20th SSIG Meeting: Videos and Abstracts

‘Dear friends, the situation is certainly difficult. But at the same time, there is a broad consensus on the possibility of building a better world, and of approaching this crisis, and the future, by transforming our relationship with nature.’ So spoke Ibrahim Thiaw, Executive Secretary of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification.  With these fine words, appreciation for SSIG and his encouragement, the 2021 SSIG meeting got off to a great start.

After the disappointment of having to cancel the 2020 meeting due to the Covid virus, there was tremendous interest in having a meeting in 2021, even if it had to be virtual, with participants in their homes or offices across many countries.

The enforced virtual meeting offered good opportunities, for without travel costs, visas, registration fees, the result was registration of about 180 people, compared to 90 in past years.

The themes ran from the larges issues of ‘Geopolitics, climate change and society in the Sahelo-Saharan region’  to ‘Large-scale conservation and development’ to, third, ‘Species and Sites Conservation’, the latter being normally  much the bread-and-butter of SSIG meetings.

Thirty presentations were submitted in all. We are happy to share all of the submitted abstracts, some of the videos of the presentations given, and the final version of the program on this page.



A quick survey in the week after the meeting yielded 60 responses of which 92% said they were very or more than satisfied with the online meeting. The survey also yielded may other observations on the themes, structure and content, with fine suggestions for the future; but overall, there was great approval and enthusiasm for the meeting.

SCF wishes to continue to use the SSIG family to help it pursue its strategic objective of championing conservation in the Sahel-Sahara. SCF is grateful to everyone who joined in the meeting for their support and future help in promoting the urgent and massive needs for biodiversity conservation  and sustainable development in the region.