Santiago Network Project
The Santiago Network was established at COP 25 in Madrid as part of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage (WIM) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change with the objective of “catalysing technical assistance of relevant organisations, bodies, networks and experts, for the implementation of relevant approaches for averting, minimise and addressing loss and damage at the local, national and regional level, in developing countries that are particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change.”

The functions of the Santiago Network were defined at COP 26 and the COP 27 decision made progress towards establishing its institutional arrangements, paving the way for its full operationalisation. However, some elements must still be well defined and understood in order for the Santiago network to be fully operational. These elements include, among other things, selecting the Network's host by the end of 2023, exploring more on the issue of funding arrangements for the Santiago Network, which will play an important role in the operation of the Santiago network, and providing technical assistance.

The Santiago Network Project is specifically focused on contributing to ambitious progress in these negotiations that results in a fit for purpose Santiago Network that delivers on the needs of developing countries. This project was launched shortly after the Santiago Network was established at COP 25. Our work has since focused on undertaking research to develop policy briefs and background papers, sharing technical expertise among networks and supporting advocacy to help advance negotiations on the Santiago Network. We also participate in a range of discussions relevant to the Santiago Network.

For enquiries directly related to the Santiago Network Project please contact the co-project lead:

hyacinthe [@] 

Please also find the project's concept note here.
See concept note here:
This is a project which started at COP25 in Madrid 2019. At that meeting of the countries who are members of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and its Paris Agreement, the Santiago Network for averting, minimising and addressing loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change (Santiago Network) was established.

The Santiago Network offered hope to frontline communities in the climate crisis that a body had been created to help them address loss and damage. This body would make sure there was action and support being provided on the ground in their communities including helping them access finance, technology and build their capacity to address these impacts. This was in the context of a world where climate impacts are increasing, and this is being felt by the most vulnerable people in our society who are the least responsible for climate change. These impacts are rapidly becoming worse.

This project started under the banner of the Loss and Damage Collaboration, an informal group of practitioners, researchers, activists and decision makers from both the global North and South who have expertise on a range of topics relating to the need to address loss and damage. It had a number of projects, including the Santiago Network Project which developed a committed group from a range of backgrounds led by Doreen Stabinsky and Heidi White who were concerned that the Santiago Network might become no more than a website.

The Santiago Network Working Group, as it was then called, has since been tireless in seeking to steer the negotiations on the Santiago Network from something that had become a website to something that had a dedicated negotiations stream under the UNFCCC, and a comprehensive decision with dedicated finance, agreed form and functions and a process for review. This included publications; advocacy e.g. interventions at meetings of negotiators on the Santiago Network and participation in and chairing of meetings of the Adaptation and Loss and Damage Friends Group which is led by the UK COP26 Presidency team; as well as coordination, capacity building, and support on the ground at the COP26 negotiations in Glasgow, United Kingdom in November 2021.

At COP26 there was positive progress, and the work of the Santiago Network Project will now shift to the 2022 negotiations where financial arrangements will be further elaborated and a decision will be adopted regarding the form or ‘institutional arrangements’ of the Santiago Network to finalise the decision to operationalise the Santiago Network and enable it to provide the help that vulnerable communities need to survive.

The Santiago Network Project is open to members from any background. It is important that our input into the negotiations is well-informed and based on the best available advice. We are particularly concerned to involve marginalised groups whose voices are not always heard to ensure the best outcome possible for the negotiations. We cannot be perfect but we can be ambitious and try as much as possible to learn from the past so that the assistance that is urgently needed is provided. These communities need help now and we need to ensure that the Santiago Network becomes effectively operationalised at COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt.

For enquiries directly related to the Santiago Network Project please contact the Project Lead heidimareewhite [@]
Team Members
Project Co-Lead
Heidi White
Heidi is an Australian Lawyer and independent consultant. She hosts a monthly call, and additional calls and communications as required to consult with the team on key issues unfolding with the Santiago Network. In collaboration with the team, she develops briefs and background papers to support progress in the negotiations. She also is available on an ongoing basis to advise members of the latest developments and provide inputs into external work being developed.
Project Co-Lead
Hyacinthe Niyitegeka
Hyacinthe co-leads the Santiago Network project. She develops and contributes to policy briefs and background papers including on how the Santiago Network can be fit for purpose for African countries.
Technical Expert
As head of Climate and Resilience at Practical Action Colin engages in the L&DC's Santiago network project to assure that a fit for purpose Santiago Network for Loss and Damage is operationalised as soon as possible by supporting the development of briefs and background papers to support progress in the negotiations.
Technical Expert
Kate Raffety
Kate is an Australian lawyer who provides support for ambitious outcomes in the UNFCCC negotiations on Loss and Damage. She previously acted as the associate to the Chief Justice in the Supreme Court of Tasmania. She also holds degrees in Law and International Relations from the University of Tasmania.
Technical Expert
Mattias Soderberg
Mattias Söderberg is working as Chief advisor in the Danish NGO, DanChurchAid, and is Co-Chair of the Climate Justice Group of the global ACT Alliance. Coming from an organisation engaged in both humanitarian aid and long term development on the ground in a number of developing countries, he has followed the international climate debate for more than a decade. Mattias is an active voice in the debate about Loss and Damage, and has contributed to a number of related research initiatives.
Technical Expert
Linda Siegele
Linda Siegele, JD LLM is an environmental lawyer and independent consultant. She has been involved in the United Nations climate change negotiating process since 2005 with a special focus on the issues of adaptation and loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change in developing countries. Linda is particularly familiar with the climate change concerns of small island developing states and least developed countries, having directly supported country delegations through the provision of relevant technical and strategic legal and policy advice. Linda has been a member of the WIM ExCom's Technical Expert Group on Comprehensive Risk Management since 2019.
Technical Expert
Lyndsay Walsh
Lyndsay works for Oxfam as a climate policy adviser, where a lot of her work has focused on loss and damage advocacy both in the UK and internationally. Her projects to date have mainly been around building the evidence base for why loss and damage finance is needed, supporting youth and people from the global south in climate negotiations, and in understanding how loss and damage and humanitarian action fits together.
Technical Expert
Fanny Petitbon
Fanny has been coordinating CARE France policy and advocacy work since 2013. Coming from an organisation engaged in both humanitarian aid and long term development in a number of developing countries, she has developed a solid expertise in international climate negotiations. Fanny has been specifically focusing on loss and damage advocacy in France and the European Union. She has also played a very active role in the drafting of the Humanitarian Aid Donors’ Declaration on Climate and Environment launched at the first European Humanitarian Forum in March 2022.
Technical Expert
Lien Vandamme
Lien Vandamme is a Geneva-based Senior Campaigner for Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL)’s Climate and Energy Program. Lien contributes to CIEL’s work on human rights and climate change, in particular, related to loss and damage. She co-facilitates the Human Rights and Climate Change Working Group, convening civil society organisations, Indigenous Peoples representatives and other experts advocating for the promotion and respect of human rights in climate action, and focuses on the UN climate change regime and the implementation of the Paris Agreement.
Technical Expert
Edgar Fernández Fernández
Edgar Fernández Fernández is associate researcher with the Institut de l’Ouest : Droit et Europe (IODE) of the University of Rennes 1. He holds a PhD in Public Law from the University of Nantes, as well as an LLM in General Public Law and Environmental Law from the same university. He actively engages in the project to advance the discussions on full operationalisation of Santiago network.
Project Outputs