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Article Released Wed-14th-September-2005 13:42 GMT
Contact: Sarah Siddiq Institution: Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI)
 Troubled Times: Sustainable Development and Governance in the Age of Extremes

In the present times, the question for us in the global South is: “Do we have choices?” If we do, how can we best exercise them in the age of extremes ushered in by globalization, by globalized wars, and symbolized by the events of 9/11.

Troubled Times: Sustainable Development and Governance in the Age of Extremes
Publishers: SDPI and SAMA

SDPI and Sama Editorial and Publishing Services (SAMA) are pleased to announce the forthcoming publication of a book on sustainable development titled Troubled Times: Sustainable Development and Governance in the Age of Extremes. The book will be launched at the occasion of the SDPI’s Eighth Sustainable Development Conference from 7 to 9 December 2005 in Islamabad.

This anthology springs from the Seventh Sustainable Development Conference (SDC) organized by SDPI in December 2004. The conference theme, sustainable development and globalization in the age of extremes, was selected as it captured the frustrations at achieving few improvements resulting from the ideas that SDPI has debated and worked on in different capacities as researchers, as activists, as policy-makers and above all as thinkers.

Defining moments in history are frequently symbolized by events that indicate a turn of tide. The defining moment for the 21st century appears to be what has become known as 9/11. While 9/11 has not taken place in isolation sans history and sans politics, it appears to have heralded a new era of viewing the world differently. In the present times, the troubling aspect (not that we in the Third World were not troubled before) is that our troubles appear to have undergone a change. This raises, for us in the global South, important questions of agency and choice. Do we have choices? And if we do, how can we best exercise them in the age of extremes ushered in by globalization, by globalized wars, and symbolized by the events of 9/11. The book results from the strong view that while various issues of concern for South Asia remain, they have taken on urgency in view of the deteriorating indices and post 9/11 realities.

Based on some 42 chapters and 5 sub-sections (economics; politics and sociology; health; history and culture; and, literature), the book highlights the crosscutting linkages between diverse themes and the increasingly complex demands upon the policy arena to respond to issues of sustainable development quickly and effectively.

It critically reassesses strategies for good governance and sustainable development and arrives at ways of making them more meaningful. It examines how much progress has been achieved in South Asia vis-à-vis governance. It questions whether government is more transparent today than it was a decade ago, and whether the governments have kept their promises to the marginalized, the poor, women or minorities. The book shares strategic lessons by researchers, theorists, activists, and creative thinkers from South Asia and other regions of the world. The authors also recommend policy interventions based on the prior experiences.

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