About STAP



The Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel comprises six expert advisers supported by a Secretariat, which are together responsible for connecting the GEF to the most up to date, authoritative, and globally representative science

To find out more please download the STAP Brochure.

STAP’s mandate, in accordance with the terms of reference adopted by the GEF Council in June 2007, states the following -

“The STAP is established as an advisory body to the GEF. The STAP shall provide objective, strategic scientific and technical advice on GEF policies, operational strategies, programs and on projects and programmatic approaches; and, maintain a database of institutions, networks and individual scientists to provide the necessary expertise and advice for the GEF. STAP’s activities shall be coordinated with the activities of the GEF Secretariat and the Implementing and Executing Agencies (GEF Agencies) and be consistent with GEF processes and procedures approved by the Council.

The STAP shall interact in a complementary manner with other relevant scientific and technical bodies, particularly with the subsidiary bodies of the Convention on Biological Diversity, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Convention to Combat Desertification and the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants. For focal areas in which the GEF is not operating as a convention’s financial mechanism, the STAP shall advise on the development of scientific and technical criteria and provide scientific and technical advice on priorities for GEF funding. The STAP shall provide expert scientific advice to inter-agency task forces and bodies handling other GEF processes, when such advice is requested.

Pursuant to this mandate, STAP shall report to each regular meeting of the GEF Council and, if requested, to the GEF Assembly on the status of its activities.

UNEP shall provide STAP’s Secretariat and operate as its liaison with the GEF.”

RosinaRosina Bierbaum

Position: Chairperson

Appointed: July 2013

Dr. Rosina Bierbaum’s experience extends from climate science into foreign relations and international development. She is a Professor and Dean Emerita at the University of Michigan with appointments in both the School of Natural Resources and Environment, and the School of Public Health. She also serves on President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, and is a lead author of the U.S. National Climate Assessment, and an Adaptation Fellow at the World Bank. Previously, Dr. Bierbaum served for two decades in both the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. Government, and ran the first Environmental Division of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). She was selected by the World Bank to co-direct its prestigious World Development Report in 2010, which focused on climate change and development.

Dr. Bierbaum is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Ecological Society of America, and received the American Geophysical Union’s Waldo Smith award for “extraordinary service to Geosciences”, and the Environmental Protection Agency’s “Climate Protection Award”. She is also a board member for the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the Wildlife Conservation Society, the Federation of American Scientists, the Environmental and Energy Study Institute, and the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement.


SimsRalph E. Sims

Position: Adviser on Climate Change Mitigation

Appointed: November 2012

Professor Ralph Sims began his career in Sustainable Energy at Massey University, New Zealand in 1971 making and testing biodiesel. After 4 years recently based at the IEA (International Energy Agency) in Paris as a senior analyst working on Renewable Energy and climate change mitigation, he has now returned to his position at Massey of Professor of Sustainable Energy, and Director, Centre for Energy Research.

For the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that was awarded the 2007 Nobel Peace prize, he was a lead author covering renewable energy and agriculture for the 3rd Assessment Report (2001), led the chapter on “Energy Supply” in the IPCC 4th Assessment Report 2007, the “Integration” chapter in the Special Report on Renewable Energy for Climate Change Mitigation (2011) and is currently leading the “Transport” chapter of the IPCC 5th Assessment Report (to be published in 2014). Ralph is currently undertaking consulting projects for UNEP, UN FAO, REN 21 and OECD. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Professional Engineers and of the UK Institute of Agricultural Engineers, a Companion of the Royal Society of New Zealand and received the 2010 Outstanding Achievement Award from the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) of which he was a Ministerial Board Member appointee for 3 terms.


