Archive for SSP related Analysis

New OECD Report on Migration and Public Policy

OCDE

The OECD recently released a report entitled Interrelations between Public Policies, Migration and Development. Launched at the UN headquarters in New York City, the report is based on field research and empirical analysis conducted in ten low and middle-income countries. More than 20,000 households, representing over 100,000 individuals, were involved in the study. Countries studied include Dominican Republic, Cambodia, Costa Rica, the Ivory Coast, Haiti, Morocco, and the Philippines, among others. The extensive document details the dual relationship between migratory flows and public policy by looking at factors like education, investment, agriculture, and labour market trends.

The OECD findings highlight the influence of specific public policies on migratory ¨outcomes¨ including remittances, cultural integration, and the decision whether to migrate or return. The report identifies numerous policy areas where governments are failing to implement coherent strategies that align with their migration goals. Poor vocational training, low rates of financial inclusion and literacy, and the denial of regular status to immigrants are some examples of this failure.

The report points out that in many developing countries, immigrant heads with regular migration status are more likely to own a business. One nation that it refers to specifically is the Dominican Republic, a place where Club de Madrid has focused much attention as part of its Shared Society Project joint initiative together the Instituto Nacional de Migración (INM-RD), a Government body within the Dominican Home Affairs Minister. The CdM and the INM-RD have championed a humanitarian approach during a recent High Level Mission led by former President of Spain and Club de Madrid Member, Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, championing a comprehensive and humane approach to the issue of migrants, emphasizing the need to recognize their inalienable rights and to not treat them as second-class citizens.

The Shared Societies Project took part in a session at the OECD on October 2016 to review the draft of the document and highlight the positive impact of an approach to policy formulation which involves both the migrant and host communities. It has also been in touch with OECD Migration Unit planning a potential collaboration in the Dominican Republic as both organizations agree on promoting an inclusive migration approach in the country.

Vike-Freiberga explains Club de Madrid’s ‘Shared Vision of a Shared Society’ at the Hufftington Post

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The future of the United Kingdom is uncertain, as the challenges of a post-Brexit reality need to be faced and editorials compete in their predictions of the course the United Kingdom will take under its new prime minister.

As such, it was an encouraging sign for many, especially within the Club de Madrid, when PM Theresa May seemed to adopt the concept of Shared Society, long championed by the Club de Madrid, in a speech drawing up her plans for the future of the islands. Club de Madrid’s President, Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga, penned an essay in the Huffington Post in response, which doubled down on the values that Shared Societies embodies: “when everyone is involved and encouraged, they become an asset to society and a contributor to the common good, rather than being a drain or a liability”.  It also emphasized that in order to be effective, governments all across the ideological spectrum need to support it, not imposing it but rather enabling it.  The Prime Minister’s speech has sparked a welcome debate about the concept in the UK media.  For example Frances Ryan in the Guardian gave her own views of the policy changes that would be required to create a Shared Society here.

Please to find Vaira Vike-Freiberga’s article in the following link.

Although the United Kingdom is sailing in uncharted waters, we at the Club of Madrid feel confident that there could be no better guiding principles for a nation seeking to reinvent itself than those of our Shared Societies Project and we are open to opportunities to share the insights that the Members have gained over the years.

 

How to use the SSP Guide?

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Did you know we have a guide of good practices to achieve a Shared Society? You can find it here, and below you can learn how to use it!

 

What is the SSP Good Practice Guide?
The Shared Societies Good Practices Guide is an easy way to explore the goals and activities of the Shared Societies Project. Our approaches for building dialogue, diversity, and social cohesion have been divided into four parts on the color wheel. These are: arrangements, safeguards, service provisions, and intercommunity development. You can use the wheel to follow a specific approach and use the map below to see how various projects across the world are using these methods successfully, being an inspiration for our project.

Commitment 1:
Commitment one of the Shared Societies Project is to locate responsibility in order to ensure the promotion of social cohesion within government structures.

The Approaches:
The first commitment of locating responsibility of social cohesion within government structures has three different recommended approaches. The first is to create a government department with this goal in mind that has its own minister within the government. The second is to create a unit within the executive branch that will directly report to the head of state. The third and final recommendation is to create an independent body (such as a community relations council) to act between the government and the people to encourage civil society involvement that will strengthen community relations.

