessments.

The overarching goal is to connect Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (BES) experts from universities, research institutions, science-policy interface institutions, government agencies and non-governmental organisations in West Africa and beyond. Expert workshops conducted annually will act as the exchange platforms and distribution hubs for IPBES developments. This incentive will be supplemented by an online platform available on our webpage.

Complementarily, a Master’s programme on “Managing the Science-Policy Interface on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services for sustainable development in West Africa – SPIBES” has been established in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire in collaboration with the University Felix Houphouët-Boigny (UFHB). This programme admits qualified students from all fifteen member states of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
Altogether, WABES shall act as pioneer to strengthen the sub-regional BES expert pool to support and disseminate assessments within the scope of IPBES.

WABES is supported by its partner institutions across West Africa and Europe and is funded by the International Climate Initiative (IKI) of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, and Nuclear Safety (BMU).