Terms of Reference

Terms of Reference of the UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man Stakeholder Partnership Group

1. Name

The name of the group will be UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man Stakeholder Partnership Group which may be abbreviated to UBIOM SPG as appropriate.


2. Purpose

The UBIOM Stakeholder Partnership Group will:

a)  Communicate the UBIOM Policy:

‘The aim of UBIOM is to encourage all sectors of the Isle of Man to work together for a sustainable future.’

b)  Ensure participation of the public, private and third sectors of the Isle of Man in carrying out the functions of UBIOM.

c)   Be the designated mechanism for the implementation of UBIOM, realising the opportunities of UNESCO recognition and implementing Article 4 of the Statutory Framework of the World Network of Biosphere Reserves of the UNESCO Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme, by making provisions for:

a)    mechanisms to manage human use and activities in the buffer zone or zones;

b)    a management policy or plan for the area as a biosphere reserve;

c)    a designated authority or mechanism to implement this policy or plan;

d)    programmes for research, monitoring, education and training.

3. Roles & responsibilities

UBIOM Stakeholder Partnership Group (SPG) is the custodian of the UBIOM vision and brand. It is the overarching coordination body, ensuring accountability and direction in the UBIOM initiative. It agrees the overall Vision and Strategy (the management policy in UNESCO’s terms) and the ensuing action plans for implementation.


4. Membership

a) UBIOM SPG represents major sectors on the Isle of Man. Its composition is set out in Annex 1.

b) Additional people may be co-opted on the basis of skills/experience and/or overall gender/age balances.

c) The Chief Minister will be Chair and the DEFA Minister will be Vice Chair, if they choose to take these positions. If they do not, then the SPG will elect one Chair and one Vice Chair.

d) UBIOM SPG members will take leading roles in project initiation and oversight.


5. Tasks


a) By way of papers to the biannual meetings, suggest projects and methods of implementation in line with the UBIOM Vision and Strategy.

b) Play a practical role in delivering projects of UBIOM.

c) Receive reports from the UBIOM Project Officer, and other DEFA staff charged with working indirectly on UBIOM, and a report from each Biosphere Youth Forum meeting, and agree actions as required. 

d) Review and monitor projects undertaken by UBIOM

e) Ensure they positively promote UBIOM within the organisation or sector that each member represents, and more widely.

e) Create and keep under review criteria and processes for recognising networks, organisations and projects wishing to utilise or be associated with UBIOM logo.

f) Authorise the use of the name, identity and marks of UBIOM for commercial or identity purposes. This has been delegated to DEFA for practical purposes

i) Review its own Terms of Reference to ensure they remain fit for purpose and to amend them when there is consensus that this is necessary.

j) Set up subgroups when considered appropriate, and establish appropriate Terms of Reference for them.


6. Outputs and deliverables

a) Development of Agreed governance relating to Article 4 of the Statutory Framework of the World Network of Biosphere Reserves and other measures relating to.


b) Regular communication of developments and project outputs to stakeholders and Council of Ministers (CoMin) Committees when applicable.


7. Working principles

a) Participation in UBIOM SPG is voluntary.

b) Members who volunteer to participate in UBIOM SPG agree to abide by its decisions and to work towards its purposes

c) Issues will be addressed with an intention to identify consensus rather than to work with the ‘majority vote’, although the SPG may vote to resolve an issue if the members affected by the outcome of the vote agree to hold a vote and abide by the outcome.

d) Just as UBIOM SPG will reach agreement by consensus in open meetings, so will disagreements be resolved.

f) Secretarial and support services for the UBIOM SPG and Thematic Groups will be agreed by the SPG or relevant subgroups as applicable.


8. Funding

a) UBIOM will not charge fees for Partnerships or other affiliations.

b) Should any money be received (such as donations or proceeds of any initiatives) the UBIOM Partnership will be empowered to hold, manage and distribute funds and will appoint the signatories to any bank account opened for this purpose.

c) Should UBIOM SPG need to deal with significant sums of money or other assets, either it will agree upon a willing and suitably empowered member organisation to act on its behalf, or it will replace this document with a legal form that confers limited liability on its members.


9. Meeting arrangements

a) UBIOM SPG will hold at least two ordinary business meetings a year and special meetings when warranted, to discuss specific matters.

b) Meetings will be held within the Isle of Man.

c) The minutes of meetings will, with effect from the meeting held in July 2019, be published on the UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man website.

d) Each stakeholder organisation will, ordinarily, send one representative to meetings but nominated representatives may send deputies to meetings in their place


Annex 1: suggested Membership Structure of UBIOM Stakeholder Partnership Group, based on comparable peer sites in WNBR.

Primary Interest Sector
IOM Government

Project Lead (DEFA)

DESC representative

DfE representative

DoI representative

Cabinet Office representative

MUA representative

University College Isle of Man representative

Isle of Man Arts Council representative

Local/community Municipal Association representative
IOM Politicians Ministers of DEFA, DESC, DfE, DoI and Policy and Reform
IOM Politicians President of Tynwald/CM
Business Sector

Institute of Directors

Chamber of Commerce

Manx NFU

Manx Fish Producers’ Organisation

E-gaming representative

Food and drink sector representative

Financial services representative

Tourism sector representative

NGO/Third Sector

NGO stakeholders:

Manx National Heritage

Council of Voluntary Organisations

The Children’s Centre

Manx Wildlife Trust

Farming, Wildlife and Advisory Group

Culture Vannin

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