PARM’s Advisory Committee (AC), plays a key consultative role in providing guidance to PARM Secretariat and facilitating the flow of information among members to strengthen knowledge and partnerships on ARM. The committee meets annually, face-to-face or via teleconference and in attendance are its members and concerned observers.
This year, the AC meeting was held on December 13th, back-to-back with the PARM regional knowledge sharing event in Lusaka, Zambia. It aimed at following up on the actions agreed during the 4th AC meeting in 2017. It also sought to capitalize on the lessons learned from PARM first five years (2013-2018) of implementation to improve the role of the AC towards the PARM Horizon 2 (2019-2024).
The meeting welcomed PARM AC Members and new concerned observers from CABI, EAFF, EU, Heifer International and SADC/SPGRC, all from Zambia.
The meeting started with a first tour the table to allow all members and observers to share updates and relevant information related to ARM. The PARM Secretariat then had the opportunity to share with participants results and assess if the planned objectives agreed together with the AC members have been achieved throughout the first four years of implementation in the area of: (a) mainstreaming ARM into policy through assessment, prioritization of risks and tools in partnership with some of the AC members; (b) collect and share knowledge through K-sharing events and dissemination of K-products and webinars; (c) strengthening of regional and national networks to build capacity on ARM.
The members had the opportunity to learn about the achieved results and open the dialogue to discuss what has worked well and what could be improved in the partnership with PARM. Members actively participated in the discussion providing positive feedback and confirming the relevance of the role of PARM as knowledge broker to identify gaps, facilitate the dissemination of good practices, methodology and tools on ARM. Discussions on how to better engage the members in technical advice of PARM activities was also discussed and members expressed the need to continue having specific objectives in order to ensure active participation and engagement from members.
Finally, the PARM Secretariat had the opportunity to present the new components of PARM Horizon 2 (2019-2024), which will continue focusing on creating evidence on ARM through assessment and feasibility studies, but will also further develop concept and project design for operational implementation.
The deliberations from the meeting yielded agreements to/for continue to explore innovative and improved ways to share knowledge on ARM through regular meetings, newsletters, webinars, etc; strengthen partnership with AC members representative at country level and priorities and welcome of new request for membership.