Further resources

Information exchange standards

Background

The joint clearing-house mechanism is fed by information provided by Parties, the Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions, intergovernmental organizations, non-governmental organizations and other stakeholders resulting in the establishment of a global and collaborative knowledge base to support the implementation of the conventions.

Participation in the joint clearing-house programme is, and will remain, voluntary.

The joint clearing-house mechanism initially followed a centralized approach in which information providers are sending information to the Secretariat, usually through emails or other means of correspondence, and the Secretariat disseminates it trough a central joint clearing-house mechanism. One of the benefits of a centralized approach is that it facilitates the maintenance of the joint clearing-house mechanism infrastructure and tools. Some of the disadvantages are slow information flows and complex processes for sharing and updating the information.

A decentralized approach, thanks to new Information Technology tools, tackle the above mentioned disadvantages by enabling automatic information exchange, harvesting and aggregating of information between all clearing-house mechanism nodes. In a decentralized approach, all regional and national online information repositories can become a node of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions joint clearing-house mechanism.

Expected benefits of local nodes of the joint clearing-house mechanism

The benefits of developing a local node of the joint clearing-house mechanism of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions, particularly regional centres, from an executive point of view, are:

  1. The owner of the local clearing house node becomes an "information provider" for the joint clearing house mechanism, reaching specialized target audiences, particularly parties of the three conventions, NGOs, industry association and other conventions' stakeholders;
  2. Information providers can promote their activities to a broader and more diverse target audiences and can foster collaboration with other members of the joint clearing house;
  3. Information providers will also be able to harvest information from other clearing house nodes and aggregate or re-package depending on the intended purpose, for instance it will be possible to organize regional information exchange processes on regional issues and in a local language;
  4. The information content will still be managed, processed and stored on each node repositories and systems in order to ensure full ownership and control to the information owners;
  5. The current knowledge management processes and systems within each node will not be impacted by the implementation of a local node;
  6. The combination of all clearing-house mechanism nodes content will be accessed in a friendly manner by all stakeholders as if it was one large repository of information;
  7. The quantity and quality of information will be increased for each node of the joint clearing-house mechanism by leveraging the combined efforts of global, regional and national institutions, which are actively contributing information to the joint clearing house mechanism.

Further information

The Secretariat has prepared, in consultation and with the support of a group of experts nominated by their governments, a guidance document for parties and other stakeholders to define common information exchange standards and to facilitate the implementation of the joint clearing-house mechanism at the national and regional levels which outlines how the OData protocol is used by the Secretariat and its partners.

For a more in-depth description and updated technical description on how to implement a local node of the joint clearing-house mechanism, please visit our resources for developers page.  

For any clarifications or requests related to retrieval or transmission of information from and to the joint clearing-house meachanism, please contact:

Mr. Osmany Pereira Gonzalez
Information and Conference Services Manager
E-mail: osmany.pereira[at]brsmeas.org