Rethinking Work and Learning
Rethinking a Sustainable Society Alan Mayne The world has already passed the midway point for achieving by 2015 the eight Millennium Development Goals for a 'more peaceful, prosperous and just world' that were set by the United Nations in the wake of its inspirational Millennium Dec- 1 laration in 2000. These goals range from combating poverty, hunger, and disease, to empowering women, and ensuring environmental sustainability. However Ban Ki-Moon, the United Nations Secretary-General, conceded in 2007 that progress to date has been mixed. During 2008 the head of the United Nations World Food P- gramme cautioned that because of the surge in world commodity prices the program had insuf?cient money to stave off global malnutrition, and the World Health Or- nization warned of a global crisis in water and sanitation. Depressing news accounts accumulate about opportunities missed to achieve a fairer world order and ecolo- calsustainability:themanipulationofelectionresultsinAfrica,humanrightsabuses in China, 4000 Americans dead and another nation torn apart by a senseless and protracted war in Iraq, and weasel words by the world's political leadership in the lead-up to negotiations for a climate change deal in 2009 that is supposed to stabilize global carbon dioxide emissions. It is clear that the parameters of the debates that drive progressive policy change urgently require repositioning and energizing. As is shown by the contributors to Rethinking work and learning, experts in the humanities and social sciences (HASS) couldhaveanimportantroletoplayinthisprocess.
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