Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

‘Nothing for Us Without Us’ - Towards an economic justice framework for Sustainable Development


Published on

Presentation delivered by Masego Madzwamuse (OSISA) at the Rio+20 side event on the role of civil society and knowledge institutions in sustainable development:

  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

‘Nothing for Us Without Us’ - Towards an economic justice framework for Sustainable Development

  1. 1. ‘Nothing for Us WithoutUs’ – Towards aneconomic justiceframework for SD By Masego Madzwamuse, OSISA
  2. 2. Why an economic justice framework for sustainability?Due to the current context for SD• Deepening levels of Poverty & Inequality – Despite rapid economic growth more than 50% of the population in Southern Africa lives below the poverty datum line – Since 1990 the number of poor people have increased by an average of 10 million a year mostly in Africa – Another 44 million suffering from malnutrition – Namibia half of the population is unemployed; the wealthiest 20% of the population controls 78% of the countries income and the poorest 20% share 1.4%) – SA with two economies within one nation state (Mbeki – 1st economy least number of people highest concentration of wealth & 2nd economy highest number of people and poorest) – Current development frameworks have failed to redress historical inequalities based on race, gender, ethnicity, class and regional disparities
  3. 3. Why an economic justice framework for sustainability?• The link between growth and human development is not automatic – lopsided growth; – Jobless growth (without expanding employment opportunities i.e. SA, Namibia & Angola); – Ruthless growth (associated with increasing inequality and poverty); – Voiceless growth (without extending democracy); – Rootless growth (that withers cultural identity and is short-term); – Futureless growth (that squanders resources needed by future generations).
  4. 4. Why an economic justice framework for sustainability?• The biggest financial crises since the great depression -resulting failed economic model in the most ‘advanced’ capitalist system; • WB estimated 100 million more people were driven into poverty in one year alone during the 2008/2009 financial crises – this figure continues to grow• This crippling crises is happening concurrently with others, escalating food and fuel prices • Further fuelling high levels of poverty & inequality • Results in job losses all of which threatens social stability (Arab spring & service delivery protests in South Africa are indicators of this)
  5. 5. Ethics Before Economics“This global crisis and the environmental disaster that has been inheritedfrom 250 years of industrial revolution and 500 years of capitalism force us torethink deeply the relations between economics and ethics” – Alejandro Nadal
  6. 6. Who is vulnerable to this multiple crises?• Vulnerability is socially differentiated & depends on – Class, income, gender, race, age, education levels and geography – The most marginalised and disenfranchised are most vulnerable to this multiple crises; • the elderly, women, children, poor, ethnic minorities, indigenous peoples, migrants and people who are directly dependent on fragile systems for their livelihoods such as pastoralists – We see double edged injustice - those who are least responsible for the mess are paying the highest cost
  7. 7. Economic Justice Framework for SD• The current crises of systems point to a need to find space for institutional change and alternative solutions – Finding alternatives to a neo-liberal development paradigm – Deal with structural causes of vulnerability and not tinker on the margins of a failed system – Transform social structures, institutions and power relations that underpin vulnerability & inequality (move from technical fixes to systemic change)• Specific SD policy measures are needed through actions of the state, civil society and private sector – to ensure that economic growth is inclusive, robust and that the proceeds of economic growth are directed into human development
  8. 8. Economic Justice Framework for SD• Ensure new assessment criteria beyond GDP to measure growth and development – Growth has to be pro-jobs and premised on growth that enhances production potential & supports the growth of the informal sector – Look at the extent to which enclavity & duality is addressed and rural economies are diversified – Take into account the costs that are already met by vulnerable sectors of society – Factor in the economic interests of the poor – Addresses questions of inter-generational equity – Ensure gender considerations
  9. 9. Fig 1: source: Beyond the Enclave: Towards an inclusive and pro poordevelopment strategy for Zimbabwe; edited by Kanyenze G et el, 2011
  10. 10. Economic Justice Framework for SD• People centred and bottom up policy formulation processes – Emphasising downward accountability – Centred on empowering vulnerable sectors of society and building their capacity for self-representation – Ensuring that the rights of communities are not diminished – eliminating elite capture of resources and political power – State plays a facilitatory developmental role to ensure equity, fairness, accountability & balancing competing interests and needs
  11. 11. What is needed?An SD agenda that is based ona change of values
  12. 12. What are the implications for institutional frameworks for SD?• State intervention needs to be embraced as a development model• Need to enhance social movements – demand policy responses are people led – Reclaim power from the World Bank, IMF and back to citizens• Establishment of multi-stakeholder platforms• Facilitate partnerships & dialogue between CSOs, Private Sector, Research Institutions and Government – harnessing collective knowledge and wisdom• Provide real space for active participation of vulnerable communities & self determination
  13. 13. What are the implications for institutional frameworks for SD?• The creation of a dynamic, participatory and radical democracy which regards; – People’s mobilisation, demonstrations, public hearings as part of the struggle for a developmental state – Facilitating partnerships between env NGOs and devpt NGOs – Democratises macro-economic policy formulation processes
  14. 14. ConclusionSocial factors Democratic factor Global Factor• safeguarding people’s • how political systems • How systems work at basic human rights function, global level• protecting vulnerable • how decisions are made • How decisions are made people against poverty and implemented and implemented & exploitation • How resources and • How global resources opportunities are are controlled and distributed distributed • How justice and fairness • How global systems is achieved affect the developing world