Civil society consultation on the 2021/22 Human Development Report

Uncertain times, unsettled lives.

On 21 February 2022 Dr Vasu Gounden, the Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, was invited to be a panellist in the above virtual consultation that was co-hosted by the United Nations Development Programme and the United Nations SDG Action Campaign. Consultations on the HDR are intended to start a conversation on the themes of the report, with the purpose of seeking input and advice on report content from diverse fields and viewpoints. 

The consultation included the participation of civil society leaders and activists across the globe, in order to bring reflections from their respective areas of work and expertise.  To support the conversation, a selection of discussants were identified to contribute to and explore the themes, while a broader group was invited to listen, and contribute, via an interactive workshop tool.  Responses during the open discussion segment of the consultation made provision for feedback as part of a post-consultation survey. 

The three main questions that the panel aimed to address were: 

  • Do the aspects of uncertainty considered – Anthropocene, transitions, and technological transformation – cover the most distinguishing elements of today’s uncertainty? Is there anything important missing? 
  • How are uncertainties unsettling lives around the world? What needs to be done on this front?, and 
  • What may be the role of policymakers, civilians and civil society to alter this path and navigate us to a more desirable future in the Anthropocene? 

The forthcoming HDR will draw from and extend the discussions of the 2019 HDR (on inequalities) and of the 2020 HDR (on the structural risks of the Anthropocene), highlighting the ways in which inequalities and uncertainty interact with one another, creating exclusion and polarization. Together, inequalities and uncertainty unsettle lives, impeding people’s ability to do and be what they value and have reason to value – the expansion of which is central to human development.

ACCORD’s vision of promoting dialogue towards building peaceful coexistence in an interdependent world guides the Institution in its contribution towards peaceful co-existence.

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