Search our website
Recent PublicationsBaseline Survey For Royal Society For Senior Citizens
UNDP Supports Secretariat for New Development Paradigm’s International Expert Working Group Meeting in Thimphu
For several years now, UNDP has not only been supporting the broadening of the international understanding of development, but has also been at the forefront of defining just what development is, and how it is measured. With its support for Bhutan's Secretariat for the New Development Paradigm's International Expert Working Group (IEWG) in Thimphu, which took place from January 30th to February 2nd, UNDP-Bhutan has continued with this role, and with its commitment to developing definitions of development that encompass not only economics, but also include the full spectrum of the development of human being, a spectrum that also includes social, cultural, and human dimensions.
In April of 2012, Bhutan hosted a High Level Meeting at the United Nations in New York on Wellbeing and Happiness: Defining a New Economic Paradigm, which was followed in July of the same year by a royal edict by His Majesty the King of Bhutan to establish a Steering Committee and the IEWG, with the explicit aim of drafting the proposed new development paradigm. With this in mind, the IEWG was convened to define the goal and context of this new paradigm, and to examine the conditions required to achieve this goal. In the words of the Honorable Prime Minister of Bhutan, from his opening address to the IEWG on January 30, "[T]he time has never been more ripe and ready for genuine change from our current materialist obsession to a much broader and deeper view of human happiness and the wellbeing of all life on earth; from our current alienation from nature and from each other to a return to our essential one-ness with all life; from an economic structure founded on greed, competition and profit to one based on sufficiency, cooperation, and fairness."
fter an intense four-day meeting, a draft document was crafted which was to be expanded and completed over the next few weeks, and then presented to the UN's High Level Panel on global partnerships in Bali, in March of this year. UN Resident Coordinator in Bhutan, Ms. Claire van der Vaeren, noted in her closing address the unique opportunity that Bhutan, with support from the IEWG, has in influencing the global development dialogue, and the approach that UN will take after the current Millenium Development Goals come to an end in 2015. She noted that, in the end, the UN will support just one universally-applicable, but flexible, global development agenda beyond 2015, but that Bhutan, through the IEWG process, has a unique opportunity to influence this agenda. The UN family in Bhutan, and UNDP specifically, will continue to provide support, advice and aid in navigating the coming months, and continuing to broaden our understanding of development into a coherent and holistic vision for the future.
|Back to top|