Sandra DiazSandra Díaz

Position: Adviser on Biodiversity

Appointed: December 2009

As Professor and Senior Principal Researcher at the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina, working in the area of community and ecosystems ecology, Professor Díaz has made significant contributions to the understanding of the role that biodiversity plays in the benefits that humankind derives from ecosystems. Professor Díaz has contributed 18 peer reviewed book chapters and 78 peer reviewed scientific papers on functional biodiversity and global change which are widely cited; several papers have received prestigious awards. An Associate Foreign Member of the USA National Academy of Sciences, Professor Díaz has been an active member of IPCC since 1994, acting as a main author and convening main author, most recently as review editor of the Chapter on Ecosystems and their Services and of the Synthesis Report. Professor Díaz was also a Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Convening Lead Author of the Chapter of Biodiversity Regulation of Ecosystem Services, and then author of the Biodiversity Synthesis (MA contribution to the CBD), and additionally a member of the ad-hoc UNESCO-UNU-ICSU Millennium-Follow-Up Report Group. As a member of the Scientific Steering Committees of DIVERSITAS, the Global Land Project of IPCC, the ICSU Regional Committee for Latin America and the Caribbean, and director of one of the Collaborative Research Networks of the Inter American Institute for Global Change Research (IAI), Professor Díaz is well qualified to advise the GEF regarding contemporary challenges focusing on biodiversity, ecosystem services and sustainability.


Henk BouwmanHenk Bouwman

Position: Adviser on POPs and Ozone Depletion

Appointed: July 2010

Henk Bouwman was born in 1958 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Part of his schooling was three years in Holland. After matriculating at Middelburg High School (Mpumalanga), he obtained his B.Sc (1981), B.Sc Hons (1982), M.Sc (1984) and Ph.D (1990) at the PU vir CHO.

For his Ph.D he was a Medical Research Council bursar, working on the levels and dynamics of DDT, as used in malaria control, in humans, fish, birds and the environment. He started his career as a Medical/Senior Medical Researcher at the MRC (Environmental Diseases 1988-1990), Senior Lecturer (PU vir CHO, 1990-1995), Assistant Director and Specialist Scientist, Agricultural Research Council, 1996-1999), and Professor (PU vir CHO, 2000-current). He has published 48 refereed papers in scientific journals, and is involved in a number of projects, both as leader / co-ordinator, or as collaborator or advisor, with local and international research organizations (e.g. United Nations Environment Programme / Global Environment Facility, SIDA, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and ARC). He has travelled extensively overseas.

His work concentrates mainly on the ecology of birds and the so called Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs). He has acted as advisor to the Government on POPs and has also been an accredited member of the South African team in international negotiation fora. Other aspects of his work relates to endocrine disruptors and the effects of pollutants on earthworms and birds. In 2000 he was appointed by the NWU as Professor in the School of Environmental Sciences and Development, and his research is conducted in the research focus area: Environmental Science and Management. His current teaching includes evolutionary theory, zoogeography and animal behaviour at the pre-graduate level, and various aspects of pollution and impact on the post-graduate level. He is currently leader and a co-leader for more than 10 M.Sc and Ph.D students on various aspects of pollution, POPs and birds.

Most recently he served his second term as a project evaluator for the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) of the Global Environment Facility with the responsibility of evaluating national and international applications for GEF sponsored projects.


Annette CowieAnnette Cowie

Position: Adviser on Land Degradation

Appointed: May 2012

Annette Cowie has a background in soil science and plant nutrition, with particular interest in sustainable resource management. She is the Director of Rural Climate Solutions, a joint venture between NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) and the University of New England. Previously Annette led the New Forests research program in the NSW DPI for ten years, researching environmental services from planted forests, focusing on greenhouse gas mitigation, amelioration of dryland salinity and land rehabilitation through use of recycled organics. Annette is also Co-Task Leader of the International Energy Agency Bioenergy research group on Greenhouse Gas Balances of Biomass and Bioenergy Systems.

