English education is key factor in sustainable future

Category: [ Education ]

By Edo Heirich-Sanchez

Next year will be the Education for Sustainable Development 2014 World Conference, in Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, from Nov. 10 through 12 with the Stakeholder Meetings in Okayama Nov. 4 ~ 8.

The “My Island-My Earth” Navigation Charter will be released on Nov. 11th during the World Conference.

In 2005 the United Nations launched the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (DESD 2005-2014) as was proposed by the Government of Japan.

According to UNESCO, “Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) is about enabling us to constructively and creatively address present and future global challenges and create more sustainable and resilient societies”.  UNESCO states that “sustainable development cannot be achieved by technological solutions, political regulation or financial instrument alone.  We need to change the way we think and act.  This requires quality education and learning for sustainable development at all levels and in all social contexts.” It is essential that these elements are reflected in the current process of crafting the post-2015 development goals.


In Japan, the UNESCO Schools Network is full of resources and opportunities for schools and teachers alike.  We encourage all schools in Okinawa, including on base schools to explore the UNESCO School Network and take advantage of the tools available for free in order to use it as a common platform for exchange, international understanding and positive community relations.

UNESCO Associated Schools Project Network (ASPnet) information is at http://www.unesco-school.jp/index.php?action=pages_view_main&page_id=500

An international forum is planned in Costa Rica

For many leaders in the public sector as well as in the business community, employing the sustainability approach in decision-making might conflict with conventional economics and business management precepts.  This is apparent through the multitude of well-publicized clashes between sustainability and governmental and business practices, from corporate environmental pollution to human rights violations.  How can the ethical dilemmas that emerge in the day-to-day processes of decision-making be addressed?

The International Forum: Ethics for Sustainability New Perspectives on Leadership, Decision Making and Education will take place from January 31st to February 1st at the inauguration of the Earth Charter Center for Education for Sustainable Development at the University of Peace.  It is co-organized by the Earth Charter International and the University for Peace in collaboration with the Netherlands Embassy to the Costa Rican Government and UNESCO, under the framework of the UNESCO Chair on Education for Sustainable Development and the Earth Charter.

For information please contact edo@okinawaocean.org

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