The current environment and the experience during this COVID era more than ever usher in a need not only to recognize the stalwart role of nurses the world over, but to establish priority areas on which the profession should concentrate in order to prepare for future human development. This as I understand it, is the message of this year's International Nurses Day theme, ‘A Voice to Lead: A Vision for Future Health Care’. It resonates in the significance we place on May 12, the 201st birth anniversary of the legendary nurse, Florence Nightingale.
GOFAD was honoured last year when Sir George Alleyne presented the International Nurses Day blog Nursing Now and Forever in which he aptly made the point that Covid-19 brought into the sharpest relief one of the most critical roles of nurses that sometimes seems to be taken for granted. He referred to the discussions of “the technical advances in the profession and the loud and proper cries for them to take leadership roles in for example primary health care and universal health coverage”.
Over the past year, the role of nurses globally has been amplified as the number coronavirus cases (based on WHO tracker) ballooned from 5,934,936 to 160,074,267 and the number of deaths from 367,166 to 3,325,260. By having to cope with the burdens of this exponential increase in caseloads, nurses are often the health care providers with the most patient contact, those who are 'comforters in chief' and who are viewed by patients frequently as more approachable. They are at the heart of health communications. They are patient advocates. This means that nurses are more likely to encounter patients spreading misinformation, which gives them a special opportunity to intervene. But this pandemic has thrown so much more at them. It placed increasing demands on them, creating physical strain for frontline workers and psychological strain for those losing patients, co-workers and loved ones. It has led to the interpretation from the 19th annual Gallup Poll (April 2021) that in the USA, the pandemic has definitely taken a toll on medical frontline workers. “It isn’t necessarily what they signed up for”.
Yet for the 19th year in a row, according to this recent Gallup Poll, nurses were ranked as the most trusted and ethical of 15 professions. In fact, even as they came through the pandemic—their toughest year in the survey’s history—nurses’ approval rating rose another 4 percent.
Building a New Vision for the Health Workforce
McKinsey and Company: 2021 Future of work in Nursing— our newest survey of 400+ frontline medical frontline workers resulted in arriving at four broad strategies for building a new vision for the health work force:
The bottom line is that these strategies are applicable widely. In many countries, including those in the developing world, hospitals accelerated the uses of tech devices at the bedside that could integrate with patient records such as tablets for communication, and other forms of virtual monitoring. As a result, these developments could lead simultaneously to other opportunities for nurses to provide remote patient care in the future; have cost effective use of technologies rather than just having them as additional costs and burdens that nurses need to deal with every day; and delivering inputs to any aspect of a health system that affect their work: from hiring of team members, to ordering and use of supplies. (see attached)
The changing dynamics of COVID-19 on healthcare systems are relevant to institutions training the community of nurses in a variety of roles. Some undertaking original research to help clients understand and navigate a complex, ever-evolving regulatory landscape. Others working in professional development to help colleagues map out careers and build capabilities. Yet others serving in the social sector community practices and outreach in collaboration with physicians and other clinicians, like pharmacists. These are tasks that can be done in multiple ways to have impact on people’s lives, either one-on-one with patients and families or at a larger-scale at the systems level.
But there is another compounding factor which brings the softer skills of nurses into play. Bogus claims about the virus, masks and vaccines have exploded since COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic a year ago. Journalists, public health officials and tech companies have tried to push back against the falsehoods, but much of the job of correcting misinformation has fallen to the world’s front-line medical workers.
Conclusions Voices with Visions
I end with three random quotes that summarize the essence of how voices of nurses may shape the vision for the future that we celebrate.
“As a nurse, we have the opportunity to heal the heart, mind, soul and body of our patients, their families and ourselves. They may not remember your name but they will never forget the way you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou.
Nursing is not for everyone. It takes a very strong, intelligent, and compassionate person to take on the ills of the world with passion and purpose and work to maintain the health and well-being of the planet.” – Donna Wilk Cardill, Nurse consultant, McKinsey
Nursing for the future will be a dynamic and exciting endeavor. I urge you: embrace new clinical technology, focus on professional development and seek out opportunities to increase knowledge and gain expertise. You are our champions for a better, healthier future and together we continue on our path to provide comprehensive quality health care. Again. I salute you! Sandra Barrow Chief Nursing Officer (GP)Barbados
A President’s first 100 days are an arbitrary benchmark. Journalists and other commentators in the traditional media, comments in social media and standard polling entities use them as a point of measurement to draw comparisons between the current officeholder and Franklin D. Roosevelt (FDR), the last chief executive whose first three months were truly momentous. FDR passed 15 major pieces of legislation in his first 100 days and his New Deal Laws lasted for generations.
A Conventional Benchmark
The 100-day trope has also been taken seriously by Presidents including both Donald Trump and Joe Biden. The assessments of Biden’s 100 days are generally favourable, more so than four of the last Presidents. The most pervasive reasons for this relative success are that he ‘under promised and over delivered’ and his communications with stakeholders were for the most part substantiated by empirical information, ‘truthful’ and credible. His rollout numbers of the vaccine for example, originally promised at 100, 000 for the first 100 days and revised to 200,000 have been exceeded.
Stark contrast in Style and Substance
Several commentators have referred to Biden’s attempt at the restoration of the New Deal-style of FDR. But in essence, only one piece of legislation has been passed within his 100-days and his promises are circumscribed by four overlapping compounding crises —the pandemic, the economy, climate change and race relations. Biden’s relief bill at $2.9Trillion passed without a single Republican vote, is an enormous achievement. According to Elaine Kamarck, a Brookings Institution scholar of the presidency, “these have been emergency measures, justified by the pandemic.” Her view is that a better comparison with the FDR ‘s success can be made on the basis of the fate and durability of Biden’s proposed infrastructure bill, the family tax credit that promises to cut child poverty in half and a $15 minimum wage. The President's returning the US to the Paris Agreement in January 2021, enhances the hitherto waning standing of the country among major allies and will be the subject of a separate blog. Biden’s 54% approval rating after 100 days stands in stark contrast to Trump’s whose ratings never broke the 50% barrier throughout his Presidency.