Annette’s particular expertise and research interests include:

  • Sustainable land management – indicators, assessment and policy development
  • Soil carbon dynamics in agriculture and forestry: Sustainability assessment of bioenergy and biochar systems, including land use change issues and certification
  • Life cycle assessment, especially to assess the carbon footprint of wood products, and climate change mitigation value of reforestation, bioenergy and biochar systems
  • Synergies between environmental goals through sustainable land management
  • Estimation and accounting for GHG emissions and removals in agriculture and forestry, for inventory and emissions trading

During 2011, Annette was one of the six members of the Domestic Offsets Integrity Committee, an independent expert committee that was established to assess offset methodologies proposed under Australia’s Carbon Farming Initiative. Annette is a member of the International Standards Organisation working group developing the standard for quantifying and communicating the carbon footprint of products, and the committee developing sustainability criteria for bioenergy. She has more than 50 peer reviewed publications, largely focused on terrestrial carbon cycle, GHG accounting and sustainable land management.


JakobGranitJakob Granit

Position: Adviser on International Waters

Appointed: June 2012

Dr Jakob Granit, who has a PhD in Geography, has 20 years of expertise gained from working with transboundary freshwater resources management and development. This includes strategic planning, project design, implementation and management in the broad fields of water, energy and the environment. He has extensive work experience from Eastern & Southern Africa, the Middle East, the U.S. and Europe. He is currently Centre Director for the Stockholm Centre of the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI). The Centre carries out multidisciplinary research into water resources, energy, climate change and biotechnology as well as conducting policy analyses. Before joining the SEI, Dr Granit was Director of the Knowledge Services Department of the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI). His responsibilities were advisory services and applied research in integrated natural and water resources management, energy policy and regional integration for public and private clients globally.

Prior to this, Dr Granit was Senior Water Resources Management Specialist at the World Bank for eight years. At the World Bank he also acted as Cluster Team Leader for a multi-sector Nile team that provided advisory services and institutional building advice to clients in East, Central and Southern Africa. Dr Granit gained theoretical and practical experience in this field from working for the Swedish International Development Cooperation (Sida)where he developed and managed Sida’s regional transboundary water resources initiative for the Southern Africa region. The Sida initiative supported the strengthening of cooperation on the major transboundary river basin systems in this region. This was done in partnership with sovereign states, the Regional Economic Communities, Regional River Basin Commissions, academia, the private sector and civil society.

During his time at the World Bank and at Sida, Dr Granit focused on building environments conducive to development investments in international as well as national contexts with a focus on achieving real development outcomes. His research has focused on how to achieve collective action on international waters with an emphasis on transboundary freshwater systems and how to support strategic planning and project transactions to achieve results on the ground. He has published actively in the field of regional integration, transboundary water issues, institutional development, the water-energy nexus, and the environment.


Anand_PatwardhanAnand Patwardhan

Position: Adviser on Adaptation 

Appointed: June 2012

Anand Patwardhan is Professor in the Shailesh J Mehta School of Management at the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay. He served as the Head of the School from 2003-2004, and as Executive Director of the Technology Information, Forecasting and Assessment Council (TIFAC), in the Ministry of Science & Technology, Government of India from 2004-2008. Anand has a BTech (Electrical Engineering) from IIT-Bombay and a MS (Environmental Science & Engineering) and PhD (Engineering and Public Policy), both from Carnegie Mellon University.

Anand’s research interests are in the area of environment – climate studies, focusing on mitigation and adaptation responses to climate change; including the diffusion and adoption of clean technology and broader issues of science, technology and innovation policy. As Executive Director of TIFAC, he was responsible for conceptualizing and implementing a number of innovation support programs. He has been a coordinating lead author for the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment; and a coordinating lead author (CLA) for the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Anand is currently co-Chair of the Executive Committee of the Global Energy Assessment, CLA for the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report, and a member of the Steering Committee of the Programme of Research on Vulnerability, Impacts and Adaptation (PRO-VIA) of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).


