Preparatory dialogues "within" the system
Discussions convened by a host facilitation team before the start of a formal negotiation round or session. They often employ alternative formats, and are typically used for gathering information, to better understand interests and to build relationships.
Preparatory dialogues "outside" the system
Discussions that take place during events or processes that do not fall under the auspices of the international organisation and its formal negotiations, often leveraged by a host facilitation team. The discussions can help identify difficult issues, build consensus, or create a sense of momentum.
Summit "small group" dialogues
Meetings among a selected group of senior negotiators or political leaders, typically no more than a few dozen, convened by the host facilitation team or secretariat with the intention of making progress on complicated issues that must be resolved to achieve a successful outcome of the summit.