Discussion
Return to [previous page]
Roshni Menon
on Fri, November 30, 2012 at 10.13 pm

Phase II: How can we ensure an accountability framework that takes into account human rights principles and obligations to assure effective delivery on the post-2015 development agenda?

Details:

Welcome to the Phase II of the e-discussion on governance and the post-2015 framework as part of the Global Thematic Consultation on Governance!

Whereas the first phase of the consultation focused on governance building blocks in the future framework, this second phase focuses on accountability as a key aspect of governance and human rights in the post-2015 context. As the UN Secretary General has recognized, “Shortfalls have occurred not because the goals are unreachable, or because time is too short. We are off course because of unmet commitments, inadequate resources and a lack of focus and accountability." How accountability can be strengthened in the post-2015 development framework is a central concern of the High Level Panel which will make recommendations to the SG on the content of the new framework.

In this phase, the e-discussion will focus on Accountability Framework for Delivery on the Post-2015 Development Agenda. Over the course of the next two weeks (until 16 December), we would like to invite your views on the principles and practices of accountability relevant to the MDGs and the post-2015 development agenda. The e-discussion intends to draw upon a the broadest possible range of perspectives on the extent to which the MDGs have fostered accountability for development outcomes, and invites reflection on interconnected levels (sub-national, national, regional and global) and dimensions (horizontal and vertical) of accountability. The main objective is to solicit and distil recommendations of specific relevance to member States’ deliberations on the post-2015 development agenda, including how post-2015 commitments could most effectively be framed, measured and monitored, and what kinds of accountability mechanisms might best ensure that new global promises are actually delivered on, in ways that respect and fulfill the rights of those facing poverty and discrimination. The overall guiding question of this second phase of the e-Discussion, therefore, is:

 How can we ensure an accountability framework that takes into account human rights principles and obligations to assure delivery on the post-2015 development agenda?

 Further guiding sub-questions are:

  1. What is accountability?: What do we mean by accountability in the context of a global development framework (e.g. by whom, to whom, on which basis)?
  2. Why is accountability important?: To what extent have the MDGs fostered accountability and what are the accountability gaps? How might “accountability” principles and mechanisms strengthen incentives for delivering on a new global development agenda?
  3. Recommendations for post-2015: Based on the above, what should be key principles for accountability in the post-2015 agenda? What should be key criteria when designing a monitoring framework (including new global goals, targets and indicators) to measure progress on a post-2015 agenda? Are there innovative and effective examples of accountability mechanisms (at the local, national, regional or global levels) that could be drawn upon in designing the post-2015 framework, and ensuring that post-2015 commitments are implemented in practice? What governance gaps need to be filled before 2015 to support a sound post-2015 accountability framework?

We would also like to remind you that the Phase I of this e-discussion focused on the overall question of what the building blocks for responsive and effective governance should be in a post-2015 agenda. You may still access it here

We look forward to hearing your views and engaging in a stimulating discussion with you over the next two weeks.

Best regards,

Mac Darrow, Chief of the MDGs Section, OHCHR

Ignacio Saiz, Executive Director, CESR
Co-moderators of the Phase II of the e-discussion

 


Visibility: 
Public
Gitte Dyrhagen Husager from
Wed, January 30, 2013 at 02.35 pm

To the moderators of this space:

Will there be a summary paper of the points raised in the discussion, and if so when will it be released?

Anonymous from
Wed, January 16, 2013 at 11.11 am

Dear All.

I want to add my voice to points raised by other contributors which I know will be useful in archieving our post 2015 goals on governance and accountaility.

These are (A) ownersip, (B) Measurement ND (C)Reporting, Communication system.

(A) The people must take ownership for a program to be effective, This shows impact on the lives of people. Impacts are visible and quantitative and can be measured. This takes us to the next,

(B) Measurement is the process that  uses either a template or medium or comparisim with set standards to access quantums , effects and imparts on the people at each point in time, to access a benefit or improvement as a result of an intervention. This is critical at all times as a measure of value. To show a posetive impact or a failed process.

(C)Reoorting, Communication process. To comfirm the result of an effect, communication is key as a well reported synergy or intervention serves as motivation and standard for future refrences. Reports must be in simple clear languages, Communication must be made to a targeted group and Communication must be time bound as a stale communication is as wasted as a non effect. it therefore becomes pertinent that knowledge must be key to communication and communication must get to target group as at when needed. This will come into play, in post 2015 programs, projects for various groups and target audiences.

In summary three key issues that will help in Accountable governance iis Ownership, Measurement and Reporting proceses.

LIZZY IGBINE

Anonymous from
Mon, January 7, 2013 at 06.02 pm

Health is human a human right, and good governance in the health sector is widely recognized as improving a population’s access to health care and health outcomes.  The Leadership, Management, and Governance (LMG) Project, funded by USAID, has sought to understand governing, and what makes it effective, from the perspective of people in leadership positions in the health sectors of low and middle income countries (LMICs).

LMG conducted a web-based quantitative survey in which there were over 450 respondents from 80 countries, as well as conducted interviews with 25 key informants in 16 countries.  We asked these leaders in the health sector what they thought the challenges, successes, and best practices of governance for improved health outcomes.

Our findings include:

(1)   Those in health leadership positions in LMICs are likely to define effective governance in terms of improvements in both the health services and the health of individuals and populations.

(2)   Leadership, management, and governance are highly inter-linked and mutually reinforcing constructs in the context of health. Leaders are critical to the governing process, and effective leadership is a prerequisite for effective governance and effective management.

(3)   Those surveyed found the inclusion of the governed in the governing process; making sound policies and smart regulations; collaborating across ministries, sectors and levels; and effective oversight to be integral elements of the governing process.

(4)   The top enablers for health sector governing were identified as: ethical and moral integrity; measurement and use of data; sound management; adequate financial resources available for governing; openness and transparency; participatory decision making; accountability to the citizens and clients; use of scientific evidence; effective governance in sectors other than health; and use of technology.

(5)   Governance needs to be gender aware, gender responsive, and gender transformative in order to be increasingly effective. 

The themes of accountability, transparency, and responsiveness were prevalent in the responses. Leaders who govern in LMICs and who wish to achieve better health outcomes for their constituents should, according to their peers, strengthen governance by investing in cultivating transparency, accountability, participation, gender responsiveness, integrity, measurement of results, and use of technology in governing.  The results of this survey helped shape LMG’s main governance practices:

  • Cultivate accountability
  • Engage stakeholders
  • Set shared direction
  • Steward resources

 

Post-2015, good governance with an emphasis on accountability should be at the forefront of the development agenda to ensure that all have access to health care. 

Mahesh Shukla

Senior Technical Advisor, Public Sector Governance

Leadership, Manangement, and Governance Project

Management Sciences for Health

LIZZY NNEKA IGBINE from
Mon, January 7, 2013 at 05.51 am

In this second phase of accountability in post 2015 discussions, The areas of interest is to look at , the mechanisms to further ensure that accountability is further ensured. This can be done by the followings.

A) Putting in place a monotoring standard.

B) Ensuring that countries sign into the protocols and conventions of the Un in accontability framework.

C) Standardizing the different countries laws and policies on accountability.

D) Ensuring that countries comply and placing of sanctions for non complying countries.

E) Inclusion of CivilSociety Organisations in decision making process at each point of governance in the Un system and Countries,

I will elaborate on this in my subsequent contributions,

LIZZY IGBINE

NIWAAFA.

 

Anonymous from
Sat, January 12, 2013 at 12.22 am
 

Accountability

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

In ethics and governance, accountability is answerability, blameworthiness, liability, and the expectation of account-giving.[1] As an aspect of governance, it has been central to discussions related to problems in the public sector, nonprofit and private (corporate) worlds. In leadership roles,[2] accountability is the acknowledgment and assumption of responsibility for actions, products, decisions, and policies including the administration, governance, and implementation within the scope of the role or employment position and encompassing the obligation to report, explain and be answerable for resulting consequences.

In governance, accountability has expanded beyond the basic definition of "being called to account for one's actions".[3][4] It is frequently described as an account-giving relationship between individuals, e.g. "A is accountable to B when A is obliged to inform B about A’s (past or future) actions and decisions, to justify them, and to suffer punishment in the case of eventual misconduct".[5] Accountability cannot exist without proper accounting practices; in other words, an absence of accounting means an absence of accountability.

Contents

[hide]

[edit] History and etymology

"Accountability" stems from late Latin accomptare (to account), a prefixed form of computare (to calculate), which in turn derived from putare (to reckon).[6] While the word itself does not appear in English until its use in 13th century Norman England,[7][8] the concept of account-giving has ancient roots in record keeping activities related to governance and money-lending systems that first developed in Ancient Israel,[9]Babylon,[10]Egypt,[11]Greece,[12] and later, Rome.[13]

[edit] Types

Bruce Stone, O.P. Dwivedi, and Joseph G. Jabbra list 8 types of accountability, namely: moral, administrative, political, managerial, market, legal/judicial, constituency relation, and professional.[14]Leadership accountability cross cuts many of these distinctions.

[edit] Political accountability

Political accountability is the accountability of the government, civil servants and politicians to the public and to legislative bodies such as a congress or a parliament.

In a few cases, recall elections can be used to revoke the office of an elected official. Generally, however, voters do not have any direct way of holding elected representatives to account during the term for which they have been elected. Additionally, some officials and legislators may be appointed rather than elected. Constitution, or statute, can empower a legislative body to hold their own members, the government, and government bodies to account. This can be through holding an internal or independent inquiry. Inquiries are usually held in response to an allegation of misconduct or corruption. The powers, procedures and sanctions vary from country to country. The legislature may have the power to impeach the individual, remove them, or suspend them from office for a period of time. The accused person might also decide to resign before trial. Impeachment in the United States has been used both for elected representatives and other civil offices, such as district court judges.

In parliamentary systems, the government relies on the support or parliament, which gives parliament power to hold the government to account. For example, some parliaments can pass a vote of no confidence in the government.

Researchers at the Overseas Development Institute found that empowering citizens in developing countries to be able to hold their domestic government's to account was incredibly complex in practice. However, by developing explicit processes that generate change from individuals, groups or communities (Theories of Change), and by fusing political economy analysis and outcome mapping tools, the complex state-citizen dynamics can be better understood. As such, more effective ways to achieve outcomes can hence be generated.[15]

[edit] Ethical accountability

Within an organization, the principles and practices of ethical accountability aim to improve both the internal standard of individual and group conduct as well as external factors, such as sustainable economic and ecologic strategies. Also, ethical accountability plays a progressively important role in academic fields, such as laboratory experiments and field research. Debates around the practice of ethical accountability on the part of researchers in the social field - whether professional or others - have been thoroughly explored by Norma CD Romm in her work on Accountability in Social Research,[16] including her book on New Racism: Revisiting Researcher Accountabilities, reviewed by Carole Truman in the journal Sociological Research Online.[17] Here it is suggested that researcher accountability implies that researchers are cognisant of, and take some responsibility for, the potential impact of their ways of doing research – and of writing it up – on the social fields of which the research is part. That is, accountability is linked to considering carefully, and being open to challenge in relation to, one's choices concerning how research agendas are framed and the styles in which write-ups of research "results" are created.

[edit] Administrative accountability

Internal rules and norms as well as some independent commission are mechanisms to hold civil servant within the administration of government accountable. Within department or ministry, firstly, behavior is bound by rules and regulations; secondly, civil servants are subordinates in a hierarchy and accountable to superiors. Nonetheless, there are independent “watchdog” units to scrutinize and hold departments accountable; legitimacy of these commissions is built upon their independence, as it avoids any conflicts of interests.

[edit] Individual accountability in organizations

Because many different individuals in large organizations contribute in many ways to the decisions and policies, it is difficult even in principle to identify who should be accountable for the results. This is what is known, following Thompson, as the problem of many hands.[18] It creates a dilemma for accountability. If individuals are held accountable or responsible, individuals who could not have prevented the results are either unfairly punished, or they “take responsibility” in a symbolic ritual without suffering any consequences. But if only organizations are held accountable, then all individuals in the organization are equally blameworthy or all are excused. Various solutions have been proposed. One is to broaden the criteria for individual responsibility so that individuals are held accountable for failing to anticipate failures in the organization. Another recently proposed by Thompson is to hold individuals accountable for the design of the organization, both retrospectively and prospectively.[19]

[edit] Constituency relations

Within this perspective, a particular agency or the government is accountable if voices from agencies, groups or institutions, which is outside the public sector and representing citizens’ interests in a particular constituency or field, are heard. Moreover, the government is obliged to empower members of agencies with political rights to run for elections and be elected; or, appoint them into the public sector as a way to hold the government representative and ensure voices from all constituencies are included in policy-making process.

[edit] Public/private overlap

With the increase over the last several decades in public service provision by private entities, especially in Britain and the United States, some have called for increased political accountability mechanisms to be applied to otherwise non-political entities. Legal scholar Anne Davies, for instance, argues that the line between public institutions and private entities like corporations is becoming blurred in certain areas of public service provision in the United Kingdom and that this can compromise political accountability in those areas. She and others argue that some administrative law reforms are necessary to address this accountability gap.[20]

With respect to the public/private overlap in the United States, public concern over the contracting out of government (including military) services and the resulting accountability gap has been highlighted recently following the shooting incident involving the Blackwater security firm in Iraq.[21]

[edit] Contemporary evolution

Accountability involves either the expectation or assumption of account-giving behavior. The study of account giving as a sociological act was articulated in a 1968 article on "Accounts" by Marvin Scott and Stanford Lyman[22] and Stephen Soroka[citation needed], although it can be traced as well to J. L. Austin's 1956 essay "A Plea for Excuses,"[23] in which he used excuse-making as an example of speech acts.

Communications scholars have extended this work through the examination of strategic uses of excuses, justifications, rationalizations, apologies and other forms of account giving behavior by individuals and corporations, and Philip Tetlock and his colleagues have applied experimental design techniques to explore how individuals behave under various scenarios and situations that demand accountability.

Recently, accountability has become an important topic in the discussion about the legitimacy of international institutions.[24] Because there is no global democratically elected body to which organizations must account, global organizations from all sectors bodies are often criticized as having large accountability gaps. The Charter 99 for Global Democracy,[25] spearheaded by the One World Trust, first proposed that cross-sector principles of accountability be researched and observed by institutions that affect people, independent of their legal status. One paradigmatic problem arising in the global context is that of institutions such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund who are founded and supported by wealthy nations and provide aid, in the form of grants and loans, to developing nations. Should those institutions be accountable to their founders and investors or to the persons and nations they help? In the debate over global justice and its distributional consequences, Cosmopolitans tend to advocate greater accountability to the disregarded interests of traditionally marginalized populations and developing nations. On the other hand, those in the Nationalism and Society of States traditions deny the tenets of moral universalism and argue that beneficiaries of global development initiatives have no substantive entitlement to call international institutions to account. The One World Trust Global Accountability Report, published in a first full cycle 2006 to 2008,[26] is one attempt to measure the capability of global organizations to be accountable to their stakeholders.

Accountability is becoming an increasingly important issue for the non-profit world. Several NGOs signed the "accountability charter" in 2005. In the Humanitarian field, initiatives such as the HAPI (Humanitarian Accountability Partnership International) appeared. Individual NGOs have set their own accountability systems (for example, the ALPS, Accountability, Learning and Planning System of ActionAid)

[edit] Accountability in education

Student accountability is traditionally based on having school and classroom rules, combined with sanctions for infringement.

