“We cannot be too inclusive, there is no such thing” – Olav Kjorven, Director of Bureau for Development Policy UNDP. By María José García

The breadth of the consultation process for the Post-2015 Development Agenda is unprecedented, and is probably the reason why disorder and confusion are taking a leading role in the game. The process is international in scope as it is taking place in 66 countries around the world, with the goal of reaching 100. 11 thematic areas are being covered, which include: water, food security, health, inequalities, education, conflict and fragility, environmental sustainability, energy, employment, governance and population dynamics.

We are concerned that most of the UN Task Team’s efforts in developing “a participatory inclusive and open process to build consensus and engage the groups that usually do not take direct participation in the negotiations, such as youth and people living in situations of conflict” will result in nothing more than a complex process of online consultations. The problem lies in the lack of guidelines or a system of information management to ensure successful data collection as thousands of civil society participants eagerly submit the inputs that they hope will form the core of the Post-2015 agenda.

The role of civil society in this process has been highlighted as crucial to ensure the representation of the people that they serve on the ground. However, it seems clear that civil society is contributing inputs at a far faster pace than the existing structure currently is able to process.

Last Monday, January 14th, a briefing to Member Sates on the Post-2015 process resulted in a full house at one of the largest conference rooms in UN Headquarters.

Olav Kjorven, UN Assistant Secretary-General and Director of the Bureau for Development Policy at UNDP tried to address concerns from delegates about the process by noting the importance of the following:

  • The avoidance of a top-to-bottom approach to the 11 key thematic areas and a focus on ensuring equal discussion and avoiding disproportionate ownership of the consultations by ‘top countries’.
  • Coherence and coordination between the discussions on the new set of Sustainable Development Goals and the overall agenda for development in the Post-2015 framework, reflected in the online platforms “worldwewant2015.org” and “myworld.org”.

We applaud the unique efforts of countries like Peru, which have taken the lead in striving for inclusiveness by holding a series of workshops in the Amazon region of Loreto. They brought the consultation process to marginalized groups of linguistic and ethnic minorities, including children, youth and women, as well as engaged grassroots leaders.

The World Youth Alliance continues to remain actively involved in the Post-2015 process with the ultimate goal of ensuring that the authentic needs of the person are reflected in the final agenda.

Join the global conversation at www.worldwewant2015.org

By María José García Manzano, Advocacy Fellow at the World Youth Alliance Headquarters

For more information, please contact elyssa@wya.net