Tuesday, January 6, 2009

New Seven Wonders of Nature : Next Phase of Competition

The national qualifiers are now over, and you can vote for your chosen seven from the list of 261 qualified nominees.

The Swiss-based nonprofit foundation collected 441 nominations over the Internet since it opened the selection process in 2007.The foundation then chose the top vote-getter from each country, making a list of 222 sites. The overall list rose to 261 with the inclusion of sites shared by two or more countries.

Votes can be cast until July 7. Registration on the Web site aims to prevent people from voting twice.A panel of experts in nature, chaired by Federico Mayor, former chief of UNESCO, the U.N. Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, will reduce the list to 21 finalists in July.

The seven winners will then be chosen in another round of public voting lasting until 2011, this time by Internet, telephone and text messages.

When will the New7Wonders of Nature be declared?
What are the stages of the election?
There are three stages in the New7Wonders of Nature campaign: the National Qualification, the Nomination stage and the Finalist stage:

On 1 January 2009, only one national nominee per country will be allowed to proceed: the highest ranked in the voting on 31 December 2008. Therefore until the end of 2008, countries with more than one nominee will be racing to choose the national representative that is allowed to continue into 2009. Nominees shared by more than one country will remain and continue into 2009.

In the Nomination stage, voting for nominees will continue through July 7, 2009. Then the New7Wonders of Nature Panel of Experts, under the leadership of Prof. Federico Mayor, former Director-General of UNESCO, will review the top 77 nominees and choose the 21 finalists, to be announced on 21 July 2009.

For the Finalist stage, the 21 New7Wonders of Nature Finalists will be put to popular vote in July 2009. Voting will continue throughout 2010 and into 2011. During this time, the New7Wonders World Tour will visit each of the Finalists to allow them to present themselves to the voters across the globe.

The final declaration of the New7Wonders of Nature will be in 2011.

Can there be more than one Finalist and more than one of the New7Wonders of Nature from the same country?
No, there will only be one Finalist per country, except for Finalists that share countries, for example those that cross national borders.

How many times can I vote?
Via www.new7wonders.com you can only vote once in each stage (nominee/Top 77 stage and Finalist stage), identifying yourself using your email address.
Please note that each person must vote for 7 different natural sites when they vote in each of the two stages.


ELIANE ENGELER, Associated Press Writer


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