Education & Social Justice

Excellence through Equity

12/17/2014, by Max Rashbrooke

The new EU Social Justice Index finds that fostering social justice is not only compatible with educational excellence but, in fact, often delivers well-performing school systems.

Italy

"Social Justice Must Become a European Priority"

11/28/2014, by SGI News

Political scientist Maurizio Cotta discusses the challenges of intergenerational inequality in Italy, Matteo Renzi's labor market reforms, and why Europe needs to put social justice at the top of its policy agenda.

Environmental Policy

OECD Countries Fails to Make Headway on Conservation

11/04/2014, by Alison Singer

Environmental policy in the OECD largely stagnates. While financing and enforcing policies is essential, geographic and demographic factors also play a role for countries’ success in conservation issues.

Slovakia's New President

Will Andrej Kiska Revive Slovak Democracy?

10/13/2014, by Olga Gyarfasova

The election of Andrej Kiska as fourth Slovak president was a blow to Prime Minister Robert Fico. Kiska's first actions might even signal a change in the country's political atmosphere.

EU Social Justice Index

In Search of "Social Europe"

09/30/2014, by Craig J. Willy

The Bertelsmann Stiftung's new EU Social Justice Index shows that social injustice in the European Union is on the rise. The study highlights the challenges of a multinational social policy.

New Study on Social Justice in the EU

Social Imbalance in Europe is on the Rise

09/15/2014, by Daniel Schraad-Tischler

The Bertelsmann Stiftung's new Social Justice Index finds that young people are affected most by the social division in Europe. This threatens the future viability of the European project and calls for a European social strategy.

Chile

Media Duopoly Threatens Right to Information

09/11/2014, by Natália Mazotte

Chile's media is highly concentrated. With two groups dominating the market, pluralistic public opinion is constrained. Hopes now rest on the new president who has promised to reform the system.

Global Finance

The Saviors

08/21/2014, by Justine Doody

Which countries in the European Union are helping to stabilize the global financial system, and how? The latest edition of the Bertelsmann Stiftung's Sustainable Governance Indicators gives some answers.

Media in Macedonia & Slovenia

Too Small, Too Personal

08/06/2014, by Sally Broughton Micova

Media laws in Macedonia and Slovenia are largely in line with international standards. Yet to guarantee a transparent system and independent reporting this is not enough.

Estonia & the Ukraine Crisis

A Bastion of Stability

07/26/2014, by Jan Hofmeyr

In contrast to neighbouring Ukraine, strong governance makes Estonia less vulnerable to internal challenges to stability. Yet, economic sanctions on Russia could have a profound impact on the Baltic state too.

Central-Eastern Europe

Progress and Roll-Back of Europeanization

07/09/2014, by Craig J. Willy

Ten years after the European Union's Eastern enlargement, the diverging development of Poland and Hungary highlight how fragile attachment to Western orientation and institutions potentially is.

Series: Democracy & Sustainability

Nordic Civil Society: Schools of Democracy or Organised Individualism?

06/27/2014, by Mi Ah Schøyen & Marianne Takle

Nordic civil societies focus on interest group representation and recreational activities. Yet especially in Norway, civic engagement is increasingly motivated by individualistic goals. Does this affect the quality of democracy?

Turkey

Judicial Defense

06/20/2014, by Hakan Demir

Turkey is deeply split between supporters of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the opposition. The constitutional court remains one of the few buffers between them. But is this enough to uphold democracy?

Global Environmental Policy

The Tragedy of Conservation

06/10/2014, by Alison Singer

As the SGI 2014 found, multilateral environmental cooperation in the OECD and EU stagnates. It might indeed be easier to create partnerships than enforceable regulations and law.

Wellbeing & Policy Advice

"It's Important to Go Beyond GDP"

06/02/2014, by SGI News

Martine Durand, Chief Statistician of the OECD, talks about the importance of measuring and analysing wellbeing and the impact this could have on policy making.

Wellbeing Analysis

"It Would Radically Improve Policies"

05/20/2014, by SGI News

Gus O'Donnell, Chair of the Legatum Institute Commission on Wellbeing Policy, talks about the implications of applying wellbeing analysis to public policy.

