A joint media project of the global news agency Inter Press Service (IPS) and the lay Buddhist network Soka Gakkai International (SGI) aimed to promote a vision of global citizenship which has the potentiality to confront the global challenges calling for global solutions, by providing in-depth news and analyses from around the world.

Please note that this website is part of a project that has been successfully concluded on 31 March 2016.

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Warga Dunia, Bersatulah!

Roger Hamilton-Martin

PERSERIKATAN BANGSA-BANGSA (IPS) – SEBAGAIMANA politik, ekonomi, konflik, dan kebudayaan yang menjadi kian bertautan, akankah identitas individu juga mulai melampaui batas-batas negara?

Sifat “kewarganegaraan global” yang sulit dipahami dikemukakan Dr Palitha Kohana, perwakilan tetap Sri Lanka untuk PBB, dalam IPS Forum on Global Citizenship pada 18 November 2014 di Misi Tetap Sri Lanka untuk PBB di New York.

“Konsep kewarganegaraan global menantang pikiran manusia untuk waktu lama meski definisi yang tepat tak pernah benar-benar mengkristal,” kata Kohana.

Ide tersebut dikemukakan dengan baik oleh Tony Blair dalam pidatonya di Chicago pada 1999. “Kita semua kini internasionalis, suka tidak suka. Kita tak bisa menolak untuk berpartisipasi dalam pasar global jika kita ingin maju. Kita tak bisa mengabaikan ide-ide politik baru di negara-negara lain jika kita ingin berinovasi,” kata Blair.

Kohana mengatakan, bahkan setelah runtuhnya kekaisaran melahirkan sistem Westphalian, tumbuhnya negara-negara luar biasa kuat tidak mendorong pengembangan sebuah sistem yang benar-benar global.

Kohana menekankan pentingnya PBB sebagai institusi yang mengangkat prinsip kewarganegaraan global

“Terbentuknya PBB menciptakan forum bagi kemanusiaan untuk melakukan upaya mengatasi masalah umum bersama-sama dari perspektif global. PBB dan lembaga-lembaganya telah berhasil membangun pengertian yang berguna untuk mendekati banyak tantangan hari ini bersama-sama.”

Forum tersebut dipimpin Dutabesar Anwarul K. Chowdhury, mantan perwakilan Bangladesh dan penggerak utama resolusi Majelis Umum PBB tahun 1999 yang mengadopsi Deklarasi PBB dan Program Aksi (PoA) Budaya Damai.

“Ketika kita berbicara tentang kewarganegaraan global, refleksi-refleksi tertentu muncul dalam pikiran,” katanya. “Hal pertama yang harus dipahami adalah spiritualitas. Apa nilai-nilai kita, apa komitmen kita sebagai manusia? Kedua, keyakinan dalam kesatuan kemanusiaan. Kita harus keluar dari batas-batas sempit kita, tak hanya dari diri kita sendiri tetapi masyarakat kita.”

Selain tantangan, banyak panelis sepakat bahwa promosi kewarganegaraan global bergerak melawan arah angin apa yang diklaim sebagai benturan peradaban, menurunnya sumber daya, dan sinisme budaya.

Kepala Perwakilan Inter Press Service (IPS) Walther Lichem mencatat bahwa, “Hingga hampir 200 tahun setelah dimulainya diplomasi multilateral di Kongres Wina, kita menjadi sadar bahwa diplomasi multilateral kian memberikan andil bagi pemerintahan global.”

Lichem mengatakan, kewarganegaraan global perlu dilihat dalam konteks sistem yang mengemban norma seperti “tanggungjawab untuk melindungi”, sebuah prinsip yang menempatkan masyarakat internasional di atas negara-bangsa ketika tiba waktunya untuk melindungi warga negaranya sendiri.

 

“Kewarganegaraan global harus dipahami sebagai kewarganegaraan dengan hak asasi manusia sebagai cara hidup,” kata Lichem.