The second commitment of the SSP Good Practices Guide is to create opportunities for minorities to be consulted and the Club de Madrid recommends four different approaches in order to achieve this goal. The first is to establish consultative councils on which all identity groups are represented and are given the right to be consulted on the impact of government policies. The second is to encourage identity groups to create representative bodies with which they can meet with the government and other identity group in order to explore and understand issues and concerns that affect them. The third is to create a system of community meetings that allow community members to express their views and air their grievances. The fourth and final recommendation is to mandate that public bodies include representatives of smaller identity groups in their boards and other decision making bodies.

Examples of good practices:
There are several organizations from around the world who are following the SSP Guide’s recommendations for good practice such as the Sierra Productiva which focuses on increasing national productivity in Peru by working with local farmers and new forms of technology, the Nigeria Inter-Religious Council which focuses on bringing peaceful coexistence to Muslim and Christian populations, and the CEO Philadelphia Access Network which seeks to increase small business ownership amongst minority women within the City of Philadelphia.

Diversity enters into the Spanish Parliament (Finally!)

RitaBosano

The elections held in Spain on December 20th of 2015 brought about many changes in the Spanish political sphere. One of these changes came in the hands of Rita Bosaho, who became Spain’s first female black Member of Parliament . As The Guardian explains, the “election saw record number of women elected into lower parliament” while “immigrants still make up only 1,2% of country’s representatives,” and composeapproximately 10%of the population.[1]

Bosaho has received much attention from the media following the elections, which has caught her off guard, as she tells EFE News Agency. “Why is it so striking that a black woman could end up in parliament? What does that say about us all being integrated?”

Born with Spanish nationality in Equatorial Guinea, Spain’s former African colony, and after three decades living in Spain, she doesn’t consider herself an immigrant, but is happy to have become such a symbol. As she explains, immigrants remain somewhat invisible in Spanish institutions. “It’s a structural problem that needs to be put in context, looking at the social panorama of Spain.”

According to an ongoing study called “Pathways to Power” led by several European universities,[2] which compares immigrant political representation among seven European democracies, says “in Britain or the Netherlands, between 8% and 11% of national deputies are of immigrant origin, in France and Germany these rates fluctuate between 3% and 4%, and in Italy it is 1.5%.”It’s not only about immigrants making it into parliament, “but about reaching all the institutions”, as the French and political scientist and sociologist Sami Nair says.

Rita Bosaho’s achievement seems like a positive step forward in bringing about true social integration through political representation, as well bringing attention to the percentage of political representation of immigrants in Spain.

While speaking to El País, Vladimir Paspuel of the Ecuadorian association Rumiñahuispoke about the immigrant representatives in government saying “it’s providing a real struggle, but little by little we’re starting to achieve political participation.”

The Club of Madrid has developed the Shared Societies Project, committed to achieve an integrated society. In this framework, it has developed 10 Commitments as key policy areas for leaders and governments.

With the first black woman ever elected in Spain, comes the opportunity to “encourage the creation of a shared vision of society” both locally and nationally, as Commitment VIII promotes. Including bringing new ideas into the political arena to build a society in which the needs and rights of all citizens are met and protected.

As Bosaho jokingly said, it’s about time someone like her reached the Spanish Congress.

 


[1]According to the InstitutoNacional de Estadística (INE), http://www.ine.es/inebaseDYN/cp30321/cp_inicio.htm

[2]Study led by the University of Amsterdam (Netherlands), University of Bamberg (Germany), University of Leicester (United Kingdom), and SciencesPo (France).

Sustainability matters: the Equator Prize 2015 and Shared Societies

Equator Prize

 

On December 7th, the Equator Prize 2015 Award Ceremony took place in Paris. This year the Price was awarded to 21 outstanding local and indigenous initiatives that are advancing innovative solutions for people, nature and resilient communities.Winning organizations come from Asia, Latin America and the Sub-Sahara Africa. Each winning initiative received US$ 10,000 and was supported to participate in a series of special events at the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris, France in December 2015.

