Rethinking Sustainability Beyond 2015: An Agenda for Citizen Action — Outcomes
Held October 2nd, 2014, 3:00-6:30 pm. ASAP Canada and the Politics and Governance Students Association co-organized this workshop.
Sustainability – defined by social, economic as well as environmental dimensions – is emerging as the centrepiece of the new global agreement that will replace the UN’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) when they expire in 2015. In contrast to the MDGs, which focused on poverty reduction in developing countries, the post-2015 framework, with a new set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at its core, will be applicable to all countries.
Does the emerging post-2015 global framework accurately identify the multiple challenges of sustainability? How do the deepening inequalities at every level – local, national, global – affect our quest for ‘sustainability’? What forms of limits to corporate power are necessary to ensure sustainable production and consumption? How do we counter the false choice between sustainability and job creation that is presented by businesses and governments alike? Most importantly, how can citizens own these processes of transformative change?
The workshop featured brief presentations by academic experts and civil society leaders, and an intensive discussion period. Stephen Lewis, Distinguished Visiting Professor Ryerson University and former UN Special Envoy for HIV-AIDS in Africa, delivered the keynote address for the workshop. He discussed the future of global poverty and development beyond the Millennium Development Goals that expire in 2015. The video of his presentation is below.
ASAP is proud to announce that its West African Chapter will be hosting its first symposium on January 27th at the University of Lagos. The one-day symposium, titled Political Campaigns Funding and the Looming Tsunami of Poverty, will investigate the impact of political corruption on democracy, development, and access to human rights in Nigeria. In particular, it will investigate the connection between corruption and the country’s rising poverty rate. Looking towards the general elections scheduled to take place later this year, the event will bring together scholars, activists, and development practitioners to discuss how corruption can be confronted. This event is co-sponsored by Premium Times, Nigeria’s leading online investigative newspaper, which will report on the symposium discussions.
Akin Oyebode, Professor of International Law and Jurisprudence at the University of Lagos, will give the keynote address. Other notable speakers include ASAP President Thomas Pogge, Innocent Chukwuma of the Ford Foundation, and Dr. Hussein Abdu of ActionAid Nigeria.
The full schedule is available below. For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Program for the Public Discourse on Political Campaigns Funding and the Looming Tsunami of Poverty in Nigeria
Date: January 27th, 2015
Venue: Julius Berger Auditorium
Time: 10:00 am — 2:00 pm
10:00-10:30: Courtesy Call on the Vice Chancellor
10:30-10:45: Arrival of guests at the Auditorium
10:45-11:00: Opening and Introduction of Guests
11:00-11:05: Welcome Address by Professor Thomas Pogge, President of ASAP
11:05-11:15: Chairman’s Opening Remarks by Professor Adebayo Ninalowo
11:15-11:20: Remarks by the Vice Chancellor, Professor Rahaman Ade Bello
11:20-11:30: Public Discourse as a University of Lagos Tradition by The Speakers Society
11:30-12:00: Keynote Lecture by Professor Akin Oyebode
12:00-12:10: Culture of Impunity and Democratic Consolidation by Mr Innocent Chukwuma, Ford Foundation
12:10-12:20: Remarks on Keynote Lecture by Mr Femi Fani-Kayode
12:20-12:30: The Media’s Watchdog Role in Society by Professor Ralph Akinfeleye
12:30-12:40: The Dividends of Democracy and Poverty by Dr Hussein Abdu, Action Aid
12:40-12:50: Remarks by Mr Femi Aribisala
12:50-1:00: Investigative Journalism and Democratic Consolidation by Mr Dapo Olorunyomi, Premium Times
1:00-1:10: Remarks by Mr Femi Falana, SAN
1:10- 1:20: Brief Talk on ASAP, West Africa by Dr Ibraheem/Tejumaiye
1:20-1:50: Contributions from Participants
The launch event for ASAP’s Italian chapter will take place on May 9-10, 2014 at LUISS Guido Carli.
On May 9, there will be two side events on the themes of Responsibility for the realization of human rights, featuring LUISS Professors Nuzzo, Punzi, and Maffettone and Dr. Francesca Orlando, and Are we violating violating the human rights of the world’s poor?, a research seminar at the School of Political Science with two discussants.
