جامعه مدنی جهانی؟ اجلاس جهانی یوهانسبورگ در توسعه پایدار
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|29318||2008||14 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||10257 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Geoforum, Volume 39, Issue 1, January 2008, Pages 358–371
In the face of mounting environmental degradation and persistent poverty over the previous decade, Johannesburg’s World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) of August and September 2002 inherited a number of unmet accords from the 1992 Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit. Consequently, the United Nations Stakeholder Forum Implementation Conference (IC) was convened to integrate civil society stakeholders into global deliberations on sustainable development and to marshal their forces in the implementation of WSSD accords. Given the importance of the IC as the first civil society forum at a major global summit on environment and poverty, intriguing questions emerge as to its effectiveness in achieving civil society objectives. As a first attempt in exploring this topic, we examine three fundamental aspects of the IC. Specifically, we examine the relative “civility” of the IC forum in terms of (a) fidelity of representation of the community of global environment and development stakeholders; (b) autonomy of the IC agenda from state and institutional interests; and (c) interpretations of space and place as reflected in deliberative processes and outcomes. The paper begins with a review of the civil society literature with a particular emphasis on civil society representation in UN meetings since Rio. The paper concludes with a discussion of IC participation at the Johannesburg summit, and considers implications for future civil society participation in global decision-making forums.
The World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD), which convened August 26 to September 4, 2002 in Johannesburg, South Africa, aimed to reinforce a multilateral commitment to sustainable development and take stock of developments since the 1992 Rio Earth Summit. More than 20,000 participants, from governmental and non-governmental organizations, the private sector, and the scientific community, assembled at the summit to address increasing challenges in environmental degradation and sustainable development. The large number of unmet accords inherited from the 1992 Rio Summit – in no small part due to the US governments’ failure to participate in key global treaties (such as the Kyoto Accord) – called for a structural shake-up at the Johannesburg summit. Consequently, a novel approach emerged at the WSSD to include civil society in global agreements and action plans – the UN Stakeholder Forum Implementation Conference (IC). The IC was designed to mobilize stakeholder participation and facilitate the implementation of commitments established in Rio as embodied in Agenda 21’s Declaration on Sustainable Development. The IC represents a new approach to civic engagement. The organizers of the conference, United Kingdom-based Stakeholders Forum for Our Common Future, hoped that integrating civil society at an international level would help reverse disappointing trends since Rio. By including stakeholders in the planning and implementations process, it is hoped that a better record for achieving proposed international accords might be realized for the next World Sustainability Summit. Although thousands of NGO representatives attended the WSSD and numerous side events, this event was unique as it provided a forum for a concentrated group of global civil society actors to engage in a process that would directly impact the polices and outcomes of the main global summit. The concept of civil society is dynamic and ambiguous – changing in scale and scope depending on time period and geographic location. For the purpose of this paper, we engage with the term civil society as “the sphere or space between individuals and the state and/or market” (Blair, 1997, Howell and Pearce, 2001, McIlwaine, 1998 and Taylor, 2004). We frame the term also within recent NGO, and more specifically, UN efforts to incorporate non-government stakeholders into international sustainable development policy efforts (see Section 3 below). Drawing on this contemporary definition of civil society, we raise a series of questions regarding its effectiveness at an international scale. Specifically, we address three interrelated themes: (a) fidelity of representation of the community of global environment and development stakeholders; (b) autonomy of the IC’s agenda from state and institutional interests; and (c) interpretations of space and place as reflected in IC deliberative processes and outcomes. The paper is organized into four sections: introduction to the IC, literature review of civil society, analysis of IC “civility”, defined here as degree to which civil society participation is achieved, and implications for future global civil society.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
In conclusion, although this was a laudable first attempt at engaging civil society at a global scale and widening the dialog for stakeholders at mega-international conferences, structural changes need to occur if the IC and other subsequent foras are to meet their goals. For example, the participant representation at the conference did not reflect the geographic diversity that was expected at a global civil society event. Institutional capacity within these under represented regions poses challenges for future conferences where equitable representation is desired. Furthermore, it is unclear as whether the process – engaging in strategic essentialism – effectively captured the diversity of voices. Simply, the long-term impacts of the IC remain uncertain. However, for the short term at least it appears that active civil society participation will continue to be part of the sustainable development movement. Whether IC stakeholders efficaciously mobilize their actions plans will be contingent on the international community’s willingness to accept them as essential players in the sustainability movement and on local people’s empowerment in participating in such movements. The success of any agreement, however, ultimately relies on the motivation and goodwill of all stakeholders, representing constituencies and coffers large and small, to adhere to the accords developed at the WSSD. The IC is merely an attempt to improve the means to this end. Nonetheless, the success of the IC-type movements will remain largely contingent on the level of equality of global stakeholder participation. The analysis presented here is a first attempt to analyze that representation.