Subject: Help wanted to bring Africa Streets to Dar es Salaam for the 26-28 June 2018 ITDP MOBILIZE events
Dear Friends of sustainable transport, sustainable cities and sustainable lives, greetings,
Here is what I want to do for our common cause and that just may interest you.. It is a long shot, but after half a day of turning the ideas around in my mind I decided to give it a try and seek counsel on this from our 10k plus international readers.. Let’s have a look.
- MOBILIZE: This morning for the first time I received a boilerplate invitation to an ITDP mobility conference in Dar es Salaam: MOBILIZE: “Making Space for Mobility in Booming Cities – June 26-28 2018” – reference – https://mobilizesummit.org/. This happens a couple of times a week, so I had a quick look, my immediate reaction being to set it aside and get back to the serious work of the day.
- AFRICAN STREETS: Hmm, I pondered it a bit more with my second cup of coffee. Dar is a city that I really love – and moreover the topic relates 100% to the collaborative book project that we initiated in April with a promised special edition from World Transport Policy & Practice and informally in a first instance from an innovations unit at WHO under the title of . “AFRICAN STREETS: Stories of success, failure and learning from experience”. (See https://worldstreets.wordpress.com/2018/04/10/africa-streets-2018-letter-of-invitation/ and https://www.facebook.com/AfricaStreets/ for more on that.)
- SERENDIPITY: To see if there was anything of possible worth going on here, I then dumped my name (in quotes) AND Africa AND MOBILIZE into Google and here is what I came up with — https://bit.ly/2JAquI5
- IDEA: Okay, let’s find a way to get me to Dar, both as an observer and also eventually as an available asset/contributor, with the idea of writing up an independent perspective piece in which I cross my ideas and experience with what I would be learning via the main event and all that surrounds it. (I like doing this because it obliges me to cover every session and event as the program allows. Otherwise I tend to skip around.)
- INVITATION: For that as a first step I would need a formal invitation—along the lines of: “Dear Professor Britton, we are pleased to invite you to join our conference and . . . et., etc..” I am now knocking at the door of the ITDP to see if I can scare up such an invitation. And if not from them, perhaps other sponsors or key African, bilateral aid, or the OECD, EU, UN family organizations.
- SPONSOR: Surely ITDP has no budget for this, certainly not at the very last minute, so I shall have to shop elsewhere for financial support. And hence this note to you and our readers. For this I will need a grant or Fellowship to cover travel, etc. costs and 3-4 weeks of input and follow-up, including a report first to the sponsors and subsequently anyone else with you they might wish to share my observations.
- CONCURRENT: As always with these assignments, I intend to make contact with local government, operators, universities, key media, interest groups and civil society, to make presentations, engage in dialogues, and in general to learn from my hosts from multiple perspectives. If it proves interesting, I will propose to present and invite critical discussion to any of the New Mobility Watching Briefs that are currently keeping us more than busy — https://worldstreets.wordpress.com/tag/watching-briefs/.
- FOLLOW-UP: Before, during and after the event itself, World Streets will publish interviews with local and other African experts, to benefit from their views, along with a certain number of Op-Ed contributions to benefit from independent assessments and visions. It is hoped that several authors and chapters of the special edition of the Journal of World Transport Policy and Practice due for publication end of this year will also be identified and integrated into the work plan for the coming months.
There you have it. Any suggestions for eventual sponsors whom I might approach. Or collaborating organizations or individual experts or scholars who might wish to get involved? In any event if you let me know of your interest I will keep you informed though World Streets and our various channels and platforms if anything comes of this.
With all good wishes, and oh yes while you’re at it, light a candle for luck.
George Bernard Shaw put it like this: “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: while the unreasonable one persists in . . . “.
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About the author:
9, rue Gabillot, 69003 Lyon France
Bio: Educated as an international development economist, Eric Britton is an American political scientist, teacher and sustainability activist who has worked on missions and advisory assignments on all continents. Professor of Sustainable Development, Economy and Democracy at the Institut Supérieur de Gestion (Paris), he is also MD of EcoPlan Association, an independent advisory network providing strategic counsel for government and business on policy and decision issues involving complex systems, social-technical change, civil society and sustainable development. Founding editor of World Streets: The Politics of Transport in Cities | See Britton online at https://goo.gl/9CJXTh and @ericbritton