Council for an Innovative Society

author: Blaž Kavčič, National Council of the Republic of Slovenia
published: May 11, 2011,   recorded: April 2011,   views: 2987

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What is happening today to our environment and our societies? Are things running predominantly well and asure the quality of life to us, to our children, to our grand-children? One does not have to be to analytical to conclude that human civilization has long ago exceeded the sustainabilty levels in terms of population, polution, biodiversity, carbon levels, natural resources, water quantity and quality and many others. The knowledge and exchange of information on this subjects are rich. But, nothing really changes. It will change eventually, but it is an important difference in how and when will it happen. Will it be as a result of environmental and/or social outbursts with unforseeable consequences, or will it be by a shift in socio-economic paradigm. Is it realistic to expect that serious attempts in formulating and implementing a new paradigm is going to emerge out of existing institutions and mechanisms. Not very likely. It is, therefore, very important to seek for more innovative approach in political institutional framework. When we ask ourselves antoher question: Is it fair to attribute all the power to decide about most important questions of life of citizens to political parties only? How does the ethical platform, long term perspective of thinking, importance to appeal to the voters, readiness to open »non-productive« issues of the political party leaders look like? Are we able, in a today's globalized world, to speak about »noiseless« transformance of the will and interests of citizens into proper political decisions? Accepting parliamentary democracy and political parties as the best solution, not ideal, but working, it wise to have a possibility of second opinion. This is the role of the National Council, a second chamber of the Slovenian Parliament. To certain extent innovative, because national councellors, when elected, do not become professional politicians when elected, but remain professionally active in their electorates, which might be in local communities or in different areas of society. The National Council has thus developed a very intensive collaboration with NGOs and represents a valid platform of influencing formal political structures. In order to intensify its work in formulating a draft of a New socio-economic paradigm and to intensify its interaction with NGOs, a consultative body of the president of The National Council (NC) has been nominated some two years ago – The Council for Innovative Society (CIS). CIS consists of national councilors and experts from outside the NC. There are three main content blocks CIS is dealing with: The New Socio-economic paradigm, Forestry and wood processing industry, Environment and energy.

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