During his 2016 presidential campaign, Trump promised that in his first 100 days he would repeal Obamacare, build a wall on the border with Mexico and persuade Congress to pass term limits. None of those things happened, but he did out do former holders of the office in one regard: “producing unshirted chaos". Among them, the imposed bans on immigrants and travelers from Muslim countries that were quickly reversed by federal courts; his stripping federal funding from sanctuary cities, also quickly challenged; and his national security advisor resigned amid a scandal over secret contacts with Russian officials. Even Trump himself disavowed his own self-proclaimed three-month deadlines while at the same time insisting, “I have done more than any other president in the first 100 days"
Polarization and Partisanship
Despite his high ratings on personal qualities and honesty the polls show that President Biden has made no new friends or new enemies. They reveal the greatest gap ever with his disapproval ratings at 6 % by Democrats and 80 percent by Republicans and approval ratings 86% democrats and 10 percent by Republicans.
The polls also show that Americans under the age of 36 years would not have experienced a landslide government majority. FDR's Democrats in 1932 received an average of 18% increase in each of the House of Representatives, Senate and Governorships. Linden Bain Johnson’s Democrats in 1968 achieved a 23% increase in the House and a 2:1 control of the Senate.
Ronald Regan campaigned on a platform of ‘Government as a problem’ and secured a biggest landslide victory in American history in 1984 winning 49 of the 50 states. His message has pervaded the electoral campaigns and the political mantra of Republican leadership ever since. Biden on the other hand, empowered by the exigencies of the pandemic has promoted the default setting, “government as the solution.” Lacking the majorities of FDR, LBJ and Ronald Regan, the question remains whether the multi legislative victories required by Biden to advance his agenda, can be achieved. However that he is the first President with so much governmental experience and given his current favorable ratings, the possibilities hang in the balance. They depend on how he is able to use the reconciliation process rather than the destabilization process that characterized the Trump era illustrated by the slow pace of staffing executive positions and the national disruption caused by a government shutdown within his 100 Days.
Shadows of Success Looming
President Biden chances of successful implementation are enhanced as he seems to operate from the playbook of William Galston, a former Clinton advisor, whose Anti-Pluralism: The Populist Threat to Liberal Democracy Anti-Pluralism shows the populist backlash that sustained Trumpism can be eroded by inclusive economic growth and frank discussion of pressing social and cultural issues. He also advocates for the survival of liberal democracy, despite its permanent tensions so long as citizens fight for it . That fight must be embedded in the aspirational goal of equity and the struggle to overturn systemic racism. The link, demonstrated by the pursuit of racial equity in the Kennedy era had a disastrous 100 days, upended by the ill-conceived Bay of Pigs (Cuba) debacle. But he managed to initiate a process that broke the Southern control of the rules committee on which LBJ with majority support both in the House and Senate could capitalize to pass radical civil rights legislation.
In these different political and social times, President Biden is fortunate that unemployment has dropped from 14% to 6 % between January and April 2021. This is largely associated with the improving health conditions. Over 50 % of Americans have received at least one vaccination. Still 4.2m remain unemployed including 12% of Black Community compared with 5.2% of the White population. Hence Biden’s emphasis on creating the possibilities for racial equity through whole of government policies, roll out of vaccinations for low income communities, tackling policing and police brutality in response to the Black Lives Matter Movement, and the introduction universal paid leave are all in line with the FDR syndrome of success. They are in addition, not only prerequisites for reducing systemic racism but also the stimulus to the strategy deployed by Biden to fight COVID 19 which mirrors FDR's philosophy.
Dark Clouds on the Horizon
Despite optimism for the Democratic Party stimulated by Biden's performance in the first 100 days, dark clouds hover. Among the immediate ones to be lifted are sustainable economic growth linked to arresting the coronavirus, improving democratic standing at the mid-terms, immigration and border controls, among others.
Mid-terms are in 2022 and must take into account that in the normal electoral apportionment, the President’s party tends to lose votes. At the same time, indications are that polarization that characterized the 2020 elections is likely carry over. With respect to improving democratic political standing, while Trump never tried to expand his base, Biden can do so by increasing for example, the approval ratings among Whites without college degrees and Latinos which now stand at 36% and 38% respectively. Accordingly, Biden must take into consideration the view that the essence of working class resistance is less about economics than it is cultural.
Immigration, a perennial issue is at breaking point aggravated by what has been inherited from the previous administration. To deal with the border issue within the wider ambit of immigration reform, President Biden has placed Vice President Kamala Harris in charge of what has become a most significant humanitarian issue. This can make or break her future political fortunes. The current unplanned immigration crisis with a massive number of children at the border has already sparked an expanded refugee proclamation by President Biden. This issue for which Biden has received a 37% approval rating, bucks the positive trends.
Conclusion: So What's the Deal!
Major dark clouds hover around the nexus between economic and health policies driven by sustainable economic development which depends on getting COVID-19 under control, reducing unemployment and moving forward with the ambitious infra structure programme. Others include stabilizing the democratic process which from President Biden's perspective means making the Democratic Party a viable administration with working majorities in Congress, and reforming immigration with border control as the immediate target. But meaningful sustainability also requires extinguishing those dark clouds of institutional racism by placing emphasis on the pursuit of equity and inclusion. Impediments to remedial action have been flagged. The filibuster and partisan cleavages in Congress are only part of the problem. Important too, is the need for the Democratic party to grow its numbers in Congress to deliver on a partisan agenda in view of Republicans' resolve on non-cooperation..
Yet bipartisan accomplishments are still possible. Despite the polarized environment, the 116th Congress passed the CARES Act (March 2020), the most effective antipoverty law passed in the USA in more than a generation. Congress also enacted almost $4 trillion in pandemic relief. During the President's Obama's tenure some major pieces of bipartisan legislation were achieved. Among them: the expansion of the Violence against women Act, the K-12 Education Policy and the 21st Century Cures Act which among other things according to Francis Lee and James Curry The Limits of Party: Congress and Lawmaking in a Polarized Era. Atlantic (April 23, 2021) may have helped speed up the release of the COVID-19 vaccines.
In the final analysis, the deal is to explore the available options to forestall economic and social fatalities from dark clouds. For Lee and Curry from their empirical examination of political history, the lessons from FDR to the present time are clear. " Congressional majority parties today are neither more nor less successful at enacting their partisan agendas. They are not more likely to ram though partisan laws or become mired in stalemate". In other words a sustainable political culture requires that "parties continue to build bipartisan coalitions for their legislative priorities and typically compromise on their original visions for legislation in order to achieve legislative success". This seems a reason path to removing authoritarian dark clouds that obscure the vision to liberal democracy.
