Promoting Social Democratic Thinking, Alternatives and Practices


Singapore Conference Summary on Education

There is almost a universal consensus among experts, civil society organizations, governments and global institutions with respect to Education’s crucial role in fostering individual empowerment collective cohesion, and national as well as regional development. Also, throughout the long history of the emergence and development of social democrats and progressive movements, from labour unions, to civil society groups, and reform-minded intellectuals, Education has remained as a central advocacy. Education is a primary mechanism for empowering members and the broader citizenry, enabling organizational consolidation and coalition-building, fostering vibrant and informed debates around pressing issues in the society, and advancing socio-political consciousness against ignorance and political passivity. Despite the rapid changes in the fortunes and circumstances of progressive movements and workers groups, with many social democratic parties enmeshed in direct day-to-day governance issues, Education still continues to serve as a pillar of public advocacy and outreach -- inspiring new generations of leaders with cutting-edge ideas, guiding political mobilizations, and shaping a socially-conscious citizenry.

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Manila Conference Summary on Decent Work Worldwide

All across the world, from Europe and Asia, to Africa and Latin Africa, the last three decades have witnessed the gradual and persistent retrenchment of state institutions, most especially in the realm of economics. Such seismic renegotiation in the relationship between the state and markets has been found upon a set of simplistic assumptions, namely the efficiency of markets as collective mechanisms of value-production and the rationality of individual market participants. Concerned with hyper-inflation and chronic budget deficit, proponents of market reform have called for the overhaul of national and international economic order, shifting the balance of power in favour of private business interests at the expense of public welfare and social cohesion. With the dismantling of regulatory structures -- designed to rein in the excesses of markets, and strike a balance between economic productivity and constitutional principles undermining the political order -- market liberalization has gone hand in hand with successive financial crises, which have, in turn, undermined the social fabric of many countries around the world.

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Speech of Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng at SOCDEM Asia Conference on Lessons and Best Practices in Governance

The George Town Conurbation (GTC) consists of the highly urbanised Penang Island, Seberang Perai, Sungai Petani, Kulim and the surrounding areas (see map). With a population of 1.6 million according to the National Cencus in 2000, it was the second-largest metropolitan area in Malaysia after the Kuala Lumpur conurbation (Klang Valley), which had a population of 4.9 million. Johor Bahru had 1.5 million. The population of the GTC is now estimated more than 2 million.

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