ADP joins UNDP in launching Development Advocate magazine
UNDP launched its development magazine, The Development Advocate, in Islamabad on 24th January 2014. The quarterly magazine seeks to share and foster robust national public discourse on development challenges and solutions in Pakistan and hopes to serve as a platform for Pakistani authorities, civil society and intelligentsia to exchange ideas on key development solution pathways in Pakistan.
The first issue of the magazine centers on local governance in Pakistan, with articles focusing on its impact on Pakistani politics, women and religious minorities in particular. On the occasion, Mr. Haoliang Xu, UN Assistant Secretary General, UNDP Assistant Administrator and Director of the Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific, said, “The 18th Constitutional Amendment- unanimously passed in 2010- has set new directions for Pakistan as a federal, democratic and parliamentary state.” Later, the panelists which included lawyers, analysts, public policy officials and women’s rights activists, discussed the role of civil society and politicians in ensuring that this third tier of governance is well received and allowed to flourish and celebrate the spirit of plurality and diversity that the 18th Amendment has set out to achieve.
For large development agencies like UNDP as well as small-to-medium sized ones like ADP, the changing fabric of governance in Pakistan holds much significance. The willingness of the federal, provincial and local levels of the state to interact with donor organizations and grassroots development actors is essential in ensuring that the impact of projects is maximized and felt in each segment of the villages and cities targeted. Dialogue around these transformations in Pakistani society is absolutely crucial in order to broaden our understanding of the implications of such policies and initiatives. The Development Advocate provides the avenue to do just this. In Country Director UNDP, Mr. Marc Andre Franche’s words, this “marks the beginning of what will be an ongoing discourse leading to innovative development solutions…it is creating a space for dialogue that bridges the gap between policy and people’s daily lives.”
ADP is excited to have been a part of the launch of a platform which will play an instrumental role in how conversations on development issues are held, analyzed and deliberated from here onwards. We intend to remain fully engaged in this dialogue and keep all of you up to date!