Over the past two weeks, both the University of Guyana (UG) and the University of the West Indies (UWI) have addressed the issues of surviving in the post COVID era. In the case of UG, the discussions centered on the construction of the Strategic Blueprint (Plan) to 2040. Its emphasis is on rolling out hybrid education placing priorities on creating viable research centres, multidisciplinary approaches and a business model for ensuring sustainability. For UWI, its focus is on implementing the Triple Strategy: Access, Alignment and Agility to revitalize Caribbean Development 2017-2022. Emphasis has been placed on its substantial research profile and global approach to partnering with institutions in Africa, Canada, China, European Union and USA. These attributes have contributed to UWI's high ranking in the 400-500 band or the top 2.5% of Universities in the world, based on the 2021 Times Educational Impact Rankings. The details of these activities reveal that both UG’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Paloma Mohamed Martin and UWI’s Vice Chancellor, Sir Hilary Beckles and their senior management teams must be congratulated for their creative leadership in confronting the challenges of these COVID-19 times.
Challenges to Overcome
The severity of the times that affect the region's higher educational institutions is articulated in " A post pandemic assessment of the SDGs", a new study by the IMF ( April 29, 2021). The study proposes a framework for developing countries to evaluate policy choices that can raise long-term growth, mobilize more revenue, and attract private investments to help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). To say that the COVID-19 pandemic has hit countries' development agendas hard, is an understatement with reference to the Caribbean. ECLAC'S Economic Development Report (April 2021) indicates that the crisis is threatening to leave the Latin America and Caribbean region with higher poverty levels, greater inequality, and higher levels of debt across virtually all countries. There are many potential reasons why the region fared poorly. Weak health infrastructure, patchy enforcement of lockdowns, high levels of informality, and a lack of connectivity to work from home worsened the health crisis.
Meanwhile, limited fiscal packages and central bank assistance of 3% - 8.5% of GDP compared with an average of 19% for advanced countries may have caused more suffering to the region’s economies. It will for example, result in shrinking government resources available for spending on achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The IMF’s study which assesses the current state of funding SDGs in five key development areas—: education, health, roads, electricity, and water and sanitation — is particularly relevant. Based on its newly developed “dynamic macroeconomic framework”, the study predicts that even with ambitious domestic reforms, most developing countries will not be able to raise the necessary resources to finance these goals. They will need decisive and extraordinary support from the international community—including private and official donors and international financial institutions.
It is in response to these circumstances that long term planning such as those undertaken by UG’s Blueprint and UWI’s Triple Strategy is commendable. They both focus on alternative revenue streams to those provided by governments, configuring new programs, fostering non- traditional partnerships and achieving greater equity in access to higher education.
The 2021 Times Educational Impact Rankings include criteria for assessing Universities on their performance around selected SDGs, thereby ensuring connections between universities and the respective national and regional communities that they serve. This is referred to by UG as "citizens success", one of the major goals in its Blueprint and the aspiration of one graduate per household by 2040. Like UWI, UG has been able to pivot to online learning and teaching with a high degree of success. UG has even increased its enrollment for 2020-2021 amid the COVID crisis. UWI has at the same time attracted the largest all time grant of US $25m through partnership with Silicon Valley to expand its digital footprint.
Some Critical Issues to be Resolved
Notwithstanding the achievements and aspirational goals of UG and UWI, there are some overarching considerations for universities contributing to the achievement of the 2030 SDGs. They raise some random thoughts in the form of the following questions:
Framing the Answers -Two Extreme cases
Answers to these questions are grounded in the experiences of a wide array of universities with special reference to articles, webinars and podcasts in several recent issues from Inside Higher Ed. Among them are two articles with diametrically opposed results: one on Fordham University, Bronx, New York on creative budgeting in the COVID era https://insight.fordham.edu/2021-anomaly-balanced-budget/. The other on the insolvency declaration at Laurentian University in Ontario, Canada:https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2021/04/29/insolvency-declaration-laurentian-throws-much-limbo
Focusing More Specifically on Differentiation
The following are some summary responses to the questions raised:
Conclusion: Toward a Comprehensive Regional Dialogue
As institutions and individuals confront the challenges of the COVID-19 era, it is becoming clear that for the CARICOM region there is much to be gained by a collective approach. It is for example heartening to note Prime Minister Keith Rowley, Chair of the Caribbean Community, appealing for vaccine supplies for the Region (not only for Trinidad and Tobago). A recent meeting of CARICOM Ministers of Health revealed the importance of the coordinating role of the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) in disseminating scientific information, linking the region's COVID-19 response through collaboration with the Pan American Health Organization and the World Health Organization. CARICOM counties are also rallying assistance for St Vincent and the Grenadines due to the Soufrière volcanic eruption that has created a national crisis. Educational institutions in various ways -- especially UWI -- have been important sources of analysis and dissemination of information on the coronavirus. This crisis has however created an awareness of the need for collaboration. It provides a most appropriate opportunity for dialogue among our national and regional institutions. Consideration could be given to a theme such as, the Future of Higher Education in the Caribbean in the Post COVID-19 era- taking collective action in support of a Community for all.
As we write this Blog on the 51st anniversary of World Earth day, 40 world leaders are engaged in a Virtual Climate Summit convened by President Joseph Biden. The aims among others, are to galvanize efforts by the world’s major economies to keep a limit of global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius and to protect lives and livelihoods from the impacts of climate change. His aspirational goal for USA is to achieve net zero by 2050. It seemed to simulate positive responses from China and many other countries including Russia. Reinstating the USA in the 2015 Paris Agreement as one the first acts of his Presidency indicates a serious intent to respond to the science which shows that threats of climate change are mounting. Global average temperatures are rising. There is increased frequency and severity of extreme weather events, such as heatwaves, droughts, floods, winter storms, hurricanes and wildfires. All these affect the health and safety of communities around the world. According to a recent report from the UN, without urgent action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero and invest in sustainable development, climate change could push 100 million people into extreme poverty in the next decade.
