“A global citizen is someone who identifies with being a part of an emerging world community, and whose actions contribute to building this community’s values and practices.”Â Global Citizenship: A Path to Building Identity and Community in a Globalized World, Ron Israel, 2011 (go toÂ TGCI StoreÂ to purchase and download a complete copy of this book)
If you are interested in finding answers to any of the following five questions, then consider becoming a member of The Global Citizensâ€™ Initiative:
1. How can I act more responsibly as a citizen of the globe?
2. How can I better contribute to and advocate for policies and programs that benefit the whole planet?
3. How can I become more engaged with institutions involved in global governance?
4. Where can I meet people who share my interest in global citizenship and work with them to build a better planet?
5. How can I become better informed about activities and events that influence how we live and work with one another as a global community?
The Global Citizensâ€™ Initiative (TGCI) is an effort to build a network of people who see themselves as global citizens and want to build a better world. Such a network responds to an urgent need for better grass-roots mechanisms that engage people in the processes of advocating for global values, finding global solutions to global issues, and building more participatory global governance institutions.
We live in a world where a global dimension has been added to everyoneâ€™s lives, whether through the Internet, the globalization of our economies, or the strains of world music and art that infuse our cultures. In this world nation states have neither the will nor ability by themselves to address the problems confronting the planet; and all sort of players, from UN agencies to NGOs and multi-national corporations, are rushing in to fill the void in global decision-making. Yet, the powers of the formal multilateral institutions reflect the interests, agendas and power of existing nation states and there are few mechanisms on the global stage that give voice to the concerns of the growing numbers of us who feel that we are members of an emerging global community.
The Global Citizensâ€™ Initiative seeks to address this need. The Initiative is based on the following set of principles and beliefs:
1. There is an emerging world community with a shared set of values*;
2. People have the ability to think and act as global citizens, in addition to being citizens of their countries;
3. People from around the world need opportunities to participate in the development of solutions to the growing number of global problems challenging the world community;
4. Governance institutions that seek to address global problems need mechanisms that help ensure greater engagement with and accountability to the people they serve;
* Such values include a commitment to basic human rights; religious pluralism; participatory governance; protection of the earthâ€™s environment; sustainable world-wide economic growth; poverty alleviation; humanitarian assistance; elimination of weapons of mass destruction; cessation and prevention of conflicts between countries; preservation of cultural diversity
Our major goals are to build a group of leaders who can promote the practice of global citizenship engagement and advocate for policies and programs that reflect the values of a world community. TGCI is a member organization where people can access information about global citizenship issues, engage in global development advocacy efforts, and build their skills as global citizenship leaders.
The Global Citizens’ Initiative will link with, and seek to support other organizations working on related issues, such as NGOs, Global Action Networks, social entrepreneurship and social corporate responsibility efforts. Our goal is to strengthen the citizen participation dimension of the work of these organizations.
Our advocacy efforts will enable TGCI members to learn about important global issues, institutions, and events that affect them; and work together to promote globally based answers to the challenges that face the planet as a whole. We will speak out against actions and policies that threaten the fabric of world community; and organize a campaign to celebrate Global Citizenship Day on June 21st; a day when people around the planet can express their sense of belonging and engagement with a world community.
Our leadership building efforts will focus on a program to train a cadre of leaders from different regions of the world in the skills needed to engage people in the practice of global citizenship. Such skills include (a) how to increase the effectiveness of citizen participation in institutions that address global issues, e.g. governments, international organizations, NGOs, corporations; (b) how to build multi-country networks to engage citizens from different countries in working together to influence global values and policies.
The Global Citizensâ€™ Initiative will link with, and seek to support other organizations working on related issues, such as NGOs, Global Action Networks, social entrepreneurship and social corporate responsibility efforts. Our goal is to strengthen the citizen participation dimension of the work of these organizations.
TGCI will be registered in the U.S. as a non-profit 501 ( c ) (3) organization. It has a small Board of Trustees and is forming a larger international Advisory Board that will provide overall policy advice and guidance.