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Sustainable growth and peace

Jan 21,2019 - Last updated at Jan 21,2019

The above title is as big as the world itself. Yet, the theme has been the subject of a new book published in 2019 and penned by Amani Jarrar, an associate professor at Philadelphia University in Jordan. She served in various places, mainly of high statute, but her passion for research eventually boxed her in as a professor and researcher.

Jarrar launched her book, written in Arabic, on January 14 at the Abdul Hamid Shoman Foundation. She was kind enough to ask me to be the main reviewer of her book. Former ambassador to the UK Mazen Hmoud chaired, and Jarra introduced the book’s content. The exact translation of the book’s title is “Sustainable Development and Global Peace”.

The book is basically a tidy taxonomy of the literature on the relationship between world peace and sustainable development in its various parts. She takes the variables as the constituents of the main three sections of the book.

 In the first chapter, she analyses the various theories, concepts and evolution of literature on the concept of “developments”. She even goes to old, almost-defective books, like Rostow’s “Stages of Economic Growth”, a silly retortive answer to Karl Marx’s “Das Kapital”.

In the second chapter, the author discusses the concept of peace. She analyses three dimensions here, and these are human rights in mankind history, terrorism and the future of the world order and last but not least, human security and the new world order.

The last part brings the author’s ideas and preferences to the fore. She dedicates it to the axle of education in confrontation with violence, extremism and terrorism.

I tried to understand the book in a slightly different approach. I asked myself the question: How would you, as a researcher, make use of this book in advancing the cause of peace and in demonstrating convincingly the ultimate objective of the direct functional relation between global peace and sustainable development?

The relationship between the two variables of sustainable growth and peace is circular. Both are dependent and independent variables.

What is the relation between human rights and sustainable growth? My friend from Chile, Manfred Max-Neef, adopts a large definition of human rights. These are not merely physical, but moral and psychological.

Then the next problématique: What is the relation between sustainable growth and democracy? China is accused since 1949 with the absence of democracy and freedom of choice. Yet, it ensured the creation of synergy to overcome their negative impact. On the other side, countries like Mexico, Colombia, Panama, etc. achieved high sustainable growth rates with democracy.

Until we can practically prove that, in the long run, sustainable peace, quid pro quo, is equal for sustainable growth, we will continue to see terrorism, abuse and dispute turning to violence.

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