Earth Day was initiated on April 22, 1970 in the USA with demonstrations involving 20 million Americans against dangerously serious issues such as: toxic drinking water, air pollution, and the effects of pesticides. It led to the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency, provided a model for other countries and introduced laws such as the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Endangered Species Act. Despite these efforts, carbon emissions have increased worldwide due to human abuse of the environment. The world’s tropical forests, a reservoir for trapping carbon emissions are rapidly being destroyed. So have the natural habitat of wildlife species. Conserving and restoring tropical forests and wildlife are among the most immediate steps necessary to reduce the risk of future pandemics.
What is more, biodiversity that underpins all life on Earth from the genetic make up of plants and animals to cultural diversity is under serious attack. WHO’s state of knowledge report jointly published with the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) fully amplifies the health consequences of biodiversity loss and change. https://www.who.int/publications-detail-redirect/connecting-global-priorities-biodiversity-and-human-health . They show that the impact on nutrition, new infectious diseases and on the shifts in the distribution of plants, pathogens, animals, and even human settlements, are all affected by climate change. This is why international organizations, national governments, and companies are spending some 95 percent of their climate-related investment on carbon emission reductions. But those efforts will serve to prevent only the worst-case scenarios. The fact is that climate change has already done a great deal of damage and that more harmful effects will be impossible to avert altogether.
World leaders at the Biden Summit on Climate Change have mostly referred to high tech solutions such as solar panels, electric vehicles, targets to transition to on-grid services and new construction, farming and battery technologies. Yet reducing emissions is just half the battle. The UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, shows how restoring our damaged ecosystems will help to end poverty, combat climate change and prevent mass extinction. Fortunately, most of the adjustments needed to lessen their impact are not difficult. Many adaptations do not require new technology. Nor do they have to pass through ‘the political minefield of international climate action’. Instead, many simply require citizens to take the initiative in their local communities.
Two illustrations from the Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) region are pertinent.
First, St Lucia has just launched a stimulating 4-minute animated video designed to raise public awareness about climate change. Second, Latin America and the Caribbean 24 states are signatories, while 12 have ratified the Regional Agreement on Access to Information, Public Participation and Justice in Environmental Matters known as the Escazú Agreement
came into force on World’s Earth Day 2021. It also commemorates International Mother Earth Day. To mark the occasion, the UN Secretary General says “we must act decisively to protect our planet from both the coronavirus and the existential threat of climate disruption”. This statement aptly describes the stark reality of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines currently in a major crisis from La Soufrière, silent since 1979, that combines a volcanic eruption, its largest COVID-19 surge since the pandemic, the region’s worst Dengue outbreak in recent history, and a new, possibly deadly, hurricane season. With further eruptions expected in the coming weeks, experts believe that the growing humanitarian crisis will last months. The UN launching a $29.2 million global funding appeal is an illustration of Global solidarity.
However, it was Prime Minister Brown of Antigua and Barbuda speaking on behalf of the the 44 members of the Alliance of Small Island States (OASIS) at the Summit, that highlighted the fact these countries contributing just 1.5 percent of the greenhouse gas emissions of industrialized nations, are the most affected by climate change. Yet many of them have already begun to roll out ambitious programmes to reduce their small carbon footprint, particularly in renewable energy. He made the economic case for concessional financing for small states based on unsustainable levels of debt because of repeated borrowings to rebuild and recover from continuous debilitation by natural disasters, arising from climate change. He also advocated for dismantling the false criterion of middle and high per capita income countries, which ignores the huge vulnerabilities that small states face. “This requires action to design new and innovative financial instruments and to provide debt relief, including debt cancellation, debt suspension, debt rescheduling, debt restructuring and debt-for-climate swap.” He also called for funding to compensate for damage to help reconstruct the AOSIS economies and funding to acquire decarbonized technologies to assist in building resilience. These demands are by no means new or novel but they require restating. Now is the time for more collective advocacy by AOSIS in the run up to the Climate Change Conference of the Parties in Glasgow in December 2021.
Again as was the case at the Climate Change debates at the UN in September 2019, it was the voice of youth on the problem and the need to “Restore our Earth” that resonated through Greta Thunberg’s:
Professor Patricia Anderson shines a light on Masculinity and Fathering with implications for Reimagining Gender RelationsRead Now
Patricia Anderson Masculinity and Fathering in Jamaica
The University of the West Indies Press, Jamaica, 2021
This is a groundbreaking study of fathering in Jamaica but with importance for understanding the essence of gender relations in the Caribbean. It draws on the classic works and approaches advanced by leading sociologists and anthropologists including Raymond Smith (1956), George Roberts (1957), Edith Clarke (1957), Lloyd Brathwaite (1960), Michael Smith (1962). It also builds on the more recent work of Christine Barrow (1996) among others. Most important is the prominence it gives to pioneering unpublished and unfinished work of Professor Barry Chevannes and a study, Contribution of Caribbean men to the Family (1991) by Janet Brown, two excerpts from which are included in this book. This study carefully documents the range of the literature on the Afro-Caribbean family structure and gender relations in the Caribbean, the historical experiences rooted in slavery and the colonial system. It sets the scene for comprehending some key areas of research including sexuality, family building, outside children, domestic roles, conflict and violence, gender relations, men’s family bonds, their attachment to peer groups and the overall impact of these factors on the essential component of fathering. It highlights how fathering opens the rocky experience of being fathered, not fathered, or not very well fathered. These may joyous or painful.
Focus on Fathering
This book fills a void by drawing attention to patterns of fathering that hitherto have been scanty. It faithfully conveys the social worlds of fathers by illustrations of their unfiltered sentiments and views. In so doing, Professor Anderson produces material that is rich with fathering and parenting Identities. They challenge the anecdotal interpretations of the social worlds of Jamaican fathers. For example, they shatter the overwhelming opinion of male dominance that has often overshadowed the need to explore the factors shaping male behavior. It does this through community surveys and qualitative research that explore issues such as the essence of gender socialization of the average Jamaican father; and the failure to question the validity or cause of male absence from the "domestic sphere”. It seeks answers to questions such as: Can men be good fathers and bad husbands? How do men feel about their children, about women, their partners, their daughters, their own mothers and their fathering activities?