The Equator Prize was established in 2002 and there are now 87 winner organizations from 70 different countries. The Equator Prize is awarded biennially to recognize and advance local sustainable development solutions for people, nature and resilient communities. As local and indigenous groups across the world chart a path towards sustainable development. The Prize is part of the action plan of the Equator Initiative, a partnership that brings together the United Nations, governments, civil society, businesses, and grassroots organizations to build the capacity and raise the profile of local efforts to reduce poverty through the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity. Other initiatives include the so-called Equator Dialogues and Equator Knowledge, a research, documentation and learning program.

In this regard, the Club de Madrid has established a working group to examine the link between Shared Societies and Environmental Sustainability. The Shared Societies Project contends that the common basis for sustainable development is a socially inclusive process based in the achievement of Shared Societies. The Post-2015 Development Process has given the debate impetus, as the implementation of the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will require a reorientation of all aspects of development

We, at the Club de Madrid, believe that the common basis for sustainable development is a socially inclusive process based on the achievement of Shared Societies. For this reason, the Club has convened a working group to examine how a more inclusive participative and shared society can provide the framework in which social,economic and environmental wellbeing can be realized for all.

 

Tracking the Post-2015 debate

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The process of creating the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which will replace the Millennium Development Goals, is coming to fruition with the Summit during the UN General Assembly in September 2015.

It has been difficult to keep track of all the meetings, reports and conferences on the topic that have taken place I the last few. They have been important not only as contributions to the drafting and adopting of the goals but in the years to come they will continue to be important in reminding us of key issues and approaches that can inform the implementation of the new set of Goals.

The Post-2015 Development Process has become a defining focus for the global debate on social development, bringing together economic, social and environmental concerns.

The Club de Madrid, mainly through its Shared Societies Project, has made its own contribution to the debate, particularly addressing the issue of the continuing marginalization of many groups on grounds of identity. The Members have contributed to High Level Panels, and listed below are their various statements, making the argument that an inclusive Shared Society is more likely to be able to meet environmental, economic and social goals, and therefore it is a foundation for achieving the SDGs.

Back at the beginning of the Process, Members of the Club de Madrid presented the Global Shared Societies Agenda to Promote Long term Inclusive and Sustainable Growth. The event “Sustainable Development in an Unequal World” took place on June 2012 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Michelle Bachelet, former President of Chile, Gro Harlem Brundtland, former Prime Minister of Norway and Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland, addressed different facets of the event’s overarching message on the state of national and global inequalities and their relationship to sustainable development and growth.

Hörst Kohler, former Chancellor of Germany and Member of the Club de Madrid was a member of the UN Secretary General’s High Level Panel of Eminent Persons, which produced the report “A New Global Partnership: Eradicate Poverty And Transform Economies Through Sustainable Development”.

The SSP Project was involved during the work sessions of the Open Working Group (OWG) of the UN General Assembly on Post 2015 Development Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals to retain a Shared Societies perspective in the outcome document and published “A Shared Societies Perspective on the Post-2105 Development Agenda”. Cassam Uteem, former President of Mauritius, and Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland, spoke at an OWG session in February 2014 and the Project circulated a statement from the Second Global Shared Societies Forum in Baku. After the OWG published its report, a further paper was circulated: “Response to Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals Outcome Document”.

During the final phase of negotiations from the beginning of 2015, the Project has kept in touch with the process and in the lead-up to the Financing for Development Summit in July 2015, the SSP Project team Co Chairs issues a paper.

In addition, Club de Madrid members Roza Otunbayeva, former President of Kyrgyzstan, Zlatko Lagumdzija, former Prime Minister of Bosnia & Herzegovina and Abdurrahim El-Keib, former Prime Minister of Libya, were keynote speakers at the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Annual Ministerial Review of the Millennium Development Goals. The participation of the CdM members took place from 8 to 10 July, 2015 in New York just days before the Financing for Development Summit.

For further information the website Post2015.org “What comes after the Millennium Goals” and its twitter account, @post2015, has been collecting relevant material on the Post-2015 agenda coordinated by the British think thank Overseas Development Institute.

The website is focused on the debate on what should follow the Millennium Development Goals when they expire this year 2015 emphasizing that “there is a new meeting, report or conference on the subject somewhere in the world almost every day, although trying to keep track of what the key players are thinking, writing and saying is becoming increasingly difficult.” The post2015.org website brings together the key documents, reports and ongoing research on the post-2015 agenda, with regular updates on events and briefings about the emerging agenda.

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