Currently our main focus is on the Sustainable Democracy Game - a dialogue tool that relates to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The game facilitates understanding of the 17 goals and their 169 targets, represented on cards that help participants relate to them. It helps participants understand institutions and public participation through other cards. It uses a board that supports structure thinking in relation to local, national, regional and global contexts. The dialogue process is described in a booklet that describes the game process and main concepts.
We live in a world where we are permanently dependent on complex networks and systems in our daily lives. We rely on water supply, sewage, electricity, heating or cooling, financial stability, food supplies, the possibility to have a job, roads, public transport, security, media etc.
We are all connected, but who is in charge of making sure that our hyper-complex world functions. How is this done in a way that works equitably and long term sustainably? And how do we ensure that everybody can have confidence in this and make their voice heard? In todays world trust in institutions and authorities seems to diminish.
It is our common challenges that connect us more than anything else.
To handle our common challenges common norms and actions are essential. Communities do this through institutions and rules.
Trust and legitimacy is the key to effective institutions that produce the conditions for a good life for people. Public participation is an essential factor here.
Good Governance or Democracy is our collective taking charge of common challenges through institutions that are controlled through public participation.
Dialogue is essential to create common understanding between citizens as well as between institutions. IAED has developed the SDG-game to enable learning related to the SDG's and dialogue among all stakeholders.
Since the birth of humanity we have lived in communities and developed rules. The first communities were groups of a hundreds of people, but with the invention of agriculture societies of millions of people developed, and together with this even more advanced and complex forms of organisation led to the establishment of states and nations.
In todays industrial and postindustrial world we live in a globalised interconnected world. Challenges are addressed by institutions at different levels; local, national, continental, global, depending on the nature of the specific challenge.
Global issues are not remote or far away. They are just as much present "here" as local issue. If they were not here, they would not be global but just far away. Global is what is here - and simultaneously on the other side of the earth. It is those issues that can only be dealt with through concerted action globally - such as climate change. This is reflected in the lay out of the game boards used for our dialogue process, where global is symmetrical with local.