It is intriguing to note the methodology used in this study that relates fathering to gender relations by measuring two sets of values: fathering identity and macho identity. In this respect, the values of fathering depend on (a) whether they themselves were well or poorly fathered; (b) relations with their partners or “baby mothers" and (c) interactions with their children. There are other views that contribute to understanding what men contribute to their communities that make their lives and success as fathers?. These include their views of women, childbearing and gender roles.
The authenticity of this study is bolstered by its choice of locating its survey of men’s attitudes and values in four communities based on a range social class differences, with variations in family structure and implications for gender relations. What is fascinating from my understanding of the results of this survey is that:
The Intrigues of Masculinity
Another intriguing element of this study is its focus on masculinity. The construct here is: what it means to be a man against which to be judged by the community and which pressures men and boys to engage in conduct that reproduces social inequalities? The conclusion is that there is no single ideal but there are some common traits like breadwinner, control of emotions, being respected, avoiding feminism, risk taking, toughness, violence, heterosexuality and heterosexism. Masculinity also displays an expressed aversion to homosexuality and direct relations to homophobia. It is, in addition associated with a range of behaviors from sexual harassment to domestic and sexual violence and non-relational sex (without emotional involvement).
Convergence and Contradictions
What therefore emerges is the reality that Jamaican men cling to two sets of values —Fathering and Masculinity — which are inherently contradictory. In the former, the attributes of 'fathering identity' include involvement in parenting styles among which are challenges of discipline, time and talking together, teaching and nurturing. The macho identity is aligned to liming or drinking spots and the streets represent a sense of being in control, so essential to men. It is a form of social organization that is informal and not kinship based. While masculinity defines gender distinction and power relations between men and women, fathering focuses on the power relations with the husband-father role. But it is important to note that these distinctions tend to break down as more women enter the workforce and fathers take more responsibilities in the socialization of their children.
Professor Patricia Anderson must be congratulated for this outstanding work. It is essential reading especially as we contemplate further challenges to family life and gender relations in the persistent COVID-19 era and beyond. We are grateful for the wisdom portrayed in this book. It tells us that the main dimensions which fathers identified as being central to their role are responsibility, economic maintenance, love and emotional support, nurturing and setting an example. It identifies the consistency with which Jamaican fathers representing a range of social classes articulated their understanding of fatherhood. It establishes clearly that these values represent a common cultural core. What in addition this study brings to the fore is the impact of harsh economic conditions in unmistakable limiting the ability of Jamaican men to translate their fathering commitment into active and continuing involvement. This socioeconomic indicator is perhaps an important pivot in the reimagining of gender studies in the Caribbean which is the subject for a follow up discussion. Professor Anderson’s summary carried on the cover of the book provides the most sanguine conclusion:
“Across the social class Jamaican men share a common cultural conception of what is required to be a good father. However they are also tied to definitions of hegemonic masculinity which emphasize male dominance and virility so that domestic conflict maybe inevitable and men’s aspirations to be good fathers may become imperiled. Given these countervailing values there is a struggle to find a reasonable fit. The study concludes that it is possible for Jamaican men to be good fathers but bad husbands”
What a pleasure is has been to listen to the voices of Caribbean youth leaders at the 10th Economic and Social Council Youth Forum sponsored by the UN, April 7-8, 2021. It is clear that they "Get It." They advocated for building resilience, drive, creativity and leadership in participating in the decade of action to deliver the Sustainable development Goals (SDGs). In his opening statement to the Forum, H.E. Mr. Munir Akram, President of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) makes the case that: "The future belongs to you, the youth. We need your energy, your ideals, your boldness, your imagination, your innovation, to build the structure of a peaceful, prosperous and equal world order”
Youth in the COVID-19 Era: What are they responding to?
The Forum began on April 7th which coincided with World Health Day, highlighting the immense impacts that COVID-19 on young people around the world:
The forum also takes place in a year when COVID-19 has had multidimensional health, economic and social impacts globally. In Latin America and the Caribbean gross domestic product has declined 7-7% in 2020, poverty effects 231million people with an increase of 28.5 million people living in extreme poverty.
How are the Challenges facing Youth being tackled?
At the special Caribbean Youth Regional Table within the Forum (April 8) the panelists (listed at the end) highlighted the need to view good health and wellbeing in the broadest context of the WHO mission of health as embracing physical, mental and social well-being. In the Caribbean as in the entire Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) region, the challenge is the triple burden of food insecurity, malnutrition and obesity. The closing of schools for example, has had a negative impact on those vulnerable youth and households. The UN Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG) Survey, 2020 for LAC shows that 31% of young people suffered from shortage of food with 16 percent from households without resources to buy food. In addition, 52% of young people expressed experiencing greater stress, 47% of having panic attacks during the lock down and more than 50% of those living with HIV stopped accessing antiretroviral treatment. There was also a recognition that the migrant populations were particularly affected due to structural victimization. These factors were compounded by a lack of adequate economic responses, largely due to the fact that many Caribbean countries are dependent on tourism whose revenue stream both for governments and the private sector, is highly compromised. The Youth Leaders were aware that the need to procure loans to cushion the economic crisis will increase the burden of debt repayment which their generation would have to bear. Consequently, they supported the new Special Drawing Rights proposed by the IMF. The dilemmas for many Caribbean countries are that they do not have a system of universal unemployment insurance and lack other adequate social safety net programs.
The Caribbean Regional Table pointed to comparable challenges resulting from the inequities in access to education that were magnified by digitization, resulting in an increasing number of less privileged children and young people being left behind. This level of vulnerability is even more so when the differently abled are added to the mix. Then there is a different dimension to digitization which plagues many Caribbean societies. Several processes that enhance more effective ways of doing business requiring digitization are lacking. These include implementing online banking, online accounting, and other financial and operational procedures. Even when they exist, uneven access again negatively affects the marginalized individuals and communities the most.
Why Caribbean youth "Get It"
The Caribbean Youth advanced several worthwhile recommendations which focused on 5 key issues each of which provided an understanding of the different youth platforms used to respond to the pandemic, the challenges and priorities related to specific aspects of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. They include:
The Caribbean Youth Regional Table Session concluded that these and other challenges, must be addressed comprehensively and coherently. They are the vitality of leadership capabilities by their active involvement in several initiatives for overcoming the challenges of COVID-19. They have advocated for the Caribbean to act collectively, engage youth in the policy formulation, and include youth more actively and less as tokenism in the business of the Caribbean Community. And through collective Caribbean action, they call for establishing the dynamics to foster international cooperation, especially by fully utilizing and strengthening the United Nations – the world’s only universal organization – and by reinforcing respect for its fundamental principles of Justice for All.