In contrast, some educational establishments such as Sudbury schools believe that students are personally responsible for their acts, and that traditional schools do not permit students to choose their course of action fully; they do not permit students to embark on the course, once chosen; and they do not permit students to suffer the consequences of the course, once taken. Freedom of choice, freedom of action, freedom to bear the results of action are considered the three great freedoms that constitute personal responsibility. Sudbury schools claim that "Ethics" is a course taught by life experience. They adduce that the essential ingredient for acquiring values—and for moral action is personal responsibility, that schools will become involved in the teaching of morals when they become communities of people who fully respect each other's right to make choices, and that the only way the schools can become meaningful purveyors of ethical values is if they provide students and adults with real-life experiences that are bearers of moral import. Students are given complete responsibility for their own education and the school is run by a direct democracy in which students and staff are equals.[27][28][29][30][31][32]

[edit] Proposed symbolism

Viktor Frankl, neurologist, psychiatrist, author, and founder of logotherapy and one of the key figures in existential therapy, in his book Man's Search for Meaning recommended "that the Statue of Liberty on the East Coast (that has become a symbol of Liberty and Freedom) should be supplemented by a Statue of Responsibility on the West Coast." Frankl stated: "Freedom, however, is not the last word. Freedom is only part of the story and half of the truth. Freedom is but the negative aspect of the whole phenomenon whose positive aspect is responsibleness. In fact, freedom is in danger of degenerating into mere arbitrariness unless it is lived in terms of responsibleness."[33][34]

[edit] See also

[edit] Footnotes

  1. ^ Dykstra, Clarence A. (February 1939). "The Quest for Responsibility". American Political Science Review (The American Political Science Review, Vol. 33, No. 1) 33 (1): 1–25. doi:10.2307/1949761. JSTOR 1949761.
  2. ^ Williams, Reyes(2006) Leadership accountability in a globalizing world. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
  3. ^ Mulgan, Richard (2000). "'Accountability': An Ever-Expanding Concept?". Public Administration 78 (3): 555–573. doi:10.1111/1467-9299.00218.
  4. ^ Sinclair, Amanda (1995). "The Chameleon of Accountability: Forms and Discourses". Accounting, Organizations and Society 20 (2/3): 219–237. doi:10.1016/0361-3682(93)E0003-Y.
  5. ^ Schedler, Andreas (1999). "Conceptualizing Accountability". In Andreas Schedler, Larry Diamond, Marc F. Plattner. The Self-Restraining State: Power and Accountability in New Democracies. London: Lynne Rienner Publishers. pp. 13–28. ISBN 1-55587-773-7.
  6. ^ Oxford English Dictionary 2nd Ed.
  7. ^ Dubnick, Melvin (1998). "Clarifying Accountability: An Ethical Theory Framework". In Charles Sampford, Noel Preston and C. A. Bois. Public Sector Ethics: Finding And Implementing Values. Leichhardt, NSW, Australia: The Federation Press/Routledge. pp. 68–8l.
  8. ^ Seidman, Gary I (Winter 2005). "The Origins of Accountability: Everything I Know About the Sovereign's Immunity, I Learned from King Henry III". St. Louis University Law Journal 49 (2): 393–480.
  9. ^ Walzer, Michael (1994). "The Legal Codes of Ancient Israel". In Ian Shapiro. the Rule of Law. NY: New York University Press. pp. 101–119.
  10. ^ Urch, Edwin J. (July 1929). "The Law Code of Hammurabi". American Bar Association Journal 15 (7): 437–441.
  11. ^ Ezzamel, Mahmoud (December 1997). "Accounting, Control and Accountability: Preliminary Evidence from Ancient Egypt". Critical Perspectives on Accounting 8 (6): 563–601. doi:10.1006/cpac.1997.0123.
  12. ^ Roberts, Jennnifer T. (1982). Accountability in Athenian Government. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press.
  13. ^ Plescia, Joseph (January 2001). "Judicial Accountability and Immunity in Roman Law". American Journal of Legal History (The American Journal of Legal History, Vol. 45, No. 1) 45 (1): 51–70. doi:10.2307/3185349. JSTOR 3185349.
  14. ^ Jabbra, J. G. and Dwivedi, 0. P. (eds.), Public Service Accountability: A Comparative Perspective, Kumarian Press, Hartford, CT, 1989, ISBN 0-7837-7581-4
  15. ^ Tembo, F., March 2012, Citizen voice and state accountability: towards theories of change that embrace contextual dynamics Overseas Development Institute, retrieved 23rd March 2012
  16. ^ Romm, Norma R.A. (2001). Accountability in Social Research. New York: Klower Academic. ISBN 978-0-306-46564-2. http://www.springer.com/social+sciences/book/978-0-306-46564-2?detailsPage=reviews.
  17. ^ Truman, Carole (2010). "Review of New Racism: Revisiting Researcher Accountabilities". Sociological Research Online. http://www.socresonline.org.uk/16/2/reviews/3.html. Retrieved 27 August 2012.
  18. ^ Thompson, Dennis (2005). “The Problem of Many Hands” in Restoring Responsibility: Ethics in Government, Business and Healthcare. Cambridge University Press. pp. 33-49. ISBN 978-0521547222
  19. ^ Thompson, Dennis F (2012). “Designing Responsibility: The Problem of Many Hands in Complex Organizations,” in The Design Turn in Applied Ethics, eds. Jeroen van den Hoven, Seumas Miller and Thomas Pogge. Cambridge University Press.
  20. ^ "oxford law - the faculty and its members : anne davies". Competition-law.ox.ac.uk. http://www.competition-law.ox.ac.uk/members/profile.phtml?lecturer_code=daviesa. Retrieved 2009-08-26.
  21. ^ Harriman, Ed (2007-09-28). "Blackwater poisons the well". London: Commentisfree.guardian.co.uk. http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/ed_harriman/2007/09/blackwater_poisons_the_well.html. Retrieved 2009-08-26.
  22. ^ Scott, Marvin B.; Lyman, Stanford M. (February 1968). "Accounts". American Sociological Review (American Sociological Review, Vol. 33, No. 1) 33 (1): 46–62. doi:10.2307/2092239. JSTOR 2092239. PMID 5644339.
  23. ^ Austin, J.L. 1956-7. A plea for excuses. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society. Reprinted in J. O. Urmson & G. J. Warnock, eds., 1979, J. L. Austin: Philosophical Papers, 3rd edition. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 175-204.
  24. ^ Grant, Ruth W.; Keohane, Robert O. (2005). "Accountability and Abuses of Power in World Politics". American Political Science Review 99 (1): 29–43. doi:10.1017/S0003055405051476.
  25. ^ http://www.oneworldtrust.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=14&Itemid=55
  26. ^ http://www.oneworldtrust.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=73&Itemid=60
  27. ^ Greenberg, D. (1992), Education in America - A View from Sudbury Valley, "'Ethics' is a Course Taught By Life Experience." Retrieved, 24 October 2009.
  28. ^ Greenberg, D. (1987) The Sudbury Valley School Experience "Back to Basics - Moral basics." Retrieved, 24 October 2009.
  29. ^ Feldman, J. (2001) "The Moral Behavior of Children and Adolescents at a Democratic School." Pdf. This study examined moral discourse, reflection, and development in a school community with a process similar to that described by Lawrence Kohlberg. Data were drawn from an extensive set of field notes made in an ethnographic study at Sudbury Valley School (an ungraded, democratically structured school in Framingham, MA), where students, ranging in age from 4 to 19, are free to choose their own activities and companions. Vignettes were analyzed using grounded theory approach to qualitative analysis, and themes were developed from an analysis of observations of meetings. Each theme describes a participation level that students assume in the process and that provide opportunities for them to develop and deepen understanding of the balance of personal rights and responsibilities within a community. The study adds to the understanding of education and child development by describing a school that differs significantly in its practice from the wider educational community and by validating Kohlberg's thesis about developing moral reasoning. Retrieved, 24 October 2009.
  30. ^ The Sudbury Valley School (1970), "Law and Order: Foundations of Discipline" The Crisis in American Education — An Analysis and a Proposal.(p. 49-55). Retrieved, 24 October 2009.
  31. ^ Greenberg, D. (1992) "Democracy Must be Experienced to be Learned !" Education in America — A View from Sudbury Valley. Retrieved, 24 October 2009.
  32. ^ Reiss, S. (2010), Whatever Happened to Personal Responsibility?. Retrieved August 18, 2010.
  33. ^ Frankl, Viktor Emil (1956) Man's Search for Meaning, p. 209-210.
  34. ^ Warnock, C. (2005) "Statue of Responsibility," DAILY HERALD. Retrieved 24 October 2009.

[edit] References

  • Bovens, Mark. The Quest for Responsibility: Accountability and Citizenship in Complex Organisations (Cambridge University Press, 1998).
  • Hunt, G. ‘The Principle of Complementarity: Freedom of Information, Public Accountability & Whistleblowing’, chap 5 in R A Chapman & M Hunt (eds) Open Government in a Theoretical and Practical Context. Ashgate, Aldershot, 2006.
  • Hunt, G. (ed) Whistleblowing in the Social Services: Public Accountability & Professional Practice, Arnold (Hodder), 1998.
  • Mastop, Rosja. “Characterising Responsibility in Organisational Structures: The Problem of Many Hands” in Deontic Logic in Computer Science, eds. G. Governatori and G. Sartor (Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 2010). pp. 274–287. ISBN 978-3-540-70524-6
  • Thompson, Dennis F. “Designing Responsibility: The Problem of Many Hands in Complex Organizations,” in The Design Turn in Applied Ethics, eds., Jeroen van den Hoven, Seumas Miller and Thomas Pogge (Cambridge University Press, 2012).
  • Thompson, Dennis F. “The Responsibility of Advisers” in Restoring Responsibility: Ethics in Government, Business and Healthcare (Cambridge University Press, 2005), pp. 33–49. ISBN 978-0521547222

[edit] Further reading

  • Mark Bovens, "Two concepts of accountability: accountability as a virtue and as a mechanism," West European Politics 33 (2010), 946–967.
  • Sterling Harwood, "Accountability," in John K. Roth, ed., Ethics: Ready Reference (Salem Press, 1994), reprinted in Sterling Harwood, ed., Business as Ethical and Business as Usual (Wadsworth Publishing Co., 1996).
  • David Luban, Alan Strudler, and David Wasserman, “Moral Responsibility in the Age of Bureaucracy,” Michigan Law Review 90 (1992), 2348-2392.
  • Romm, Norma RA (2001) Accountability in Social Research. New York: Springer. [1]
  • Dennis Thompson, “The Responsibility of Advisers” in Restoring Responsibility: Ethics in Government, Business and Healthcare (Cambridge University Press, 2005), pp. 33–49. ISBN 978-0521547222
  • Williams, Christopher (2006) Leadership accountability in a globalizing world. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

[edit] External links

Help improve this page

What's this?

×

Wikipedia would like to hear what you think of this article. Share your feedback with the editors – and help improve this page.

Learn more >>

Did you find what you were looking for?

Yes, I found what I was looking for.Yes
No, I did not find what I was looking for.No

Please post helpful feedback. By posting, you agree to transparency under these terms.

Post your feedback
Laud Kpakpo Addo from
Fri, January 4, 2013 at 09.01 am

•    Broadly speaking, Accountability entails standing up to what is expected of one by natural circumstances such as having being elected or standing up to an agreed set of objectives or actions.
•    In the context of the development framework accountability should mean standing up or owning up to agreed set of deliverables to ensure that set objectives are meet with the view of ensuring or enhancing development.
•    Accountability to us should be from two broad set of actors:
o    Political Leadership (elected and appointed)
o    National Institutions (Chief Implementing agencies of actions/plans); the leadership and institutions as a whole.
•    The chief people to which accountability must be rendered to should include:
1.    the larger population of other people of a nation.
2.    Civil society groups, the media and other interest groups (recognized bodies/groups/professionals).
3.    Development Partners and Funding agencies.
4.    Global community at large.
•    Accountability in this global framework should be on the basis of agreed set of targets and deliverables outlined in the Post 2015 Agenda. Especially even as countries broadly integrate these global goals in to national and subnational goals. Broadly speaking any country who adopts the global goals and targets in any form and receives funding to implement these goals, must be made to be accountable based on these targets and goals.
•    Accountability framework in the MDG framework is poor even where it existed. Accountability should clearly be separated from monitoring and evaluation of specific programs/projects. Accountability could perhaps be understood as, “what more action do we take when monitoring and evaluation reveals that agreed set of targets, deliverable and goals are not being met’”
•    As a means of strengthening incentives for delivering on globally agreed goals, “those who achieve set goals should stand to benefit more. those who do not, should stand to benefit less or perhaps not at all.” Such strict principles will ensure that all put in their best.
•    Key principles we would suggest in an accountability framework are that
1.    National institutions, example Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health, and who are the main implementing agencies of these global development goals once adopted by the country, should also be made to render account to those who need it. The leadership of these National Institutions and the institutions as a whole should also be included in the whole accountability framework. This tend to strengthen the arm of the Public servants who tend to be the Professional leaders of these institutions, as against the appointed/selected/elected Political heads who have oversight for these institutions.
2.    Another principle which must be incorporated should also be that “Those who deliver must benefit more, and those who do not, must benefit less.”
•    Target and goal monitoring indicator that should also be included in the Post 2015 Global Development Agenda should be one that “Identifies causes of the achievement or non-achievement of targets and goals due to actions and/or inactions on the part of the people working in the implementing agency: leaders and other workers.”
•    Prior to 2015, countries and governments must be made to understand that it is not only in their personal interest to see their countries and its people developed, but indeed in the interest of the global community and for which reason the global community has gathered to set these global development goals. This will conscientize governments and leaders to be prepared for the strict accountability framework set into the Post 2015 global development framework.

Weam Banjar from
Wed, January 2, 2013 at 05.31 pm

 

I believe the voice of public should be heard, respected and considered. Over the decades, it has been proven that Human Rights movements have been succeeded because of the citizen engagement. The rising voices of Public Opinion rings the bell toward the demands addressed. In order to successfully ensure the maintenance of Human Rights principles, we need to take the initiative to:

-       Build partnership with key organizations and human rights activists

-       Minimize the censorship of media

-       Utilize the social media to address, discuss and express thoughts in respect to human rights

-       Enables the minorities from expressing their thoughts and concerns

Nevertheless, efforts to maintain the citizen power to express and keep their basic rights should be peacefully demonstrated without undermining any country’s stability. Also, proposed solution should consider the uniqueness of each community

Laud Kpakpo Addo from
Fri, January 4, 2013 at 07.43 pm

Indeed the Social media is a powerful tool whcih could be harnessed to improve governance and accountability in general and could also

be employeed in ensuring accountability with respect to the 2015 global development goals. With the high rate of mobile phone penetration,

in Africa, with the appropriate training ancapacity building, social media could become an important tool through which the grassroots

population could ask questuions and also for them to get answers. It goes without saying that employing social media as an accountability and

governance tool could also create employment opportunities for especially the youth who are more inclined to ICT. This is a clear example

of the cross effect of one goal on another.

Anonymous from
Wed, January 2, 2013 at 02.36 pm

This e-discussion provides an important venue in which to share some thoughts on the issue of accountability, particularly as it relates to the Post-2015 discussion.  What follows are some rudimentary ideas (influenced, in part, by the writings of the Baha'i Faith) which, hopefully, will lead to further discussion about the nature and purpose of accountability because, without that understanding, we may run the risk of reinforcing habits - good or bad - without thinking critically on our ultimate aims and aspirations.

From the standpoint of something as vital as accountability, it might be best to address certain foundational questions before coming to suggestions on implementation.  For example, to whom does accountability apply? To whom are we accountable? What is the ultimate purpose of establishing an accountability mechanism?  In order to determine the best mechanisms to enhance and ensure accountability, determining what is really to be gained by it could be very helpful.  In attempting to answer these questions, an image may emerge whereby accountability is multidirectional and multidimensional, and is ultimately a means towards the accomplishment of the betterment of society.  In order to achieve that meaningful objective of accountability, accurate information, transparency, honesty, and a capacity and willingness to learn and improve are required.

With the betterment of the world as the goal, we must determine how each of us can be proactive in contributing.  I would posit that each participant in society is entrusted with a degree of responsibility to the whole and this applies profoundly to governments at all levels, but it also has direct implications on non-governmental organizations, individuals, and even the private sector and corporations.  Should these organizations be accountable to the citizens within their ambit, or does the responsibility extend to a broader swath of humanity?  For example, what is the role of a government – is it to improve the situation for its electorate? Constituents? Funders? Interest groups? Children? Future generations?  The materially poor?  The disempowered?  People in other regions? Similarly, what is the role of an aid-agency or a corporation? To whom are they accountable?  As these questions are considered, the ambit of accountability changes and its multidimensionality becomes apparent.  Further, the qualities of the relationships between and among the individuals, communities, and institutions mentioned take a central role in engendering constructive accountability frameworks.  For example, the qualities of cooperation, reciprocity and fairness will ultimately lead to better outcomes than unhealthy competition, selfishness, and inequality.

When viewed in the light of relationships, the traditional two-dimensional image of accountability quickly dissolves and the systems which risk entrenching a dangerous power-based status quo are called into question.  In a world where improvement in the lives of all is the objective – as the Post-2015 development framework should enunciate – the approach of ‘provider’ and ‘beneficiary’ loses meaning as we are all co-participants and protagonists accountable to, and in community with, each other.  Just as institutions must be accountable to individuals (and vice versa), people living in community with each other must be accountable to their government officials, to their neighbors, to their families, and to themselves.  Thought of another way, a community forms an organic whole and institutions which govern are the trust of that whole.  An optimal scenario, and the goal towards which we should be striving, is a community where the individual trusts the institution and the institution trusts the individual.  A scenario in which there is disingenuousness and mistrust, or where the reason for accountability is antagonistic rather than cooperative, the community will not be advancing optimally.  Ultimately, accountability measures will be strongest when they are expressions of trust and goodwill rather than power and antagonism.

If the purpose of accountability is to facilitate the better functioning of society in all dimensions, it must be approached with the appropriate attitude.  That is, with a willingness to change perspectives as necessary (accountability would clearly be most valuable when those involved have the capacity and desire to improve based on the information they are receiving and sharing).  In an environment characterized by trustworthiness and non-judgmentalism, a process of taking action, reflecting and learning from that action, consulting on how to improve, and implementing these improvements would serve these ends.  Viewed in this light, it is important to consider how accountability monitoring metrics could better capture information from which we can learn.  However, at a more fundamental level, how can a culture of accountability be nurtured and the quality of relationships between the institutions of society be improved?  How can honest measurements be ensured?  And how can the fear of genuine accountability be replaced by a vision derived from accountability as a tool for cooperation?

In closing, accountability mechanisms that measure what is most likely to bring about positive change are most valuable.  For example, could mechanisms be encouraged which promote information exchange from the grassroots rather than only to the grassroots?  Could decision-making processes be required to seek the genuine participation of diverse members of society in all phases?  Could periodic reflection meetings and/or reports be required in a spirit of learning and cooperation?  How might these kinds of suggestions or institutions be incorporated in both resource rich and resource poor communities and countries?  More broadly, with this understanding of accountability, what are the implications for governments, citizens, non-governmental organizations, funders, corporations, investors, etc.?  If the betterment of the world is the aim, then how does accountability facilitate all the constituent parts to work honestly and effectively towards that ends?