Sekretaris Jenderal PBB Ban Ki-moon mengidentifikasi kewarganegaraan global sebagai area prioritas ketiga dalam Global Education First initiative, menganggapnya penting bahwa siswa bukan hanya belajar bagaimana lulus ujian dan mendapat pekerjaan di negara sendiri, tetapi ditanamkan pemahaman pentingnya rasa hormat dan tanggung jawab lintas budaya, negara, dan wilayah.

“Kewarganegaraan global adalah sebuah perang melawan lupa,” kata Erol Avdovic, wakil ketua Asosiasi Koresponden PBB. “Ini adalah perang melawan prasangka dan pengabaian –atau bahkan lebih buruk lagi, manipulasi– fakta-fakta yang jelas.”

Aliansi PBB untuk Peradaban (UNAOC), satu entitas yang menggali akar polarisasi antara masyarakat dan budaya, yang hadir dalam IPS Forum on Global Citizenship, dengan jurubicara Perwakilan Tinggi Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, Nihal Saad, mencatat bahwa pendidikan kewarganegaraan global “punya kekuatan untuk membentuk masa depan berkelanjutan dan dunia yang lebih baik.”

“Kebijakan pendidikan harus mempromosikan perdamaian, saling menghormati, dan peduli lingkungan. Pendidikan tak cukup hanya menghasilkan individu yang bisa membaca, menulis, dan berhitung. Pendidikan harus membawa nilai-nilai hidup bersama.”

Pandangan Saad digaungkan Monte Joffee, perwakilan Soka Gakkai International AS, yang mengatakan, “Kurikulum kita perlu menyertakan topik yang lebih bersifat global sehingga siswa-siswa kita dapat mengembangkan semangat empati terhadap ‘liyan’.”

“Ini tidak mengakomodasi inti dari krisis pendidikan saat ini. Berbicara hanya soal pendidikan Amerika, saya harus katakan bahwa kesenjangan dana pendidikan, tingkat putus asa dan putus harapan terlalu banyak dalam masyarakat kami... menyebabkan kekurangpekaan terhadap realitas dan ‘perangkat’ kurikulum tentang kewarganegaraan global bukanlah solusi.”

Joffee mengaitkannya dengan kisah Anand Kumar, seorang matematikawan India yang dikenal karena program “Super 30” di Patna, Bihar. Ia memfasilitasi siswa-siswa kurang mampu secara ekonomi untuk ikut ujian masuk sekolah teknik terkenal, Institute Teknologi India (ITT), dan sukses besar.

Programnya memilih 30 calon berbakat dari kalangan tak mampu, melatih mereka, serta menyediakan materi-materi pelajaran dan penginapan mereka selama setahun.

Joffee mengatakan, kisah ini memberikan sebuah contoh luar biasa bagi Pendidikan Kewarganegaraan Global. “Para pendidik harus mengatakan, ‘Saya akan mulai di sini, dengan siswa tepat di depan saya’.”

Ramu Damodaran dari Divisi Layanan Departemen Informasi Publik PBB juga berbicara tentang pentingnya akademisi diberi lebih banyak kesempatan untuk memiliki suara di PBB.*

Translated by Imam Shofwan

Edited by Budi Setiyono

Naskah ini diterbitkan atas kerjasama Yayasan Pantau dan IPS

Citizens of the World, Unite!

 

By Roger Hamilton-Martin

 

 

 

UNITED NATIONS, Nov 29 2014 (IPS) - As politics, economies, conflicts and cultures become increasingly intertwined, will individual identities also begin to transcend national boundaries?

 

The elusive nature of “global citizenship” was noted by Sri Lanka’s permanent representative to the United Nations, Dr. Palitha Kohona, at an IPS Forum on Global Citizenship last week at the Sri Lankan Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York.

 

“The concept of global citizenship has challenged the minds of humans for a very long time although its exact definition has never really crystallised,” Kohona said.