Reflecting on the history of youth development in the Caribbean, it is revealing that in 2018, the UN Secretary-General launched the first-ever UN system-wide Youth Strategy. This is 8 years after the Caribbean Youth Ambassadors strategy: The Eye on the Future was presented to CARICOM Heads of Government in Suriname. That strategy evolved in an era when many CARICOM Member and Associate Member States included CARICOM Youth Ambassadors in their country delegations to the Heads of Government Conference. More recently, CARICOM Secretary General, Ambassador Irwin Larocque valiantly convened annual CYA Forums and the Pan Caribbean Partnership against HIV/AIDS sponsored a series of engagements involving CYAs in its Justice for All Programme. But significant results require activities designed to achieve, youth resilience be institutionalized and budgeted for. The current discussion of Caribbean Youth Leaders at the UN Youth Forum 2021, and their articulation for action toward sustainable development deserve the fullest attention by CARICOM Heads of Government. An appropriate message is delivered by the UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres to the UN Youth Forum 2021. Watch the video:
Participants in the Caribbean Youth Leaders at the Latin American and Caribbean Regional Table
Dominique Noralez (Belize) & Java Sealy (Barbados)-- Co-Chairs
Franz George, Commonwealth Youth Council; Roshanna Trim, Caribbean Regional Youth Council; Representatives of Caribbean Youth Councils: Christopher Laurie, Kurba-Marie Questell, Pryia Khan , Claudia Taboada, Delano DaSouza.
I saw at first hand the miraculous micro-sculptures of Jamaican-born Willard Wigan at an exhibition, “Art in the Eye of a Needle” at the Parish Gallery, Washington, DC on January 3, 2013. It was an unbelievable revelation of the genius of the human spirit. Viewing this exhibition required a microscope. The intriguing story of a young boy in England whose teacher proclaimed him “a dunce, destined to go nowhere” and who emerged with highest acclaim in the World of Art is featured in the Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity (August 2020).https://dyslexia.yale.edu/story/willard-wigan/
In 2007, this young dyslexic and creative young man was decorated with one of the highest awards given to citizens from the British Government, a Member of Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his contributions to the Art Community. He has also recently been proclaimed in the Guinness Book of Record (2020) as having produced the smallest ever sculpture in the World. He attributes his success to his Jamaican mother who urged him to aspire to greatness through “small things” applying discipline in conquering physical and mental demands. Those of you who have not heard or read of Willard Wigan may find both the feature from the You-Tube production of his feats (below) a worthwhile investment of your time (you will encounter many ads during the You-Tube but should find it most rewarding to persevere to the end) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8cJAIzBs-U
GOFAD wishes you a happy Easter!
Wilson Harris was born in 1921 in New Amsterdam, in what was then British Guiana, on 24 March, 1921, and died March 8, 2018. He is considered one of the most original writers of the twentieth century, for his fiction, essays, and poems that explore human history, metaphysics, and the natural world. According to the obituary in The London Guardian "his was an inimitable style, dense with metaphor, symbolism, and mythological reference". He received a Knighthood in June 2017 from the Queen for his services to literature.
The Genesis of a Magical Writer
After Harris' marriage to Cecily Carew in 1945 ended in divorce, he emigrated to England in 1959, met and married Scottish writer Margaret Burns who died in 2010. He became a full-time writer, involved in lecturing and teaching creative writing classes at various universities in the United States and other countries. The Ramson Center in Texas which houses the vast collection of works has this to say: “Harris’s personal experiences with the complex Guyanese landscape and multi-racial culture influenced his writing. His novels, known for their abstract and experimental nature, are full of metaphors and complex symbolism, with an intermingling of time, reality, imagination, memory, and dreams; they have been called “psychical expeditions”.
Culling from a series of articles on this renowned writer, it is important to note the extent to which his earlier profession as a land surveyor before leaving Guyana for England influenced his thinking and writing. His exploration of the dense forests, rivers and vast savannahs of the Guyanese hinterland for example, features prominently in the settings of his fiction. According to a recent article by Faber and Faber, the English publishers of many of his works, "Harris' novels are complex, alluding to diverse mythologies from different cultures, and eschew conventional narration in favour of shifting interwoven voices".
Establishing a Class by Himself
Among the wide range of his works is the novel, Palace of the Peacock (1960), the first of The Guyana Quartet, which includes The Far Journey of Oudin (1961), The Whole Armour (1962) and The Secret Ladder (1963). They formed the basis of a magnificent series of lectures he gave to overflowing audiences at the Sir Phillip Sherlock Cultural Center, UWI Mona in 1984. But many others followed: including, The Carnival Trilogy (Carnival (1985), The Infinite Rehearsal (1987) and The Four Banks of the River of Space (1990), Jonestown (1996), which tells of the mass-suicide of a thousand followers of cult leader Jim Jones, The Dark Jester (2001), a semi-autobiographical novel, The Mask of the Beggar (2003), and one of his most accessible novels (for me easier to read and amusing), The Ghost of Memory (2006). But there were many more of which the best resources on his life and work from across the web can be found on: https://www.bocaslitfest.com/wilson-harris-at-100/
Wilson Harris also wrote non-fiction and critical essays and has been awarded honorary doctorates by several universities, including the University of the West Indies (1984) and the University of Liège (2001). He has twice been winner of the Guyana Prize for Literature. Harris won the Guyana National Prize for Literature in 1987 and 2002. On his 95th birthday, a year before he died he gave an interview to the BBC, erudite and incisive which truly establishes his pedigree with the description, “writer as magician”.
Keeping his Pedigree Alive
Moray House Trust with support from the NGC Bocas Lit Fest will premiere “The Unfinished Genesis of the Imagination”. It is an excerpt from a dramatic work in progress that compares two approaches to social change in the Caribbean: Wilson Harris’s dreamworld of the creative imagination and Walter Rodney’s more grounded approach on Saturday March 27, 2021 at 6.00 p.m. Guyana time. This excerpt explores the radical imagining championed by Wilson Harris. See video production at youtube.com/bocaslitfest, facebook.com/bocaslitfest, or here on our Wilson Harris at 100 webpage, They aptlyexplore "the groundbreaking, mind-expanding work of Harris through videos, texts, images, and sound recordings, including an excerpt from his novel, Heartland, courtesy Peepal Tree Press".
