Leaves 4(2) July 2002


Newsletter of the
Volume 4, Number 2 --- July 2002


"Reflect upon the inner realities of the universe, the secret wisdoms involved, the enigmas,
the inter-relationships, the rules that govern all.
For every part of the universe is connected to every other part by ties that are very powerful
and admit no imbalance, nor any slackening whatsoever"



Members of the IEF have been actively involved in the preparatory meetings leading up to the World Summit on Sustainable Development taking place in Johannesburg, South Africa next month. This event, otherwise known as Rio+10 in recognition of the 10th anniversary of the Rio Earth Summit, many hope to be a pivotal occasion in the global management of Earth's natural resources. In addition to our participation in numerous WSSD events, the IEF is blessed to have the opportunity to hold our 6th annual conference at the National Centre of the Baha'is of South Africa. You'll find information about many of the exciting events taking place in a few short weeks below and on the IEF website.

Please note the imminent deadline for taking part in the electronic conference. And please note that the kind of support for WSSD activities we asked for in the special email we sent out to members in early May is still needed, including donations (write to us if you did not receive that email).

- Sylvia Karlsson and Christiana Lawson

Making Globalization Sustainable and Just - Through Science, Values and Education

19 August-4 September 2002, Johannesburg, South Africa
+ Electronic Conference 1-18 August 2002

This conference will be held as a series of seminars running parallel to the WSSD. Building on the conclusions from the 5th IEF conference (see the IEF website) where the complementary roles of knowledge, values and education for sustainable development were explored, we hope to stimulate a dialogue with the broader civil society on these three essential components of decision-making.

We will collaborate with appropriate NGOs (Baha¹i-inspired or others) in planning individual seminars. The IEF is also exploring a joint booth with the European Baha'i Business Forum (EBBF). The 6th General Assembly of the IEF will be held on the 31st of August.

Electronic conference

1-18 August, 2002

During the three weeks immediately preceding the conference an email forum is offered for those who cannot come to Johannesburg. It will address the seminar themes and invite contributions and consultation which can then be fed into the conference in Johannesburg.

To register for the electronic conference, send your name, full address and short introduction of yourself (ca 50 words) by 30 July to: ief-conf-registration@bcca.org

For more information, see www.bcca.org/ief or write to wssd-ief@bcca.org


27 August "Dialogue on Indicators for Sustainability" 18:00-20:00
At the Science Forum in Ubunthu Village

31 August IEF General Assembly 16:00
Johannesburg Baha'i Center

1 September "Value-Based Education for Sustainable Development" 10:00-12:00
Global Peoples Forum, NASREC

2 September "Integrating Science in Local Communities" 15:00-17:00
University of Witwaatersrand, Hoffmeyre House

3 September "Multiple Dimensions of Globalization", 9:00-10:30
IUCN Environment House, Aloe Room

Further details regarding IEF activities in Johannesburg will be found at http://www.bcca.org/ief/conf6prg.htm


Report by Sylvia Karlsson

At this PrepCom the IEF was represented by two members, myself and David Willis. We both got caught in the "hype" of the number of parallel events to attend simulatenously and interesting people to meet and thus we did not see much of each other! Short talks in the Vienna Café was about it. The meetings I attended in the brief four days I was there included the NGO Multistakeholder Dialogue Caucus, the seminar "Integrating Human Rights Framework for Sustainable Development" organised by the People¹s Movement for Human Rights Education, the seminar "Deepening and Broadening Participation in Sustainable Development" organised by the Earth Council, several meetings of the Science Caucus, one meeting of the Caucus on Legal and Institutional matters and last but not least the session "The Earth Charter: A Useful Tool for Governments" organised by the Values Caucus. One evening there was a briefing from Greenpeace. They expressed strong views that the whole process was close to complete failure particularly because so many countries were lobbying against strong language on renewable energy for the poor. Another evening there was a reception for the launching of a webiste for the Summit where example projects from around the worlds would be shown, broadcasts from the Summit would be made etc.

BALI, 27 MAY-7 JUNE 2002

Report by Sylvia Karlsson

The 4th PrepCom of the WSSD was held in Bali, in a large conference complex in Nusa Dua, an exclusive tourist resort area on the Southern tip of the "Chicken Island," as some locals call it due to its shape. Proximity to the beautiful beaches was probably frequently used in media reports, but most participants hardly had time to even see the beach as the days were long and many negotiations lasted into the nights the second week. The first days were devoted to MultiStakeholder Dialogues between representatives of the Major Groups (Women, NGOs, Farmers etc. according to the groups defined in Agenda 21). These dialogues served as a forum for governments and Major Groups to discuss issues such as global governance, capacity building and priorities for the future. The rest of the days were full of long sessions of negotiations, tough ones, on the implementation document. The work on the political declaration that was scheduled to start did not take place (see item below on e-mail forum). The last days were a meeting at the Ministerial level and quite a large number of primarily environment ministers did attend.