 

The idea was famously put forth by Tony Blair during a speech in Chicago in 1999. “We are all internationalists now, whether we like it or not. We cannot refuse to participate in global markets if we want to prosper. We cannot ignore new political ideas in other countries if we want to innovate,” Blair said.

 

Ambassador Kohona said that even after the collapse of the empires spawned by the Westphalian system, the growth of powerful individual states has not encouraged the development of a genuinely global system.

 

Kohona stressed the importance of the United Nations as an institution in which to hold up the principle of global citizenship.

 

“The establishment of the United Nations has created the forum for humanity to make an effort to address common issues together from a global perspective. It is the most effective forum available to all nation states. The United Nations and its agencies have been successful in generating sympathy for the usefulness of approaching many of today’s challenges together.”

 

The Forum was chaired by Ambassador Anwarul K. Chowdhury, former representative for Bangladesh and the prime mover of the 1999 General Assembly resolution that adopted the U.N. Declaration and the Programme of Action (PoA) on the Culture of Peace.

 

“When we speak of global citizenship, certain thoughts come to mind,” he said. “The first thing to understand is spirituality. What are our values, what are our commitments as human beings? The second is the belief in the oneness of humanity. We should come out of our narrow boundaries, not only of ourselves but of our communities.”

 

Despite challenges, many of the panellists agreed that the promotion of global citizenship is advancing against the headwinds of the purported clash of civilisations, declining resources, and cultural cynicism.

 

IPS Chair Ambassador Walther Lichem noted that, “Almost to the day 200 years after the initiation of multilateral diplomacy at the Congress of Vienna, we become aware that multilateral diplomacy is increasingly giving way to global governance.”

 

Lichem noted that global citizenship needs to be seen in the context of a system that espouses norms such as the “responsibility to protect,” a principle that puts the international community above the nation state when it comes to protecting its own citizens.

 

“Global citizenship is to be understood as a citizenship with human rights as a way of life,” Lichem said.

 

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has identified global citizenship as the third priority area in his Global Education First initiative, seeing it as important that students don’t simply learn how to pass exams and get jobs in their own countries, but are instilled with an understanding of the importance of respect and responsibility across cultures, countries and regions.

 

“Global citizenship is a fight against limbo,” said Erol Avdovic, vice president of the United Nations Correspondents Association. “It is the fight against misconception and against ignoring – or even worse, manipulating – simple facts.”

 

The United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, an entity that explores the roots of polarisation between societies and cultures was in attendance at the Forum, with spokesperson for the High Representative Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, Nihal Saad noting that education for global citizenship “has the power to shape a sustainable future and better world.

 

“Educational policies should promote peace, mutual respect and environmental care. It does not suffice for education to produce individuals who can read, write and count. Education should and must bring shared values to life.”

 

Saad’s sentiments were shared by Monte Joffee, Soka Gakkai International’s USA representative, who said, “Our curriculum needs to include more topics of a global nature so our students can develop empathetic resonance with ‘the other’.

 

“This does not reach to the core of today’s educational crisis. Speaking only of American education, I must say that the inequalities of educational funding, the levels of despair and hopelessness in too many of our communities… are numbing realities and ‘add-ons’ to the curriculum about global citizenship are not the solution.”

 

Joffee related the story of Anand Kumar, an Indian mathematician who is well known for his “Super 30” programme in Patna, Bihar. It prepares economically disadvantaged students for the entrance examination for the renowned Indian Institutes of Technology (ITT) engineering schools, with great success.

 

His programme selects 30 talented candidates from disadvantaged, tutors them, and provides study materials and lodging for a year.

 

Joffee noted that this story provides a great model for Global Citizenship Education. “Educators must say, ‘I will start right here, with the student right in front of me.'”

 

Ramu Damodaran from United Nations Department of Public Information Outreach Division also spoke of the importance of academics being given more opportunities to have a voice at the United Nations.

 

Edited by Kitty Stapp