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Stakeholder Democracy: Represented Democracy in a Time of FearAvailable Now.
I was on the 28th of May at my old university - the University of Surrey with my good friend and Water Institute outgoing Executive Director Jamie Bartram to celebrate with receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award who has been recognised for his outstanding contribution work to improve the lives of disadvantaged populations through improving water, sanitation and hygiene in developed and developing countries worldwide. Jamie’s decade-long direction at the World Health Organization changed policy and practice. It was a great evening of fun and some amazing other winners such as Mary Dinah winner of the Outstanding Contribution to Society Award. She is founder and MD of M.A.D Hospitality and has a passion for connecting people to their dream jobs, setting up Nigeria’s first job centre and providing support to victims of sexual harassment. Mary has received numerous awards, including The British Council Social Impact Award 2017 and the Governor’s Recognition of Outstanding Impact on Youth Award, 2016. In 2018, Mary won the British Council Future Leaders Award and has joined a United Nations committee for providing support for displaced persons worldwide.
Comments by Felix Dodds for the event Overturning the Credibility Gap in Traditional PPP: the ‘People-First’ approach for national and local governments. This was at the UN Financing for Development Forum Investment Fair (full video of side event available here).
The 2030 Agenda represents one of the most important sets of Global Goals that the international community has committed to. It is an unprecedented effort that embodies universal aspirations for achieving a more just, equitable, peaceful and sustainable future. It is an excellent example of successful multilateralism.
This ambitious and unique exercise represents a paradigm shift in policy-making for sustainable development. It gives a roadmap by which we all, the UN, governments and stakeholders can work together to address the most pressing global challenges. In this context, the rule of law, as well as effective, robust, participatory and accountable institutions are of the utmost importance to achieve the 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) and their 169 targets.
This is the third book that the Group of Friends of the Governance for Sustainable Development has produced in an effort to share widely the papers that have been presented at the workshops for member States to discuss. The Group recognizes that there is an inextricable link between good governance and sustainable development and that, as the 2030 Agenda is implemented, governance challenges will need discussion and action at all levels and by all institutions.
I would also like to thank my co-authors Jan-Gustav Strandenaes, Carolina Duque Chopitea, Minu Hemmati, Susanne Salz, Bernd Lakemeier, Laura Schmitz, and Jana Borkenhagen for their chapters - which are awesome!! While underscoring that my co-authors do not necessarily agree with the chapters written by other people.
The book will be out in July for the High-Level Political Forum where we will be launching the book. Let me share with you the introduction for the book...and a few reviews out already.
“A revolution is coming — a revolution which will be peaceful if we are wise enough; compassionate if we care enough; successful if we are fortunate enough — But a revolution which is coming whether we will it or not. We can affect its character; we cannot alter its inevitability.” (Kennedy, 1966) - continued in my blog here.
My Vision for UNEP - why I am standing to be the next Executive Director of UNEP
The quotes below do not indicate an endorsement for me for the position of UNEP Executive Director they were comments made on my work over the past thirty years.
“Felix Dodds has been a close partner of mine with whom we liaised on many issues around the UN environmental governance reform as well as during the entire period of the OWG. His passion for all matter’s environment and his great network particularly with NGOs and all the various experts that work on the Multilateral process around the environmental agenda is extremely impressive. He is one of the most committed professionals that I have had the pleasure to work with.”Macharia Kamau co-facilitator of the 2015 SDG negotiations (2019)
"Felix Dodds is a passionate and articulate campaigner for environmental sustainability. He has in-depth familiarity with the major international negotiations on sustainable development and has helped to shape the critical policy debates which gave rise to, and accompanied, these processes. He also played an important role in mobilising the contribution of multi-stakeholder groups to these negotiations". David Donoghue co-facilitator of the 2015 SDGs negotiations (2019)
UNEP – Vision and the 50th
The next Executive Director will be overseeing the 50th anniversary of UNEP and that offers a great opportunity to promote a global conversation among the public on the inter-woven stories of the Earth’s ecological systems, our collective environmental resources, and their integrated impact on nations, institutions, and every individual human being’s lives. It also provides an opportunity for a conversation among governments and stakeholders on what UNEP should prioritize in the near - and mid-range future as its contribution to the delivery of the Sustainable Development Goals and gaps and challenges in relation of the environment. Those are important and complex conversations that require confident and capable facilitation. (continued here)
I am standing for Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme
I have decided to apply for the position of Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
I wanted to go over in two blogs first who I am and then second what my vision would be.
In these blogs I will share what people have said over the years about my work. These quotes do not indicate they are supporting me for UNEP Executive Director.
“Felix Dodds deserves high respect and admiration for his unswerving and dedicated efforts as one of the key leaders of the global NGO movement for sustainable development for several decades."
Lars Goran Engfeldt, Former Environment Ambassador of Sweden (2012)
I believe that we are living in an almost-unprecedented period of complex and rapidly-shifting challenges to multilateralism, layered on top of the multiple threats to ours and all other species on this planet.
UNEP needs to fulfil its essential role in leading nations and stakeholders to creatively work together in ensuring that these threats are addressed and resolved effectively.
Governments naturally underpin our multilateral system, but today’s challenges require also multi-stakeholder responses. All of us need to be working together.
Over my entire career, I have been a strong advocate for multilateralism in all its forms. I have taken a leadership role in highlighting the issues such as:
human and environmental security,
water and sanitation;
the nexus of food-water-energy and climate change,
governance at all levels, and
the role that stakeholders can play in supporting representative democracy in policy development and in partnerships.
In this I have been a consistent advocate for the United Nations its mission and its values and the leadership role it can play in these difficult times.
I recognize that it is less-than-traditional for one to apply for head of a UN Programme or Agency from outside the customary roles of Minister, senior official or Ambassador, but I believe I have acquired many of the same and additional experiences and skills through decades of experience advising and consulting for national governments and UN agencies/programmes, and working with extensive international coalitions of NGOs, IGOs, sub-national governments and the private sector. More significantly, I have often worked in the interface between those organisations and national governments in multiple UN processes, covering a wide range of sectoral and most recently nexus areas.
"There is hardly anyone who knows the international sustainable development scene better than Felix Dodds. A lot of the progress that has been achieved over the past twenty years could not have been achieved without his engagement and input."
Adnan Z. Amin, Director-General, International Renewable Energy Agency (2015)
Given the extraordinary sectoral, economic and political challenges of the times, I believe that the skills and relationships gained in such experience is essential toUNEPplaying its role in successfully addressing the complex issues we face – in no small part by bringing different sets of stakeholders to the table around results-based initiatives.