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www.alliance21.org > What is the Alliance?

The Alliance in Brief

1 - What is the Alliance for a Responsible, Plural and United World?
2 - What is the Platform for a Responsible and United World?
3 - Who participates in the Alliance?
4 - In what context was the Alliance born?
5 - Does the Alliance have an official spokesperson?
6 - Does the Alliance have a legal status?
7 - Who funds the Alliance?
8 - What is the Alliance for?
9 - What is a Thematic Workshop?
10 - What is a Socioprofessional Network?
11 - What is a Geocultural Group?
12 - What are the Continental Meetings?
13 - What is the World Citizens Assembly?
14 - What is a Proposal Paper?
15 - What is a Charter?
16 - What is the Alliance Charter?

1 - What is the Alliance for a Responsible, Plural and United World?

The Alliance is an informal network made of people, institutions and movements that are aware of the complexity of contemporary problems and seek to find the necessary mutations so that we can together act upon the future. This network has generated a social dynamics and is inventing new forms of collective action.

2 - What is the Platform for a Responsible and United world?

The Platform is a text drafted in 1993 by people from different cultures and spheres following after a number of meetings, by continent, by socioprofessional sphere, or by theme.
This text proposes:
- a diagnosis on the nature and causes of the main crisis points of our world;
- values and principles for action aiming for a more responsible and united world.
- priorities and strategies.

This document today is a reference that has been signed by several thousand people, either as individuals or as representatives of a group, in more that 115 countries. It is the circulation of this text that launched the dynamics of the Alliance.

3 - Who participates in the Alliance?

Organization activists, researchers, company directors, workers, farmers, young people, old people, men and women from all over the world, as individuals, groups, movements, institutions. "Allies" have in common their endorsement of the Platform as a reflection of their main concerns and of their values. They feel the need to move with others, they agree on certain perspectives and on a collective working ethic, and they wish to contribute publicly to this dynamics.

4 - In what context was the Alliance born?

To understand the beginnings of this initiative, we need to remember that the eighties and the early nineties were the stages of major social and political changes in which the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 was a historical marking point. The new globalization of financial and commercial markets, the expansion of modernization that is constantly growing stronger, etc. have deeply transformed the economy, society, and culture. Facing the uncontested dominant system of free-market globalization, we have witnessed the emergence of a new civil society on a global scale, which has marked its distance with the old ideological models and obsolete methods of social and political organization. The Alliance was born in this movement, searching for new paradigms, new relations, enhancing the value of cross-culturality, of diversity, of the claim for new human rights, etc. It has appeared as a response to the need felt by a growing number of people for an articulation of the forces of thinking and action.

5 - Does the Alliance have an official spokesperson?

No. Everybody can refer to the Alliance, provided that they respect the rules of collective work and can claim their participation in a network, a group, an association, a nonprofit organization, or an institution that is a part of this dynamics. No one can speak in another person’s name, or in the name of the Alliance as a whole.

6 - Does the Alliance have a legal status?

The Alliance today has no legal structure. When the practical need is felt for a legal status, the working groups can rely on a legally recognized entity. This will often be a partner organization.

7 - Who funds the Alliance?

The Charles Leopold Mayer Foundation for Human Progress (a Swiss-based foundation) has largely contributed to funding the essential work for the start of the Alliance. Beyond the personal investment of all the people and organizations that are actively involved in the Alliance, institutional or organization partners also financially support specific "allied" initiatives.

8 - What is the Alliance for?

In order to prepare together for the necessary mutations, the Alliance seeks to :
- overcome the feeling of helplessness that arises from isolation;
- bring people together on common objectives and events, while respecting everyone’s autonomy;
- invent ways of working together while being scattered around the world.

9 - What is a Thematic Workshop?

