Ariel Halpern

Vice-President, PROCASUR Corporation

In the near future, our societies will value local communities as knowledge holders. We will learn that problems are global but effective solutions start from the bottom. Because people’s knowledge reflects on the know-how accumulated by generations of settlers and migrants within a territory, this wisdom will turn into the foremost asset in the never ending adaptation to recurrent or new manmade and natural disasters. If the SDGs are achieved, we might be fully aware of what is meant by ‘knowledge is power.’ Fostering homegrown solutions, peer to peer learning and South-South Cooperation are key components of several Low and Middle Income Countries’ strategies. Therefore, we propose that the Knowledge Development Goals should explicitly anchor learning and innovation at the national and local level, promoting among other solutions: i) the establishment of self-managed local knowledge enterprises and centres for improved access to knowledge and other extension services by the most vulnerable population and territories; ii) investment in fair dialogue between people’s organisations and academia in order to transit from a respectful consideration of local knowledge into externally driven interventions. This would involve full recognition of the value of local knowledge and its contribution to the SDGs.