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Habitat II Conference                     [ Back to Habitat II ]

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IV Global Plan of Action

E. International cooperation and coordination

4. Technology transfer and information exchange

205. The use and transfer of environmentally sound technologies that have a profound impact on consumption and production patterns are prerequisites for sustainable human settlements development. Advanced and appropriate technologies and the knowledge-based systems that support their application offer new opportunities for more efficient use of human, financial and material resources, more sustainable industrial practices and new sources of employment. International organizations have an important role to play in disseminating and facilitating access to information on technologies available for transfer. It is understood that the transfer of technology will take into account the need to protect intellectual property rights.

206. The international community should promote and facilitate the transfer of technology and expertise in support of the implementation of plans of action for adequate shelter for all and sustainable human settlements development, inter alia, through:

(a) Encouraging the establishment or reinforcement, as appropriate, of global networks among all interested parties to facilitate the exchange of information on environmentally sound technologies, particularly those related to shelter and human settlements;

(b) Seeking to ensure that the process of technology transfer avoids the dumping of environmentally unsound technologies on the recipients and that the transfer of environmentally sound technologies and corresponding know-how, in particular to developing countries, is on favourable terms, as mutually agreed, taking into account the need to protect intellectual property rights;

(c) Facilitating, developing and/or intensifying, as appropriate, technical cooperation with and among all regions, including South-South cooperation, in order to exchange experiences, particularly on best practices, foster the development of technology and technical skills and increase the efficiency of shelter and human settlements policies and management, with the backing of coordinated and complementary support from multilateral and bilateral arrangements;

(d) Encouraging and supporting the use of appropriate building technology and the production of local building materials, as well as supporting the development of international, subregional and regional networks of institutions involved in research, production, dissemination and commercialization of locally produced building materials;

(e) Placing special emphasis on the funding and promotion of applied research and the dissemination of the results thereof, and on innovation in all areas that could contribute to enhancing the capabilities of all developing countries, particularly those in Africa and the least developed countries, to provide shelter, basic services, infrastructure and amenities to their communities;

(f) Enhancing the identification and dissemination of those new and promising technologies related to human settlements that generate employment, especially those that can lower the cost of infrastructure, make basic services more affordable and minimize detrimental environmental impacts; and identifying specific roles for existing United Nations organizations which would promote those goals.

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