Becoming a UNFCCC delegate: what you need to know

Attending UN climate negotiations for the first time is daunting, especially if it’s a Conference of the Parties (COP) session. With so many meetings happening in parallel — some open, some closed — and jargon and acronyms that constantly roll off people’s tongues, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process is notoriously complex.This toolkit has been written to help new delegates, in particular from the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), navigate the session. It focuses on the process, rather than the content of negotiations, and offers some practical ‘insider’ tips for getting through the days (and nights).There’s no ‘right’ way to use this toolkit. Skip from section to section, or go through it from beginning to end.We do however suggest the toolkit is used alongside its sister publication: ‘Climate negotiations terminology: the pocket guide’. The pocket guide explains and will help you to apply the specialist language of the UNFCCC negotiations. It is available free of charge on the IIED website in English ( and French ( A very full acronym list is included in the pocket guide, hence not repeated in this toolkit.


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