Two decades after the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action from the World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance in 2001, International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on 21 March each year, is a reminder of the persistence of systemic racial discrimination that continues to strangle the rights of people of African descent to equal services, quality education, decent work and meaningful participation. This Year the theme is appropriately Youth Standing up against Racism.
Recognizing the 20th anniversary of the Durban Declaration, sparks a reflection on a period of my career when I had recently joined the staff of the CARICOM Secretariat (in 2000) and thrust into a coordinating role in the preparatory consultations for the Region's participation in the September 2001 Durban Conference in South Africa. The CARICOM Delegation was led by Hon Mia Mottley, then Minister of Education, Youth and Culture of Barbados. It included representatives from several governments and NGOs across the Caribbean region, UWI, and significantly, the recently formed CARICOM Youth Ambassadors (CYAs). Having to coordinate and present the CARICOM Secretariat's paper at a joint CARICOM-UWI Forum at UWI St Augustine in March 2000, created a deep awareness of the entrenched harms inflicted by racism over generations.
The 2000 CARICOM paper called upon States to honour the memory of victims of the historical injustices of slavery, the slave trade, including the transatlantic slave trade, colonialism and apartheid. It recognized that the contemporary genesis for the world’s commemorating the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on 21 March, is because on that day in 1960, the police in Sharpeville, South Africa, opened fire and killed Youth leader Steve Bikko among 69 people at a peaceful demonstration against apartheid "pass laws".
The South Africa atrocity converged with and amplified the advocacy for the Black Power movement in the USA inspired by Malcolm X, Stokely Carmichael of the Student Coordinating Committee and Angela Davis, Huey Newton and Bobby Seale of the Black Panther Party. The Black Power Movement took root in the Caribbean in Trinidad and Tobago (1968-1969), coinciding with my first year on the staff of UWI St Augustine. It provides a vivid reminder of the power of youth leadership of Geddes Granger (later, Makakndal Daaga) and Khafra Khambon of the National Joint Action Committee (NJAC) which was aligned to the UWI St Augustine Guild of Undergraduates that sparked major social reforms introduced by the PNM government led by Dr Eric Williams. The historical events, their socio-economic and political results are aptly analyzed in Selwyn Ryan memoirs, Ryan Recalls reviews in GOFAD by Compton Bourne (11/11/2019). It helps us to understand the ripple effects of Apartheid through the Sharpeville protests, the Black Power movement in the USA and its contagious effects in the Caribbean. Important fragments are the Rodney riots led by UWI Students following his deportation from Jamaica and the emergence of Rosie Douglas who led the students protest at Sir George William University (now Concordia University) See Micheal O West History vs. Historical Memory: Rosie Douglas, Black Power on Campus, and the Canadian Color Conceit (2017)
The tenor of the international Black Power movement and its militancy differed from the earlier nonviolent protests in the USA. Among them were the Montgomery bus boycott led by Martin Luther King in the winter of 1959, resulting in the arrest of Rosa Parks and the March to over the Edmund Pettus Bridge that crossed the Alabama River out of Selma led by John Lewis and Hosea Williams on “Bloody Sunday” March 7, 1965 . The latter event is recorded in detail in Chapter 5 Bloody Sunday in John Lewis, Walking with the Wind: A Memoir of the Civil Rights Movement 1998.
The case of the US is the starkest evidence of the long history of humanity's struggle to end racism and racial discrimination. Events over the past year signal a critical moment afflicting the entire world and have heightened the urgency of action to end the scourge of racism, which in words of the Antonio Gutterres Secretary-General, "violates the UN Charter and debases us all as human beings”. He is of course referring to the escalation of deep rage at the violence, injustice, abuse and unfairness faced by millions as protests rock cities around the world.
This feature is compounded by the spread of the Coronavirus in early 2020, as a parallel pandemic was unleashed to that of hatred, violence and fear against certain ethnicities and nationalities. It quickly became clear that stark inequities, sometimes rooted in racism, had subjected minorities to a significantly higher risk of infection and death.
Young people again massively showed their support at the 2020 Black Lives Matter marches, which drew millions of demonstrators worldwide. On the streets, groundswells of youth - mostly teens and twenty-somethings - came together to protest against racial injustice. On social media, they mobilized participation, calling on their peers to speak out, and to stand up for the equal rights and justice for all.
The socio economic impact of COVID-19 points to very stark racial disparities. In the USA for example, infection, hospitalization and death rates amongst people of African descent are respectively triple, five times and double the rates seen amongst white Americans. American life expectancy dropped a full year due to the pandemic – but the life expectancy of Black Americans declined by 2.7 years. In the United Kingdom, women and men of African descent were four times more likely to die of COVID-19 than white people. The pandemic's impact on the livelihoods and income of people from minority communities has been massively disproportionate, in every region.
Pulitzer Prize Winner Isabel Wilkerson in her recent book, Caste:The Origins of Our Discontent, explains that the pervasiveness of the caste is not limited to India but also applicable to racism in the USA. She states that: “long before the the American Revolution, a human hierarchy had evolved on the contested soil of what would become the United States, a concept of birthright, the temptation of entitled expansion that would set the world’s first democracy and with it then ranking of human value and usages”. But most important is her drawing on the comprehensive work of Swedish social economist, Gunner Myrdal. He concluded that America created a caste system to maintain a color line that to the ordinary white man functions to uphold the caste system for keeping the negro in his place. In other words for Myrdal the most accurate term to describe the workings of American society is not race but caste.
Wilkerson's brilliant book provides the answers to questions asked in previous GOFAD blogs such as: How did Donald Trump receive so many votes? What is the link between cultism and racism? Why is white supremacy so pervasive? It also explains the vulgar display of white nationalism and white insurrectionism on January 6, 2021 inspired by Donald Trump and for which with complicity, Republicans in both the House of Representatives and Senate conspired against convicting him.
