UNDP official emphasizes need for focus on equality, sustainability and opportunity to ensure wellbeing of people
Dubai-UAE: 12 February 2018 – Government and governance are of critical importance when it comes to enabling innovation through smart policy-making. This was the main message from Achim Steiner, Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in his talk on ‘Government of the Future – Innovation & Technology' on day two of the ongoing World Government Summit (WGS 2018) in Dubai.
The Brazilian, who is a renowned global leader on sustainable development, international cooperation and global diplomacy for nearly three decades, said: “When we discuss government of the future, one might be tempted to say that government will be less central to what happens next in terms of technology and entrepreneurial vision. Indeed, there are times when the government stands in the way of innovation and public policy hinders progress. However, it is up to governments to implement policies that ensure inclusiveness and that technology contributes to solving problems rather than amplifying them by leaving people behind.”
Steiner emphasized that, when deploying technology, social impact should be taken into consideration. “In recent times, we have seen what happens when too many people are left behind and marginalized, therefore, making them prone to questioning the authority of their government. It is essential that societies are governed in a way that ensures happiness, fulfillment, and the ability to educate its children to be part of a supportive society.”
He continued: “With the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, for the first time in history, countries have agreed to be guided by a common, universal development agenda. There is global recognition that in the last 20-30 years, we have prioritized economic growth, assuming that wellbeing would follow. We have been reminded recently that this is a mistake – equality, sustainability and opportunity for future generations is what enables wellbeing. This is what our societies should pursue at the beginning of the 21stcentury.”
Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the World Government Summit 2018 runs from February 11 to 13 at the Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai. The landmark event convenes more than 4,000 participants from 140 countries, including heads of state and governments, as well as top-tier representatives of 16 international organizations.
Hosting more than 130 speakers across 120 interactive sessions, WGS 2018 features six distinct forums that examine the challenges of vital sectors for the future with a view to finding the best resolutions for the greater global good. Furthermore, over 20 specialized global reports spanning key sectors and topics of the summit are being launched during the event.