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Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on January 25th, 2014
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

 

PEACE AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: A TWO-WAY RELATIONSHIP

Panel discussion during the 8th session of the

United Nations Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals.

FridayFebruary 71:15pm – 2:45pm
 
United Nations Conference Room 5, New York, NY
Please join our panel at the United Nations which will focus on the following topics:
  • Causal relationship between durable peace and sustainable development
  • Dilemma of the governments and armed opposition groups: the issue of trust and credible commitment to follow through on peace agreement
  • Distrust of the conflicting sides as a barrier to the implementation of SDGs
  • Enforcement mechanism: How can the United Nations, its agencies, and regional intergovernmental organizations enforce peace deals and contribute to sustainable development
This event will feature a discussion by H.E. Carlos Enrique Garcia Gonzalez, Permanent Representative of El Salvador to the United Nations as well as professors from Columbia University and New York University. 
UN Pass is required to attend.
To receive a UN Pass, please RSVP to rsvp@peaceislands.org        by no later than Thursday, January 30th.
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As a preparation for this meeting I would like to propose an old Jan Pronk article of Maastricht, 1.5.2007, that starts:

SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT AND PEACE

by Jan Pronk

  [  Jan Pronk: Sustainable Development and Peace – UNU-Merit

www.merit.unu.edu/…/200705_JanPronkM…?United Nations University ]
 

Shortly after the fall of the Berlin wall the then UN Secretary General, Boutros Boutros Galil, drew the attention to the need for a new paradigm in international policy making: there is no peace without development and there is no development without peace. It may sound as a truism. However, it had been ignored during the Cold War between East and West as well as during many years of lukewarm peace between North and South in the aftermath of decolonisation.

Mutual interests

The neglect of this truism had already become clear during the discussions about the conclusions presented by the Brandt Commission in the two reports North- South: A Programme for Survival (1980) and Common Crisis: Cooperation for World Recovery (1983). These reports dealt with issues concerning development, poverty and new relations between North and South, a new international economic order. They reflected a new philosophy: interdependence between nations, mutual dependencies resulting in a common interest of all nations, not only in order to establish recovery, but also to manage development and even to guarantee survival. The reports claimed that all nations shared a global responsibility for world social and economic development. A world public

sector was advocated, parallel to orderly international market operations, in particular in energy, food, trade in general as well as in finance. This was complemented by the statement that there was a need for world institutional reforms. Would all this be possible? Yes, as Willy Brandt said in the preface to the report: ‘One should not give up the hope that problems created by men can also be solved by men’.

This programme has not been implemented. Why not? Maybe the minds were not yet ripe. The confrontation between East West during the Cold War did not create a climate in favour of global cooperation. There was not yet a feeling of global communality.

There was a second reason as well. The world economic recession of the second half of the seventies and the eighties was not conducive to new approaches. Instead countries followed a pattern of adjustment to what was felt as the economic reality. This adjustment took place through expenditure cuts, rather than investments resulting in growth and development. This led to an economic philosophy consisting of elements which were not in accordance with those proposed by the Brandt Commission: market liberalisation, deregulation, a smaller public sector and more reliance on unbridled market mechanisms.

In the second half of the eighties and in the nineties the world has changed drastically. There was the end of the Cold War, followed by a new phase of globalisation. The new chances for world peace after the Cold War were a big boost to world economic growth, benefiting both the US, the countries of the former Soviet Union as well the countries in Eastern and Western Europe. The economies of these countries were benefiting from a fast and intense globalisation following the opening of national borders. There was a new mutuality of peace and economic progress. Could it be extended towards developing countries as well?

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