Eric Schneider from
Tue, January 1, 2013 at 12.56 pm

Hello!

I agree with those placing the focus on CITIZEN EMPOWERMENT in the dissemination of

*media,

*impulses and

*opportunities for 

effective delivery.

 

1) PARTNERSHIPS

This requires involvement on NON-GOVERNMENTAL PARTNERS

- original people from the changemaker sphere

(not pr or media agencies, not the normal, prominent NGOs, since those have been FAILING to inspire people for decades, including Greenpeace; this is about involving the few LEADING progressive media style changemaker networks successfully(!!!) pioneering this new, participative, inspirational media culture, see some mentioned below)

- so the accountability framework should be based on

a. quantitive measures for promoting this participative knowledge TO the people

b. qualitative

c. independent

d. created and driven BY passionate non-governmental pro's (changemaker media pro's as mentioned above, links below)

e. driven by a large gathering of civil society activists

f. regularly GATHERINGs, at least biannually, *nationally and *regionally, BASED to the larger part ON participative methods (open space, world cafe, dotmocracy, open forum...) (with own moderators, not paid expensive ones) (in their own spaces (not wasting money on hotels and venues) (based on casual accomodation; for example campgrounds, no kidding!, not to waste money PLUS to create cooperative ambience, and focus on what matters to these (genuine!!!) changemakers attending. Not a nature and community lover? Then you hardly qualify! After all, this is what this quest is about!

The SUGGESTIONS above are based partly in the FAILURE and shortcomings of the UNITED NATIONS Decade of Education for Sustainable Development progress and orchestration by the german, academic, closed office in charge of running the decade. All they do is a bureaucratic process giving status to model projects but ZERO cooperation, ZERO facilitation, ... NO projects are being taken to scale, replicated, connected... money is wasted on expensive hosting costs. NO PARTICIPATIVE METHODS are MEANINGFULLY APPLIED. Events are fabricated to serve as FIG LEAFS to back up the STATEMENTS decided and crafted BY THE OFFICE'S captain, the gatherings simply give an illusion that the office's ideas were supported by hundreds of selected representatives "from the activists and experts" and working groups - which have close to ZERO practical relevance. 

And we are speaking of probably the best established UN ESD Decade program on the planet, since most nations don't care AT ALL about establishing and supporting this initiative. 

Also, the educational programs created BY the office and curricula are awfully theoretic, teaching about water cycles and recycling but with ZERO passion, zero action, zero student powered participation, zero YOUTH LEADERSHIP. 

Therefore, falling short of the needs, ending at maybe 2% of the required impact on the GERMAN STUDENT POPULATION, the majority TURNED OFF sustainability issues, just like a majority is turned off by MDGs because of the awful boring way these things have been presented.

´

2) THE NOVEL MEDIA

CREATING THIS EFFECTIVE, PARTICIPATIVE AND EMPOWERING DELIVERY requires a specific KIND of NOVEL media that I elaborate here, shortly. This is based on best practice experience, links included and available on DEMAND. I am writing a handbook about it right now, to be publöished free and online in mid January 2013 on www.youth-leader.org. 

This includes 

a. making model solutions AND

b. human role models (youth leaders and grown-up changemakers) This is CRITICAL, so we as individuals are inspired, our inner hero awakened, and we start believing THAT we CAN make a change (close to none of our parents convey this, since they never grew up with it)

available in

c. attractive media formats

d. easily available (online, multiple languages through online volunteers, see TED Talks and others) and

e. applicable by the people

f. PDF DOWNLOAD and SELF-PRINTING are an excellent low-cost option in most places)

g. with *more to find online, for those who have been reached by the *print media (flyers, posters etc)

 

I have been experimenting with precisely this for 8 years and developed and successfully tested many tools, media, online and onsite co-laboration environments; the work has multiple UNESCO status, won UNOV and media awards.

 

These media naturally have excellent value also for

h. USE IN EDUCATION, 

a priority environment, since 

- all youth are at school

- easy to reach via poster exhibits

- and more reosurces online

- they have the passion to get involved

- the TIME to act

- and the impacts, if given some support as students / school status / fundraising and media work

(international partnerships are more powerful than many would expect, see www.weday.com)

- they GROW up with these solutions (this is where MPACTS come from) and will apply them also as adults.

 

3) THE CREATION OF THESE MEDIA

i) must involve *POSITIVE CHANGE MEDIA experts (not theorists, not pr agencies or academix NGO people because NONE OF THEM HAVE *genuine* PASSIONATE CHANGEMAKER WIT) to hit the right STYLE, people like http://www.freerange.com/ and http://www.youth-leader.org and http://www.metowe.com and http://www.genup.net . 

USE IN EDUCATION with CONSTANT PRESENCE through dynamic wall displays with inspirational updates with instant action opportunites and model projects to be taken to scale is essential

- so the young generation grows up with this

- and it becomes part of their worldview and lifestyle

If NOT, they will fail, since they will be coined to the dominant degree with the insufficient memes of their parent generation and dominant role models through conventional MEDIA and peers and schools, none of which are yet capable of living and applying the required solutions.

 

4) SCIENCE BACKGROUND

Neuroscience says we learn 80% through informal learning and 80% by SUBCONSCIOUS **COPYING** from others. 

This is why POSITIVE CHANGE Role Model heroes and massive SHOWN, tangible, feelable(!!!) SUCCESS STORIES are in-dis-pen-sable for awakening the Changemaker Hero inside of us.

 

The FEEDBACK from youth, http://www.global1.youth-leader.org/category/8_yl-rocks/reader-feedback/ 

and experts http://www.youth-leader.org/feedback-experts.html

and teachers: http://www.youth-leader.org/feedback-teachers.html

proves this.

Current MEDIA CAMPAIGNS do include CONTEXT, often like "50% of the world population are youth, we are the change."

I suggest adding the HISTORIC SPECTRUM OF positive change currently unfolding. This is so far hardly known to people and has been showing excellent awakening and feedback by readers: http://www.youth-leader.org/wave.html

It is extremely motivational for people, improves their worldview, sense of self, hope and access to empowerment and action.

More relevant backgrounds and facets to include are TRANSFORMATIONAL LEARNING, from HERO TO HOST, and GAMING in CO-CREATING THE WORLD and the NEW STORIES & MYTHS, all by multi-award winning innovators. I am including those links in the coming handbook. it will be available on the www.youth-leader.org website under YL DISCOVERY TOUR to a Bright New World.

I hope this has been helpful.

 

 

 

Kouassi Kouassi from
Sun, December 30, 2012 at 11.53 am

I believe what we need is an accountability framework should include participatory mechanisms to  all communities stakeholders to monitor and transparency and acountability of governments. Governments, leaders, organizations should develop a monitoring and evalutation systems that involves everybody ( youth, women...).

And I also think more openess is needed: citizens should be givent the opportunity to consult and have their opinions on  budgets, development programs.


Laud Kpakpo Addo from
Fri, January 4, 2013 at 08.07 pm

Most often than not when we are mentioning those that need to be held accountable, we mention only the political leadership.

However, the Public Servants who head the government agencies and who normally are technocrats or professionals in the

specific filed/ministry  they are heading must also be made/held accountable.

For example in Ghana, the Minister of Youth is a political position and he represents the Political party in government at the Monistry.

but there is also the Chief Director of the Ministry of Youth who is a Public Servant and is supposed to be one who has knowledge in

the area of Youth Development. The Chief Director is actuially one who oversses the implementation of Policies at the Ministry. So this

person, the Chief Director, must also be held accountable. In doing so we are not putting them on the spot, but rather in the long run we will

be strengthening their hands in their professional leadership of the Ministry which they oversee.

Itis important to note that whiles most of these Chief Directors know what is to be done, in many cases they are hampered by the

political leaders of the Ministry who most often than nopt look at short term populist programs instead of long term program which

will yield dividence over a much longer period.

Anonymous from
Mon, December 31, 2012 at 02.07 pm

I agree completely with you Kouassi and Al Budd, we should not forget that the citizens full participation in paramount in this regards.

The mechanism so proposed should take into consideration citizen's viligence, political and economic literacy, not forgetting active citizenship as

a way out of this.

Anonymous from
Tue, January 1, 2013 at 04.42 pm

I appreciate the elaborate and painstaking job done by the contributor on how to equitabily carry every citizen along. My contributions is that a pattern of communication called Town hall meetings should be explored as an inclusive method of bringing the citizens to participate. Discrimination in any form should be discouraged as gender should not be the basis of participation and contributions at the Town hall meetings and common language known should be used or translated to at the meetings. Our job is almost done by this suggestions and what is left is to articulate timeframe and implimentation strategies to be used to make effective this discusions.

Anonymous from
Sun, December 30, 2012 at 02.07 pm

I fully concur with this Mr Kouassi's comments in his posting (above). 


Having a framework is good - but we need much more than a framework - we need to act on its ethos. The responsibility is not for politicians alone to take responsibility for the framework's implementation; we 'the people' have a role to play also.  It is in the best interest of all peoples for as many people to get and be involved in the implementation of the framework. The consultations are excellent and actions following the consultations are as equally important.


AL Budd (UK)


 


 

Anonymous from
Fri, January 4, 2013 at 05.56 am

I think the policies should accomodate the human needs and therefore to reflect on the future of the peole to allow the development to take place through available local resources.

Mainsah Gilbert Shaafe from
Fri, January 4, 2013 at 08.28 pm

I believe there is the need for the problems to be tackle from thebottom upward rather than from the top downward. Most of the problemsare faced by the local and indigenous people who always do not haveany information about the laws and are they are implemented. There isthe great for communication and with the right tools that can reachthe under priviledged.On 1/4/13, notification@unteamworks.org wrote:> You can post a reply on Teamworks by replying directly to this email. Text>> above this line will be included in the post.>> World We Want 2015 UNDP's HIV, Health and Development Practice: New comment>> on *Discussion* Phase II: How can we ensure an accountability framework that>> takes into account human rights principles and obligations to assure> effective delivery on the post-2015 development agenda? [1] by Lucas Charles>> Mkwizu [2] : I think the policies should [3]> I think the policies should accomodate the human needs and therefore to> reflect on the future of the peole to allow the development to take place> through available local resources.>> 4 Jan 2013 [ read more [4] ] [ reply [5] ]>> To manage your subscriptions, browse to> http://www.worldwewant2015.org/user/80801/notifications [6]> This is an automatic message from World We Want 2015 [7]>> View original post:> https://undp.unteamworks.org/mailcomment/redirect/%3C80801.291598.40112.... [8]>>> [1] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/node/291598> [2] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/user/0> [3] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/node/291598#comment-40112> [4] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/node/291598#comment-40112> [5] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/comment/reply/291598/40112> [6] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/user/80801/notifications> [7] http://www.worldwewant2015.org> [8]> https://undp.unteamworks.org/mailcomment/redirect/%3C80801.291598.40112.... Mainsah Gilbertwebsite: www.wiser.org/group/wisercameroonactivities: www.wiser.org/user/magisha

Anonymous from
Sat, January 5, 2013 at 10.32 am

I think civil society plays a critical role in accountability. Unfortunately some of us do not know what accountability is all about. This makes it necessary for CSOs to be empowered on horizontal accountability and vertical accountability. While we are holding governments accountable to their promises on MDGs we should hold ourselves accountable for results considering those on whose behalf we are working including the grassroots people, the poor, the maginalised, the voiceless not only the donors and government. Therefore in this  post-2015 development frmaework, UN should find a way of making the process all-inclusive so that monitoring and accounatbility for result would be paramount.

Thank you 

Mainsah Gilbert Shaafe from
Sat, January 5, 2013 at 11.59 am

Accountability in human rights principles and obligations is not onlythe right and obligation of the state or the governing but the rightand obligation of each and everyone. We, the indigenous people,community members, those in the public and private sectors, the civilesociety we as one have the rights and obligation to account for ourrights and for the rights of those around us preparing ourselves for asustainable living mother earth.On 1/5/13, notification@unteamworks.org wrote:> You can post a reply on Teamworks by replying directly to this email. Text>> above this line will be included in the post.>> World We Want 2015 UNDP's HIV, Health and Development Practice: New comment>> on *Discussion* Phase II: How can we ensure an accountability framework that>> takes into account human rights principles and obligations to assure> effective delivery on the post-2015 development agenda? [1] by Tola Winjobi>> [2] : I think civil society plays a [3]> I think civil society plays a critical role in accountability. Unfortunately>> some of us do not know what accountability is all about. This makes it> necessary for CSOs to be empowered on horizontal accountability and vertical>> accountability. While we are holding governments accountable to their> promises on MDGs we should hold ourselves accountable for results> considering> those on whose behalf we are working including the grassroots people, the> poor, the maginalised, the voiceless not only the donors and government.> Therefore in this  post-2015 development frmaework, UN should find a way of>> making the process all-inclusive so that monitoring and accounatbility for>> result would be paramount.>> Thank you>> 5 Jan 2013 [ read more [4] ] [ reply [5] ]>> To manage your subscriptions, browse to> http://www.worldwewant2015.org/user/80801/notifications [6]> This is an automatic message from World We Want 2015 [7]>> View original post:> https://undp.unteamworks.org/mailcomment/redirect/%3C80801.291598.40162.... [8]>>> [1] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/node/291598> [2] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/user/0> [3] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/node/291598#comment-40162> [4] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/node/291598#comment-40162> [5] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/comment/reply/291598/40162> [6] http://www.worldwewant2015.org/user/80801/notifications> [7] http://www.worldwewant2015.org> [8]> https://undp.unteamworks.org/mailcomment/redirect/%3C80801.291598.40162.... Mainsah Gilbertwebsite: www.wiser.org/group/wisercameroonactivities: www.wiser.org/user/magisha

Anonymous from
Mon, December 31, 2012 at 02.41 pm

Al Bud and Mr Kouassi are right. The politicians in some cases, do not represent the interests of the people. Often times too, the civil organisations who are meant to represent the minorities do not fulfil their roles. It is really pertinent therefore, to ensure that the grassroots are linked with tthe civil organisations so that a larger number of people are involved and tutored on how best the framework can be implemented for their own benefits. In this way, cutting corners and negligence of mission can be evaded.

Maria Alexandra Cadena Fernandez from
Fri, December 28, 2012 at 09.56 pm

 




“El mundo está en continua evolución”, pero al detener nuestro paso observamos en ese camino está destruyendo el Planeta Tierra


Triangulacion entre


Bienes Comunes VS Derechos Fundamentales


 Legislacion, Discursos Politicos y  denuncias de la Sociedad Civil por violacion de sus derechos.


 


¿Cuáles son los mecanismos de Protección del Medio ambiente que han establecido los Estados con relación a los Derechos Fundamentales de los Bienes comunes a todos


 


Recopilar Información sobre la Tratados, legislación, jurisprudencia que permitan realizar una triangulación entre ellos y el discurso político actual.


 


Analizar los proyectos multinacionales que se desarrollan en los Estados vs la legislación y las medidas tomadas en materia económica.


 


Medir los Impactos Sociales en los Bienes Comunes de los Estados frente a las denuncias de la Sociedad Civil.


 


 


 


 


 



 



 

 





Somos seres humanos en continuo crecimiento


 


 


“El mundo esta en continua evolución”, pero al detener nuestro paso observamos que el hombre  en ese camino esta destruyendo el Planeta Tierra. Las organizaciones del mundo movilizadas frente a esta realidad, claman por la Protección de los bienes comunes, aquellos que se consideran importantes para preservar la especie Humana, sin embargo se contraponen en dos extremos, el sentir de la Sociedad Civil, las ordenanzas de Naciones  Unidas y los Planes de Desarrollo de cada Estado  frente  a  la Realidad observada en la Depredación de la Tierra.


 


 


La  protección y el mejoramiento del medio ambiente se han convertido  en motivo de preocupación de los Estados, el deterioro y destrucción del entorno ecológico una  causa importante en el  deterioro y la destrucción de los pueblos. El mayor grado de afectación del medio ambiente proviene del las actividades humanas, producidas en el proceso de satisfacción de sus necesidades.


 


Adquieren  especial relevancia con los procesos de industrialización y tecnificación, sumados al crecimiento de la población, se aceleraron de forma desmedida, sin un criterio de sostenibilidad, generando un impacto negativo sobre los recursos naturales y  el ecosistema global. La preocupación ambientalista viene a tomarse en serio, cuando existe el pleno convencimiento del grave daño que el desarrollo incontrolado y la explotación sin límites de los recursos naturales, ha causado en el ser humano y a su entorno ecológico.


 


Los niveles de contaminación de agua, aire, tierra  y seres vivos, agotamiento de la capa de ozono, calentamiento global, la degradación del hábitat y la deforestación y graves problemas ambientales que resultan nocivos para la salud física. Mental y social del hombre. La respuesta para la mayoría de países del mundo ha sido el asumir un compromiso ineludible de lograr que la capacidad del hombre para transformar lo que lo rodea, sea utilizada con prudencia respetando la naturaleza y sin perturbar los procesos esenciales. La existencia de la especie humana depende del respeto al entorno ecológico y la defensa del medio ambiente sano, permitiéndole existir y garantizar una subsistencia plena. La preservación del medio ambiente para las generaciones presentes y futuras, se convierte en el objetivo  de la política universal a través del cual se busca lograr un desarrollo sostenible, “satisfacer las necesidades del presente sin comprometer las futuras generaciones que puedan satisfaces sus propias necesidades.