Michael StockingMichael Stocking

Position: Adviser to STAP Chair

Appointed: 2011

Prof. Michael Stocking is Emeritus Professor of Natural Resources Development, School of International Development, University of East Anglia, UK. Formerly Vice-Chair of STAP and Panel Member for Land Degradation, Prof. Stocking remains a STAP Consultant. Prof. Stocking also works for the Overseas Development Group on a number of projects for various agencies, including the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (Rome), the United Nations University (Tokyo) and the Swiss National Science Foundation.His professional interests are in the conservation and management of renewable natural resources (such as soil, vegetation, water and land) in developing countries. He developed a new strategy on ‘land degradation’ and ‘sustainable land management’ for the Global Environment Facility. Related projects include indicators and assessment techniques for land degradation, and developing a ‘carbon tracking tool’ for natural resource projects. Prof. Stocking’s current and recent external appointments are:

  • Vice-Chair and Panel Member, Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel, Global Environment Facility, 2006-2009. Responsible for scientific oversight of GEF’s focal area of ‘land degradation’ and Operational program 15 ‘sustainable land management’
  • Chair of the Scientific Advisory Committee to CIAT (Centro Internacional de Agricultura Tropical), Cali, Colombia and the Tropical Soil Biology and Fertility Institute, Nairobi, Kenya (2003-2007)
  • Chair, Programme Advisory Committee, Conservation and Sustainable Management of Below-Ground Biodiversity, TSBF-CIAT project for UNEP-GEF, 2003-2009
  • Senior Programme Advisor for Land Management to the United Nations University, Tokyo (2003-2007)
  • Member, International Scientific Advisory Board, Swiss National Science Foundation, Berne – Research Partnerships in International Co-operation (2003-2012)
  • Member, Steering Committee, Land Degradation Assessment in Drylands, for FAO, Rome (2004-2010)
  • Member, Steering Committee, Sustainable Land Management in the High Pamir and Pamir-Alai Mountains, for UNU, Tokyo (2005-2009)
  • Natural Resources Adviser, Hillsides Production Systems (Bolivia, Nepal, Uganda), for the UK Department for International Development (1999-2006)

Thomas HammondThomas Hammond

Position: STAP Secretary 

Thomas Hammond was formerly Senior Biodiversity Program Manager with the Commission for Environmental Cooperation, an international organization created by Canada, Mexico and the United States under the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation. He spent 12 years in senior positions with IUCN (The World Conservation Union) and WWF, and led a variety of conservation and development projects in both Africa and Latin America. A native of Toronto, Canada, Tom obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Natural Resource Management from the University of Ottawa and a Master’s Degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Waterloo.


Lev NeretinLev Neretin

Position: Programme Officer 

Lev Neretin, a Programme Officer in the STAP Secretariat, is a graduate of the Moscow State University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. He spent more than 10 years in academia working on ocean biogeochemical cycles and marine microbial ecology. Most of this time Lev was with the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology in Bremen, Germany. He is the author of more than 30 publications and the editor of the book “Past and Present Water Column Anoxia” published by Springer in 2006. Before joining STAP Secretariat, Lev worked as a Biodiversity Expert of the Caspian Environment Programme in Iran and GEF Task Manager (Biodiversity and International Waters) based in UNEP’s Moscow office. In his later position Lev supervised projects dealing with environmental protection of the Russian Arctic. He has regional knowledge and working experience in countries of Eastern and Central Europe, Central Asia and Middle East.


Christine Wellington-MooreChristine Wellington-Moore

Position: Programme Officer

Christine has approximately 15 years in the field of Environment. She began with an Environmental Science Specialist Degree (BSc ’94) from University of Toronto, with a MSc in the field from McGill University, with a focus on nutrient mass balances of Caribbean Coastal waters of Barbados, and water chemistry, with collaboration with the University of West Indies (1995-1998). She then joined the Ministry of Environment of the Government of Barbados (1998-2001), primarily working in the Biodiversity area, before becoming the Chemicals and Climate Focal point, negotiating the related Conventions and overseeing national implementation aspects.

Christine began with UNEP in 2002, first overseeing GEF Methyl Bromide project execution with UNEP’s Division of Technology, Industry and Economics in Paris. She then became a Task Manager for UNEP DGEF in 2004, overseeing the entire Ozone protfolio of DTIE. She transferred to Washington, DC, in late 2007, broadening her focal area responsibilities to POPS projects.

On 1 September 2011, she joined the STAP team as a Programme Officer in charge of the Chemicals and Adaptation areas of GEF work.


