GUNi's input to Rio+20
The Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development has accepted the input of GUNi for the UNCSD 2012 Compilation Document, both as institution and as member of a Multiple National, Multinational and International Tertiary Education Sustainability Organizations partnership.
- The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) (USA/Canada)
- Australasian Campuses Towards Sustainability (ACTS) (Australia/New Zealand)
- Global University Network for Innovation (GUNi) (Spain/international)
- Korean Association for Green Campus Initiative (KAGCI) (South Korea)
- Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges (EAUC) (United Kingdom)
Collectively, these organizations engage more than one-thousand tertiary institutions across the globe.
The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) is being organized in pursuance of General Assembly Resolution 64/236 (A/RES/64/236). The Conference will take place in Brazil on 20-22 June 2012 to mark the 20th anniversary of the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), in Rio de Janeiro, and the 10th anniversary of the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg. It is envisaged as a Conference at the highest possible level, including Heads of State and Government or other representatives. The Conference will result in a focused political document.
The objective of the Conference is to secure renewed political commitment for sustainable development, assess the progress to date and the remaining gaps in the implementation of the outcomes of the major summits on sustainable development, and address new and emerging challenges
The Conference will focus on two themes: (a) a green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication; and (b) the institutional framework for sustainable development.
As part of the UNCSD efforts to properly organize the Rio +20, it has received inputs from 646 stakeholders regarding their expectations for the outcome of Rio +20, and their concrete proposals in this regard, including views on a possible structure of the Outcome document. Additionally the UNCSD requested them to provide their comments on existing proposals e.g. a green economy roadmap, framework for action, sustainable development goals, a revitalized global partnership for sustainable development, or others. Furthermore, UNCSD requested participants their views on implementation and on how to close the implementation gap and which relevant actors are envisaged as being involved.
GUNi has contributed with a document where the emphasis is on two key aspects for the construction of sustainable development: the role of knowledge and its use, and the role of education in the construction of a sustainable future for humanity and the planet. Furthermore, GUNi stressed that HEIs can contribute to a green economy and to sustainable development goals by providing the lessons learnt by its research, through the training of the professionals of the future, and by introducing technological advances. Therefore, the document continues, it is necessary to shorten the time in which knowledge reaches society. The democratization of knowledge and education must bring better decisions and actions based on a suitable use of knowledge.
Accordingly, some of the specific cooperation mechanisms proposed by GUNi are: proactive engagement in dialogue with citizens and the rest of social, cultural and economic stakeholders; Create a true knowledge-based society through engagement with society as a whole; Provide a plurality of expert advice in dealing with green economy, poverty and the sustainable development goals; The creation of real partnerships for the co-creation of knowledge and answers to problems and to co-create visions for the future. Hence, HEIs can play a significant role in building a sustainable paradigm. They may help in facing local and global challenges, facilitating society to answer them.
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