 


El propósito universal para propiciar un medio ambiente sano, impulsando  el desarrollo de instrumentos de derecho interno, para permitir a los países enfrentar la degradación logrando que los ciudadanos y comunidades sean responsables y de la labor de preservar la naturaleza actuando con prudencia  frente a ella. Los problemas ambientales y los factores que conducen  al deterioro no pueden ser considerados como asuntos que concierne exclusivamente a un país, su preservación, incumbe a todos los Estados.


 


Se han expedido una serie de instrumentos de derecho internacional, para establecer una alianza mundial  y de cooperación entre los Estados, para la protección de la integridad ambiental.


 


Ellos son:


  • La Declaración de Estocolmo sobre el medio Ambiente Humano en 1972

  • La Carta Mundial de la Naturaleza de las Naciones Unidas de 1982

  • El Protocolo de Montreal

  • La Declaración de Río sobre el Medio Ambiente y Desarrollo de las Naciones Unidas de 1992

  • La Convención Marco de la Naciones Unidas sobre el cambio climático de 1992

  • El protocolo de Kyoto de la Naciones Unidas Cambio  Climático de 1997

  • La Cumbre del Milenio de las Naciones Unidas de 2000, y el Acuerdo de Copenhague de 2009.

 


 


Desde la conferencia del Naciones Unidas sobre el medio ambiente en Estocolmo en 1972, el alcance de la Protección de los Bienes comunes se ha extendido considerablemente a todos los niveles. Ello condujo al establecimiento del Programa de Naciones Unidas sobre el medio ambiente (PNUMA) y la creación de Acuerdos Medio Ambientales (AMM`S). Con el Informe Brundtland, “Our Commun Future” ( Nuestro futuro común) en 1987, nace el concepto de desarrollo sostenible, desarrollo que satisface las necesidades del presente sin comprometer los  de las siguientes generaciones.


 


El no agotamiento de recursos naturales, o el daño del medio ambiente fija en el marco de la conferencia de Naciones Unidas sobre el Medio Ambiente y Desarrollo o Cumbre de la Tierra, celebrada en Río de Janeiro en 1992, donde asisten 100 Jefes de Estado y de gobierno. Los resultados fueron significados creándose la declaración política de principios sobre el medio ambiente y Desarrollo (Declaración de Río), el plan para la implementación del desarrollo sostenible (Agenda 21), la declaración de los Principios de los Bosques y las dos convenciones multilaterales. 1. Sobre el Cambio Climático y el Convenio sobre la Diversidad Biológica. Dando lugar ello a la inclusión de varios grupos sociales en el debate político y a la comision sobre el Desarrollo Sostenible (CDS).


 


Desde 1992, los acuerdos medioambientales han crecido considerablemente, existiendo al día de hoy cientos de acuerdos globales sobre asuntos medioambientales obligatorios y no obligatorios. A pesar de ello los problemas medioambientales se han intensificado globalmente, provocando una perdida de la diversidad de vida en la Tierra, sustancialmente y altamente irrecuperable, las emisiones globales de CO2 han aumentado un 70% entre 1970 y 2004. La actividad humanase convierte en una amenaza para el planeta y el bienestar de la humanidad.


 


Esta franja de tiempo corresponde  al periodo en que la comunidad global a alcanzado una comprensión sobre las afectaciones de actividades como nunca se había hecho. La continua degradación del medio ambiente ha sido causada por las debilidades de los gobiernos, quienes pasando por alto la integración de los tres pilares  del Desarrollo Sostenible, lo social, lo  económico y lo ambiental olvidan lograr que se interactúen en el gobierno conjunto de los bienes comunes.


 


Se suma a ello, que los Gobiernos como el de Colombia ha durante varias décadas  socavado los recursos naturales, ampliando las legislaciones que protegen sectores económicos como los mineros sin que hasta el día de hoy las regiones afectadas hallan sido beneficiadas de alguna  manera por el desarrollo o por la evolución de las poblaciones que están en su área de influencia.


 


Si bien es cierto que la raza humana se precia de ser evolutiva hacia el desarrollo científico  y tecnológico, vale la pena contemplar el panorama que estamos forjando hacia el Futuro. “ El Planeta Tierra en donde se da el fenómeno maravilloso de lo que llamamos vida, donde cada criatura es tan única como el mundo que llámanos hogar, y donde cada día da comienzo para todos por igual , cruza por la mente que una vida afecta tantas otras y que todas las cosas se relacionan como la sangre que une a una familia  todas las cosas se relaciona y que los seres humanos solo habitamos la tierra y es ella la que ha generado el pasado , el presente y el futuro de la humanidad, todo lo trato que demos a ella , lo hacemos a nosotros mismos.


 


El crecimiento continuo del ser humano debe propender por el cuidado hacia nuestro primer hogar, la Protección de Nuestro Planeta Tierra, cada uno de nosotros somos los altos comisionados de la Generaciones Futuras. El futuro esta en nuestras manos, el futuro para nuestros hijos. Es nuestra obligación cuidar el mundo de nuestros padres para entregarlo intacto a los que nos precederán.


 


 


 

LIZZY NNEKA IGBINE from
Wed, December 26, 2012 at 05.16 pm
Karima Jambulatova from
Mon, January 7, 2013 at 02.48 pm

Dear Lizzy,


thank you for your interest in the consultation. Please note that submitting these documents is not sufficient to be considered as a candidate for selection. To apply for the participation in this meeting, please fill out the online expression of interest form, the link to which is indicated above, or on the governance consultation home page, or you may click directly here http://www.worldwewant2015.org/node/296608. Your candidacy will then be reviewed together with all other applicants and only the selected candidates will be invited to attend the global consultation in Johannesburg.


Kind regards,
-Karima Jambulatova
OHCHR

LIZZY NNEKA IGBINE from
Wed, December 26, 2012 at 04.28 pm
Anonymous from
Tue, December 25, 2012 at 10.48 am

Important to stress:


Integrate in an efficient way the respect of the Aarhus Convention in Governmental institutions


Take into account the consequences of technologic innovations for future generations.  Support independent expertise!


Reduce influence by powerful lobbies and give equal influence to those living in poverty.


Respect gender equality: organize implementation of CEDAW (Convention of Elimination of all Discrimination Against Women), organize implementation of UNDRIP (rights of indigenous peoples), organize respect on the Rights of the Child.

Anonymous from
Wed, December 26, 2012 at 06.14 am

Dear Friends & colleagues!


 


I would like to share following event information .


 


Warm regards.


 


Cordially,


Dr. Anil Pratap Singh,


Secretary & CEO,


Global Science Academy (GSA),


Basti-272 001 India.


Telephone Nos. +91-5542-247186, 287060


Mobile No. 9336785696,


Email: globalaps@rediffmail.com 


gsaforpost2015@yahoo.in



You can also logon to our website: www.gsaindia.org.in


 


 


National Civil-Society Deliberation cum Seminar on “Perspectives of CSOs on New Framework for Development Post-2015”


 


With the history of nearly two decades of our dedicated service to the science, environment, society and humanity, the Global Science Academy (GSA) – as a potential CSO stakeholder, is organizing the National Civil-Society Deliberation cum Seminar on “Perspectives of CSOs on New Framework for Development Post-2015” at Basti, Uttar Pradesh (India) on 28th January 2013. This is the event which incorporates the context of international campaign for The World We Want Beyond 2015. GSA has also created certain platforms for Online-discussions on issues pertaining “Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and Beyond “


CSO, ‘Global Science Academy’ (GSA) having nearly two decades of its experience on spectrum of topics pertaining to health as well as topics covered through Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Further, the representation of the United Nations (UN) in India not only supported the Global Science Academy (GSA) towards its attendance at regional (Asia-Pacific) and international High-level Meetings (HLMs) on the Millennium Development Goals topic but also financially sponsored its event. As pioneers in the field, the agency- Global Science Academy (GSA) has also organized several such events (It is recommended to logon to our website: www.gsaindia.org.in and also search through Google to read the mention of our dedicated in context of health as well as Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).  Global Science Academy (GSA) is voracious organizer of events like conferences, consultations, seminars, symposia, workshops, rallies etc. GSA has been actively engaged in follow-up activities pertaining implementation of regional framework for action in Asia-Pacific region and identified shortfalls in the mechanisms in setting out global goals and explored synergies of efforts between professionals at organizational as well as individual levels that could better be intensified in context of MDGs.


The purpose of the consultation is to bring together participation from a wide variety of interests to capture voices from civil societies and conscious citizen in the international campaign on Post-2015.


Topics proposed to be discussed in technical sessions include:


  1. Civil-Society Perspectives on New Framework for Development Post-2015

  2. Role of CSOs in Improving  the Living Standard for the Poor

  3. CSOs’  Environmental Sustainability  Agenda under Post-2015 Development Goals in India

  4. Issues & Concerns of CSOs  in Making Societies Healthier  Beyond 2015

  5. CSOs Role in Reducing Violence and Protecting Human Rights after 2015

  6. Agenda on Gender Equality Beyond 2015

 


We have the great pleasure in extending a cordial invitation to you to attend and actively contribute in this National Civil-Society Deliberation cum Seminar on “Perspectives of CSOs on New Framework for Development Post-2015” at Basti, Uttar Pradesh (India) on 28th January 2013.


 


Participation:


This national event is open for Civil Society Organizations (CSOs)  but policy makers, donors, banks, industry associations, academicians, consultants in debating issues, corporate, social scientists as well as medical professionals, laboratories, scientists and research scholars, government, colleges/ universities, research and development organizations, public sector undertakings, journalists, drug manufacturing companies, lawyers, social-workers etc. can also participate and contribute.


 


Submission of Abstract:


GSA intended to publish abstract compendium of ideas, facts and figures which will be received through this call for contribution and required to be submitted latest by 22nd January 2013. You can submit your abstracts (not more than two) by email attachment to: globalaps@rediffmail.com. Please mention “Perspectives of CSOs Post-2015” in the space provided for Subject while submitting the abstract(s). While submitting your abstract, please adhere to following:


a)       Individual author can submit a maximum of two abstracts only,


b)       Abstract should not exceed one page in length. Use font size 12 in Times New Roman,


c)       Use single spacing throughout not exceeding 300 words including title, name(s) of author(s) and affiliation(s). Make title as concise as possible,


d)       Indicate by (*) presenting author(s),


e)        Indicate four keywords describing key advances identified,


f)         Abstracts should be sent along with registration fee and contact details.


Deadlines:


a)       Registration: 24th  January 2013


 (N.B.: There will be limited number of spot registrations with additional charges)


b)       Abstract Submission: 22nd  January 2013


c)       Notification of Acceptance: 24th January 2013


Registration Fee:


a)       GSA Members: Rs. 800/- (or US $ 20)


b)       Non-Members:: Rs. 1000/- (or US $ 25)


Registration will include refreshment & working Lunch in addition to Conference Kit.


(N.B.: Non-attending individuals can also send their Contributions for getting it published in Abstract Compendium by paying a nominal charge of Rs. 200/- (or US $ 10) and are requested to send their Contributions latest by 22nd January 2013). All the contributions are intended to be widely circulated and to be aired through websites of GSA and others.


 


Accommodation:


Accommodation can be arranged for the participants in three Hotels in the city. One can contact these hotels directly at following contact Nos.:


 







Name of Hotel


Contact No.


Hotel Suyash Palace


+91-5542-283194, 284418


Hotel Prakash


+91-5542-288301, 288302


Hotel Maharaja


+91-5542-324389, +91-9559966188

 


Organizing Committee can also help in getting hotel reservations for participants in above hotels.


 


Donations & Sponsorships:


Support is solicited in the form of raising financial contributions i.e. donations and sponsorships as well as advertising in printed version of “Abstract Compendium”.


Donors, sponsors and advertisers will have their mention not only in printed version of “Abstract Compendium” but also the same will be aired to our organizational website too. Since the GSA website has its internet mediated communication (IMC) -Forum as well as Blog where our financial contributors will definitely be highlighted with due emphasis of their support.


Advertising tariffs:


a)       Quarter Page: Rs. 800/- (or US $ 20)


b)       Half Page: Rs. 1500/- (or US $ 40)


c)       Full Page: Rs.  2000/- (or US $ 50)


d)       Inside Cover(s): Rs. 2500/- (or US $ 60)


e)       Back Cover(1): Rs. 5000/- (or US $ 100)


Mode of Payment:


Registration Fees/Donations/Sponsorships/Advertisement tariffs could be submitted through Demand Draft (in Indian Rupees or US Dollars) in the name of GLOBAL SCIENCE ACADEMY payable at Basti or pay through Bank Transfer. The details for Bank Transfers are as follows:


Name of Bank: BANK OF BARODA


Address: Basti Branch, Purani Basti, Basti-272 002 (UP) India


IFSC Code: BAR B0 BASTI X


Beneficiary: GLOBAL SCIENCE ACADEMY


Account No.: 12080100001714


Place & Climate:                                                


Basti is well connected by Rail and Road transport networks. The nearest air-port is Gorakhpur being at 70 kilometers from Basti while Lucknow Air-port is approximately 200 kilometers. During January, the climate will be cold.


 


For further information contact:


Dr. Anil Pratap Singh,


Organizing Chairman &


Secretary & CEO,  


Global Science Academy (GSA),


Basti-272 001 India.


Tele-fax No. +91-5542-247186


Mobile Nos. 9336785696


Email: globalaps@rediffmail.com


           gsaforpost2015@yahoo.in


Website: www.gsaindia.org.in 

Anonymous from
Wed, December 26, 2012 at 06.09 am

Dear Friends & colleagues!


 


I would like to share following event information .


 


Warm regards.


 


Cordially,


Dr. Anil Pratap Singh,


Secretary & CEO,


Global Science Academy (GSA),


Basti-272 001 India.


Telephone Nos. +91-5542-247186, 287060


Mobile No. 9336785696,


Email: globalaps@rediffmail.com 


gsaforpost2015@yahoo.in



You can also logon to our website: www.gsaindia.org.in


 


 


National Civil-Society Deliberation cum Seminar on “Perspectives of CSOs on New Framework for Development Post-2015”


 


With the history of nearly two decades of our dedicated service to the science, environment, society and humanity, the Global Science Academy (GSA) – as a potential CSO stakeholder, is organizing the National Civil-Society Deliberation cum Seminar on “Perspectives of CSOs on New Framework for Development Post-2015” at Basti, Uttar Pradesh (India) on 28th January 2013. This is the event which incorporates the context of international campaign for The World We Want Beyond 2015. GSA has also created certain platforms for Online-discussions on issues pertaining “Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and Beyond “


CSO, ‘Global Science Academy’ (GSA) having nearly two decades of its experience on spectrum of topics pertaining to health as well as topics covered through Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Further, the representation of the United Nations (UN) in India not only supported the Global Science Academy (GSA) towards its attendance at regional (Asia-Pacific) and international High-level Meetings (HLMs) on the Millennium Development Goals topic but also financially sponsored its event. As pioneers in the field, the agency- Global Science Academy (GSA) has also organized several such events (It is recommended to logon to our website: www.gsaindia.org.in and also search through Google to read the mention of our dedicated in context of health as well as Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).  Global Science Academy (GSA) is voracious organizer of events like conferences, consultations, seminars, symposia, workshops, rallies etc. GSA has been actively engaged in follow-up activities pertaining implementation of regional framework for action in Asia-Pacific region and identified shortfalls in the mechanisms in setting out global goals and explored synergies of efforts between professionals at organizational as well as individual levels that could better be intensified in context of MDGs.


The purpose of the consultation is to bring together participation from a wide variety of interests to capture voices from civil societies and conscious citizen in the international campaign on Post-2015.


Topics proposed to be discussed in technical sessions include:


  1. Civil-Society Perspectives on New Framework for Development Post-2015

  2. Role of CSOs in Improving  the Living Standard for the Poor

  3. CSOs’  Environmental Sustainability  Agenda under Post-2015 Development Goals in India

  4. Issues & Concerns of CSOs  in Making Societies Healthier  Beyond 2015

  5. CSOs Role in Reducing Violence and Protecting Human Rights after 2015

  6. Agenda on Gender Equality Beyond 2015

 


We have the great pleasure in extending a cordial invitation to you to attend and actively contribute in this National Civil-Society Deliberation cum Seminar on “Perspectives of CSOs on New Framework for Development Post-2015” at Basti, Uttar Pradesh (India) on 28th January 2013.


 


Participation:


This national event is open for Civil Society Organizations (CSOs)  but policy makers, donors, banks, industry associations, academicians, consultants in debating issues, corporate, social scientists as well as medical professionals, laboratories, scientists and research scholars, government, colleges/ universities, research and development organizations, public sector undertakings, journalists, drug manufacturing companies, lawyers, social-workers etc. can also participate and contribute.


 


Submission of Abstract:


GSA intended to publish abstract compendium of ideas, facts and figures which will be received through this call for contribution and required to be submitted latest by 22nd January 2013. You can submit your abstracts (not more than two) by email attachment to: globalaps@rediffmail.com. Please mention “Perspectives of CSOs Post-2015” in the space provided for Subject while submitting the abstract(s). While submitting your abstract, please adhere to following:


a)       Individual author can submit a maximum of two abstracts only,


b)       Abstract should not exceed one page in length. Use font size 12 in Times New Roman,


c)       Use single spacing throughout not exceeding 300 words including title, name(s) of author(s) and affiliation(s). Make title as concise as possible,


d)       Indicate by (*) presenting author(s),


e)        Indicate four keywords describing key advances identified,


f)         Abstracts should be sent along with registration fee and contact details.


