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New books – Education For Change

Water Ethics A Values Approach to Solving the Water Crisis

David Groenfeldt, 2013, Routledge, 216 p, Paperback: £24.99, ISBN-978-0-415-62645-3

This book introduces the idea that ethics are an intrinsic dimension of any water policy, program, or practice, and that understanding what ethics are being acted out in water policies is fundamental to an understanding of water resource management. Thus in controversies or conflicts over water resource allocation and use, an examination of ethics can help clarify the positions of conflicting parties as preparation for constructive negotiations.

The book shows how new technologies, such as drip irrigation, or governance structures, such as river basin organizations are neither “good” nor “bad” in their own right, but can serve a range of interests which are guided by ethics. A new ethic of coexistence and synergies with nature is possible, but ultimately depends not on science, law, or finances but on the values we choose to adopt. The book includes a wide range of case studies from countries including Australia, India, Philippines, South Africa and USA. These cover various contexts including water for agriculture, urban, domestic and industrial use, the rights of indigenous people and river, watershed and ecosystem management.

Human Development Report 2013 The Rise of the South: Human Progress in a Diverse World

United Nations Development Programme, 2013, UNDP, UN Plaza, New York, NY 10017, USA, ISBN 978-92-1-126340-4

The 21st century is witnessing a profound shift in global dynamics, driven by the fast-rising new powers of the developing world. Besides China, India and Brazil, developing countries like Indonesia, Mexico, South Africa, Thailand, Turkey and others are becoming leading actors on the world stage. The 2013 Human Development Report identifies more than 40 developing countries that have done better than expected in human development in recent decades, with their progress accelerating markedly over the past 10 years.

The 2013 Human Development Report analyses the causes and consequences of the continuing “Rise of the South” and identifies policies rooted in this new reality that could promote greater progress throughout the world for decades to come. The Report calls for far better representation of the South in global governance systems and points to potential new sources of financing within the South for essential public goods. With fresh analytical insights and clear proposals for policy reforms, the Report charts a course for people in all regions to face shared human development challenges together, fairly and effectively.

Reducing Inequalities: A Sustainable Development Challenge (A Planet for Life)

Rémi Genevey, Rajendra K. Pachauri & Laurence Tubiana, 2013, Teri Press, 265p, $27.75, ISBN -9788179935309

The 2013 edition of A Planet for Life represents a unique international initiative grounded on conceptual and strategic thinking, and – most importantly – empirical experiments, conducted on five continents and touching on multiple realities. This unprecedented collection of works proposes a solid empirical approach, rather than an ideological one, to inform future debate. The case studies collected in this volume demonstrate the complexity of the new systems required to accommodate each country’s specific economic, political and cultural realities.

These systems combine technical, financial, legal, fiscal and organizational elements with a great deal of applied expertise, and are articulated within a clear, well-understood, growthand job-generating development strategy.