Luxembourg

The World's Top Donor

04/29/2014, by Justine Doody

Luxembourg leads the world on global social policy. This has not only aided developing countries but also the diminutive nation’s financial sector and its international influence.

Series: Democracy & Sustainability

Japan's Civil Society and its Fight against Nuclear Energy

04/09/2014, by Susanne Brucksch

Fukushima triggered vibrant civic engagement in Japan. Yet Japanese clientelistic politics undermines any effective democratic control. Not even the nuclear catastrophe has changed that.

SGI 2014

Social Divides Threaten Europe's Future

04/06/2014, by Daniel Schraad-Tischler

The latest SGI findings show that the gap between rich and poor is growing in OECD and EU countries. Scandinavia tops the ranking, while participation opportunities in southern Europe are declining.

SGI Asia Study

Asian Waters

03/27/2014, by Justine Doody

Asia's growth has been one of the success stories of the 21st century. But it has created pressure on the environment too, particularly water supplies. So, how do China, India, Indonesia and Vietnam protect their water resources?

Post-Communist Countries in Transition

An Appetite for Change?

03/04/2014, by Justine Doody

While the Czech Republic shows signs of a new right direction to curb corruption and bolster the rule of law, Russia is taking steps to bring its judiciary under even tighter control. This might also dim its economic future.

Right-Sized Policy-Making

A New Model for International Cooperation

02/10/2014, by Kathrin Keil

"The more the merrier" or "as big as necessary"? Arctic governance shows how small-size policy-making can complement more inclusive agreements in order to ensure the right level of participation for "right-sized" policy-making.

SGI 2014

"Making Governance Innovations Travel"

01/20/2014, by SGI News

The SGI team talks about the upcoming release of the SGI 2014, the creation of a Learning Network for Governance Innovations and what the financial and economic crisis reveals about governments’ capacity for reform.

BRICS in CRISIS

"Dilma Government Needs to Control Inflation"

01/09/2014, by SGI News

Political scientist Lucio Renno talks about the role of personality in Brazilian politics and the dangers of debt and inflation, and he gives his outlook for the upcoming presidential election year.

Ecological Footprint

Developing With The Future In Mind

12/17/2013, by Antonia Sohns

All OECD countries are creating an ecological footprint that exceeds the earth’s capacity. To ensure intergenerational justice, nations must consider the impact of today’s exploitation of natural resources on future generations.

South Korea

"Social Welfare is One of the Biggest Challenges"

12/02/2013, by SGI News

Political scientist Thomas Kalinowski talks about South Korea’s first female president, quality of democracy and social justice as well as the role of the national intelligence service.

Intergenerational Justice in the Nordic Countries

The Super Model?

11/21/2013, by Mi Ah Schøyen & Bjørn Hvinden

When it comes to balancing the needs of current and future generations, the Nordic welfare states have done fairly well. Yet, environmental considerations remain neglected – in the Nordic countries and elsewhere in the OECD.

East Asian Development Models

Towards Atlantic Laissez-Faire or Asian Nation-Statism?

11/11/2013, by Craig J. Willy

The world is increasingly a non-Western one. Europe will have to change, either forcing others to respect Western legal and commercial principles or adapting itself to the East Asian development model.

Europe's Aging Societies

Escaping The Intergenerational (In-)justice Trap

10/31/2013, by Daniel Schraad-Tischler

What should policy makers do to promote fairness between the young and the old? Invest in intergenerational measures and introduce proxy voting for children, for example, says SGI’s senior project manager.

Chinese Environmental Policy

The Dam Problem

10/18/2013, by Alison Singer

As the global leader in hydropower, China must adopt environmental policies that account for methane and carbon emissions as well as ecosystem disruptions and erosion potential.

Intergenerational Justice in the OECD

Demography Is No Destiny

10/08/2013, by Jan Hofmeyr

A country’s age distribution isn’t the best predictor of justice between the young and the old. What matters is good policy. A new SGI study analyses how 29 OECD countries deal with the fairness between generations.