Guadalupe DuronGuadalupe Durón

Position: Programme officer

Guadalupe Duron is an Associate Program Officer at the Secretariat of the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) to the Global Environment Facility (GEF). She joined the STAP Secretariat in 2002. Her main tasks included managing a database of experts on environmental issues, and assisting STAP organize expert meetings to develop technical and policy advice for the GEF. Most recently, she began to work specifically on GEF sustainable land management activities. In doing so, she supports STAP to develop and deliver strategic advice for the GEF land degradation portfolio. She also supports STAP’s work on cross-cutting topics, such as land use and climate change. Guadalupe holds a Master of Science Degree in Development Studies with a focus on Agriculture, Environment, and Development from the University of East Anglia, United Kingdom.


Robin BurgessRobin Burgess

Position; Programme Assistant

Robin began working with UNEP in 1997, supporting the Division of Global Environment Facility’s (GEF) Liaison Office, located in Washington, DC. Additionally, since its relocation to Washington in 2002, she also supports the Secretariat to Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) to the GEF. Besides providing local administrative and financial support, she organizes logistical arrangements for bi-annual STAP meetings, manages STAP’s recording of GEF agency submissions, GEF Secretariat reviews, and STAP project reviews. Prior to joining UNEP, Robin supported a large team of commercial real estate brokers in the DC area. She has more than 20 years of experience in office administration, logistical arrangements, and finance.


Katherine KinuthiaKatherine Kinuthia

Position: Programme Assistant 

Programme Assistant in Nairobi, Kenya for STAP.

Lovejoy jpegThomas E. Lovejoy

Position: Chairperson

Appointed: July 2008

Thomas E. Lovejoy is currently Biodiversity Chair and he was formerly President of The Heinz Center since May 2002. Before coming to The Heinz Center, he was the World Bank’s Chief Biodiversity Advisor and Lead Specialist for Environment for Latin America and the Caribbean and Senior Advisor to the President of the United Nations Foundation.

Dr. Lovejoy has been Assistant Secretary and Counselor to the Secretary at the Smithsonian Institution, Science Advisor to the Secretary of the Interior, U.S., and Executive Vice President of the World Wildlife Fund–U.S. He conceived the idea for the Minimum Critical Size of Ecosystems project (a joint project between the Smithsonian and Brazil’s INPA), originated the concept of debt-for-nature swaps, and is the founder of the public television series Nature. In 2001 he was awarded the prestigious Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement. Dr. Lovejoy served on science and environmental councils or committees under the Reagan, Bush, and Clinton administrations. He received his B. S. and Ph.D. (biology) degrees from Yale University.

Dr Lovejoy is the author of over 240 papers and 8 books and is an authority on biodiversity and sustainable forest management and on climate change and its impacts on living systems. He is particularly well-known for his extensively published work on Amazonian ecology, and he currently advises more than 100 international, governmental and non-governmental organizations and is the recipient of many awards and honor.


Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel – Global Environment Facility (GEF)

The Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) of the Global Environment Facility is currently looking to recruit for the following position.

Internship with STAP – Research and Outreach

The Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) is an independent panel of experts which provides strategic and operational advice on science and technological matters to the Governing Council and Secretariat of the Global Environment Facility (GEF). The Panel and Secretariat of STAP are hosted by UNEP, and based in the Regional Office for North America (RONA) in Washington, DC.

The Secretariat of STAP recruits an intern three times a year (see schedule below) who is a suitably qualified candidate with an interest in environmental management to contribute to the work of STAP in the following ways:

Responsibilities

  • Assist the Secretary of STAP, and other Secretariat staff members, with research on issues related to the main focal areas of the GEF (biodiversity, climate change mitigation, climate adaptation, chemicals, land degradation, and international waters). This can include:
  • Background research to support preparation of STAP periodic publications, including terms of reference as required;
  • Assistance in preparing speaking notes and presentations for the STAP Chair and Panel Members;
  • Background research as required in the preparation of project reviews;
  • Contribution as necessary in the organization and delivery of STAP workshops and meeting events
  • Contribute to preparing/designing updates to the STAP website
  • Participate in the development of communication and outreach materials,  which demonstrate the work of STAP

