It is time that we fundamentally change the way we think and do things. Saving our planet, social justice and advancing economic growth are one and the same fight. These fights are not locally bound but extend borders. Actions taken on one side of the planet, impact the other. It is the worlds’ diversity that is our strength and path to sustainability, yet at the same time our challenge. Recognizing the worlds complexity is important, but changing the way we connect the dots is now essential. With a new kind of leadership, we may find new insights and connect elements like never done before to create new innovative solutions to tackle the complex challenges we face today.
The recent, rapid acceleration of multiple, interconnected, global issues – climate change, deforestation, desertification, food shortages, etc. – is overwhelming the world’s organizational and institutional capacity to address them. In fact, we appear to be confronted today not with a single crisis, but with a crisis of multiple crises – not just a financial crisis, a climate crisis, a forests crisis, a food crisis, an ecological crisis, a developmental crisis – all of these, and maybe even more. The international community has agreed, since the Rio Summit in 1992, that Sustainable Development should be the road all nations should travel as we navigate out of these crises. So we need to meet the current generations’ needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs, as the Brundtland commission pointed out in 1987. This statement implies both intra- and intergenerational equity as well as the maintenance of the carrying capacity of the earth. Yet governments alone are not capable of engaging in the negotiations of diplomacy and creating the institutions of governance that are required to move towards these objectives. New ways of diplomacy and new innovative governance arrangements seem needed to better attain these goals.
Yet the first contours of such a new diplomacy are emerging. Non-state actors are now allowed to play their roles in international diplomacy (think about environmental NGOs and their impact on international treaties), whereas private instruments to address sustainability issues are emerging (e.g. certification schemes for sustainable forest management). We call this Sustainable Development Diplomacy (SDD).
Are you passionate about SUSTAINABILITY, interested in international relations, international DEVELOPMENT, environmental policy, DIPLOMACY and negotiations? Do you want to become part of an international network and community of practice? Then the SDD Master track might be for you!
The Sustainable Development Diplomacy (SDD) Master track at Wageningen University opens up opportunities for motivated students to prepare themselves in becoming future leaders in the field of sustainable development diplomacy. Students are connected to fellow SDD practitioners through alumni, exclusive workshops, seminars, field trips and much more, with the purpose of improving their knowledge and skills required to tackle to most challenging problems we face today. A maximum of 12 students will be admitted to the SDD Track every year! For more information on the track, how to apply, and the selection procedure please see here.
We are a community of practice of current and alumni SDD students. We are the ‘SDD Community’. We are a dynamic and diverse group from different interests, backgrounds, and nationalities who have all followed the SDD Track since the launch in 2012. While we are so diverse, we find common ground in our interest in the field of sustainable development and how governance, negotiations, and diplomacy play a role in this.
The SDD Community organizes master classes, field trips, speakers, attend conferences, writes blogs, shares SDD related news, generates new SDD information and organizes other activities exclusively for SDD Wageningen students and alumni. It is through the process of sharing information and experiences that we are able to learn from each other and develop ourselves personally and professionally. As the community grows with 12 members each academic year, we create a global network of young professionals striving to make a positive impact on local and global decision making levels to tackle the many challenges we face today.
The Capita Selecta course, Sustainable Development Diplomacy (SDD), elaborated on the contested and ‘comprehensive’ definition of SDD. In addition to this course SDD students had the opportunity to attend several masterclasses, and conferences. During this period it became apparent that the term of SDD is shaped by a mosaic of different interpretations and implementations, which …
On 16 and 17 January, a small delegation of our SDD community travelled to the Hague to attend the academic policy cross- over conference on the Unintended Effects of International Cooperation, organized by the Radboud University and the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The conference attracted a large variety of interested: researchers, evaluators, policymakers, and …
Two weeks ago I had the pleasure of attending the Future Force Conference at the World Forum in the Hague. As a rapporteur working on behalf of the Hague Centre for Strategic Studies, I was part of a team of volunteers that sat in on the various break-out sessions taking rigorous notes on the current …