At its tenth session held in Changwon, Republic of Korea in October 2011, the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UNCCD acknowledged the need to mobilize scientific and technical expertise to address the problems of desertification/land degradation and to mitigate the effects of drought. Decision 20/COP.10 stipulates "to set up an ad hoc working group, taking into consideration regional balance, to further discuss the options for the provision of scientific advice focusing on desertification, land degradation and drought issues, taking into account the regional approach of the UNCCD".
The AGSA will aim at proposing the most suitable components that would shape an integrated scenario for providing scientific advice to the UNCCD focusing on desertification/land degradation and drought issues, for consideration by the Committee on Science and Technology (CST) at its eleventh session (CST11).
At its meeting from 29 - 30 May 2012 in Bonn, Germany, the CST Bureau finalized the selection of the members of the AGSA. The AGSA consists of 12 members, comprising two experts per each regional group and two "global experts" selected among representatives of major synergistic efforts and relevant international conventions, organizations and institutions.
The AGSA held three meetings that took place on 30-31 July 2012, 10-11 December 2012 and 29-30 April 2013 in Bonn Germany.
The conclusions and recommendations of the AGSA will be presented for discussion at the eleventh session of the CST which will be held from 17 - 20 September 2013 in Windhoek, Namibia.