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Alliance 21: Making Another World Possible
Evaluations, Visions, Proposals, and Projects
Alliance for a Responsible, Plural and United World
April 2003

The first three parts :

- Evaluation and Vision of the Future :

- Proposals and Projects
- Report on the Participatory Process Used for the Evaluation and Future of the Alliance


- The second stage of the Alliance

 

Part One: Evaluation and Vision of the Future

ByMartí Olivella
Barcelona, April 20, 2003

1. General Evaluation of the Alliance

Thanks to the strategic horizon and a common methodology laid out in the Platform, the Alliance has been a very rich place for sharing thoughts and ideas on alternative and new civilization paradigms, an outstanding collective adventure because of its focus on proposal building, its thematic scope, its sectoral and geocultural diversity, and its calendar, which is independent of the official international calendar.

Alliance proposals aim at responding to the problems that humans and societies face every day, with a constant question as to whether with “our” forces alone, we can truly oppose, before it’s too late, the destructive forces that have political, commercial, and military power.

This adventure has been made possible by the colossal personal investment of many Allies in the Alliance process and by the fundamental role played by the FPH in its management, organization, and financing. This role, which is indispensable to a process such as that of the Alliance, has, however, led to the establishment of a far-too-centralized coordination structure, in which the FPH has assumed too much responsibility, because it has pooled leadership along with the main financial and human resources.

Although the experience of participating in the Alliance produces great personal enrichment, the lack of clarity in the rules of the game, the excessive centralization of decision making at the FPH, and the dependence on the FPH engendered among many groups and Allies have led to loss of valuable energy and produced a lot of frustration among many different people, who have since withdrawn from the Alliance.

Enormous effort was put into elaborating the Proposal Papers and into organizing the Continental Meetings and the Assembly of Lille, but the doubt remains as to whether we shall know how to channel all of this effort into the social-transformation projects the world needs.

It may be that what has been lacking are the education and the necessary joint participation needed to get past the difficulty of understanding the dynamics of the Thematic Workshops, the Socioprofessional Networks, and the Geocultural Groups… and of the methods proposed in Lille. The more methodological innovation is proposed by a minority, the more education and joint participation is necessary for these processes to be reinforced.

The failed attempt at setting up an International Facilitation Team (IFT), which was intended to progressively and collectively take over the Alliance process? led to the loss of very valuable contributions, removed synergies from the organization of the Continental Meetings and of the Assembly of Lille and, worst of all, confirmed the fear that any process moving in the direction of creating a collective form for the facilitation of the Alliance is staked out for failure as long as the FPH continues playing such a decisive role.

The result of this feeling is that the necessary and expected collective and open dialogue on the evaluation and the future of the Alliance has not taken place, given that it is less hazardous, in order not to lose possible future FPH support, to continue negotiating directly with it or through its Call for Initiatives. This would also explain the reason why very few workgroup coordinators have used the free and self-managed available forum to debate openly on the general process and on the articulations of the workgroups. However, through the EIFE e-forum and the "delibera" method, more than one hundred Allies have taken the floor in the course of the past year.

The Lille Assembly was a great meeting with powerful experience sharing and collective thinking, but it did not clearly generate the expected intense, synergic articulation. In the way it was organized, it was not well explained why most of the participants had not participated in the previous work of the Alliance, nor even why many of the participants didn't know the Alliance at all. Neither was it ever clear why the Proposal Papers were not presented for ownership by the participants of the Assembly. Further confusion came from the expectation of some of the Allies that the Assembly should have debated on how to organize action proposals; but for that to happen, the Proposal Papers would have to have been made available beforehand so that everyone would have read them and it would have been possible to move on to strategic concerns.

The methodological innovations proposed in Lille were a great challenge, necessary for experimenting on how to improve the participatory processes of large assemblies, but not having been well explained or integrated by the participants, they caused much division of opinions. Another of the difficulties for the Allies to “understand” the Lille Assembly, is that many consider that they were not informed of the recommendations and proposals that resulted from Lille.

© 2001 Alliance pour un monde responsable, pluriel et solidaire. Tous droits rZservZs.