Laureates Forum

BACKGROUND
The Dubai International Award was established in November 1995 under the directive of H.H. Sheikh Maktoum Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President, Prime Minister of the U.A.E. and Ruler of Dubai. The main purpose of the Award is to encourage and recognize outstanding and sustainable achievements in improving the living environment. The Award was first presented during the Habitat II Conference to six recipients. Since then, the Award has been increased to 10 recipients and is now presented biennially to coincide withWorld Habitat Day. There are, to date, 16 Dubai International Award (DIA) Laureates (1998 Laureates or 1996 Laureates).

MISSION STATEMENT
To improve the quality of life in human settlements through the transfer of Best Practices knowledge, expertise and experience.

OBJECTIVES
The DIA Laureates Forum will capitalise on the efforts and contributions of the 16 Dubai Award recipients in support of the following objectives:

To transfer knowledge, expertise and experience derived from Best Practices
To build awareness of proven solutions, demonstrated experience and innovative strategies
To strengthen the Best Practices and Local Leadership network

ACTIVITIES
The principle activities of the Forum in the area of "Transfer of Experience" will include:
1. Scaling Up: The success of transfer depends to a large extent on the ability of a Best Practice to scale-up its impact at the local level. Scaling up activities typically include consolidation/strengthening of capacity through policy change, the adoption of new and improved strategies, training and human resource development;
2. Pilot Transfers of Best Practice knowledge, experience and expertise through peer-to-peer learning. Specific activities may include study tours, staff exchanges and seminars with other organisations. These transfers will be based on a methodology developed by Habitat, BLP Partners, Dubai Municipality and DIA recipients. Transfers between Laureates is also encouraged.
3. Casebook Development of Lessons Learned: The analysis, documentation and dissemination of lessons learned from a Best Practice with the specific aim of sharing experience and expertise with other cities and communities within their own country, region or internationally;
4. Conference/Exhibition Presentations: Laureates should engage themselves in sharing their experience locally, nationally and internationaly. Habitat and Dubai Municipality will also promote DIA recipients as resource persons for conferences and seminars. Resources depending, Laureates may also wish to collaborate and organise their own conferences and meetings;

The principle activities of the Forum in the area of "Awareness building" will include:

1. Production of Promotional Material: Laureates may produce videos; flyers, brochures, buttons, etc. featuring Best Practices and the DIA;
2. Media Relations: Laureates should disseminate their experience and raise awareness of development issues through their local or national media;
3. Journals and Newsletters: Laureates may also wish to prepare articles profiling their work for local or international professional/academic journals and newsletters;
4. Promoting the Objectives of the DIA: Raise awareness, through the media and by other means, of the objectives, criteria, eligibility and selection method of the DIA. Laureates are also encouraged to nominate organisations for the DIA 2000.

The principle Forum activities under "Networking" will include:

1. Strengthening of Regional/National/Local Networks: Laureates should build upon existing networks and can forge links between themselves to further the goal of the Forum. Collaboration between Laureates within a region offers good potential for action;
2. Development of an Internet Home Page: Upcoming Laureates events, action plans, progress reports and publications will reside electronically on http://sustainabledevelopment.org/blp/laureates
3. Electronic Conferencing: Forum members can make use of the BLP’s Intranet to engage in electronic conferencing to collaborate on specific activities;
4. Biennial Meeting: Every two years, DIA Laureates will meet to review progress and to identify opportunities and constraints for further action

PROPOSED START-UP ACTIVITIES
1. Formal establishment of the DIA Laureates Forum (6 October 1998)
2. Discussion and endorsement of the Draft Terms of Reference (6 October 1998)
3. Habitat to circulate Meeting Report, revised Terms of Reference and reporting format in early November;
4. DIA Laureates to review and approve Meeting Report, Terms of Reference and reporting format by 16 November;
5. DIA Laureates to prepare draft action plans for 1998-2000 by and related resource mobilization by 5 December 1998;
6. Habitat to collate all action plans and place them on the DIA Laureates home-page by 15 December 1998;
7. First report on action plan progress to be forwarded to Habitat by 31 March 1999.

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