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Scientific Committee begins in Slovenia

Over the next two weeks, Slovenia will once again play host to the Scientific Committee of the IWC.  More than 120 of the world’s leading cetacean scientists are gathering in Bled to discuss the latest research on a wide range of subjects related to cetacean conservation and management.

The meeting opened today with a plenary session.  Sixteen sub-groups will run simultaneously before recommendations are agreed at a finalised at a closing plenary.  This year the agenda and sub-committee structure have been modified to align more closely with the priorities of the Commission.  New groups include one focused on Abundance Estimates and one focused on Database Capability.  Accessibility will be an important factor for both groups.

The role of the IWC Scientific Committee is to provide advice to the Commission.  The discussions and recommendations of the Scientific Committee's annual meeting are recorded in a detailed report which is presented to the Commission and provides a scientific foundation for IWC policy making.  The Scientific Committee report will be published in June (two weeks after the meeting closes) and will be available via the IWC home page.  To read Scientific Committee Reports from previous years click here.

A joint meeting of the Scientific and Conservation Committees will follow immediately afterwards on 22nd May.   The Conservation Committee considers policy and management aspects of cetacean conservation, and works closely with the Scientific Committee to understand and address a range of threats to whales and their habitats.