Youth Leadership Taking a Stand
It is against this general background that youth leadership is required to find the formula for taking action. Among the broad range of activities on which to pivot the following are put forward for consideration:
I vividly recall the tragedy in the 1962 film of "To Kill a Mockingbird,” with Gregory Peck based on Lee Harper’s book which no doubt represents thousands of true-life stories just like it, that could only come in a racist society. The black man in the story clearly could not have committed the crimes of which he was accused, but the all-white jury simply would not acquit him, instead sending him to prison, where he would be shot "trying to escape." These types of stories are part of the hateful legacy of racism that have persisted to day in George Floyd, Breana Taylor and others, who, except for racism, did not have to die.
In her heart-wrenching debut memoir, Why the Caged Birds Sing, Maya Angelou shares her experience with racism and bigotry and how she turned to literature and her own inner strength to help her survive. For those who need their lessons couched in story, you can't go wrong with Maya Angelou.
A Year After Declaring COVID-19 an Epidemic: It's Time to Take the World from the Brink of a Catastrophic Moral FailureRead Now
March 11, 2021 is a landmark in the history of COVID-19. It marks one year since the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the COVID-19 outbreak, a pandemic. It is also a defining moment in the USA when President Biden signed the US$1.9B American Rescue Plan (Relief Bill) giving hope for the economic and social redemption to many citizens and small businesses. This anniversary also coincides with a period when due to the collective scientific response, there is a better understanding of the crisis and the rollout of vaccines. Yet there remains cynicism in some quarters of whether the world is better prepared for the next pandemic and the lessons learned from the failures of detection, preparation, and cooperation; political repercussions; and missteps that have resulted in 2.6 million deaths worldwide and 528,000 in the USA.
Preparing for the next Pandemic
According to an article "How the Pandemic Changed the World" (Foreign Affairs, March 10, 2021), time is running out in “Preparing for the Next Pandemic.” This preparation, it advocates, requires governments, businesses and public health leaders acting now with decisiveness and purpose to avoid another global catastrophe. “Terrible as it is, COVID-19 should serve as a warning of how much worse a pandemic could be—and spur the necessary action to contain an outbreak before it is again too late”. The article refers to a 2017 book (which I haven’t read) Deadliest Enemy: Our War Against Killer Germs by MICHAEL T. OSTERHOLM and MARK OLSHAKER, two notable scientists. The Book accordingly illustrates the epidemiology of SARS, MERS, and a number of other recent outbreaks—the 2009 H1N1 flu pandemic that started in Mexico, the 2014–16 Ebola epidemic in West Africa, the 2015–16 spread of the Zika flavivirus from the Pacific Islands to North and South America. It states that although the diseases differed from one another in different ways including their clinical presentations and, degree of severity and clinical presentation, they all came as surprises when they shouldn’t have.
Politics and Security Fears Crippling the Collective Response
Politics and security fears have been characterized by Yanzhong Huang in Foreign Affairs (January 28, 2021) as crippling the collective global response. Within months of COVID-19’s initial discovery in Wuhan, China, in December 2019, Trump, took to calling COVID-19 the “China virus,” blaming Beijing for having “instigated a global pandemic.” Chinese state media fired back, insisting that “though COVID-19 was first discovered in China, it does not mean that it originated from China". Now Biden’s pledge to hold a summit of democracies to tackle COVID-19 aimed at asserting US diplomatic leadership of the free world, risks reinforcing this divisive narrative, carving the globe into two political camps in the face of a common global challenge. Amid the current pandemic, governments have repeatedly forsaken opportunities for consultation, joint planning, and collaboration, opting instead to adopt nationalist stances that have put them at odds with one another and with the WHO. The result has been a near-total lack of global policy coherence.
The Dismal Multilateral Response to the Pandemic
This reflects, in part, the decisions of specific leaders, especially Chinese President Xi Jinping and former U.S. President Donald Trump. Their behavior helps explain why the WHO struggled in the initial stages of the outbreak and why forums for multilateral coordination, such as the G-7, the G-20, and the UN Security Council, failed to rise to the occasion. This is contrasted with an era when the multilateral ecosystem of global public health arrangements blossomed alongside the WHO and its International Health Regulations, including the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (now called GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance), the Global Health Security Agenda, the World Bank’s Pandemic Emergency Financing Facility, and the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The uncoordinated, chaotic, and state-centric international response to COVID-19 sharply contrasted with the international response to the 2009 H1N1 pandemic and to the 2014 Ebola outbreak. In 2009, health authorities from major powers, including China and the United States, exchanged technology and information about the spread of the swine flu virus and accelerated the development of a vaccine—a collaboration that helped combat that virus and a later one, the H7N9 avian influenza, which easily could have become a pandemic in 2013 but did not. Then in 2014, major powers responded to calls from the United Nations and the WHO to send health aid to West Africa to help fight the Ebola virus. China and the United States in particular forged a close partnership—working together to construct treatment centers and direct medical supplies—that played an important role in turning the tide against Ebola.
Vaccine Nationalism will Delay Winning the Fight vs COVID-19
A year after the declaration of the pandemic, the development and approval of safe and effective vaccines is a stunning scientific achievement. At the same time WHO ACT Accelerator and the COVAX vaccines pillar have been laying the groundwork for the equitable distribution and deployment of vaccines. Referring to the gap and inequity in access to vaccines, WHO Director General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, identified the vaccine access gap. He is clear that the recent emergence of rapidly-spreading variants makes the rapid and equitable rollout of vaccines all the more important. He pointed out that more than 39 million doses of vaccine have now been administered in at least 49 higher-income countries. “Just 25 doses have been given in one lowest-income country. Not 25 million; not 25 thousand; just 25." He said, " I need to be blunt: the world is on the brink of a catastrophic moral failure – and the price of this failure will be paid with lives and livelihoods in the world’s poorest countries".
Conclusions COVID -19 and the Moral Imagination
Writing in The Lancet, (January 22, 2021) Said Patel and Christine Phillips implore us to respond with purpose to the challenges outlined:
In their view it is within the purview of our moral imagination to turn this crisis into an opportunity of hope. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(21)00151-3/fulltext
"The COVID-19 pandemic offers an opportunity to break with the past and imagine the world anew. It also offers a “cosmopolitan moment”, when the existing order is destabilized to open up a new arena of moral and political responsibility. In this cosmopolitan moment, the global community could come together to create new institutions or mechanisms to address the structural causes of global inequity and promote the wellbeing of people and the planet.”
Edward and Auriol Greene Directors, GOFAD.