You may have heard on the news that the results from the PrepCom in Bali were pretty small (most NGOs would say dismal). It seems clear that there is little of the "Rio spirit" and the situations between North and South, between some subsets of countries and the rest, governments and NGOs have become very polarised and the blatant self-interest of countries is visible on all sides. It is a situation of having gone backwards from Rio according to many, and the Youth Caucus initiated a small demonstration, forming a line walking backwards through the halls of the Convention Centre in Bali one morning. Delegations spent a lot of space in the text quoting the text from Doha and Monterrey as these were already agreed upon. But it was much more difficult to use text from other UN meetings. In addition to following the process and engaging with many committed people from around the world, the work for IEF at the PrepCom consisted of, on the one hand, following some of the NGO Caucuses, such as those on values and spirituality, science, and education. In addition, much time was spent talking to the organisers of the Johannesburg Summit and its Civil Society Forum to figure out the logistical information necessary for arranging seminars there. The official documents from this PrepCom, such as the draft Plan of Action, and daily summaries of negotiations can be downloaded at: http://www.johanesburgsummit.org.



You will shortly find that our website has its first pages in Spanish thanks to translation work by Fabiana Mendez Raya, IEF member in Bolivia. Further changes include the addition of the small booklet "Spiritual Foundations of an Ecologically Sustainable Society" by Robert White at http://www.bcca.org/ief/dwhite98.htm


Although we never seem to be able to keep the deadlines we set out for the next issue of Leaves, we hope to get one out as soon as possible after the WSSD. Deadline for submissions would then be 10 September.




You are invited to join a discussion of the draft Political Declaration, which has recently been published on the official WSSD site. It will be discussed in relation to an alternative version drafted by Stakeholder Forum for Our Common Future. Join the discussion on Earth Summit for All at ___. The outcomes of this discussion will feed into the Implementation Conference in Johannesburg being held just before the WSSD and into the WSSD itself.


"Knowledge for the Sustainability Transition: The Challenge for Social Science"
Berlin, 6-7 December 2002

The Environmental Policy and Global Change Section of the German Political Science Association (DVPW) invites papers for the 2002 Berlin Conference on the Human Dimensions of Global Environmental Change, to be held in Berlin on 6-7 December 2002.

Papers for the conference on one of three sets of questions are invited:


1. Papers that analyse ways in which national and international politics and institutions influence the way sustainability knowledge is generated, distributed and used by actors. Papers could address, for example, ways in which political systems influence scientific research for the sustainability transition, including policies that shape the development and safe use of new technologies both harmful and beneficial to the sustainability transition. We also invite papers that examine the distribution and utilisation of knowledge, from scientific information to technical expertise, and that seek to explain the role of political institutions and political and societal actors in these knowledge-generation processes.

2. Papers that view knowledge as a factor that affects and influences political decision-making and analyse the ways in which existing knowledge--from scientific information to more general ideas, discourses or belief systems--affects the ways in which political actors respond to the global environmental crisis.

3. Papers that respond to the challenges raised by recent thinkers who have argued for fundamental changes in the way science is conducted--thinkers who have put forward integrative concepts such as 'earth system analysis', 'syndromes of global change' or 'sustainability science'. We welcome innovative and (self-)critical papers and hope to stir up debate within the social science community.

The deadline for submissions is 31 July 2002.

Further information will be posted at www.environmental-policy.de.


A new democracy game for young people on the Internet. The game is part of a major global awareness campaign in connection with the World Summit in Johannesburg. The Summit is getting closer and so is the first round of Global Island (see www.globalisland.nu). In the Global Island game serious dilemmas are presented for debate in local Parliaments, and the goal is to find a solution to the problems caused by the dilemmas, avoiding serious conflicts from arising. Visit www.globalisland.nu for more information and registration.


The Earth Dialogues is a public forum initiated by Mikhail Gorbachev and Maurice Strong, which aims to mobilise global public interest and action to promote three important objectives essential to the future of humanity: averting the ecological disasters which threaten our planet; fighting the plague of poverty; and acting to ensure truly sustainable development. For more information on their latest report, see http://www.earthdialogues.org/documents/synthesis.html and explore also


"Goals and Conditions for a Sustainable World" by John Cairns, Jr., University Distinguished Professor of Environmental Biology Emeritus, can be downloaded at http://www.esep.de/journals/esep/esepbooks.html. ESEP is the publication organ of the Eco-Ethics International Union (www.eeiu.org).

"Evaluation of U.S. Progress on Agenda 21". IEF members attending PrepCom IV in Bali met John C. Dernbach of Widener University Law School in Pennsylvania. Prof. Dernbach has recently edited Stumbling Towards Sustainability, a new collection of essays that assesses the progress made in the United States towards implementing the recommendations set out in Agenda 21. For more information, visit the Environmental Law Institute's website: http://www.eli.org.


"Whither Diversity in the Environmental Movement"

This article, written by new IEF member Norman MacLeod, is available at ___


(as of July 2002)

Kate Lindsay (Canada)

Andrew Mancey (Guyana)

Adam O'Toole (Australia)

Shakhti Prakash (India)

Terry Robinson (USA)

Steve Worth (South Africa)

T. Dehday Beh (Ghana)

Hanna Snorradottir (Sweden)

Said Jalali (Portugal)

Norman McLoad (USA)

Lars Rogers (Switzerland)

Gail Lash (USA)

Mojgan Sami (USA)



Kaykhosrov Manucheri

Erin O'Connor

Terry Robinson

Please inform the IEF Secretariat if you have a recent email for any of these members. We have lost contact with them.


Please send information to the secretariat on changes of address etc. We are "losing" members whose email starts bouncing because they have not informed us of their new address.


Sylvia Karlsson
Sigmund Freud Str. 36
D-53127 Bonn
Email: ief@bcca.org
website: www.bcca.org/ief

Updated 19 September 2002