Deadlines:


a)       Registration: 24th  January 2013


 (N.B.: There will be limited number of spot registrations with additional charges)


b)       Abstract Submission: 22nd  January 2013


c)       Notification of Acceptance: 24th January 2013


Registration Fee:


a)       GSA Members: Rs. 800/- (or US $ 20)


b)       Non-Members:: Rs. 1000/- (or US $ 25)


Registration will include refreshment & working Lunch in addition to Conference Kit.


(N.B.: Non-attending individuals can also send their Contributions for getting it published in Abstract Compendium by paying a nominal charge of Rs. 200/- (or US $ 10) and are requested to send their Contributions latest by 22nd January 2013). All the contributions are intended to be widely circulated and to be aired through websites of GSA and others.


 


Accommodation:


Accommodation can be arranged for the participants in three Hotels in the city. One can contact these hotels directly at following contact Nos.:


 







Name of Hotel


Contact No.


Hotel Suyash Palace


+91-5542-283194, 284418


Hotel Prakash


+91-5542-288301, 288302


Hotel Maharaja


+91-5542-324389, +91-9559966188

 


Organizing Committee can also help in getting hotel reservations for participants in above hotels.


 


Donations & Sponsorships:


Support is solicited in the form of raising financial contributions i.e. donations and sponsorships as well as advertising in printed version of “Abstract Compendium”.


Donors, sponsors and advertisers will have their mention not only in printed version of “Abstract Compendium” but also the same will be aired to our organizational website too. Since the GSA website has its internet mediated communication (IMC) -Forum as well as Blog where our financial contributors will definitely be highlighted with due emphasis of their support.


Advertising tariffs:


a)       Quarter Page: Rs. 800/- (or US $ 20)


b)       Half Page: Rs. 1500/- (or US $ 40)


c)       Full Page: Rs.  2000/- (or US $ 50)


d)       Inside Cover(s): Rs. 2500/- (or US $ 60)


e)       Back Cover(1): Rs. 5000/- (or US $ 100)


Mode of Payment:


Registration Fees/Donations/Sponsorships/Advertisement tariffs could be submitted through Demand Draft (in Indian Rupees or US Dollars) in the name of GLOBAL SCIENCE ACADEMY payable at Basti or pay through Bank Transfer. The details for Bank Transfers are as follows:


Name of Bank: BANK OF BARODA


Address: Basti Branch, Purani Basti, Basti-272 002 (UP) India


IFSC Code: BAR B0 BASTI X


Beneficiary: GLOBAL SCIENCE ACADEMY


Account No.: 12080100001714


Place & Climate:                                                


Basti is well connected by Rail and Road transport networks. The nearest air-port is Gorakhpur being at 70 kilometers from Basti while Lucknow Air-port is approximately 200 kilometers. During January, the climate will be cold.


 


For further information contact:


Dr. Anil Pratap Singh,


Organizing Chairman &


Secretary & CEO,  


Global Science Academy (GSA),


Basti-272 001 India.


Tele-fax No. +91-5542-247186


Mobile Nos. 9336785696


Email: globalaps@rediffmail.com


           gsaforpost2015@yahoo.in


Website: www.gsaindia.org.in 

Matt Davies from
Fri, December 21, 2012 at 07.15 pm

Contribution from the International Movement ATD Fourth World to the Phase II of the thematic governance consultation

How can we ensure an accountability framework that takes into account human rights principles and obligations to assure delivery on the post-2015 development agenda?

 

  • Context for this submission

For this second phase of the consultation, ATD Fourth World would like to share some of the initial findings from its participatory research taking place in the context of the post-MDG discussion and being undertaken with people living in extreme poverty in 11 countries.

Research participants, which included people living in extreme poverty, from 6 different countries gathered in seminars in late-2012 in Mauritius and in Bolivia to pool the knowledge they have produced to date on MDG-related themes and to formulate proposals to address the inequalities and injustices identified. These thematic areas include income, housing, education, health, work, gender equality, environment. In each case, what comes through as a cross-cutting theme is a difficulty in holding duty bearers and authorities to account in order that they fulfil national and international human rights obligations.

Research participants gave both examples of failures to meet obligations and proposals as to how to hold public authorities to account in order to bridge the implementation gap, strengthen legislation and improve practice.

  • Discrimination as primary obstacle to people in poverty becoming active citizens

Participants spoke at length of the discrimination they face as a result of living in extreme poverty. They are not recognised as people equal in dignity and rights and this consequently impacts their capability to be active citizens in their communities and societies. Participants spoke of humiliations and maltreatment when accessing services such as health care and education, as well as in the workplace or as informal autonomous workers. As one Bolivian mother reported, "I have been on the receiving end of words that insult, chastise. When they speak to me like that, I prefer to die in my own home rather than be treated in such a way." As a result, they shun such services despite the negative impact this may have on their lives and those of their family members. Their experience is that reporting such discrimination will lead to further ill-treatment, that their complaints will go unheeded or even result in reprisals against them.

Under such circumstances, people in extreme poverty are rendered powerless in holding duty bearers to account. There is therefore a need to strengthen the institutional mechanisms that protect against such discriminations.

  • Legislation not reaching the most marginalised people and populations

Participants also expressed how existing legislation that should enable them to effectively access their rights is not applied equitably, further marginalising them. For example, indirect costs of education (transport, food, uniforms, school equipment, photocopies, "voluntary contributions" for building maintenance) lead to school drop-out for the poorest children. As one Haitian father reported, "A child may go to school today without money in his or her pocket for the bus fare or without having eaten, but tomorrow he or she won't be able to stand it and will drop out."

In terms of decent work, minimum wage legislation is often not enforced. The most vulnerable women are often paid less than men for the same work (or paid in food or clothes rather than in money) and labour laws fail to prevent their exploitation, particularly of domestic workers. Participants also spoke of how trade unions are often ineffective in protecting their rights as workers, sometimes due to weak management but also because of a climate of fear that affects their effectiveness in defending vulnerable workers, as well as the fear of the workers themselves that becoming unionised will lead to their dismissal.

Greater effort is needed to ensure that both public and private institutions meet their obligations. This needs both action at the legislative level to protect the poorest citizens and also greater transparency and strengthening of monitoring mechanisms to ensure existing laws are enforced equitably and to prevent discriminatory practice. This applies equally at local level - participants spoke for example of better mechanisms to hold school parents' association to account over the use of funds - as at national level.

  • The need for effective participation of people in extreme poverty to improve accountability in policy and practice

Participants in the seminars spoke of the need for public and private authorities, as well as civil society organisations, to create permanent spaces for dialogue in order to create the conditions for meaningful participation of people in extreme poverty at all levels of life in the community and society. This precondition for them to exercise their right to hold such authorities accountable for the decisions that impact on their lives cannot be reduced to simple "consultations". Truly inclusive participation needs adequate time being given to ensure everyone, including the most excluded, fully understands both the process and the content of anti-poverty programmes or policies and be involved in their design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation. Community based organisations in which people in poverty choose to express themselves can act a competent bodies to realise the effectiveness of such participation by creating trust and ensuring their expectations are met.

  • Human rights education as a precondition to effective accountability

Seminar participants stressed that without knowledge of their rights and of the legal obligations of duty bearers, they were unable to hold authorities to account. This was seen as precondition for meaningful participation. It was felt that to achieve this, greater awareness and diffusion of existing programmes and policies was needed, through publicity campaigns or public meetings which involve a serious commitment to inform the population of programmes and initiatives.

Participants also felt that duty bearers, as well as civil society organisations, had an important rôle to play in providing training to citizens – of all ages – in order for them to know their rights, and for there to be mediators and bodies to accompany all citizens to be able to effectively exercise their rights. The rôle of trade unions and human rights organisations was seen as crucial in this regard and measures, including budgetary, should be taken to ensure they have the means to fulfil effectively this safeguarding rôle. 

  • Training of professionals and policy-makers in poverty awareness

A final condition emphasised by seminar participants to enable the most vulnerable populations to be able to hold duty bearers accountable was the need to invest in the training of service providers, professionals and policy makers to better understand the reality of extreme poverty and its impact on people's and families' lives. Positive examples were given from Haiti where poverty awareness was part of nurses' training so that they may offer a better service to the population and improve outcomes. It was stressed that such training should be a systematic part of the training of all service providers who often are unaware of the obstacles families encounter in accessing services, creating a culture where people in extreme poverty are blamed for their situation. Such training would foster a culture of trust through which outcomes for the most vulnerable people and populations would improve, including the capacity to hold the relevant providers accountable for the services they provide.

 

Meg Satterthwaite from
Thu, December 20, 2012 at 04.04 pm

Thank you for convening this important consultation. Governance and accountability must be key principles guiding the post-2015 framework, and need to be based strongly on international human rights law.


I have been engaged in the post-2015 discussions from several angles, and write today from two main perspectives: first, as the rapporteur to the Equity and Non-Discrimination Working Group (END Working Group) of the Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) for Water Supply and Sanitation (UNICEF/WHO), which was chaired by UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Right to Water and Sanitation Catarina de Albuquerque; and second, as a professor of human rights law who has been working on equalities in the context of economic and social rights for some time.


The END Working Group worked for about a year to formulate and propose methods for ensuring that attention to equity and non-discrimination would be central to any future WASH goal(s), targets and indicators (GTIs). Relevant to this discussion, the idea of building equality directly into targets and indicators was to ensure that the post-2015 framework would enhance accountability for the core requirement that development reduce, and ultimately eliminate, inequalities. Unless attention to inequalities is built directly into the framework, accountability for eliminating discriminatory processes within development will be attenuated.


With this background, it might be interesting to share some of the basic principles that the END Working Group proposed to the WASH sector as a whole, and which have been largely taken on board in the sector’s current proposed goal, targets and indicators for WASH. As noted below, several of these key principles were also echoed in the final principles presented by participants at the UN Women’s Expert Group Meeting on Gender Equality in the post-2015 framework, held at the end of November in New York.

As a whole, the post-2015 goals, targets and indicators should: 

1. Prioritize basic access and focus on progressive realization toward safe and sustainable water, sanitation and hygiene for all, while reducing inequalities. In the current WASH proposed GTIs, this is done though language in each target requiring that “inequalities” be “eliminated” (for absolute targets) or “progressively reduced” (for all other targets). This language will ensure that governments are held to account for their efforts to reduce inequalities on the basis of measurable indicators.

2. Address spatial inequalities, such as those experienced by communities in remote and inaccessible rural areas and slum-dwellers in (peri-)urban areas. In the current WASH proposed GTIs, this is done through disaggregation of data on the basis of rural/urban and informal urban/formal urban; such disaggregated data would be used as one set of indicators to track the reduction or elimination of inequalities in the targets.

3. Focus on inequities, shining the light on the poorest of the poor. In the current WASH proposed GTIs, this is done through disaggregation of data by quintile; such disaggregated data would be used as one set of indicators to track the reduction or elimination of inequalities in the targets. In addition, there are also targets and indicators that are in practice relevant mostly to the poorest, such as a target aimed at eliminating open defecation.

4. Address group-related inequalities that vary across countries, such as those based on ethnicity, race, nationality, language, religion, and caste. In the current WASH proposed GTIs, this is done through disaggregation of data by “disadvantaged groups”; such disaggregated data would be used as one set of indicators to track the reduction or elimination of inequalities in the targets. Since inequalities on axes like ethnicity, race, nationality, language, religion, and caste vary greatly across countries, the END Working Group recommended that the decision about which “disadvantaged groups” should be globally monitored would be determined by each country through nationally participatory processes, which would take into account which groups suffer discrimination. This kind of process is crucial to ensuring that minorities are empowered to speak for and define themselves, and would enhance accountability of governments to marginalized groups.

5. Attend to the impacts of individual-related inequalities that are relevant in every country of the globe, such as those based on sex/gender, age, disability, and health conditions imposing access constraints—as they are experienced both inside and beyond the household (including menstrual hygiene management). In the current WASH proposed GTIs, this is done through specific targets that monitor WASH in schools and health centers and call for reduction or elimination of inequalities in such settings. A major limit of the current WASH proposals is that they do not include attention to intra-household inequalities. This is largely due to a lack of data, since most WASH monitoring is based on household data. This issue was highlighted at the UN Women EGM, which recommended that GTIs “should not be limited by current data availability.” The need to measure intra-household inequalities is something our UN Women colleagues may be especially well positioned to comment on since the agency and its predecessor, UNIFEM, has called for more attention to this issue for many years. For goals and targets that are not usually monitored at the household level (such as education and health, for example) this issue will be less problematic.

6. The END Working Group recommended the adoption of a stand-alone goal on equality and non-discrimination in the overall architecture of post-2015 development goals, in addition to the integration of non-discrimination in all sectors. The UNIFEM EGM recommended that if there are GTIs, there should be a “unifying goal” on gender equality, as well as calling for the mainstreaming of gender equality into other goals and targets.


For further information, the END Working Group reports can be found online here: http://www.wssinfo.org/post-2015-monitoring/working-groups/equity-and-non-discrimination/


In addition to these issues, I would like to speak briefly outside of the context of my WASH work. I have spent several years researching and using indicators in human rights contexts. Based on this research, a few issues seem important in relation to governance and accountability. These comments are meant as a supplement to the crucial issues addressed in the OHCHR/UNDP meeting report, and the manyh very insightful comments already posted by participants in this consultation.


Data availability: we need to be guided by what is measurable, not what is currently available. Data sets are often built by powerful actors and they may not always include issues most important to assessing governance and accountability. This is especially true in relation to marginalized communities. The intra-household inequality example given above is only one example; others include failures to capture the daily reality of life for those living in slums, the homeless, and undocumented migrants, as well as difficulties gathering data on populations that may suffer under laws that criminalize their very lives, such as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in some countries. The post-2015 framework must be used to catalyze improvements in data-gathering that are built on consultative processes involving such marginalized communities themselves. Such processes will enhance both governance and accountability of states to all people.


Data from unofficial sources: the acceptability of data for monitoring the post-2015 framework should be based on technical specifications and human rights principles (i.e. the process of data-gathering must be consonant with rights principles) and should not be limited, a priori, by a rule that only official statistics are acceptable. While many civil and political rights-related issues can be measured in part through official statistics, others cannot. Where methodologically sound, data gathered and analyzed by academic, expert, and other institutions should be explored as a basis for measuring these issues. This will almost definitely involve accepting non-probability/non-random/events-based data in addition to data gathered through random/probability sampling. Further, as the END Working Group discussed, very small (minority) groups are rarely adequately addressed in large national surveys since sample sizes become too small for statistical analyses when disaggregated on the basis of such groupings. One solution to this challenge would be to publish clear standards for gathering and analyzing data related to monitoring goals, targets and indicators, and to then encourage such data gathering and analysis in relation to small (minority) groups or marginalized communities, with their participation. Finally, the development and human rights communities are only now coming to understand how best to make use of “big data”, crowdsourcing, and other ICT-related data sources. The post-2015 framework should incentivize work to model and analyze such sources instead of rejecting it outright.


Accountability and governance for the whole international community: it is crucial that the post-2015 framework be universally applicable to all countries. More than that, however, the extraterritorial obligations of states must be built into the framework to ensure that it incentivizes better global governance by all states and the accountability of each state for the actions they take, regardless of geographical location. This is crucially important since important forces and factors directly relevant to achieving key goals often lie beyond the territory of a single state; holding only the territorial state accountable for outcomes impacted by such forces unfairly punishes low-capacity states and those states that are integrated unequally into the global order. Since the MDGs were formulated, international courts and human rights bodies have clarified and strengthened the scope and nature of these extraterritorial obligations. That work should guide the construction of relevant issues in the framework.


I look forward to further discussion.


Meg Satterthwaite, NYU School of Law

Anonymous from
Tue, January 15, 2013 at 03.58 pm

will be very interested in seeing how your opinion comes to support the application of UNDRIP and the intention of the Indigenous peoples to be treated fairly in the future. 

Anonymous from
Thu, December 20, 2012 at 07.18 am

Accoutability should cover responsibiliy,sanction and monitoring. Communities should also be involved in accountability

Carolina Pinheiro from
Wed, December 19, 2012 at 11.03 pm

Huairou Commission

An accountability framework should include participatory mechanisms to engage grassroots groups and communities to monitor and evaluate the transparency and accountability of NGOs and authorities in their implementation of post-2015 goals. Programs should not only include grassroots women in the planning processes but also in the implementation phase of the development agenda. Their perspectives and recommendations should be incorporated into monitoring processes, and multilevel partnerships between grassroots women, local authorities, and international organizations should be fostered and strengthened. When citizens engage with government in order to monitor their roles, budget, policies, etc, they are demanding and building accountability and good governance. 

Jeremy Flattau from
Tue, December 18, 2012 at 08.41 pm

Thank you all for your posts, your insights have been quite informative for someone like me who is not deeply involved in development efforts. Since the focus of my firm is on combining social science research and technology to improve the timeliness, reliability, and utility of governance data, your comments on indicators, evaluation, and accountability jumped out at me:

[Craig Fagan]
In looking how this can happen for the "accountability" part of the chain, it can be achieved by:

  • measuring progress against targets and commitments set by governments
  • creating spaces for individuals to question, shape and monitor policies
  • ensuring independent oversight and monitoring that is timely and whose findings are publicly available.

