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Autumn Newsletter: Breaking the power of short-term economics

Our theme for autumn is how greater participation is necessary to achieve sustainable development, particularly to break open previously closed economic policy, or to counter short-termism and vested interests. Our two new trustees, Peter Davies, Wales’ first Sustainable Futures Commissioner and Dr Sándor Fülöp, previously Hungary’s Ombudsman for Future Generations reflect on their roles, and highlight the importance of community participation in decision-making.
 
Graham Smith shows how a radical experiment in public participation aims to challenge the idea that economic decision making should be left to experts alone; and, as part of our response to a UK parliamentary inquiry, we argue that the principles underpinning the Sustainable Development Goals should be seen as an opportunity to rebalance and future-proof the economy, as well as reduce inequalities.
As always, we're bringing together rigorous thinking and practical examples in partnership with others to help inform and create change. Please get in touch at info@fdsd.org if you or your organisation would like to work with us, share inspirational examples, write reports or provocations, or comment on any of our pieces.
Peter Davies discusses the impact and future development of the Wellbeing of Future Generations (Wales) Act as well as his own commitment to build links between local democracy and community action.
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Dr Sándor Fülöp looks back at the impact and role of the Hungarian Office of the Ombudsman for Future Generations and talks about the need for local communities to stand up for their environmental rights.
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As part of the advisory board of the RSA’s Citizens' Economic Council, Graham Smith shows how democratic innovations of this kind need to be more widespread to really democratise economic decision-making.
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Andrea Westall sets out FDSD’s response to the UK’s Environmental Audit Inquiry into The Sustainable Development Goals and their domestic implementation in the UK.

CALL FOR TRUSTEES

We are seeking to recruit a new member to our committed Board of Trustees. If you have a professional background or significant experience in Communications or External Affairs, we’d love to hear from you. You will work with others on the Board  who come with various backgrounds and have a shared commitment to keep our organisation afloat. If this interests you, please get in touch with Graham Smith (Chair of the Board): graham.smith@fdsd.org. The closing date for applications is Friday 4th November 2016.
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NEWS AND COMMENT FROM AROUND THE WEB

Five years ago, on 15 October 2011, around three thousand people turned up at the London Stock Exchange to form the UK response to the Occupy Wall Street movement. This article in The New Internationalist blog revisits the movement and its use of direct democracy.
"If you are worried about Brexit, Donald Trump and right wing nationalist populism, shift your gaze to cities and be reassured. Polarized and paralyzed nation states are no longer the story: cities are", the GPM Project founder, Benjamin Barber, is quoted. Learn more about the recently launched governance forum here.
Following a UK launch of his book with Graeme Maxton, Reinventing Prosperity, the APPG on Limits to Growth will host Jørgen Randers and other guests for an evening debate at the House of Commons, moderated by Caroline Lucas. The aims of the APPG are: to create the space for cross-party dialogue on environmental and social limits to growth and to contribute to the international debate on redefining prosperity.
What future for the EU after Brexit? European leaders met at Bratislava on 16 September and promised Europeans that this would be the beginning of a process leading up to the March celebrations of the EU’s 60th anniversary. In her blog on Social Europe, Kalypso Nicolaïdis explores the promise of a 'better Europe'.
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Our lifestyle today is widely considered to be the dominant influence on climate and the environment. The recognition of the Anthropocene as a new era calls for a new approach to politics, Marit Hammond argues; and the arts could play a key role.
The management of cities has become crucial in achieving new global sustainable development goals as more than half the world's people live in urban settlements, a number forecast to rise to nearly 70 percent by 2050, according to the UN. Park Won-soon argues that cities will have to take on the role of leaders in innovation in order to tackle the challenges such as inequality, disease and aging populations.
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Browse previous newsletters here

:: Images ::
Theme image (CC BY 2.0) Legosz / Flickr
UK Occupy movement five years on - courtesy of (CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0) Nathan Mejer / Flickr
Global Parliament of Mayors - © Global Parliament of Mayors

APPG on Limits to Growth event - (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) Linda Gessner / kultur.work
Governance in the Anthropocene - courtesy of © Cerano Power station outflow, from the No Al Carbone series, Environmental Resistance, 2015
Park Won-Soon - courtesy of (CC BY 2.0) Frank Saptel / Flickr
 
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