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Delhi Sustainable Development Summit 2002
Ensuring sustainable livelihoods:

challenges for governments, corporates, and civil society at Rio+10
8 - 11 February 2002, New Delhi

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    9 February 2002: Keynote address 1

Dr Gowher Rizvi
Representative, Ford Foundation, India



Real video

Prof. Hans J A van Ginkel
Rector, The United Nations University, Tokyo, Japan

"Education is mentioned many times in conferences, but it is really difficult to assess how it is transmitted to people."

Session summary
The need for universal education occupied centre-stage in Prof. Hans van Ginkel’s keynote address. Much has been discussed at various forums as well as mentioned in Agenda 21 but it is important to assess how the recommendations can be implemented at the grass-roots level.
He made three conceptual remarks.

Reality There are optical distortions associated with what we see. What we see is our interpretation of how we want to see/understand it. The difficult task is to see reality in a multi-dimensional perspective, more so for global processes.

Complexity There are no simple solutions to complex issues. The key is to think of interlinkages, like those between globalization, poverty, development, and environment on one level and multilateral environmental agreements at another. It is the synergy and consistency between these on which there is lack of consensus.

Subsidiarity This refers to too much belief on what can be achieved at the WSSD. There is a need to clearly identify what needs to be done at the global level and what lies in national/local domains.

Laying thrust on all forms of education systems is critical. Understanding of concerns of sustainability is not haphazard; there exists a pool of knowledge and experience to draw upon. The challenge is reaching the large section of people outside the ambit of formal and/or regular education systems.

Capacity building has two distinct dimensions—improving qualifications of individuals and building institutional capacities.

It is recommended that governance structures be flexible to take into account the realities of decision making in distinct global and local levels of society. Also, at one end, there is impending need for creating regional centres of excellence and networking amongst them, while at the other end, there is requirement of commitment from the people themselves to bring about a change in the core curriculum at various levels of education towards sustainable development.