[Hilde Kroes]
Based on the above, the post 2015 development framework should include:

  • human rights indicators to be able to monitor not only on quantity but also on quality, processes/structures and policy efforts;
  • operational frameworks and funding mechanisms which are transparent and facilitate meaningful participation of citizens and civil society to be able to hold governments accountable
  • collection of disaggregated data to address inequities and discrimination within societies
  • establishment of country level monitoring bodies and human rights institutions

[Mac Darrow]
Taking into account the suggested criteria for new global goals (including the SDGs) discussed earlier, OHCHR and CESR suggest that national “tailoring” of post-2015 goals might involve the following eight steps

  • Set national and sub-national goals, targets, indicators and benchmarks, and monitor progress, through participatory processes;
  • Use a range of indicators and all available information (subjective as well as objective; qualitative as well as quantitative), across the full range of human rights (economic, political, civil, social and cultural), to help monitor progress.

[Cecile Vernant]
6. Evaluation:
particular attention should be paid to data generation, disaggregation and qualitative data.

In the current framework even in countries showing good progress on MDGs, gender, rural, age-disaggregated data when available show existing in-country discrepancies. Yet, the correlations between these factors are essential to a thorough analysis. Therefore analyses should look at inequalities and diversity among population groups, especially to ensure that the poorest and excluded sectors are accessing the policies, laws and services put in place/ Specific monitoring should be established to look at marginalised groups such as rural and slum dwellers populations, including migrant, displaced, conflict-affected, indigenous and minority populations, women, adolescents and youth, and older persons living in poverty. Evaluation of progress must focus on qualitative aspects and impact rather than quantitative measures, including on governance aspects and transparency.

~~~~

From our perspective, governance analytics—data that tells us how countries are being governed—is way behind where it should be. Despite recent advances in information technology, most governance assessments report their findings once a year, or once every two years and, by the time data is made available to the public, governance conditions in a country have long since changed. Moreover, data sources often rely on “expert” surveys to generate their information, which means that they are measuring, not what’s happening in a country, but what a small group of people think is happening in a country. Lastly, contemporary sources of governance data tend to overlook users’ needs when presenting information and fail to make their data interactive, customizable, and exportable.

My firm is in the process of developing a new piece of technology, called Democracy Ticker, that seeks to address the challenges listed above as well as many of the needs that you have cited in your comments (e.g., creating spaces for individuals to question, shape and monitor policies; collection of disaggregated data; monitoring not only on quantity but also on quality, processes/structures and policy efforts; etc.). Since individuals' and organizations' objectives are often quite different, we always welcome feedback and examples of the types of questions you would like to answer on a daily basis using real-time data on how countries are being governed. This will help us ensure the dashboard that we are developing is as pragmatic as possible. Feel free to get in touch if you would like to learn more about our efforts to deliver the type of data that is needed to hold governments to better account, or would simply like to chat about using new information technologies to monitor governance.

Anonymous from
Tue, December 18, 2012 at 08.21 pm

Beyond 2015 is a global civil society campaign pushing for a strong and legitimate successor framework to the MDGs. Beyond 2015 is calling for the following ¨essential must haves¨ on Accountability:

a) The framework must clearly lay out enforceable accountability mechanisms, as well as the process for accountability at a national, regional and global level. This must include national oversight and independent review mechanisms at the international level.

b) The framework must include mechanisms for mutual accountability between governments and donors.

c) The framework must include mechanisms for a governmental peer review process which includes civil society.

d) The framework must enable citizens in developing countries to hold their governments to account in real time for progress on commitments made.

e) The framework must include monitoring mechanisms with measures to disaggregate data so that the impact on marginalised groups can be properly addressed.

f) National processes must, in the spirit of democratic ownership, involve meaningful consultation and scrutiny by parliament and civil society.

As part of the thematic consultations on the post-2015 agenda, Beyond 2015 is preparing a position paper on governance to be submitted in advance of the Johannesburg meeting in February 2013. Below is a synthesis of views received so far by the Beyond 2015 team putting together this paper from a range of member organizations. These views do not necessarily represent a formal Beyond 2015 position. The individual inputs are all available here.

Anonymous from
Tue, December 18, 2012 at 08.02 pm

The following contribution stems from a consultation process within Beyond 2015 members. It reflects input from a range of civil society organisations working on the post 2015 agenda, but does not necessarily reflect the views of Beyond 2015.

Governance and Accountability in the post-2015 framework: A synthesis of views from members of the Beyond 2015 drafting team

  

Governance in the post-2015 framework

What do we mean by “governance” in the post-2015 context?

 

  1. The term “good governance” is understood in many different ways that express wide spectrum of comprehensive approaches to the topic.
  2. However, there is a broad consensus around 8 key interrelated components of good governance that are necessary for effective and just development and should be incorporated into the post-2015 framework. These components hold on all levels, sub-national, national, regional and global.
    1. Human rights: Respecting, protecting and fulfilling human rights – political, civic, social and economic, is both one of the main purposes of governance and an essential part of good governance.
    2. Participation: All people should be able to participate in public decision-making processes that affect their interests.  A particular emphasis should be given to ensuring that those most excluded and discriminated against are empowered and provided with sufficient resources to effectively participate in shaping and monitoring the policies that affect them.
    3. Rule of law: Development requires fair legal frameworks that are enforced impartially, full protection of human rights, freedom from corruption, and universal access to justice.
    4. Transparency:  Decisions and their enforcement should be taken in a manner that follows publicized rules and regulations and in which information is freely available and directly accessible to those affected.
    5. Responsiveness: All governmental institutions should respond to requests and grievances from those affected by their actions in a fair, open, timely and efficient manner.
    6. Equity and inclusiveness: The rights of all people and groups should be treated equally. Good governance means ensuring that that social goods are fairly delivered to all members of society. A special emphasis should be put on ensuring that minorities and discriminated populations are not excluded from social goods and the fulfillment of rights, benefits and entitlements.
    7. Effectiveness and efficiency: Good governance means a capacity for effectively and efficiently delivering socially valuable results.
    8. Accountability:  

                                      i.     Accountability, in the context of governance, has two main dimensions:

  1. Answerability: governmental institutions and their officials are required to provide information about their decisions and actions and to justify them to those to whom they are accountable.
  2. Enforceability: governmental institutions and their officials are to be subject to sanction and remedy for their decisions and actions by those to whom they are accountable.

                                     ii.     Governmental institutions and their officials should be held accountable for policy and implementation, both horizontally, to other institutions in charge of oversight, and vertically, to the people they represent and whose interests they affect.

                                   iii.     In order to enable accountability, it is crucial to have extensive and publically available measurements on the performance of governmental institutions, both of outcomes and of processes, evaluating their effectiveness in delivering results and the legitimacy of the processes through which these results are delivered.

 

How should the issue of governance be integrated into the post-2015 framework?

  1. There is a wide consensus that good governance, both at the national and the global level, is necessary for achieving equitable and inclusive development. Conversely, there is a consensus that weak and illegitimate governance explains to a great degree why the benefits of development have not reached billions who are still suffering from poverty and severe deprivations despite the existence of sufficient material resources to lift them from that poverty.
  2. The MDGs did not address governance at all, thus neglecting one of the key drivers of development.  It is essential that the new framework fills this gap by going beyond the scope of the MDGs and directly promotes the quality and capacity of governance, both nationally and globally.
  3. The issue of governance can be integrated into the new framework in two non-exclusive ways:
    1. Through introducing a goal dealing specifically with promoting good governance.
    2. By integrating the elements and principles of good governance into the framework as a whole.
  4. There is a convergence on the following key recommendations:
    1. Human rights at the center: Governance should be grounded in a human rights framework, recognizing that the fulfillment, respect and protection of human rights is both the purpose and the ultimate measure of good governance. For all goals, there should be an explicit reference to the relevant human rights standards it is meant to protect and fulfill.
    2. Measurability: The goal should set concrete measurable targets and indicators for progress on the 8 key dimensions of good governance on all levels, sub-national, national, regional and global. Where there are currently gaps in data, resources should be invested in developing rigorous and comprehensive measurements. In particular:

                                      i.     There should be measurable targets on the transparency, accountability and integrity an of all development actors, including governments, international institutions and private actors.

                                     ii.     There should be measurable targets for the degree of civic participation, in particular of those most excluded, in all decisions affecting their interest. This should include participation at all levels of decision-making: sub-national, national, regional and global.  

  1. Global cooperation on development: The goal should address the strengthening of multi-lateral and mutually accountable agreements on development. The goal should aim at promoting the coherence, legitimacy, fairness and inclusiveness of global development policy, in particular in those areas where the problems and the solutions require strong international cooperation and coordination (e.g., global financial transparency and integrity, trade regulations, debt, pollution, migration).
  2. Private sector accountability, transparency and integrity: measurable targets should be set for monitoring the transparency, accountability and integrity of private sector actors, including accountability to human rights standards, transparency of financial information and sanction against corruption and tax avoidance.
  3. Inclusion and equity: The new agenda should have an explicit focus on equality and equity across all development goals, geared towards ensuring that those who are most marginalized participate in the benefits of development and growth.  Measurement of progress on all goals should be disaggregated at the national and sub-national levels. In particular, across all goals, targets should be set and progress measured for the most excluded populations, including women and girls and other traditionally marginalized groups such as the disabled people, racial, religious, and ethnic minorities, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered individuals.

 

Accountability in the post-2015 framework

 

  1. The original MDGs do not include any reference to how they are supposed to be achieved or who is accountable for achieving them. Of the goals, the only one that deals directly with the responsibilities of states and international institutions, MDG 8, is entirely devoid of measurable targets.
  2. Resulting from this omission is a serious accountability gap in the MDG framework. For example, despite the fact that we know that the child mortality goal will be missed by far, there is no one in particular who can be held accountable for missing it. Conversely, relative success stories, such as the income poverty reduction goal can be claimed as achievements of the international donor community despite the fact that they are explained to a great extent by domestic processes in a few highly populated countries.
  3. It is essential that the new framework closes this accountability gap by:
    1. Clearly laying out enforceable accountability mechanisms, as well as the process for accountability at a national, regional and global level. This must include national oversight and independent review mechanisms at the international level.
    2. Including mechanisms for mutual accountability between governments and donors.
    3. Including mechanisms for a governmental peer review process, which includes civil society.
    4. Enabling citizens in to hold their governments to account in real time for progress on commitments made.
    5. Including monitoring mechanisms with measures to disaggregate data so that the impact on marginalized groups can be properly addressed.
    6. National processes must, in the spirit of democratic ownership, involve meaningful consultation and scrutiny by parliament and civil society.
  4. The first step towards enabling true accountability in the new framework is to clearly specify the responsibilities of all actors in development for achieving the goals. The framework should state who exactly is suppose to do what exactly to achieve the goals.
  5. Assigning accountable responsibilities in the new framework requires the following:
    1. National democratic ownership of development: For each country, democratic ownership of a new global framework should be facilitated through the formulation of compliant targets and indicators at the national level.  These national level processes should be carried out with effective and meaningful participation of national parliaments, citizens, civil society organizations and other key stakeholders. Transparency and accountability assessments should be participatory and go beyond issues of capacity, assessing the political dynamics of governance in a particular country.
    2. Financing and resources: The new framework should include concrete commitments, especially from high-income countries, to allocate sufficient material and institutional resources for making progress and achieving development goals. Resources should be allocated through at least two main sources: aid and diversion of funds from harmful practices.
    3. Do no harm: The new framework should include goals and targets aimed at reforming those institutionalized rules and practices that can be shown to impede development and sustainability or to exacerbate poverty and human deprivations. Among the areas in which such reforms could have a major impact on human development, poverty alleviation, and sustainability are: illicit financial flows and transparency, intellectual property rights, resource and borrowing privileges, odious debt, international trade agreements, particularly protectionist practices, International labor standards, environmental sustainability and climate changes, migration and immigration policy and arms trade.
    4. Global legitimacy and participation: International decisions on how to course correct and adaptively allocate resources must be made through a transparent, democratic and genuinely participatory process, representing both states and populations and meaningfully consulting with those whose interests are most affected.
    5. Measurement: The framework should include comprehensive and rigorous measurement of progress on the goals, disaggregated to represent the differentiated progress among various populations, especially those populations most excluded from the benefits of development.
  6. Development goals should include reference to particular commitments by all actors involved in development to take particular means to achieve them and to take corrective action through a transparent and participatory decision making process in case they are not on track to be achieved.
  7. In order to facilitate this, it is important to set a “glide path” for all targets that clearly defines expected progress by certain intermediate time points. The goals should include a commitment by all actors to take corrective action if progress falls behind track.

 

 

Anonymous from
Mon, December 17, 2012 at 06.46 pm

Posted by:  Alison Holder, Head of Governance & Rights, Save the Children UK on behalf of Save the Children


How can we ensure an accountability framework that takes into account human rights principles and obligations to assure delivery on the post-2015 development agenda?


Further guiding sub-questions are:[1]


  • What is accountability?: What do we mean by accountability in the context of a global development framework (e.g. by whom, to whom, on which basis)?

  • Why is accountability important?: To what extent have the MDGs fostered accountability and what are the accountability gaps? How might “accountability” principles and mechanisms strengthen incentives for delivering on a new global development agenda?

Save the Children conducted an international survey amongst its employees on their aspirations for a post 2015 framework and “accountability” was one of the themes that came out most consistently and most strongly.  Most Save the Children employees noted that the accountability mechanism for the current MDG framework is lacking, making it difficult to monitor the fulfilment of commitments.  Because targets are aggregate numbers, it has been difficult to hold governments accountable for delivering on the goals for the most vulnerable segments of their populations. Further, the MDGs tend to address the consequences, but not the root causes, of a number of problems and therefore do not hold rich countries accountable for policies related to trade, natural resource exploitation, energy, environment and financial.  


Save the Children employees strongly agreed that accountability requires greater attention in a post-2015 framework.  A number of employees cited weak governance and accountability at the national and local levels as significant impediments to achieving the MDGs.  The need for accountability extended beyond governments implementing the post 2015 goals to donors:  donors must be held accountable for delivering the financial and technical resources necessary to enable developing country governments to achieve their goals.  Aid predictability and national resource pledges are both essential to achieve and sustain development outcomes.


To better address accountability for the post 2015 goals, Save the Children talked about both top-down and bottom-up approaches to promoting greater government accountability and better governance.  As a top-down approach, they suggest looking at the monitoring reports related to the various conventions and treaties that countries have signed.  Employees also raised the possibility of linking accountability for the post 2015 goals to the relatively new Universal Periodic Review, which is a peer review mechanism for human rights records by the UN Human Rights Council. It is complemented by a civil society report and a compilation of UN information, reports and recommendations (see our response to the next question for more on this).  Employees also raised the importance of building on the Paris Declaration and Busan outcomes from the Aid Effectiveness conversations.


To promote bottom-up accountability, Save the Children employees recommend building the capacity of civil society organizations and communities to participate and have a voice in government processes. Where there is a functioning judiciary and civil society, there is scope to use national-level rights systems to help hold governments to account. Any of these approaches could still respond to the MDG-like objectives and indicators, or they could take a different approach, if such objectives and indicators were not part of a successor agreement.  To garner national government acceptance of these approaches, countries such as Bangladesh and Nepal where these mechanisms have allowed civil society to contribute to the achievement of national-level goals could offer their examples.


“Peer pressure” can also be used to encourage government accountability. The publication of annual monitoring data can motivate some governments to achieve results that match those of their neighbours and regional peers.


  • Are there innovative and effective examples of accountability mechanisms (at the local, national, regional or global levels) that could be drawn upon in designing the post-2015 framework, and ensuring that post-2015 commitments are implemented in practice?

 


Integral to the post-2015 framework should be a formal accountability and reporting mechanism to track development actor’s commitments to the MDGs.  For States this would ideally be linked to an existing well-respected and adhered to State reporting process.


One of the options is that States could report to the Human Rights Council (HRC) on their post-2015 commitments.  This could either be built into existing Universal Periodic Review (UPR) reports, or could be submitted as a stand-alone post-2015 report considered at the same time.  The UPR is a peer-review mechanism of the UN Human Rights Council and would be the most appropriate accountability mechanism as it reviews all international human rights obligations of States parties, including the UNCRC. Governments have shown commitment to reporting to the UPR, with all countries – except Haiti - submitting their reports for consideration according to schedule.  Moreover, many Governments have already reported on their MDG commitments in this forum and over 85 UPR recommendations have explicitly focused on the MDGs during the first cycle.[2] 


The other advantage of including a post-2015 reporting mechanism in the UPR is that there is an established mechanism for civil society, including children, to submit stakeholder submissions to the UPR and written and oral statements at the Council. This would give civil society a formal chance to weigh-in on States’ progress towards the post-2015 goals, improving both the accountability and participation elements that are lacking in the current MDG framework.


There is also the opportunity to extend the accountability mechanisms for delivering the post-2015 framework to actors beyond States. The responsibilities of the private sector, for example, could be reviewed by a special procedure of the UN Human Rights Council, such as the Working Group on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises.


