On the 22nd of September the Government of Sierra Leone is hosting a g7+ High Level Side event in the margins of the 69th United Nations General Assembly. Sierra Leone is the Chair of the g7+ and Co-chair of the International Dialogue on Peacebuilding and Statebuilding.
Entitled Peace and capable institutions as stand alone goals in the Post-2015 Development Agenda: g7+ Perspectives, the event will bring together g7+ Ministers, Permanent Representatives, members of the International Dialogue and other partners to focus on the importance of including these goals in the Post-2015 framework so that it can be truly transformative and responsive to the needs and realities of the 21st century.
The g7+ has consistently advocated that the existence of peaceful societies with effective and capable state institutions is central to eradicating poverty, establishing the conditions for access to jobs and basic services and building a pathway to sustainable development and resilience.
This event is timely with the approaching intergovernmental negotiations to finalize the Post-2015 Development Agenda and the special summit to be held in September 2015.
Experience has shown that there can be no peace without development, and no development without peace.
Therefore the concept of peace and capable institutions as goals in internationally agreed frameworks is not novel thinking. The inherent link between peaceful societies and sustainable development has been agreed globally in the 1992 Rio Principles, and reinforced in the Millennium Declaration, The Future We Want – the outcomes document of the Rio + 20 International Conference on Sustainable Development and that of the 2013 special event on the Millennium Development Goals.
What is missing, however, is a globally agreed framework to operationalize this principle. The post 2015 process therefore presents an opportunity for peaceful societies and effective institutions to be included as goals in the Post 2015 Development Agenda.
The global discourse on the Post 2015 agenda highlights how the lack of focus on this niche hinders development, in particular the attainment of the MDGs. This is amply demonstrated in countries affected by conflict in which core state institutions have been adversely affected. It is now abundantly clear that the existence of peaceful societies with effective and capable state institutions underpinned by the rule of law based on local context are central to eradicating poverty, establishing the conditions for access to jobs and basic services. Whereas the experience of many g7+ countries illustrates the need for peace and capable institutions, it is however a global phenomenon not confined to countries in or transitioning out of conflict. Peace is not just the absence of fear, conflict or violence. It enables all people to derive benefit from development and strengthens the social contract between governments and electorates. Underpinning this relationship is the capacity of state institutions, backed by adequate human capital to effectively deliver basic services.
It is therefore important to support and strengthen the evolution of state institutions rather than substituting them with unsustainable short term fixes. Thus crafting a post 2015 agenda or any global development framework without the integration of peace and capable institutions as goals will stall transformation in fragile states. In addition, a strong implementation and monitoring mechanism (contextualized at country level) must be developed to deliver the post 2015 development framework.
THE POST 2015 DEVELOPMENT AGENDA
The Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals concluded its 13th and last session in July 2014. The outcome document of the OWG includes a proposal for 17 Sustainable Development Goals to be integrated into the UN development agenda beyond 2015, and will likely form the basis of an intergovernmental negotiation to finalize the Post 2015 Development Agenda in the lead up to the special summit to be held in September 2015.
There have been a number of other inputs into the Post 2015 deliberations, including: The report of the High Level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda, A New Global Partnership: Eradicate Poverty and Transform Economies through Sustainable Development (May 2013); the report of the Secretary General, A life of dignity for all: accelerating progress towards the Millennium Development Goals and advancing the United Nations development agenda beyond 2015 (September 2013), and the Outcome document of the special event to follow up efforts made towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals (September 2013).
It is envisaged that the Secretary General will release a synthesis report in October 2014 to draw out the key priorities from the various inputs into the Post 2015 process.
PURPOSE OF THIS EVENT
This side event presents a timely opportunity to discuss the importance of peaceful societies and effective and capable institutions for sustainable development from a g7+ perspective.
It will explore how this issue has been addressed in the Post 2015 process to date, including the proposed goals in the OWG and HLP reports1 and how Member States can ensure the inclusion of a goal on peaceful societies and effective institutions so that the Post 2015 agenda can deliver a truly transformative and ambitious development framework.
The issue of peaceful societies, effective institutions and rule of law has been the subject of much scrutiny throughout the Post 2015 process. It will be important to build on the momentum and emerging consensus, while recognising that there remains a variety of positions on including this goal in the new development agenda.
Continued opportunities for informed dialogue and the sharing of experiences will help us to recalibrate our approach to peace and development in the Post 2015 Development Agenda to ensure that it is transformative and responds to the needs and realities of the 21st century.
Date: 22 September 2014
Time: 1:15:00PM – 2:45PM
Venue: Conference Room # 7 (UN)
Format: Keynote speech, Panel Discussion (g7+ Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Permanent Representatives), Q & A