Highlighted Selections from:

Engaging Science and Politics in a Post-2015 Framework


Day, Julia; Melissa Leach and Adrian Ely. Edited by Hannah Corbett. “Engaging Science and Politics in a Post-2015 Framework.” IDS Policy Brief 42(2013): 1–2. Print.

p.1: Enduring poverty and social inequality, in the face of rapid environmental change, have focused unprecedented attention on how social justice and environmental challenges are interlinked, from local to global levels. The post-2015 framework must address these challenges together, drawing on the natural and social sciences, and creating opportunities for inclusive, democratic debate around appropriate pathways to sustainability. Technical and social innovations have essential roles to play, but a new politics of innovation is also required. The concepts of social and planetary boundaries, integrated with a ‘3D agenda’ of direction, diversity and distribution, provide a framework which can guide such politics. They can inform deliberation and debate about the implications of different social, technological and environmental pathways to sustainability, and strategies to pursue them. -- Highlighted apr 5, 2014

p.1: Choices between different social, technological and environmental pathways areinevitably political. Transformational change will require political strategies that combine top-down regulation and bottom-up mobilisation, and new alliances across government, business and civil society interests. Through democratic debate, people and social movements across the world need to be able to define and contest their interests, values and desired futures in shaping and implementing sustainable development post-2015. -- Highlighted apr 5, 2014

p.1: Enhanced links between global science and local participation in decision-making and implementation arerequired. Alongsidetechnicallyinformed analysis at the international level, we need approaches that respond to and respect diverse values, contexts, knowledge and expertise in collaboration with formal science. -- Highlighted apr 5, 2014

p.2: Uncertainty, ambiguity and dissensus need to be made explicit and diversity should be fostered to respond to varied sustainability priorities, goals and values. -- Highlighted apr 5, 2014

p.2: Policy recommendations

To pay due attention to the politics of sustainable development and the role of science and innovation, the post-2015 agenda should:

  1. Be universally applicable (to global North and South), but also nationally and sub-nationally flexible, addressing needs identified through local, democratic processes.
  2. Enhance links between global science and local participation in decision-making and implementation.
  3. Recognise the role that citizens and different forms of low-tech, high-tech, social and technical innovations can play in creating pathways to sustainability.
  4. Move beyond static goals to focus on the longer-term Direction of innovation and development towards defined sustainability objectives.
  5. Pay attention to the Distribution of the costs, benefits and risks associated with different pathways to sustainability.
  6. Emphasise Diversity in social, technological and ecological systems and in the kinds of innovation approaches that can contribute to sustainable development.
  7. Engage with and support the development of a strengthened interdisciplinary, inclusive and politically astute science of sustainable development. One that brings together social and natural scientists from different fields with the expertise of citizens, resource users, policy makers, practitioners and businesses in the co-design and co-production of knowledge to inform and shape pathways to sustainability.

-- Highlighted apr 5, 2014