Series: Democracy & Sustainability

The Tools For Democracy

09/25/2013, by Halina Ward

In order to overcome the short-termism that plagues the practice of democracy, the idea of civic education needs to be revitalised, argues Halina Ward in the third part of our series. Do we need a new type of citizen?

SGI Asia Study

"Development in Asia Demands Huge Sacrifices"

09/13/2013, by SGI News

What role does democracy play in sustainable development and governance in Asia? A new SGI study provides some answers. An interview with one of the authors of the study, political scientist Christian Goebel.

South Korea's New President

All Quiet in the Blue House

09/02/2013, by Young-Sim Song

The election of Park Geun-hye as South Korea’s first female president signaled a historic change of governance. Yet, after her first six months in office Ms. Park still needs to translate her words into deeds.

Intergenerational Justice in Europe

Towards Gerontocracy?

08/22/2013, by Craig J. Willy

In order to avoid a demographic “death trap” Western Europe must implement new and fair policies for both present and future generations. The SGI study suggests some radical solutions.

Protests in Turkey

Who Will Promote Democracy?

08/13/2013, by Hakan Demir

The recent anti-government protests in Turkey show that the country’s quality of democracy is the worst in the OECD. Brussels must treat Turkey’s bid for EU membership seriously to support reforms and the rule of law.

SGI Asia Study

Asian Award Winners

07/29/2013, by Justine Doody

Singapore and Indonesia: two economic successes based on different modes of governance. Yet both share the challenge of ensuring that growth benefits everyone in their societies.

BRICS countries

Growth Isn't Enough

07/16/2013, by Jan Hofmeyr

The recent protests in Brazil show that GDP growth alone does not suffice for sustainable development. The emerging economies must invest in better governance capacities to foster inclusive growth and social justice.

Austerity Measures in Europe and the US

Who Wears The Pain Of Adjustment?

07/04/2013, by Max Rashbrooke

Dysfunctional politics in Europe and the US can stand in the way of attempts to make the top 1% bear the brunt of austerity measures, argues Max Rashbrooke.

Media Freedom in Brazil

Veiled Censorship at Sugarloaf Mountain

06/24/2013, by Natália Mazotte

Brazil’s media is characterized by oligopolistic ownership and certain opinions dominate. Journalists and human rights activist call for new laws to safeguard freedom of speech and access to information.

SGI Asia Study: EU-China Relations

Wine vs. Solar Panels

06/18/2013, by Justine Doody

Relations between China and the EU on energy are fraught: The quarrel over tariffs could pit the two against each other in a wider struggle. Technical rather than political cooperation seems the most both sides can hope for.

Water and Land Management in the OECD

Natural Buffers Against Climate Change

06/06/2013, by Antonia Sohns

Investing in natural resilience is key for communities to grow in concert with their environment. A look at how the Netherlands and Poland adapt to climate change.

Intergenerational Justice in the OECD

Estonia Ranks Top

05/29/2013, by Justine Doody

A new study by the Sustainable Governance Indicators project ranks Estonia highest among 29 OECD countries in terms of fair policies for both the young and the old.

EU-Russia Partnership

Let's Wait and See

05/21/2013, by Jana Kobzova

It’s time for the EU to re-assess its relations with Russia: Instead of hesitating between engagement and containment of its biggest neighbour, Europe should consider a strategic pause with Moscow.

Development in the BRICS

The Geography of Innovation is Changing

05/10/2013, by Ana Garcia,Luis Fernandes

Patent registration, scientific citations and R&D policies: How the emerging powers Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa demonstrate the path of uneven development.

Corruption in the OECD

We Need New Weapons

04/29/2013, by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi

Corruption is one of the greatest dangers to democracy. But current policies often don’t pay out. Anti-corruption efforts must focus more on civil society actors instead of governments.

Series: Democracy & Sustainability

Letting Citizens Take The Helm

04/16/2013, by Jan Hofmeyr

Civil society in South Africa is vibrant – yet fragmented, underfunded and often under government auspices. But new initiatives in education and health show a new thinking about effective civic engagement.

