Evaluation Workshop held in Oslo, Norway

A workshop titled 'Provisional Technical Secretariat (PTS) and National Data Centres (NDCs) Interaction for the Evaluation of the Verification Regime: Ways and Means to Promote a Coordinated, Coherent and Comprehensive Approach' was held in Oslo, Norway, from 6 to 10 May 2002. The workshop was organized by the Evaluation Section of the Provisional Technical Secretariat and hosted by NORSAR, the Norwegian National Data Centre (NDC). The workshop examined the status of the evaluation activities related to the CTBTO verification system, and made recommendations both for particular topics and for the future framework of evaluation activities. The workshop also facilitated increased interaction both between States Signatories and the PTS, and between States Signatories themselves, especially at the technical and operational levels. The Workshop concentrated on the implementation status of recommendations from previous Evaluation Workshops; the follow-up of the 2001 evaluation exercise organised by the PTS in interaction with NDCs on capabilities for location estimates; and on means to enhance evaluation activities of NDCs related to CTBTO verification system and interaction with PTS on these matters. The main recommendations of the Workshop dealt with access by States Signatories to the information contained in the database of the PTS; the organisation of a future evaluation exercise focusing on product comparison; procedures and interface between the PTS, the communication links provider and station operators; and the contribution of the Evaluation Section to the development of the PTS verification related programme plans. The report of the workshop was presented to Working Group B for its consideration during its Eighteenth Session. Forty-nine participants from 18 countries (Canada, China, Costa Rica, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Norway, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Uganda, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States of America and Zambia), together with staff from the PTS, took part in the workshop. It was noted that the opportunity to share experiences between National Data Centres of widely different sizes and levels of development was a beneficial and educational experience for all.