On May 10, the official launch will take place, with presentations by Thomas Pogge, Sebastiano Maffetoni, and Antonio Punzi.
Mario Ascolese and Maria Ginevra of the ASAP Italy Organizing Committee will close the event by leading an open discussion of possible future projects for ASAP Italy.
The Public Attorney’s Office – 3rd Region makes available to the public the videos of the launch in Brazil of ASAP – Academics Stand Against Poverty, an international platform and academic network against poverty.
The first ASAP Brazil Conference took place in Sao Paulo, on the 5th and 6th, December, 2013. The list of 23 videos bellow shows the topics and respective speakers in the event.
List of videos in chronological order:
December 5, 2013
The Right to Education and Public Policy for the Reduction of Inequality, Promotion of Development and for the Fight against Poverty
- Video 1/6: Opening Remarks and “Social Platform”
- Video 2/6: Lecture on “Promoting Equality: Education as a Means of Reducing Poverty”. Patricia Tuma Martins Bertolin (Mackenzie University)
- Video 3/6: Lecture on “Law, Public Policy and Governmental Coordination: The Challenge of Democratizing Access to Higher Education”. Maria Paula Dallari Bucci (University of Sao Paulo) [link unavailable ]
- Video 4/6: Lecture on “The Right to Basic Education in the Development Agenda”. Denise Career (Ação Educativa)
- Video 5/6: Lecture on “Strategies for Judicial Enforceability of the Right to Child Education as a Mechanism for Social Inclusion”. Alessandra Steps Gotti (Movimento Todos pela Educação)
- Video 6/6: Rapporteur and Q&A Session
Access to Health for People in Poverty Conditions
- Video 1/5: Opening Remarks and “Social Platform”
- Video 2/5: Lecture on “Aligning Health Sciences with Citizen’s Demands”. José Augusto Barreto (Sergipe Fedetal University)
- Video 3/5: Lecture on “The Universal Right to Health in Tension: The State Duty of Care for Vulnerable Groups and Individuals with Rare/Neglected Diseases”. Fernando Aith (University of Sao Paulo)
- Video 4/5: Lecture on “Law and Global Health: The Case of the Influenza A (H1N1) Pandemic”. Deisy Ventura (University of Sao Paulo)
- Video 5/5: Concluding Remarks and Q&A Session
The Right to Urban Development: Internationalization, Poverty and Contemporary Social Challenges
- Video 1/5: Opening Remarks and “Social Platform”
- Video 2/5: Lecture by Rogério Sottili, Sao Paulo Municipal Secretary for Human Rights and Citizenship
- Video 3/5: Lecture on “Welcoming and Social Integration of Foreigners: A Human Rights Challenge”. Claudia Moraes de Souza (UNIFESP)
- Video 4/5: Lecture on “Violence and Poverty”. Stephanie Morin (Human Rights Watch, HRW Brazil)
- Video 5/5: Concluding Remarks and Q&A Session
December 6, 2013
Inaugural Lecture on Local Poverty and Global Multidimensional Solutions:
- Video 1/3: Lecturer Thomas Pogge (Yale)
- Video 2/3: Aurelio Rios (PFDC/MPF) and Solange Teles (Mackenzie University) [link unavailable ]
- Video 3/3: Lelia Antonia Sanches (MPF-PR) and Maria Tereza Uille Gomes (Parana State Department of Justice)
Poverty, Access to Justice and Universal Rights in Brazil
- Video 1/3: Lecture on “Humanistic Conception and Universality of Human Rights”. Dalmo de Abreu Dallari (University of Sao Paulo)
- Video 2/3: Lecture on “Structural Interventions to Combat Poverty”. Calixto Salomão Filho (University of Sao Paulo)
- Video 3/3: “Social Platform” and Concluding Remarks
Social Security and Convergence Policies for the Elimination of Poverty in Brazil
- Video 1/7: Opening Lecture on “Social Policies and Poverty Reduction in Brazil”. Jorge Abraham Castro (Brazilian Ministry of Planning)
- Video 2/7: “Social Platform”
- Video 3/7: Lecture on “State, Overcoming Underdevelopment and Poverty Alleviation”. Gilberto Bercovici (University of Sao Paulo and Mackenzie University)
- Video 4/7: Lecture on “Social Security: an Interpretation for the Fight to Eradicate Poverty in Brazil”. Marcus Orione Gonçalves Correia (Federal Judge, University of Sao Paulo
- Video 5/7: Lecture on “Poverty, Citizenship and Development.” Eduardo Fagnani (Unicamp)
- Video 6/7: Lecture on “Reflections on the UN Conventions for the Social Inclusion of People with Special Vulnerability”. Christoph Käppler de Oliveira (University of Dortmund and University of the Ruhr Metropolitan Region in LA) [link unavailable ]
- Video 7/7: “Social Platform” and Concluding Remarks
An audience of nearly 500 joined the conversation with political theorists and philosophers, development scholars, journalists, physical scientists and NGO practitioners at the launch conference for Nyaya: The Global Justice Programme at the University of Delhi.
