12-U1D2 - Reflect on some of the areas where you feel you are using your own cultural boundaries appropriately and some areas where you would like to make improvements
GLOBAL ISSUES AND GLOBAL PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION I N T R O D U C T I O N Understanding the interrelationships between public administration and global issues is an unavoidable necessity to anyone in a leadership position in this profession.
Wealth and poverty, environmental stewardship, and gender equality are but some of the topics that could be explored under the broad topic of global issues.
W E A L T H A N D P O V E R T Y The complexity of poverty creates many challenges for public administrators and policy makers. Long- term improvement in living standards for people living in the poorest nations is affected by many issues.
Public administration at the national level for these countries can be affected by corruption, inexperience, or lack of access to resources. Politics, civil constructs, outside economic forces, and even geography and climate can affect the creation and distribution of wealth in a country.
P O P U L A T I O N Policy action to simply reduce population can be received in many different ways and not all are positive.
Rather than simply working to reduce population, the United Nations and many governments look now toward more specific goals.
Much of the current work in population control addresses reproductive rights, HIV/AIDS prevention and education, and the increase of life expectancy and reduction in infant mortality. One strategy employed by the United Nations Population Fund is the application of population data in to poverty reduction efforts.
F O O D The World Health Organization estimates that one-third of the world is well-fed, one-third is underfed one-third is starving—and over four million will die this year as a result. Starvation and malnutrition are not only personal tragedies, they are also significant burdens to national economic development.
While one cannot put a dollar amount on suffering, economists estimate that the effects of malnutrition cost an individual 5-10 percent of potential earnings over his or her life.
Not only does this hold the person back, it also helps maintain the cycle of poverty so many developing nations are trying to break. P r i n t C r e d i t s E N E R G Y Many scientists and other experts tell us that current energy use is unsustainable. Gasoline for our automobiles, home heating fuels in the form of natural gas and heating oil, and coal-based electricity all come with higher and higher costs—some apparent and some hidden.
Policy makers need to consider the economic dangers inherent in the dependence on a potentially unreliable resource. So many aspects of the economy—worker transportation, movement of raw materials and finished goods, and the production of petroleum based products such as plastics, pesticides and even pharmaceuticals—are deeply dependent upon fossil fuels with that dependency is risk that the policy makers must address.
T H E E N V I R O N M E N T The state of the environment and the impact of human activity on the environment have become major issues in public and policy debate. Some advocate viewing the environment as a resource and a scarce resource at that.
By doing so, economic models can be applied and the value of active care of the environment and improvement of its status can be seen. Many in government and public administration claim that environmental considerations must be integrated into urban and other planning. In order to reduce the disregard for environmental consequences, some communities have introduced tools such as carbon emission taxes.
Equally important, according to many policy analysts is the concept of offering tax exemptions or reductions to industries that invest in and support environmental protection in other ways T E C H N O L O G Y The concept of technology encompasses everything from a monkey's use of sticks to fish for termites to the promise of regenerative medicine, or the current breadth of information technology.
Our relationship with technology also spans a great range from those who believe that technology can and will solve all the problems of society, to those who believe it is actually responsible for our problems and ills.
For the public administrator, technology can serve to improve and streamline processes and service delivery. Policy makers need also to consider technology from ethical and moral positions.
A L T E R N A T I V E F U T U R E S That the world is changing is a fully accepted reality. The ability for policy makers to anticipate the direction and effects of this change is crucial.
Predicting alternative futures is not simply a talent of science fiction writers, but rather a skill that uses sound methodology to anticipate outcomes. In order to plan for the communities they serve, public administrators must understand and anticipate not only the positive potentialities but also the dire outcomes of today's choices. War, resource depletion, overpopulation, and climate change are all factors that could shape the future and understanding the implications of these factors is necessary if we are to be prepared to meet the challenges these futures might bring.
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