The 22nd INTOSAI WGEA Assembly was held in Rovaniemi, Finland, 22 – 24 January 2024. The meeting gathered 120 participants from 43 countries. It was a nice mixture of WGEA veterans, newcomers, and lively discussions throughout the meeting.
As the temperatures in Rovaniemi varied between 0 and -20°C, the main topic of the meeting, Arctic environmental change, was very apt. Another main topic, indigenous knowledge, benefitted from Sámi people living in Lapland. Indigenous knowledge as a novel topic was received with great interest, as were the facts related to melting Arctic and its impacts globally. Both topics also reflect larger questions on how we integrate all people and ways of knowing in our work, and how regional perspectives can help us to understand the interconnected nature of environmental problems.
The second day of the Assembly was dedicated to eight parallel sessions taking place in three slots. Workshops were delivered by experts on environmental accounting, sustainability reporting and green budgeting, and sessions were organized by project leaders. On the third day, the Assembly heard updates from regional WGEAs and training projects, among other topics.
In the end, the third INTOSAI WGEA Award - Inspiration in Environmental Auditing, was handed out. This time, the topic of the Award was impactful environmental auditing. The Award was distributed in three categories: (1) presenting audit results inspiringly, (2) using innovative methodology in auditing, and (3) the question of what makes an audit impactful. The jury included SAIs of Egypt and the Philippines and it was led by Sylva Müllerova from SAI Czech Republic. The winner of the first category was SAI Canada, pictured above receiving their Award certificate. The winner of the second category was SAI Chile, and the co-winners of the third category were the European Court of Auditors and SAI Costa Rica.