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1. Meaning of "the way forward": There is a need to articulate understanding of what could be meant by "the way forward" in an inter-sectoral context.
2. Seeing things whole: There is a need to explore new ways of seeing things as a whole -- without losing sight of the parts for which each sector is responsible. Agenda 21 does not contain a single visual aid reflecting new systemic understanding of sustainability.
3. Inter-sectoral maps: There is a need to come to an understanding of where each sectoral concern is located on a map of the functions essential to sustainability -- functions which, when pursued to excess, result in unsustainability.
4. Overall pattern: The complex of issues under discussion should preferably be viewed as forming some meaningful overall pattern. Individual issues can usefully be seen as pieces of a systemic "jig-saw puzzle" that we do not as yet fully understand how to put together -- or what the completed "picture" might look like. It would clearly be a mistake to limit the focus to the "laundry list" schema of Agenda 21 -- whatever the priorities or validity of the points therein.
5. Beyond isolated bargains: There is a need to move beyond isolated bargains -- often only achieved at the price of unsustainable compromise in other areas. In this sense "local" (namely sector-specific) agreements tend to be achieved at the price of "global" disagreement.
6. Function of differences: There is a need to acknowledge the function of differences between sectors. This contrasts with the hope that the differences can be rendered insignificant within a global consensus -- thus making any such consensus a competitive exercise in tokenism.
7. New patterns of communication: There is a need to struggle with the challenge of understanding and articulating new patterns of inter-sectoral activity, namely new patterns of communication to sustain sustainability -- conceptual "ley lines". These need to enhance understanding of the whole rather then focusing exclusively on links between selected and privileged parts.
8. Necessary sectoral constraints: Unless each sector recognizes the conditions under which its action should be constrained, a culture of sectoral self-righteousness prevails. This imperils the emergence of any sustainable global pattern of new significance.
9. Challenge to comprehension: Unless a sector can recognize how it is part of the problem, it must necessarily be unable to understand the nature of the sustainable solution required.
10. Collective learning: The inter-sectoral challenge may be seen as a challenge of designing a collective learning process.
functionally, act strategically
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