Uncommon Opportunities: Roadmap for Employment, Food and Global Security
New Delhi, Nov. 19-22, 2004
An international symposium was conducted in New Delhi on November 19-22, 2004 to examine the relevance in today's world of recommendations contained in the report of the International Commission on Peace & Food, Uncommon Opportunities: Agenda for Peace & Equitable Development, which was submitted to the UN in 1994. The meeting was co-sponsored by the International Centre for Peace & Development (USA), the Mother's Service Society (India), the M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation (India), the National Farmers Commission (Government of India), the UN World Food Program and the World Academy of Art & Science. The conference explored the inextricable mutual interdependence between peace, social stability, democracy, employment and food security. It concluded that
Revolution of Rising Expectations:Rising expectations is the underlying social stimulus to both rapid development and increasing social violence. Generation of employment opportunities and economic growth can be a viable strategy for eliminating or minimizing local conflicts and terrorism.
Cooperative Security:In order to provide a secure environment for all peoples, the world must inevitably shift from the present competitive security system based on the nation state to a global cooperative system supported by a World Peace Army.
Nuclear Disarmament:Nuclear weapons must be eradicated and a meeting without agenda should be convened by all eight known nuclear weapons states to discuss practical steps to break the logjam on disarmament.
Right to Employment:The employment must be considered a fundamental human right to be constitutionally guaranteed and the Government of India's initiative to introduce an Employment Guarantee Act should be commended and emulated by other nations.
Employment Generation:There is ample scope for generation of greater employment, self-employment and entrepreneurial opportunities based an understanding of the natural process by which they are created in society. In India, generation of 100 million jobs is possible within 10 years by a strategy that utilizes agriculture as an engine for economic development.
Employable Skills:The global shortage of employable and vocational skills that is emerging necessitates a significant expansion of vocational training programs, the propagation of computerized vocational training for a wide range of vocational skills, raising the mandatory minimum level of education and reorientation of education to increase its relevance to social needs.
Food Security:Food security can only be achieved in developing countries such as India by a strategy that combines employment generation with rising agricultural productivity.
The conclusions of the Delhi meeting will be examined further during the General Assembly of the World Academy of Art & Science in Zagreb, Croatia in October 2005 and at an international symposium on nuclear disarmament in Nagasaki, Japan in November 2005.
Papers presented at the Symposium:
Nuclear Weapons Management -- Global Concerns, by Admiral L. Ramdas
A Roadmap for Comprehensive Development, by Ivo Slaus, World Academy of Art and Science, Croatia
Common Responsibilities to Exploit Uncommon Opportunities, by Air Commodore Jasjit Singh, AVSM, VrC, VM, IAF (ret), Director, Centre for Strategic & International Studies (CSS) New Delhi
Strategies for Full Employment in India, by Garry Jacobs, Asst. Secretary, The Mother's Service Society
Employable Skills for Full Employment, I.N.D.I.A. Trust, Chennai