Fiscal Crisis

Tax The Rich, Give To The Poor

04/12/2013, by Craig J. Willy

Is this the key to fiscal sustainability? In contrast to what is said by some EU officials and the U.S. Tea Party, higher taxes tend to coincide with lower deficits and low debt, Craig J. Willy writes.

Environmental Policy in the OECD

The Fight Over Fracking

04/02/2013, by Alison Singer

Boon or Bane? Hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking", stirs controversy. The technology offers temporary economic incentives, but also poses huge environmental risks, argues Alison Singer from the Worldwatch Institute.

BRICS Summit in Durban

"South Africa Has Been Left Behind"

03/27/2013, by SGI News

Helmut Reisen, until recently head of research at OECD Development Centre, talks about the economic and social affairs of the BRICS countries and the reasons why South Africa is no longer a model for sustainable development.

Voting Systems in the OECD

The Virtual Ballot Box

03/14/2013, by David Jandura

New technologies can be useful tools for improving voter and registration rights when framed by strong institutions. A pilot project in Norway shows how this might work.

Democracy in India

"New Delhi Will Not Be Berlin Any Time Soon"

03/07/2013, by SGI News

Mira Kamdar from the World Policy Institute in New York about democratic governance and women safety in India and the country's challenges of global warming.

The Visegrad Group

Eastern Europe's Path to Democracy

02/26/2013, by Olga Gyarfasova

In the post-Communist Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia, democracy has become the only game in town. But how well is it played, and who plays it best?

Europe and the Czech Republic

Virtuous Czechs

02/18/2013, by Craig J. Willy

Milos Zeman, a strong supporter of European integration, will be the next president of the Czech Republic: an opportunity to examine the relations between his country and Western Europe. Does the Iron Curtain still exist?

Immigration in the OECD

My House, My Job, My Kids

02/01/2013, by Antonia Sohns

The benchmarks of the integration of immigrants are diverse. Antonia Sohns examines migration policies in the OECD and argues for more efforts in education, employment and civic engagement.

Social Justice in New Zealand

The Fair Society and its Enemies

01/22/2013, by Max Rashbrooke

In New Zealand, a widening gap between the rich and the rest threatens many of the country's greatest strengths, writes Max Rashbrooke, who argues for a new settlement of welfare.

Education in the OECD

The Knowledge Economy

01/04/2013, by Justine Doody

From economic success to health and social inclusion: education is a key element in many fields. Justine Doody examines education as cross-governmental priority for policy making in the OECD.

Series: Democracy & Sustainability

The Best Possible Option?

12/17/2012, by Stefan Wurster

Do democracies promote sustainable policies better than autocracies? Yes, argues our author: Despite the partial success of autocracies in some fields, investigations show an overall advantage for democratic states.

Franco-German Relations

An Unlikely Couple

12/11/2012, by Craig J. Willy

The future of the Eurozone is deeply entwined with the political and economic relations of France and Germany. Yet while the Franco-German consensus is essential, it remains elusive.

Climate Diplomacy

Not In My Name

11/29/2012, by Justine Doody

While the leaders of the BRICS demand leeway on environmental protection, their people favour conservation. Environmental diplomacy remains a key tool for the emerging economies to impact global governance.

South Africa

"Your Can't Have a Democracy on the Basis of Anger"

11/21/2012, by SGI News

Guy Berger, Director of the Division for Freedom of Expression and Media Development of UNESCO, about the role of media and education for sustainable governance in South Africa.

Turkey

Slowly But Surely

11/14/2012, by Fréderike Geerdink

In Turkey, the need for reform is large – as is the country’s capacity to implement these reforms. So, how effectively does governance in Turkey serve the needs of present and future generations?

Governance in the BRICS: Russia

When The State Fails

11/02/2012, by Masha Egupova

On environmental issues, cyberactivists in Russia are filling the void of state indifference and failure. Russian civil society is getting stronger, writes FutureChallenges blogger Masha Egupova.

Governance in the BRICS: China

Faster Than The Censors

10/25/2012, by Dandan Wang

In China, social media and blogs are essential for dealing with state censorship and control. But the official media is changing too, writes FutureChallenges blogger Dandan Wang.