The conference, “Global Justice and the Global South,” featured more than 40 presentations by researchers from around the world, including South Africa, Mexico, the United States, Canada, the UK, Germany and China. About half of those presenting were Indian academics, from the Delhi area and universities around the country.
The conference was organized by Academics Stand Against Poverty global Board of Directors Member Ashok Acharya, with assistance from ASAP President Thomas Pogge and Board Member Luis Cabrera, as well as a large team of Delhi University volunteers.
“We couldn’t have expected more from this conference,” Acharya said. “It certainly has brought issues surrounding global justice to the centre of academic dialogue in India. This augurs well for the Nyaya initiative at the University of Delhi and the future of research and advocacy on global justice in India. Everyone who attended this conference has remarked that both in terms of the quality of scholarship and the diversity of issues covered, the deliberations were extraordinary and inspiring.”
The conference also served as an important learning experience for participants from outside South Asia, Cabrera said.
“Many participants had never visited India before, and the early feedback indicates that they have come away with a much better understanding not only of the daily challenges so many people face in large South cities such as Delhi, but also what a rich tradition of social justice theorizing and research there is in India,” he said. “Hopefully we’ve started a fruitful, ongoing exchange amongst justice theorists and researchers in many countries.”
Keynote speakers at the opening session, April 25, included Pogge, who at his opening session offered recent figures on global poverty and shared new data for his argument that large poverty reductions publicized by the Millennium Development Goals campaign are mostly sleight of hand, achieved through changing methods of counting the poor in mid-stream.
Delhi University Vice Chancellor Dinesh Singh then shared insights from his own study of Indian figures such as former Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and Mahatma Gandhi. He cautioned the audience to conceptualize global justice carefully, and proposed that they approach international moral issues from a standpoint firmly rooted in the local.
Journalist P. Sainath, author of the influential book Everybody Loves a Good Drought: Stories from India’s Poorest Districts, then offered a rousing, impassioned critique of political and economic trends in the country. He drew links between the liberalizing, freer-trade economic policies India has followed since the early 1990s and increasing inequality, farmer suicides and access to basic resources.
On Day 2, globally prominent biotechnologist V. Sitaramam, retired of the University of Pune, offered detailed empirical evidence challenging rigid poverty lines and arguing for a more nuanced view of poverty that takes multiple variables into account. Prof. Brooke Ackerly of Vanderbilt University delivered the closing keynote on Day 3. She shared recent field work in Bangladesh and argued for a conception of human rights focused not on distribution of goods but on a relational approach. Until the rights of all persons are secured, Ackerly argued, none are.
The conference was supported by a grant from the British Council’s UKIERI programme and by the School of Open Learning at the University of Delhi. A number of conference participants will be contributing instructional videos for classroom use at the School of Open Learning, which serves students mostly from deprived backgrounds.
Future conferences and collaborations are in the planning stages. For details on those or other ways to contribute to the developing Nyaya Global Justice Programme, please contact Dr. Ashok Acharya at email@example.com.