Earlier this year, the UIAA asked Member Federations to help define the future direction of the international mountaineering body over the next five years.
The results of the survey are encouraging with more than 75 per cent of UIAA Members taking the time to complete the detailed survey.
When asked how the UIAA can support its Members, 79 per cent said they looked forward to receiving help on Training Standards, with information on a reciprocity agreement for mountain huts (64%) and insurance issues (61%) also considered very important.
The emphasis placed on Training Standards confirms the efforts currently being made to develop a UIAA Training Standard label. It is designed to promote good practice in the training of voluntary mountaineering leaders and instructors. When completed, it will be awarded to Federations that meet the UIAA standards.
Asked about the image of the UIAA, an overwhelming majority of respondents see the UIAA in most cases as a modern, reliable, competent and credible organization. However, only 53 per cent regard the UIAA as member oriented, with 47 per cent thinking the body is too autocratic.
On other issues, 70 per cent agreed that the UIAA should initiate a programme to support small federations.
The work of UIAA commissions (Access, Medical, Mountain Protection, Mountaineering, Youth, Safety, Ice Climbing, Anti-doping) and working groups was well received. The Ice Climbing and Medical Commissions are the most highly regarded (at least 60% of respondents are “highly” satisfied with their work). However, 56 per cent said they thought communication between the commissions and federations could be improved.
The UIAA office in Bern, Switzerland received excellent feedback, with about 90 per cent of federations saying they were either satisfied or very satisfied with the staff’s quality of work, communication and attention to members.
E-newsletter and website
In the majority of cases, respondents also found the UIAA e-newsletter and website very useful or useful, with 89 per cent saying the UIAA website was its main source of information regarding mountaineering.
The UIAA’s use of Social Media like Facebook and Twitter have yet to catch on, with only 5 per cent finding the UIAA Facebook page “very useful” and only three per cent saying the same for Twitter.
The whole report of the Strategic Plan will be presented to Member Federations during the General Assembly in Katmandu in October. The results will form the basis for setting priorities for the UIAA as part of a “Strategic Plan” that is under development.
See full results of survey.