In addition to the Universal Periodic Review, there are a number of existing accountability mechanisms for the delivery of children’s rights that can provide useful lessons for the post-2015framework. These include the reporting procedures related to the Convention on the Rights of the Child and its associated Optional Protocols, the Committee on the Rights of the Child, the child-centred UN Special Procedures (such as Special Rapporteurs and Working Groups), and regional child-rights mechanisms (such as the African Committee on the Rights and Welfare of the Child). Lessons can also be learned from the safeguarding policies and accountability mechanisms of the international financial institutions, such as the World Bank, and the innovative sectoral accountability bodies, such as the Commission on Information and Accountability, related to the UN Secretary-General’s Every Woman, Every Child initiative.





[1] Save the Children, “Aspirations for a post-MDG Framework, based on the Experiences and Perceptions of Save the Children”, 2012 (unpublished)



[2] Save the Children analysis

Gitte Dyrhagen Husager from
Mon, December 17, 2012 at 02.23 pm

IDSN recommendations on ensuring accountability for Dalits and similarly affected groups in the Post-2015 Framework

This input is submitted on behalf of the International Dalit Solidarity Network; an international network working for the elimination of caste-based discrimination globally (www.idsn.org)

How can we ensure an accountability framework that takes into account human rights principles and obligations to assure delivery on the post-2015 development agenda?

  1. What is accountability?: What do we mean by accountability in the context of a global development framework (e.g. by whom, to whom, on which basis)?

For Dalits, the major challenge to accountability in a development framework is that they are excluded from the rest of society, because they are considered “untouchable”, “polluting” and “sub-human”. As a consequence, they are systematically excluded from equal access to basic services, equal distribution of resources, and equal participation in public and private life. Caste-based exclusion and segregation are manifest in relation to access to food, education, housing, water and sanitation, land, job opportunities, among other things.

In addition, the lack of accountability in governance for Dalits is caused by the non-enforcement and non-implementation of laws protecting their rights. Therefore, accountability for Dalits means ensuring access to justice, the enactment and implementation of anti-discrimination laws that explicitly recognize their rights, appropriate allocation of targeted funds, social inclusion, and equal participation of Dalits in public and private life.

In this discussion, it may be good to look at some of the good practices and strategies to enhance accountability for Dalits in caste-affected countries. In 2011, an International Conference was held on this subject, where Dalit activists from all over the world came together with representatives from governments and NHRIs, UN and EU delegations, researchers, and other civil society activists to mention some. As a result, a Joint Declaration and Global Call for Action to Eliminate Caste-Based Discrimination and a Report on Good Practices and Strategies to Elimination Caste-Based Discrimination was issued based on case examples, presentations, and discussions. In the Joint Declaration, the following recommendations on how to promote “Effective frameworks, policies, and institutions” were made:

Governments must create functional institutions of justice. Access to justice should be ensured following violations of the right to non-discrimination and other crimes committed against caste-affected communities, including through measures to combat impunity, support to legal aid, adequate compensation for victims, training for justice sector employees, like the police and judiciary, and monitoring of access to justice for caste-affected groups. Delays to the adjudication process must be eradicated in order to make justice possible. Governments must undertake fundamental reforms of the policing system in order to ensure access to justice for all. An independent legal aid system should be introduced, including with a mandate to intervene of behalf of victims and communities. A system for the protection of victims and witnesses should be adopted.

When addressing the need for ensuring accountability for the most marginalized, including the Dalits, IDSN would like to underline the need for integrating the principle of non-discrimination and equality in the post-2015 framework. As was mentioned by Mac Darrow from the OHCHR in the Online Discussion concerning possible steps for the national tailoring of post-2015 goals, this would help ensure that the most disadvantaged communities and regions are prioritized (in his input of 11 Dec).

With regard to promoting accountability for the most marginalised, many different actors have an important role to play – including governments, national human rights institutions, the UN and other multilateral institutions, donors, and civil society. The observations and recommendations made by UN human rights bodies, such as the UN Treaty Bodies, Special Procedures, and the Universal Periodic Review mechanism, provide an important tool in pointing out governments’ human rights responsibilities. IDSN recommends that these are systematically used by all these actors to promote accountability mechanisms in governance structures. As a “good practice”, IDSN has prepared a compilation of all recommendations by these human rights bodies as a monitoring instrument for governments, and bilateral and multilateral actors working with development and human rights in caste-affected countries: www.idsn.org/UNcompilation

  1. Why is accountability important?: To what extent have the MDGs fostered accountability and what are the accountability gaps? How might “accountability” principles and mechanisms strengthen incentives for delivering on a new global development agenda?

With regards to achieving the MDGs, caste discrimination has been a major obstacle in realizing the existing goals. Victims of caste discrimination are routinely denied access to water, schools, health services, land, markets and employment. The social exclusion of Dalits and similarly affected communities lead to high levels of poverty among affected population groups and exclusion, or reduced benefits, from development processes. It furthermore precludes their involvement in decision making and governance, and their meaningful participation in public and civil life.

The UN Independent Expert on minority issues has pointed out that progress to meet the MDGs for many of the most disadvantaged groups, including Dalits, has not met expectations. In an input to the post-2015 theme on “Inequalities”, Ms. Rita Iszak has stated that “without significant and continuing efforts to raise attention to the need for solutions that work for disadvantaged minorities, post 2015 strategies at the national level may in some cases continue to follow the same patterns, priorities and models that have proved to be flawed in their ability to address minority needs” (Online submission: “The case for attention to national, ethnic, religious & linguistic minorities in the Post-2015 Agenda”).

IDSN therefore reiterates the points raised by the OHCHR that the post-2015 development framework must address pervasive inequalities and dismantle discrimination; must be built on strong accountability mechanisms; and must represent an agenda that allows free and meaningful participation for all.

In particular, IDSN recommends the explicit inclusion of caste discrimination in the formulation of goals and targets to reach the post-MDGs. An example of this would be to mention caste as one of the prohibited grounds of discrimination, alongside other forms of discrimination (for example with regard to the point about producing disaggregated data to dismantle entrenched patterns of discrimination, mentioned in OHCHR’s Thematic Think Piece on the Post-2015 Agenda, p. 6).

If not, there is a high risk that the issue – and the group as a whole – may be overlooked or neglected in efforts taken to address inequalities and promote accountability in governance. Many examples and cases have even shown that the situation of the most marginalized, like the Dalits, are worse off in some situations after development interventions and post-disaster management, if appropriate measures and adequate assessments are not made.

On the same note, the UN Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation argues that the inclusion of equality and non-discrimination considerations in the design and implementation of policies and programmes benefits the most marginalized members of society and those most discriminated against. In her input to the Online Discussion on Water in the Post-2015 framework, Ms. Catarina de Albuquerque refers to Dalits as one of the specific groups that are excluded from access to water and sanitation (A/67/270, para. 32). She mentions that: “Being disadvantaged relates to different factors such as ethnicity, language, religion, caste, gender, age, disability, nationality, and others. While the focus of the equity discourse is often on people living in poverty, it must not be forgotten that the world’s poorest are not randomly distributed — they disproportionately share one or several of the factors that commonly lead to exclusion and discrimination” (A/67/270, para. 36).

  1. Recommendations for post-2015: Based on the above, what should be key principles for accountability in the post-2015 agenda? What should be key criteria when designing a monitoring framework (including new global goals, targets and indicators) to measure progress on a post-2015 agenda? Are there innovative and effective examples of accountability mechanisms (at the local, national, regional or global levels) that could be drawn upon in designing the post-2015 framework, and ensuring that post-2015 commitments are implemented in practice? What governance gaps need to be filled before 2015 to support a sound post-2015 accountability framework?

The key principles for mainstreaming good practices and strategies to eliminate caste-based discrimination into legislative, policy and programme activities were discussed at the International Consultation held on this theme in 2011. Based on the outcomes of this consultative discussion, IDSN recommends that the key principles to ensure accountability for Dalits in the post-2015 agenda should be the following:

-       Non-discrimination: Caste-based discrimination is prohibited by international human rights law and should therefore be recognised in all measures to address discrimination. Prohibition of discrimination on the basis of caste, descent and/or analogous systems should be included among grounds for non-discrimination in all legislative and policy provisions.

-       Participation: All persons affected by caste-based discrimination have a right to participate in decision-making that will affect them or the regions where they live. This participation should be effective participation, comprising, inter alia, information sharing, dialogue, consultation, joint decision-making and cooperation in the implementation of decisions made. This participation should occur at all stages of the programme management cycle, from design of policies and programmes to the implementation, monitoring and evaluation stages. The equal participation of women should be ensured.

-       Accountability and access to remedies: States are accountable for the elimination of caste-based discrimination. Persons affected by caste-based discrimination should have equal access to remedies for violations of their human rights.

-       Substantive equality and special measures: In order to achieve substantive equality and to overcome caste-based discrimination, states and other actors can adopt special measures in the social, economic, cultural and other fields, with the aim of ensuring full and equal enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms.

-       Intersectionality: Intersecting forms of discrimination of the basis of gender, age, disability, sexual orientation, religion and ethnicity should be taken into consideration when addressing caste-based discrimination.

-       Non-retrogression: Measures must be taken to ensure that persons affected by caste-based discrimination do not experience retrogression in access to or enjoyment of their human rights. The progressive realisation of human rights must not discriminate against anyone on the basis of caste.

-       Data and monitoring: Data to monitor the effects of caste-based discrimination should be collected systematically and transparently. Such data should be disaggregated to analyse intersecting forms of discrimination. Data should be collected in a manner that is consistent with international standards on privacy protection including, inter alia, informed consent and adherence to ethical standards. Data collected should be accessible to persons affected by caste-based discrimination and such persons should participate in all aspects of the design of methodology and collection of data.

The full text is contained in the Joint Declaration and Global Call for Action to Eliminate Caste-Based Discrimination.

A concrete suggestion is to include measures to eliminate caste-based discrimination in national plans of actions. This would ensure a holistic approach to tackling the most pressing development and human rights concerns, and would aim at ensuring accountability for the most marginalized. With regard to caste-based discrimination, IDSN recommends that general frameworks like the draft UN Principles and Guidelines for the effective elimination of discrimination based on work and descent (published by the UN Human Rights Council in 2009, A/HRC/11/CRP.3) are endorsed and used by governments as a guiding framework for the formulation of such national action plans.

IDSN GENERAL RECOMMENDATIONS TO THE POST-2015 FRAMEWORK – from the perspective of promoting accountability for Dalits in the global development agenda:

  • Inclusion and social development should be at the heart of the post-2015 agenda, and the framework be should be based on the principles of equality, non-discrimination, and participation.
  • The post-2015 framework should address the root causes to inequalities and poverty, focusing on the poorest and most marginalised groups including Dalits and similarly excluded communities.
  • The post-2015 framework should have a strong focus on multiple forms of discrimination, including the intersection between caste and gender-based discrimination.
  • Human rights indicators should be used to develop and assess the goals and targets of the post-2014 framework to ensure that equal access and distribution of resources are integrated in the post-2015 framework from a rights-based perspective.
  • The post-2015 framework should mainstream the collection of disaggregated data and research on intersecting forms of discrimination, including caste-based discrimination, as a way to measure inequalities and to develop and implement programmes to address the systematic patterns of marginalization and exclusion at the root of poverty and exclusion. This data should be collected in consultation with affected groups, and should especially aim for the participation of women in the design, collection, evaluation of data, and impact assessment.

For more information about IDSN’s work and recommendations, go to: www.idsn.org

Anonymous from
Mon, December 17, 2012 at 12.20 pm

To be accountable is to be responsible and be held responsible for whatever targets and actions not reached. How to ensure Accountability especially in developing countries where corruption is a norm, is by blocking every means in which the leaders laund and embezzle their nation's development funds to the developed nations, by mapping out strategy that stops individuals from investing outside their nations, instead invest in their nations. i believe that by this everybody inclding the poor and the rich will pay more attention to their immidiate environment, as a man's heart is where his treasure is. i am of this opinion because especially here in Africa, we don't have  good public schools again cos the children of the leaders are all schooling either in Europe or America, there is poverty and hunger cos the old pple in the farms are dieing and the govt can't motivate the youths to go back to the farms. no clean drinking water for the populace, since they have access to water in their houses. African learders are more interested in looting and packing for their children and great grand children and they don't care about the citizens of their countries. Accoutability is by puting strict attention on the level at which leaders migrate from developing contries to the developed ones especially for medical check ups, they should be asked to treat themselves in their countries, lets see how they won't build hospitals in their nations.  

Anonymous from
Mon, December 17, 2012 at 10.39 am

Existing institutional and governance structures have proved inadequate to meet rising sustainable development challenges. Core policy formulation, economic thinking and motivations remain consistently detached from our broader sustainability concerns. Monitoring and enforcement of agreed sustainable development strategies at all governance levels are weak and many central sectors and policies operate entirely without a broader sustainability overview. Since electoral cycles and business models of reporting increasingly define decision-making, short term gains take precedence over future and long term interests. Yet citizens and civil society appear disconnected from the core of policy-making. Without full representation of their needs, citizens are left without an adequate voice, or a legitimate means by which to question or present their concerns. We lack adequate mechanisms to facilitate accountability, access and monitoring of all sustainability policy decisions and their effective implementation.

Considerable evidence demonstrates that as long as sustainable development remains separated from core policy formulation and economic thinking, and as long as gaps in implementation are not secured, sustainability challenges will not be met.

Relevant lessons for sustainable development include recommendations to build on existing institutions; promote collaboration, coherence, efficiency and effectiveness in partnerships; and ensure meaningful and equitable public access to international forums related to sustainable development by adapting and structuring their processes and mechanisms in a way that they promote transparency and facilitate the participation of those groups that might not have the means for participation without encouragement and support.” Synthesis Report, UN Secretary General, 2011

“....governance accountability can be strengthened when stakeholders gain better access to information and decision-making, for example through special rights enshrined in agreements, charters and codes, and stronger participation in councils that govern resources, or in commissions that hear complaints. International environmental, developmental and economic institutions must adopt such novel accountability mechanisms more widely.” The Earth System Governance Project Policy Brief, Sept 2011

To help overcome some of these challenges, the World Future Council is calling for the establishment of Ombudspersons or Guardians for Future Generations at national, local, regional levels and for a High Commissioner for Future Generations at the international level.

This institution is designed to safeguard economic, environmental and social conditions for the benefit of current and future generations by undertaking their institutional representation in all areas of policy-making. The institution provides the necessary checks and balances to help overcome the structural short-term orientation of our democratic institutions and brings the sustainable development agenda to the heart of governments and policy-making. The Ombudsperson (which could take the shape of a Parliamentary Commissioner, Guardian or Auditor depending how it fits best into each nation’s governance structure) facilitates coherence between the separate pillars of government, between the three dimensions of sustainable development, to overcome single issue thinking, and holds government departments and private actors accountable if they do not deliver on sustainable development goals.

With the mandate as citizen defenders, engaging with public concerns and safeguarding the right to a healthy environment, Ombudspersons increase trust in policy formulation and its effective implementation. In addition, emerging issues of concern to the population and potential civil society solutions are easily transmitted to the core of policy-making.

With respect to existing governance frameworks and legal architecture, there can of course be no uniform approach, nor identical institutions from one country to the next. Similar institutions which are already in place should be reformed or strengthened as necessary. However, for this institution to be effective, attention must be given to a core set of principles upon which it must be based. These principles are drawn from our understanding of existing good practice, including the former Parliamentary Commissioner for Future Generations in Hungary. It should address the requirements of the separation of powers. This means it should be independent of government, while working at its heart, with its function to increase political accountability, thus reducing the risk of political and economic costs for present and future generations. We define six criteria in order to achieve successful impact:

  • independent
  • proficient
  • transparent
  • legitimate by democratic standards
  • with full access to all relevant information
  • widely accessible to external assessments and citizens’ concerns

 

Sustainable development and environmental governance, at the international level equally needs to be strengthened with improved integration across the various bodies. The sustainable development governance of tomorrow needs to learn from past mistakes, and offer a genuine chance of tackling the many problems we are facing. A High Commissioner for Future Generations offers that potential.

The institution would be an agenda setting role. We believe it important that the High Commissioner offer a political space to explore some of these issues, engaging governments and the public at large. We would consider the office to have a strong role in nurturing learning and understanding of the challenges faced by the global community, in relation to future generations and sustainability, and help to collectively nurture the solutions and innovative responses to them. This would encourage greater accountability by member states, to agree and implement policies which look to the long term, and in so doing, promotes the interests of future generations. This doesn’t mean that future generations would be considered at the expense of present generations. Rather the institution would consider the areas where it is possible to meet the needs of the present and the future.

The role would also provide the key initiative for monitoring the UN and its related specialized agencies, so that an integrated approach to issues is taken at the highest level of decision making, policies, programmes and multi lateral agreements. In that sense, the High Commissioner would act as an advocate for the interests of future generations across the family of UN organizations and affiliated agencies. Annual reporting to the General Assembly on their activities would be one of the key functions, this would also provide the opportunity to highlight progress made, and challenges still to be met.

The office of High Commissioner for Future Generations should work and operate in close co-operation with civil society and all stakeholders. The office would be ready to encourage and facilitate their full participation and engagement in the related issues, to help ensure their representation in relevant processes, and to consider any of their formal submissions to the UN.

Finally, we would expect that the High Commissioner, on request from governments or civil society groups, would help to facilitate international policy through to national implementation, through co-ordination with relevant national bodies, for example national Ombudspersons for Future Generations where they exist. The smooth facilitation from international to national is not working as it should. The High Commissioner could help identify bottlenecks to implementation, good practice and innovative policies, and also necessary compliance mechanisms.

