Development & Climate Days 2016


This year's Development & Climate (D&C) Days event at COP22 looked at how the world can deliver on the ambition of last year's landmark Paris Agreement. 

UN climate change conference (COP22)
A series of pages related to IIED's activities at the 2016 UNFCCC climate change summit in Marrakech
Participants at D&C Days took part in virtual reality game to help explain the complexities of making climate-related decisions (Photo: Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre)

The 14th D&C Days conference took place on 12-13 November 2016 alongside the UN climate summit in Marrakech, Morocco. More than 300 policymakers, researchers and development practitioners attended the two-day event, which had the theme 'Global ambition. Local action. Climate resilience for all'.

The programme sessions focused on efforts to deliver the goals of the Paris Agreement, ways to ensure equitable decision-making on climate finance, and how to bridge the gap between climate and humanitarian development work. 

D&C Days is held each year in the middle weekend of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The 22nd COP is taking place in the Moroccan city of Marrakech from 7-18 November 2016. Amid the formal climate negotiations, D&C Days offers an opportunity for policymakers, researchers and practitioners to meet informally to explore key issues and ideas for future action. 

Programme highlights

In her opening address, Clare Shakya, director of IIED's Climate Change research group, said participants at D&C Days made up a community of practice that could promote action, learning and accountability at all levels from global to local. Shakya said participants had an opportunity to capture a wide range of practical experience and set it out for governments who might be struggling with decisions on how to implement the Paris Agreement.

She particularly welcomed the participation of We Mean Business, a coalition of business and investment organisations. Shakya said it was vital to work with the private sector to get investment that was needed to achieve the goals of Paris. Watch Shakya's full speech on IIED's YouTube channel, and see the slides from her presentations on SlideShare.

The first plenary session focused on social protection initiatives and their potential for delivering climate resilience and carbon-neutral development. Nearly two billion people in low- and middle-income countries already benefit from social protection schemes such as 'Food for Work' programmes. Many organisations are now exploring how these initiatives could also deliver climate risk management and sustainable development solutions.

Robert Hofstede, associate director of the International Development Research Centre, highlighted the importance of the private sector when he summarised Saturday's sessions. He said the day had shown the diversity of the private sector and the importance of developing a mutual understanding between business and researchers. In keeping with the informal style of D&C Days, Hofstede ended his closing remarks with a rap.

Sunday's programme began with a plenary session titled 'Mobility and displaced peoples'. Organised by the World Bank and the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery, this session examined the possibility of large numbers of people opting for migration as an alternative to adaptation.

Also on Sunday, IIED organised a session on 'Legislating to achieve the Paris ambition'. Several countries have enacted legislation for climate responses, and parliamentarians are increasingly interested in how climate legislation can be designed and implemented, and how performance can be assessed. This session focused on domestic climate legislation and asked how civil society can get involved and how more could be done. 

IIED senior fellow Saleemul Huq focused on the importance of practical local action in his address at D&C Days. Huq called for a radical reinvention of the annual UN climate summits, saying that following the successful negotiations for the Paris Agreement, it was time for practitioners to take centre stage

D&C Days always aim to encourage innovative thinking. This year, the Red Cross/Red Crescent Climate Centre introduced a new virtual reality game designed to let people experience the complexities of making climate related decisions. Wearing a virtual reality headset and earphones, users are faced with the challenge of deciding when to evacuate areas at risk of flooding. The experience delivers a sense of the difficulties of making decisions on the ground.

Full coverage 

About the organisers

D&C Days is organised by the Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre, IIED, the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR)Mary Robinson Foundation – Climate Justice (MRFCJ), Competence Centre Climate Change in Morocco (4C Maroc), and We Mean Business (WMB)

Contributing partners also include the World Resources Institute (WRI), Action on Climate Today (ACT), Partners for Resilience (PRF), International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Building Resilience and Adaptation to Climate Extreme Disasters (BRACED).

About D&C Days

D&C Days was first organised at COP8 in 2002 and the event has now become a popular part of each COP. 

D&C Days 2015 focused on the key transitions needed to tackle climate change and eradicate poverty by 2030. The programme featured sessions focused on adaptation and finance, participatory processes and livestock systems for climate resilience, as well as 'lightning talks' about innovative products, tools, technologies and approaches. Organisers challenged participants to think about their food choices with a session offering them insect cuisine.