Governance in the BRICS: India

An Elephant In Motion

10/22/2012, by Ajinkya Pawar

In India, true sustainable governance can only come from an informed and educated electorate, reports FutureChallenges blogger Ajinkya Pawar.

Governance in the BRICS: South Africa

Riding Out The Storm

10/17/2012, by Jan Hofmeyr

History, politics and a lot of anger: FutureChallenges blogger Jan Hofmeyr analyses South Africa's education crisis and argues that skills development is vital for the country’s sustainable governance.

Governance in the BRICS: Brazil

The Big Easy

10/15/2012, by Elis dos Anjos

FutureChallenges blogger Elis Dos Anjos looks at education policy in Brazil and finds that success at school still largly depends on students' social and economic background.

Governance in the BRICS countries

Bloggers comment on SGI's New Study

10/12/2012, by SGI News

SGI's new study “Sustainable Governance in the BRICS - Initial Findings” examines policy making in Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. Five bloggers from FutureChallenges to tell us what they think about it.

Governance in the Digital Age

"Things Are Seething Under The Surface"

09/24/2012, by SGI News

In the European salons of the 1920s, the intellectual avant-garde developed basic ideas that would inspire public opinion and political processes. Today, the Facebook community Salon Virtuel is carrying this idea to the internet.

Debt in Japan, Europe and the U.S.

Who's The Worst?

09/08/2012, by Craig J. Willy

Three traditional poles of the capitalist global economy – Japan, Europe and the U.S. – seem to compete for the largest public debt. Who’s the most fiscally irresponsible, and why?

Chile

Pitting Social Justice

08/20/2012, by Antonia Sohns

Chile – the world's largest copper producer – is one of the economically most unequal countries in the OECD. Mining governance remains essential to abate social tensions and avert an energy crisis.

Non-Profit Credit Rating Agency

"The Political Momentum Is There Now"

08/10/2012, by SGI News

Annette Heuser, Director of the Bertelsmann Foundation North America, and Daniel Schraad-Tischler, SGI Project Manager, discuss INCRA – a new international non-profit credit rating agency.

Social Justice in Greece

Healthy Slimming or Fiscal Starvation?

08/02/2012, by Sophie Diesselhorst

In Greece, the crisis is leading to an ever increasing chasm between rich and poor. The austerity measures imposed by the EU are also contributing to growing social injustice. How much saving can the country cope with?

Sustainable Governance Indicators in the Media

It's Good Governance, Stupid!

07/27/2012, by Adrian Steinert

The magazine Der Spiegel recently singled out the Sustainable Governance Indicators as „the most ambitious experiment in comparative politics since Aristotle’s time“, Adrian Steinert from SGI Team reports.

BRICS Countries

Cementing New Power Structures

07/20/2012, by Justine Doody

Western dominance of global financial and political institutions is about to end if the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) have anything to do with it. Their fortunes will certainly affect the world economy.

Data Blogs

Seeing Reality Through Graphs and Maps

07/10/2012, by Craig J. Willy

While people rely less and less on traditional media data blogs serve as a new guide through the information jungle. Craig J. Willy presents some of the most influential data blogs today.

Media Freedom in Germany

Good Policy Can Be Measured

07/04/2012, by Bernd Ratmeyer

The SGI project measures and compares the policy success of states. A comparison of press freedom in Hungary and Germany shows how it works.

What's New With SGI?

"We Render the Invisible Visible"

07/03/2012, by SGI News

The Sustainable Governance Indicators examine the political challenges of the 21st century. SGI News spoke with Daniel Schraad-Tischler and Najim Azahaf from SGI about the project and the latest developments.

The Battle Against Climate Change

Nothing But Hot Air?

07/03/2012, by Jörg Frommann

In search of an effective multinational strategy to combat global warming many people are looking towards Europe. The old continent can’t provide a universal model but certainly inspiration for successful climate policy.

Rio+20 Conference

The Aftermath

07/03/2012, by Antonia Sohns

Antonia Sohns of the Worldwatch Institute discusses initiatives in the wake of the Rio+20 conference: Good governance is key to successful climate negotiations.