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Introductory document for the topic 5 - Ways of implementation: a preparatory process for a Constituent Assembly?
Rob WHEELER, WP21 team
Thursday, 13 March 2003 22:04:50


Dear Friends and Associates,

We will soon be moving ahead to the fifth month's discussion topic which focuses on how we can actually create the World Parliament. Thus a first question that we could ask is: How can we create a movement for global democracy and a world parliament and invite everyone to participate?

During this month we really want you to share your ideas. How do you think we could do local organizing; host exciting events; make a place for everyone to participate; create a structure and strategy plan for the development of the World Parliament; raise the funds needed to make it a success; reach agreement on what the WP will be and how it will operate, etc? Your contributions so far have made the WP21 an interesting, useful, and most productive forum. Now, we need even more of your input and ideas.

We want to let you know that we have submitted a proposal to the Alliance for a Responsible, Plural, and United World, suggesting that it launch an organizing process for the World Parliament through, or during, the World Social Forum - which will be held in India in January of this coming year (2004). If this happens, then we would like to broaden the effort so that the initiative is sponsored by many more organizations or networks than just the Alliance. If you are interested in the Alliance and its various activities you might find its website of interest. <http://www.alliance21.org/>. You will also find a section there about the Alliance?s participation in the World Social Forum.

In order to launch a WP21 process at the World Social Forum, a good deal of work will need to be done. We have already started to create a Working Group for the WP21 to continue to work on the on-going development of the WP. One of the things we will need to do is to develop and agree on a strategy plan for how we can best go forward. We also want to build from the WP21 e-Forum process in order to continue with, and move towards common agreement in regards to, our on-going discussions.

One means might be to continue with the present list serve format, focusing more specifically however on particular issues or questions from each theme - one at a time. We would probably have to ask for volunteers to help us translate the messages if we want to continue in three languages however. Or we could set up several list serves to discuss each of the monthly themes separately, and include a threaded message format. In addition, we know that some people are interested in continuing with an open dialogue where they can bring up or discuss any matter that they want. Which of these options do you think might work best or would you prefer?

In terms of the on-going organizing process, Pierre Calame (Director of the FPH and a key leader in the Alliance) recently circulated a paper about the Alliance and its future among the Allies. He asked for comments and feedback and will then be presenting it to the Foundation for the Progress of Humanity, in Paris, so that the FPH can define its work program in relationship to the Alliance?s intended development. The paper includes three periods of work for the whole network, defined as follows:

a) 2003-06, ending with an interregional meeting where the specifications for the organization of the World Parliament should be determined

b) 2007-09 ending with an inter-socioprofessional world meeting defining the list of the significant organizations likely to send representatives to the Parliament

c) 2010 celebrating the Parliament, with a 12-month process with 11 months of remote work leading up to one month of Assembly.

You can have a look to the whole document.

As the group, among the Alliance, responsible for discussing both the features of a world parliament and the steps to reach it, the wp21 participants needs to agree as much as possible on ideas and proposals concerning all these elements and in a larger sense as many of the elements contained in our own agenda as possible. In any case, whatever is finally decided, it is quite probable that the FPH will continue to support the WP21 effort. However, we will also need to develop additional sources of funding and ensure that other organizations come on board. One of the important things that we will have to do is to decide exactly what the relationship will be between this effort and the on-going activities of both the FPH and the Alliance.

For the on-going process, there are two primary areas of focus. First, we will have to continue to discuss and agree on what the structure and operational processes could be for the World Parliament. And second, is creating an actual organizational development process. Obviously, there will be a good deal of overlap between the two because how we set up and establish the WP will have a great deal of effect on what it will ultimately become.

One of the first things that we will have to decide is what we are trying to accomplish. Will this be a Campaign for World Democracy, for a transition to democratic global governance, and / or the start of a Preparatory Process for a World Parliament? What would be the benefits of keeping it more narrowly focused on a WP versus taking a broader approach focusing on transforming global governance or promoting world democracy? Or would it be even better to do both ? focusing specifically on the creation of a WP within the broader context of strengthening world democracy or democratizing our institutions of global governance. Tell us what you think.

Again, we are starting with the development of a Working Group to guide the process and to take some of the first steps. As we continue we will probably want this to develop into some type of a Coordinating Committee which can represent all of the different people and organizations that are participating in the organizing process. In time we might also want to create an actual Delegates Council with representatives or liaisons from local and regional assemblies and participating organizations. Obviously we will have to agree on some rules and procedures for making decisions as we go along.

There are also a number of things that we will need to do in the next year if we decide to launch the project during the World Social Forum in India next year. It might be a good idea to set up subcommittees within, or along with, the Working Group to work on particular things. Thus one group could work on our public relations or promotional materials; another on the website; a third on developing a framework and process for the Communities of Ideas or issue area discussions; one could help with translation; and another with fundraising; etc. Finally, we would like to begin to collect photographs of what we are all doing all around the world; and what our vision of the new world or the future is that we want to create. Thus, you could begin to look for such photos; and we will also send another message about what we are specifically looking for. In the meantime, let us remind you that we had originally asked people to send us photos of themselves that we could post on our webpages. Please, you are still welcome to send us these photos electronically; and we will then get them posted for you.

You can see the current photos in the Participants section.

Please let us know your ideas for how we can develop this on-going organizing process and what you think it is most important for us all to do.

Sincerely,

WP21 Team


WP21 Alliance Forum on a World Parliament for the 21st Century
E-mail : world-parl@forums.alliance21.org
Fax 1 717 264 5036
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