If we are to learn from our efforts to conceive and achieve the MDGs, we need far more effective governance mechanisms to assist countries and communities with the implementation of future international goals. We believe the High Commissioner for Future Generations would be instrumental in facilitating this process, both at the high level, by helping to navigate governments and UN agencies in driving through this agenda, but also with arming and building capacity for all the necessary actors to help implementation on the ground. Through a recognised role of outreach and co-ordination, by working with the drivers and agencies, the High Commissioner can encourage a sense of ownership of the agenda and identify incentives – recognition that we are all responsible for the creation and implementation of solutions.

Thanks to its independence, transparency and access with civil society and independent agencies the HC for FG would help to ensure that any future goals are defined and implemented through an inclusive, participatory process involving those with ‘on the ground’ knowledge. By working with other UN organs and agencies, scientific and research bodies, and independent institutions, the HC for FG can help facilitate and navigate informed, targeted and coherent efforts towards meeting them.

Defining future international development goals immediately brings into question our poor track record in truly embedding sustainability throughout all disciplines. Future goals will need to firstly recognize that issues are interlinked: a series of interconnected, thematic goals would be more appropriate than single issue, detached goals which bare no relation to one another. Secondly, any new set of goals should demonstrate an understanding that poverty will never be eradicated without incorporating sustainability challenges, and the (scientifically informed) environmental limits into our decisions. The significant risk is that poverty eradication and sustainability objectives will continue to remain separated. A fundamental starting block to these discussions should be that addressing our sustainability concerns is not an add-on or a luxury, but is at the heart of this work: it is the lack of sustainable patterns of growth and development which has exacerbated poverty.

If we are to have any success in meeting future goals, we need to find a new model of growth – one that is equally conscious of the needs of people and of the planet. The High Commissioner, placed at a high level in the UN, would be well positioned to enhance international understanding and cooperation of how this can and should happen.

Thank you,

--

Catherine Pearce

Future Justice Director

World Future Council

catherine.pearce@worldfuturecouncil.org

Anonymous from
Mon, December 17, 2012 at 09.31 am


On behalf of Puvan J Selvanathan, Chair, UN Working Group on the issue of Human Rights and Transnational Corporations and Other Businesses



Human Rights, Business and Sustainable Development Post-2015



---



The role of business is a cross-cutting theme relevant to all the nine key issues identified by the Post-2015 task team and to the issues included in the Rio+20 outcome documentThe Future We Want. The UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, endorsed by the Human Rights Council in June 2011 and constituting an authoritative global standard for states and business on how to manage business impacts on human rights, are particularly instructive when it comes to the issue of governance, which is the subject of this e-discussion.



Former Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on business and human rights, Professor John Ruggie, referred to an existing "governance gaps" in the business and human rights arena, allowing corporate-related human rights abuses to occur. In his report to the Human Rights Council in 2008, John Ruggie stated that "the root cause of the business and human rights predicament today lies in the governance gaps created by globalization - between the scope and impact of economic forces and actors, and the capacity of societies to manage their adverse consequences. These governance gaps provide the permissive environment for wrongful acts by companies of all kinds without adequate sanctioning or reparation. How to narrow and ultimately bridge the gaps in relation to human rights is our fundamental challenge" (Report of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises, John Ruggie, Protect, Respect and Remedy: a Framework for Business and Human Rights, A/HRC/8/5, para. 3)



The UN Guiding Principles provide an internationally endorsed response to bridging such governance gaps. They contain detailed guidance for both states and business enterprises on how to prevent and mitigate adverse human rights impacts, as well as stipulating necessary measures to ensure accountability and redress for business related human rights impacts. Given their comprehensive scope and global support including from the business community itself, they should be a core element in global strategies involving or directed at business to achieve sustainable development objectives rooted in good governance. They should be incorporated as appropriate across all the issue areas identified both in The Future We Want and by the Post-2015 Task Team, including in relation to Governance.



The Working Group on human rights and transnational corporations, which has been mandated by the Human Rights Council to support efforts both globally, regionally and nationally of dissemination and implementation of the UN Guiding Principles. The Working Group considers the embedding of the UN Guiding Principles into global governance frameworks a key strategic objective of its mandate and as a means to achieving implementation of the Principles at the requisite scale. The Post-2015 agenda will in time constitute the most comprehensive global governance framework which is why it is of particular concern to the Working Group that the UN Guiding Principles be adequately reflected, including in relation to governance.



All Post-2015/SDG recommendations addressing the role of business should, at a minimum, be aligned with the Guiding Principles. This implies requiring business to ensure respect for human rights in any efforts relating to sustainable development.



--



Puvan J Selvanathan, Chair, UN Working Group on the issue of Human Rights and Transnational Corporations and Other Businesses

Jan Goossenaerts from
Mon, December 17, 2012 at 06.24 am

Regarding principles :

  1. Inclusivity, materiality and responsiveness as defined and elaborated via assurance and stakeholder engagement for the organisation at AccountAbility.org (http://www.accountability.org/standards/aa1000aps.html )
  2. For what concerns post2015 agenda, elaboration of assurance and stakeholder engagement should be facilitated society-wide - how such an extension can be shaped for one sector is explained for health care in  http://www.scribd.com/doc/29230535/A-multi-level-monitoring-and-evaluation-standard-in-health-care-systems-exploring-the-option 
  3. A society wide platform recognizing the three principles, and extending the multi-level M&E  ideas ( elaborated for health care) to all sectors of industry and functions of government is piloted at Actor Atlas:  http://www.actor-atlas.info/ for example http://www.actor-atlas.info/fgc-map:01-1-1-executive-and-legislative-organs-cs


Anonymous from
Mon, December 17, 2012 at 04.37 am

1. Significance of human rights education


We would like to stress the need for mainstreaming “empowerment of individuals” in deliberations on post MDGs. In this regard we support OHCHR’s consistent assertion that the objectives of human well-being and dignity for all, enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, will not be achieved if the MDGs are pursued in isolation from human rights.


http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/MDG/Pages/MDGPost2015Agenda.aspx


 


Human rights education (HRE) is a sustainable approach which addresses root causes of all kinds of discriminations, promotes equity and equitable opportunities and prevents human rights abuses. HRE empowers individuals to advance on a path to dignity, bringing about changes for human rights respect in their respective communities and societies, which can eventually transform their entire well-being.


 


In this context, highly appreciating the role that “the United Nations Decade for Human Rights Education” and subsequent “UN World Program for Human Rights Education” can play, we have promoted their awareness-raising from a civil society standpoint. In the same context, we welcome  “the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training” adopted by the General Assembly on 19 December, 2011.


 


In fall, 2012, we created a HRE film on DVD, “A Path to Dignity”, jointly with OHCHR and Human Rights Education Associates, which features case stories including:


-       Women and children who had been discriminated or abused learn human rights and are empowered to stand up in order to help others in similar difficulties making use of their own experiences.


-       Policemen enhance the quality of their work through HRE.


These case stories illustrate the increasing interest in HRE of both governments and civil society to which the aforementioned United Nations Decade and the World Program contributed.


 


Furthermore, the aforementioned United Nations Declaration articulates that HRE and training concerns all forms of education, training and learning including non-formal education and should use languages and methods suited to target groups, taking into account their specific needs and conditions.


http://daccess-dds-ny.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/N11/467/04/PDF/N1146704.pdf?O...


 


The case stories of the film also demonstrate the importance to ensure the commitment of governments and other actors both to the promotion of HRE and inclusive development.


 


From these perspectives, the following approaches to concepts and actions should be incorporated in the post MDGs deliberation.


 


1) Development is not equal to economic growth


Recent income gap expansion between countries testifies that the MDGs cannot be achieved only through economic growth alone. While recognizing the necessity of economic growth, a comprehensive and wider, yet effective, conceptual framework is necessary to better facilitate all relevant deliberations. This requires an effort to transform a stereotyped concept that development is equal to economic growth.


 


2) Aim of development


We believe development should aim at human security, individuals’ empowerment and their leadership within their respective communities, which can be brought about through empowerment. From this perspective we should review the status of the three pillars of sustainable development, which are economy, society and environment.


 


3) Concepts which support MDGs


Respect for human rights, in other words, respect for “dignity of life” should be laid at the foundation of the new goals. Their deliberationshould take into consideration universal protection of human rights and “equal opportunities for all through access to quality HRE and training without any discrimination in line with the aforementioned United Nations Declaration.


http://daccess-dds-ny.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/N11/467/04/PDF/N1146704.pdf?O...


 


 


4) Elements to be considered for new goals


We believe that both the development in judicial and administrative system for protection of human rights and the promotion of HRE at various levels are indispensable for the post MDGs development which should be inclusive and participatory. In addition to numerical indexes reflecting international standards of civil and political rights as well as economic, social and cultural rights, the new goals should include ones regarding HRE and education for sustainable development which often compounds HRE.


 


5) Goals setting at domestic, national and international levels


Setting concrete goals at an international level requires common indexes for their evaluation. In addition, feasible goals and action plans at national level are desirable in consideration of economic gap between countries and other specific national needs and conditions that may be different from those in other countries.


At the same time, each country should facilitate establishment of those at a local community level in a domestic framework.


Furthermore, as part of international cooperation, inter-governmental organizations should monitor respective countries’ efforts and progress made, and provide necessary technical assistances upon request from their member states.


 


2. Conflict prevention and diverting military spending to development


 


The world today is becoming increasingly complex and interdependent. We must broaden our perspective and think beyond the limited framework of national interests. At the same time, as we confront pressing global challenges such as poverty and inequality, unemployment, disease and epidemics, there is an increasing demand to consider the importance of “human security” and understand these needs at meso and micro-levels. To see things through the eye of an individual’s realistic day-to-day needs is vital in building sustainable peace, a world in which dignity of life will be absolutely protected.


 


In today’s world, it seems obsolete to view and discuss security threats solely in terms of national security. In this context, military spending should be revisited to reflect such change. For instance, it is questionable whether the financial, technological and human resources need to be invested to modernize, deploy and maintain nuclear weapons. In view of human security which has increasing value today, these weapons of mass destruction do not have any justifiable value because these weapons do not actually contribute to maintaining a safer and a more secure world for ordinary citizens.


 


In the face of immediate “human security” concerns that need to be addressed around the world—such as water, food, sanitation—it does not make sense to continue spending huge amounts of money on maintaining nuclear weapons. Today’s massive military spending should be considered as a serious loss of opportunity and be shifted to support development projects that address basic human needs.


 


This reality is even undermining the post-MDG accountability framework. There is an informative discussion in the report “Opportunity Costs: Military Spending and the UN’s Development Agenda” issued by the International Peace Bureau.


http://www.ipb.org/uploads/tbl_noticies_web/169/documents/Opportunity%20Costs_text%20only.pdf


 


Post-MDG goals should include concerted efforts to reduce global military expenditure based on the spirit of Agenda 21 and the Millennium Declaration.

Oluwaseun Osiyoye from
Sun, December 16, 2012 at 07.15 pm

I must confess it is really good we can discuss this I will give big appreciation to the world leaders. i felt there are some part of the world that is not ripe for human right the way we talk about it. Take a look at what happened Libyan Arab Republic that lead to the death of Muammar Muhammad Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi.  I  think will need to do more of education and enlightening to allow the people know what is good for them and how to go about getting what is there's without violent. It actually a crucial issue to be discuss.

Anonymous from
Sun, December 16, 2012 at 04.57 pm

I am really delighted to learn through this invitation to comment on the global agenda of human development especially on governance and accountability, and for this I am thankful to the global organizers. As an Activist, associated with a number of international organizations like HDCA, IAFFE etc., I have the following observations.


Now the time has come when U N O may be treated as supreme global association and we should believe that power of top management to be vested in it to govern  human development at global level, is only way to realize the concept of the world being a  global village. For the purpose, a Human Development Council entrusted with the task of planning executing and controlling human development. The Council must be treated as guardian and guide of the member states and it should be accountable for its successful operation to the general body of UNO.


It is important because political leaders in most of the developing countries are least interested in development process keeping an eye on vote bank only and try to continue in power adopting ‘divide and rule’ policy in the name of caste, religion, ethnicity, region and so on. In the name of global sanction they may adopt development agenda convincing people that they are globally obliged to do so.


For developing accountability frame work, at the outset, UNO should seriously consider the importance of human development. It is as important as developing nuclear weapon by terrorist, because, terrorists are socialized to achieve such status missing the chance of getting opportunity of human development. Working in backward region I have closely observed that women for example, even today, are victim of adaptive preference believing that it is their pious duty to cook food for men and live on stale if any left by them. Men treat them simply child producing machine and a servant free of cost.


So, amendment in international law at the initiative of UNO is needed for the creation of a Human Development Council as body for policy making , planning directing and controlling of human development process before 2015. The responsibility of the commission will have to identify some missing dimensions of human development at global level.  One for example, will be arrangement for one effective education system for all across the world so that the coming generation should not be left in the hands of religious or cultural orthodox and corrupted people for their future inhumanity. The Council should have authority to fix accountability on the member states for the purpose. In short the system requires revolutionary change and a managerial framework should be adopted in the process. I offer my service hereby creating detailed accountability framework.

Anonymous from
Sat, December 15, 2012 at 08.15 pm

Accountability is to be faithfull to what have been planified as national program on gender equity or in equalysing women and men on economic capacities.

For now, it s a challenge that every country must face and arrange a realistic respons.

Anonymous from
Sat, December 15, 2012 at 01.41 pm

Gov. Accountability Header
"Government accountability means that public officials - elected and un-elected - have an obligation to explain their decisions and actions to the citizens. Government accountability is achieved through the use of a variety of mechanisms - political, legal and administrative - designed to prevent corruption and ensure that public officials remain answerable and accessible to the people they serve. In the absence of such mechanisms, corruption may thrive."

Anonymous from
Sat, December 15, 2012 at 01.46 pm

"Government accountability means that public officials - elected and un-elected - have an obligation to explain their decisions and actions to the citizens. Government accountability is achieved through the use of a variety of mechanisms - political, legal and administrative - designed to prevent corruption and ensure that public officials remain answerable and accessible to the people they serve. In the absence of such mechanisms, corruption may thrive."

Anonymous from
Sat, December 15, 2012 at 01.31 pm

Dear friends,

It is obvious that governments both those in developed countries and those in developing economies are strugling with paying the bills. Accountability is however much better in the devloped countries than in the developing countries. We however need to strengthen the ability of individuals and families to meet their needs and rights within there given environment. individuals and families must reduce their food and other bills by producing some of the things they consume themselves; Local, intra county and inter county markets  can help to boost the products of both city dwellers and rural dwellers: People who submit themselves for assassment and those who commit to sustainable development principles and lifestyles would receive incentives from Governments and international organizations alike. Every one must practice practical wisdom.

Nnenna Eluwa

Anonymous from
Sat, December 15, 2012 at 09.35 am

accontability is responsibility.

every individual is accontable for sustainablility. Economic development is responsibility of state and social development is responsibility of society. At last but not the least, responsibility of disadvantaged people and biodiversity is of state, society and individuals. who ever is doing any thing which is affecting these would be recover from them.

Anonymous from
Sat, December 15, 2012 at 04.58 am

Dear Secretary Kharas,

 

I was looking at the November 30 note the High Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda just made available and had a couple to-the-point short comments.

 

  1. Is there a way we can get away from the use of the maligned term ‘stakeholder’? Stakeholders stake claims, right? The simple replacement of the word  stakeholders by claim-holders or duty bearers, as appropriate (to use the correct HR parlance that we and the UN are finally trying to instill in post-2015), just might provide us with the hint of the sort of framework we are interested in fostering in the new era. Claim holder/duty bearer are in the original UN language. Stakeholders is originally business language. To have or to hold a stake in something is the same as having an interest or holding shares!!! (A. Katz)
  2. As regards the section on human development, the second bullet talks of raising the bar and of several members focusing on the need for quality of outcomes. The MDGs have shown us that a focus on outcomes does not assure sustainability of the respective goal being kept up. It is not only the quantity and the quality of outcomes that counts; it is the participatory processes to achieve them that will matter in the long run. (Note that here sustainability is used in a different sense than in the environmental connotation of the term).
  3. The fourth bullet tells us that many panel members pointed to the importance of rights and equity. I ask, do we have some panel members that ought not be there if this is not the unanimous outlook of the panel? Furthermore, there are still too many among us that consider HR and equity, gender…as crosscutting issues; they are not. They are core issues (!) and we have to build sectoral or other interventions around them.
  4. As regards the section on jobs and livelihoods, the sixth bullet talks about safety nets. I feel strongly we ought, instead, to be talking about social protection mechanisms. Safety nets take the issue of poverty as a fait accompli. So since ‘they’ are poor, we throw them a few crumbles of bread since it is morally reprehensible to us to let them starve. In reality, safety nets somehow come up with measures that avoid social discontent that could flare up into protests and thus a challenge to the status-quo. Am I very wrong?
  5. The ninth bullet pertaining to providing accessible and affordable basic needs to the poor closely relates to what I say in 4. above. It just, in a way, replaces safety nets by targeting the poor (note the use ‘the poor’ in the bullet; should it not be ‘poor people’? We have to be careful with depersonalizing the billions of  the affected). The bullet goes on to infer that nutrition, health, education, housing, clean water and sanitation will eventually cut the vicious circle of poverty. I thought the inter-generational vicious circle of poverty could only be uprooted for good with structural changes in the political and economic system that rules most of the world.  Am I very wrong?

 

I want to take the opportunity to express my thanks for the excellent 24 questions the panel released on this same occasion. They have the right food for thought and I hope to be able to spend some quality time pondering over them.

 

Very cordially,

 

Claudio Schuftan MD

People’s Health Movement, Ho Chi Ming City

cschuftan@phmovement.org

Please or Sign Up to post a comment.