DSDS 2004 |
About DSDS series
Partnerships for Sustainable Development:
addressing the WEHAB agenda
Who should attend and will benefit
Decision-makers from governments, corporates, non-governmental
organizations; pioneering researchers and scientists;
leading media representatives; and senior executives
from bilaterals, multilaterals, and the diplomatic corps.
Water, energy, health,
agriculture, and biodiversity—these are the areas ‘in which
progress is possible with the resources and technologies at our disposal,’
said Mr Kofi Annan, Secretary-General of the United Nations, at Johannesburg,
proposing special attention on these five key thematic areas forming
the WEHAB framework. Ten days of intensive deliberations at the WSSD
resulted in a significant outcome: partnerships for sustainable development
involving governments, corporates, funding agencies, scientific and
technology concerns, and civil society groups, aimed at implementing
agendas built around the WEHAB themes. While an encouraging number of
partnerships have come up and a considerable amount of funding has already
been committed, many more are needed to meet the Millennium Development
Goals of poverty reduction vis-à-vis protecting the earth’s environment
for a sustainable future.
This requires unprecedented
efforts on the part of all stakeholders; the role of science and technology
becomes paramount. Besides, governments have to agree on many propositions,
corporates have to show greater resolve, and civil society groups have
to be more proactive. While DSDS 2003 dealt with the larger development
priorities set at Johannesburg, DSDS 2004 (4–7 February 2004)
– titled Partnerships for Sustainable Development: addressing
the WEHAB agenda – will essentially focus on, analyse, and
assess innovative partnerships in the post-WSSD scenario.
As every year,
the 2004 edition of DSDS will feature contributions by enlightened leaders
and thinkers of the world, representing a wide range of constituencies:
government, business and industry, NGOs, scientific community, media,
bilateral and multilateral community, and diplomatic corps. The speakers
will be joined by over 400 delegates, adding value to the discussions
and the final outcome of the summit.
About DSDS series
inescapable perils posed by erratic changes in the earth’s climate,
the imbalances in its biodiversity, and the alarming depletion of its
natural resources, we have no other option but to operationalize the
‘sustainability’ of our development. It is imperative that
our efforts – both at local and global levels – are informed
by a clear mission and imbued with collective vision and resolve.
TERI (now The Energy
and Resources Institute) has taken up a major responsibility of continuously
providing knowledge and stimulating debate on various aspects of sustainable
development. The DSDS (Delhi Sustainable Development Summit) –
an annual international event organized by TERI since 2001 – is
one such initiative that has emerged as the only forum on global sustainability
issues, with an accentuated thrust on problems relating to the developing
world. The DSDS brings the finest minds of the world together to deliberate
upon specific themes and formulate strategies to set forth paradigms
and approaches of sustainable development.
Now in its fourth
year, the DSDS endeavours to find ways to effect the much-needed shift
away from mindless human practices that add up to global warming, resource
scarcity, and destabilization of traditional livelihood patterns; from
economic policies that overlook environmental costs and, thereby, the
future of the earth; from strategies that put political interests above
the earth’s ecological well-being; and from profit-centric corporate
Aimed to feed into the Johannesburg process, DSDS 2003 was aptly
titled The Message from WSSD: translating resolve into action for
a sustainable future. Held in the wake of the World Summit on Sustainable
Development, which set priorities for action, DSDS 2003 essentially
focused on ways to turn those priorities into concrete action. Encompassing
a number of pertinent issues – water and sanitation, environment
and health, education, corporate social responsibility, forestry and
biodiversity, governance and media, climate change, and so on –
DSDS 2003 added value to the WSSD process through many action-oriented
suggestions. Reiterating that sustainable development issues are complex
and must be tackled through integrated efforts of business organizations,
governments, and civil society, it put forth the following recommendations.
Enhance efforts to further partnerships.
Encourage civil society participation in existing
partnerships of NGOs, businesses, and governments.
Enhance and operationalize North–South
Establish monitoring and measurement mechanisms
to forecast and assess long-term impacts of various actions.
Conserve at all levels: local, regional, and
Mesh legal, institutional, economic, scientific,
and technological resources.
Involve the various stakeholders.
Operate through long-term, non-compartmentalized
Looking at livelihoods
The second edition, DSDS 2002 (8–11
February 2002), focused on Ensuring sustainable livelihoods:
challenge for governments, corporates, and civil society at Rio + 10.
It sparked opportune dialogue and debate, and recharged the political
momentum and enthusiasm of all involved in the Rio + 10 process, just
ahead of the Johannesburg Summit. It provided concrete recommendations
to feed into the Johannesburg process, advocating a holistic approach
to natural resource management with an understanding of the dynamic
interactions of the people – especially the poor – with
The series of international
conferences – Global sustainable development in the 21st century:
directions and innovations for change – in February 2000,
organized to mark TERI’s silver jubilee, recommended the need
for a common forum that could set global development agenda and would
collectively monitor its progress. TERI endeavoured to fulfil the need
and, the very next year, the DSDS series was initiated. Delegates from
the world over at DSDS
2001 (7–9 February 2001) brainstormed on Poverty: the
global challenge for governments, industry, scientists, and civil society.
Deliberating over the fact that 2.8 billion people still live in crippling
poverty, which constrains choices, exacerbates vulnerability, and perpetuates
inequities with dangerous consequences, DSDS 2001 stressed that sustainable
solutions should be swiftly devised and implemented by governments,
corporates, civil society, and the scientific community, working in