Eligibility and Qualifications

  • Enrolled in an undergraduate degree program, at minimum, or in graduate school
  • Pursue a degree in the natural or social sciences, with a focus on environmental management, human interaction with the environment, and perhaps, some exposure to  human development and environmental impacts in the developing country context
  • Demonstrate a strong interest in science, and how science can influence policy
  • Exhibit analytical and research skills
  • Ability to write and communicate clearly and effectively
  • Display strong aptitude in computer literacy – experience with website content management systems considered an asset
  • Engender creativity and enthusiasm to work and new experiences

Proficient in English with knowledge of (an)other language(s) is an asset

Electronic applications are accepted from graduate and exceptional senior-level undergraduate students. Internships are expected to be full-time and range from a minimum of three (3) to a maximum of six (6) months.

Internship Period Start Date End Date Application Deadline
Summer May August 15 March
Fall September December 15 July
Spring January April 15 October

Application Process

To apply for an internship, please visit www.careers.un.org and complete the online application (Cover Letter and Personal History Profile). Internship openings will be posted 90 days prior to the application deadline listed in the table above.

Applicants will receive a standard reply confirming receipt of their internship application. Due to the volume of applications we receive and the highly competitive nature of the programme, you will be further contacted only if your application is being actively pursued.

You may be requested to supply documentary evidence supporting the statements in your application. Do not, however, send documents until you have been requested to do so. Do not submit the original references or testimonials unless they have been obtained for the sole use of UNEP.

Applications will not, as a general rule, be valid or be retained by UNEP for more than six months from date of receipt

Important Internship Information
Payment
The UN Internship Programme operates on a non-remunerative basis. All costs connected with internships must be borne by the interns or their sponsoring institutions or governments, including travel and transportation, living and accommodation.

Visas
For applicants accepted into a UNEP internship who are not citizens of the United States, you must obtain a visa. It is UN policy that obtaining visas is the sole responsibility of the intern. UNEP will not assist beyond providing letters of acceptance and copies of internship agreements. Be mindful that obtaining a visa can be a lengthy process and failure to secure a visa will void your internship acceptance. Do not delay in pursuing your visa(s).

Insurance
UNEP accepts no responsibility or liability for costs arising from damages, travel, accident and/or illness incurred during an Internship. Interns are asked to submit:

  • A medical certificate stating that he/she is in good health
  • Valid proof of coverage by a medical insurance plan

Internship Agreements
Once selected by UNEP, applicants will be required to sign the following:

  • UN Administrative Instruction ST/AI/2000/9 governing all UN internships
  • UNEP Washington DC Internship Agreement governing the local internship programme

 

Deadline for applications: July 15, 2014

More information on the Global Environment Facility

More information on the GEF Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel.

The following documents explain how STAP operates

Q1. How can I be considered for advisory work with STAP?

Answer: STAP no longer maintains a public roster, instead it sources expertise via its network partners. At present the list includes the ten GEF Agencies, rosters of the environmental conventions supported by the GEF, the International Council for Science, the Academy of Science for the Developing World, Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, and a number of nationally based scientific bodies. Individuals interested in the work of the STAP may consider affiliating with any of the above bodies, however, STAP will not respond to requests from individuals to provide advice to the GEF.

Q2. What happened to the STAP Roster?

Answer: A. The Roster was created in 1996 with the purpose of enabling expert scientific and technical reviews of full size (>$1 million) projects and large (>$450,000) enabling activities. Late stage reviews were required to be performed prior to submission of final project documents to the GEF Council for approval, and were conducted by experts pre-screened by Panel Members, and paid for by the GEF agency submitting the project. The OPS3 identified the need for major changes to the Project Cycle, and since mid-2007, Roster reviews have been replaced by early stage ‘screening’ of project concepts by the Panel Members intead of delegated to Roster experts. For this reason the expertise requirements of the GEF provided from STAP have changed from critical reviews of nearly complete projects to screening with a view to improving projects during early stages of their development.