It is a working group that thinks about and elaborates new proposals on the main questions regarding our common future (water, soils, the economy, democracy, art, etc.). These workgroups, which are generally very international, are grouped around four workgroups: Value and Culture, Economy and Society, Governance and Citizenship, Humanity and the Biosphere. They reflect the diversity of the challenges that are faced by society.

10 - What is a Socioprofessional Network?

It a group of organizations or people from the same socioprofessional sphere who are concerned with building dialog and mobilization within that sphere (young people, farmers, scientists, local representatives, etc.). The Socioprofessional Networks reflect the concerns and responsibilities of very diverse social and professional spheres.

11 - What is a Geocultural Group?

It is a group of people from a town, a region, a country, or even a continent, working together from the realities and questions at stake in their society. These groups reflect the diversity of places and cultures.

12 - What are the Continental Meetings?

Five Continental Meetings, open to all and not only to the internal networks of the Alliance, were organized simultaneously between June 17 and 26, 2001 to demonstrate the determination to build a new global form of citizenship on the scale of today’s challenges. This was a first step, after seven years of thinking and action, toward drafting Proposal Papers and a contribution to the Alliance Charter. These meetings were followed up by a World Citizens Assembly to pool all their results.

13 - What is the World Citizens Assembly?

It was a meeting of 400 persons from all walks of life and from the four corners of the planet, messengers from many groups and movements, which took place in Lille (France) from December 2 to 10, 2001. All the work of the different Thematic Workshops, Socioprofessional Networks, and Continental Meetings of the Alliance was presented there.
The Assembly provided a place to debate common principles for the management of our planet (see the Charter) and the strategies for change that should be enacted in the coming decades to face the present deadlocks of our way of life, our form of development, and our governance (see Proposal Papers). Web site: http://www.alliance21.org/lille/en/

14 - What is a Proposal Paper?

Drafted by the different groups in the Alliance, the Proposal Papers are a collection of booklets that present, for each critical area, the proposals that seem most relevant to enacting the evolutions that are necessary to build a fairer and more viable twenty-first century. The objective is to stimulate debate both on the local and global levels. A particular focus is given to the identification of actors who are able to put these proposals into practice. Citizens and officials at every level of society must become involved in enacting the necessary innovations without leaving these to the sole responsibility of states, governments, or transnational corporations.

15 - What is a Charter?

A charter is a text that lists the values and common principles that a socioprofessional group wishes to assert. Socioprofessional networks first identify the priorities in the challenges that are specific to their socioprofessional sphere. Then they draft their charter, expressing:
- a common ethics to which the members of the network will refer in their thinking and action;
- the commitments that they make.

The charters are intended to be broadly circulated the concerned sphere, to be non conflictive with each other, as well as in keeping with the Charter for Human Responsibilities.
The latter has sought identify, through an cross-cultural working process, the founding principles and values for building a more sustainable and fairer world. The central issue is the promotion of a new regulation for international relations that will complete the texts that already regulate inter-state relations and the defense of Human Rights.

What is the Alliance Charter?

The Alliance Charter was adopted and amended according to participants’ input in 2005. It basically provides the ethical framework and the tools that Allies are henceforth able to use to network among themselves and also enlarge their action networks. Networks that were previously an integral part of the Alliance, such as the Workgroup on Solidarity Socio-Economy (WSSE), now called the Alliance for a Responsible, Plural and Solidarity Economy (ALOE), the Artists Alliance, and the Catalan Group became Allied Workgroups, independent but networked into the Alliance. Any group can now request to become part of the Allied Workgroups. In line with cutting-edge governance thinking, the Alliance is undergoing massive decentralization and turning into an Alliance of Alliances!

The Alliance communication team formed an independent competence network, Infocom21, which can provide citizen networks with the various methodologies and tools that had been developed since the mid-1990s in the framework of the Alliance, are original and particularly well-adapted to the needs of such networks, and the training needed to use them.



FURTHER READING

Go !Alliance Documents


Other Networks

- The World Citizens Assembly
- The Continental Meetings

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