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World Day of Social Justice 2016

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Saturday, February 20th, 2016
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A new world of social consciousness has opened up between the public and even the poppiest of stars, and many are cashing in.

By Rawiya Kameir

This is a poem of death
Death of person is like a thief
When it comes everyone would cry
Its alive to everybody
Is either young or old
You can not change when its there
You stealing soul of human being
And leave her/him without a soul
Death you always new in the family
You a problem because you choose right person
If you using hand, that hand is evil
You are not satisfied, many people were already dead
I wish to know when you stop
When you stop, our parents will scream because of joy
When you stop we will celebrate

“Questions of tax strike at the heart of social justice. Why else do many in Britain and elsewhere get so enraged about the existence of tax havens and global corporations that don’t pay their share?…Taxation is by far the most significant mechanism of redistribution available to us nationally, locally and, to some extent, globally too.”

Tom Goodfellow, SIID Fellow and Lecturer in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning.
Taken from his upcoming blog:
Property taxes, public services and wealth .
Placing property taxation, redistribution and social justice in an ethical context

“While the idea of promoting a just society through the challenge of injustice might be viewed as an inherently altruistic notion, in a way, it is also a better way to be selfish; as a just society for all will inevitably come with advantages making it a better society for all.”

“I have a strong interest in employment
security and making vulnerable workers
less vulnerable. For me, social justice
means the removal of discrimination within
the workplace, the promotion of equality of
opportunity and outcome, and the
redress of past inequities”.
“I shall never accept that the law can
be used to justify tragedy, to keep things
as they are, to make us abandon our ideas
of a different world. Law is the path of
liberty, and must as such open the way
to progress for everyone.”

“In this crucial year for global development, as Member States
work to craft a post-2015 agenda
and a new set of sustainable development goals, let us do our
utmost to eradicate all forms of
human exploitation. Let us strive
to build a world of social justice
where all people can live and
work in freedom, dignity and equality.”

Billie Holiday singing ”
Strange Fruit
“, 1939
“For decades, the
North/South divide
has been a strong narrative
in England’s approach to economic development. However,
inequality now goes far beyond these narrow geographical
Inequality knows no compass points
in the England of
today. There is no land of milk and honey in the south. London
also has over 600,000 children are living in poverty – 12 per cent
above the national average….
We must become more bullish in
questioning the systemic causes
which create divides in the
first place. Central to this is some serious rebalancing of the
economy, through an active plan and central economic
of where investment flows and who it flows to
. However there
is little sign of that.”

“This is a photograph of Ian Tunnicliffe, Former UK Director of Plans from the Office of Strategic Communication – a propaganda office of the post-invasion ‘Coalition Provisional Authority’ in Iraq.

He is shown seated on former President Saddam Hussein’s throne inside the Iraqi palace in Baghdad, 2003. Many such trophy photographs were taken and contrast greatly with the preferred image being portrayed of US and British actions in the propaganda produced by the Office of Strategic Communication, raising many different questions about the social justice of information sharing and propaganda in the context of international conflict.

This photograph was later included in a presentation for the MOD, which is where I obtained it. It is published with Ian Tunnicliffe’s permission in: Briant, E (2015) Propaganda and Counter-terrorism: Strategies for Global Change, Manchester University Press.”

“The inspiring humanity of many ordinary
European citizens in the face of the refugee crisis
contrasts shockingly with the limited actions of
European governments.”

“Social justice means being involved in the decisions
about your life. Having other people understand you,
write about you and decide for you is a form of poverty.”

Earth provides
enough to satisfy every man’s needs, but not
every man’s

“Philani and his friends’ anger over the state providing more support for women relates not only to their fury at being told how to manage ‘their’ women in ‘their own’ households – it has to be seen more broadly in relation to these men’s own frustrations and desperations about their own lack of equality, in relation to South African society and economy more broadly: they are poor, unemployed, some HIV positive, living in shacks, and the fact is, many of these men feel ‘Nqwayilahle’ (useless). They don’t live up to their cultural ideal as male household head. They live in a situation of severe inequality compared to the massive wealth evident in other parts of South Africa. They epitomise inequality too.
But being poor doesn’t justify embracing inequality towards women, does it?”

The Sheffield Institute for International Development (SIID) is a flagship interdisciplinary research institute within the University of Sheffield. Our network includes a growing fellowship of over 50 scholars and hundreds of postgraduate students from over 12 departments, in addition to a wider community of academic and practitioner partners in governments, think tanks and NGOs around the world.

“We strive for social and environmental justice
in a prosperous world. We insist that social,
economic, political, and environmental
injustices cannot be resolved, nor prosperity
found, simply from economic growth. We seek
solutions to these problems that are based on partnerships which transcend disciplines,
institutions and borders.”

Widening inequalities
and accelerating
damage to the natural environment

are rooted together in
. Social and environmental resources make
it possible for the economy to function, but capitalism has given them
no value. Instead, it has expropriated them in the drive to accumulate
and to the detriment of both.

twin goals of social justice and environmental sustainability
an interest in the future and in the impact of present policy and practice on the
conditions of people and the planet in generations to come. Neither goal can be
achieved by means of individual action or market transactions alone.

require collective action at local, national and global levels
, and
investment of public resources to address shared risks.”

Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute. SPERI.comment, 11 Feb 2016.
Authors: Neil McInroy and Matthew Jackson, Chief Executive and Deputy Chief Executive
of the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES)

“I always tell my students that
there is nothing more political than your health
. Your chances of living a full, healthy and dignified life – and your chances of getting treatment for health problems when they occur – all boil down to questions of politics.
Social, economic and political injustices cause poor health
. For that reason, improving peoples’ health around the world is not just about building clinics or inventing new drugs and vaccines (although those things are important): its also about fighting for justice.

For me,
the terrible history of HIV and AIDS incorporates a much more hopeful story of impassioned and productive struggles for social justice
, by all sorts of people in all sorts of places. These struggles have taken many forms. We’ve seen protests on the streets; the occupation of boardrooms; the creation of small-scale community organizations to support and protect the rights of People Living with HIV and AIDS. It is almost impossible to pick just one. But the one I’ll pick here is the
AIDS Memorial Quilt
– an initiative that grew out of San Francisco in the mid-1980s. Since then it has spread worldwide. It is currently made up of 48,000 panels, each remembering an individual life lost, serving as a moving testament to those who have died of AIDS – but also a powerful argument for social justice.”

You can see photographs of each panel of the quilt at

As we mark the World Day of Social Justice on the 20th February, members of the Sheffield Institute for International Development have been exploring this expansive topic. Here, we take you on a tour of how we engage with the issue, what it means to us, and how it drives us, both personally and professionally.

We are a group of scholars working across multiple academic disciplines and world problems. Social justice is the issue that brings us together across diverse issues such as health, natural resources, urban environments and governance. It is at the heart of the way we see international development.

Join us as we delve into the where, what and why of social justice in our world today.
In her research on the Union of South American Nations,
Pia Riggirozzi
explored how health “became a ‘locus for
integration’ and a new framework to advance the right to
health and legal paradigms linking citizenship and health.
Pia wrote for our SIID blog in Sep 2014

In 2014, SIID led the project “
: The Hundred Most Important Questions in International Development”.

ID100 offered academics, think tanks, non-governmental and multilateral organizations the opportunity to come together to identify these key issues. Over
700 people
34 countries
took part.

The questions have been published as a working paper with the
United Nations Research Institute for Social Development.

“How will governments in lower-income countries be supported to
ensure that informal settlements in urban areas are included in political, economic, health and social planning and development?”

“How can architecture, urban design and planning address social sustainability most effectively and contribute to the creation of social equality and inclusion?”

Vision, Sheffield Institute for International Development
Secretary-General of the U.N., Ban Ki-moon
Paula Meth, SIID ‘Cities’ Research Theme Lead and Senior Lecturer in the
Department of Urban Studies and Planning: “This is a poem written in 2006
by a man living in an informal settlement in the city of Durban, South Africa,
an area that has suffered from extreme levels of violence and crime. The poem
captures his emotional trauma over the on-going levels of violence in the area
and the impact that death has on family and friends. For me as a researcher
I was deeply touched by his use of this creative medium to explore this issue
of social injustice.”
Simon Rushton, SIID ‘Health’ Theme Lead and Lecturer in the
Department of Politics:

How Social Justice Became Cool
Óscar Arias Sánchez, President of Costa Rica from1986-1990 & 2006-2010. Winner of the 1987 Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to end the Central American crisis.
Ojima Abalaka, Law student at the
University of Sheffield and Social Media
Intern at SIID
Inequality knows no compass points
The North/South divide is not the problem.
Economic centralism is.
Two ID100 priority questions for social
justice in cities:
Mahatma Gandhi
Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute.
SPERI.comment, 6 Jan 2016.
Author: Dimitris Ballas, Associate Fellow, SPERI; Senior Lecturer in
Geography, University of Sheffield; and Associate Professor of Geography,
University of the Aegean
A letter from Lesvos
Pauline Dibben, SIID Fellow and Professor in the Sheffield University Management School
Kathryn Green, SIID Post Doctoral Research Associate

Source: Coote, A. (2014), A new social settlement for people and planet Understanding the links between social justice and sustainability, New Economics Foundation Working Paper, available at
Anna Coote, Associate Director, New Economics Foundation
Photo credit: Harvey Richards.

Taken from ONE blog:
“…Tackling germs, negotiating norms, and securing access to medicines are persistent challenges that disproportionally affect developing countries’ participation in global health governance. Furthermore, over the last two decades, the excessive focus on global pandemics and security in global health diplomacy rendered peripheral diseases that usually strike the poor and vulnerable, creating situations of marginalisation and inequality across societies”
Emma Briant, SIID Fellow and Lecturer in Journalism Studies:

SIID blog, March 2015, by Paula Meth
SIID ‘Cities’ Theme Lead & Senior Lecturer in the Department of Urban Studies & Planning
(Sizwe Simelani, 2006)
“Environmental justice is a crucial component of Social Justice and is fundamental to SIID’s approach. Environmental Justice means both the social consequences of environmental policy (what harms or goods do people suffer as a result of environmental policies), and the environmental aspects of socially just societies (what resources can they access, or are excluded from, to what ends etc).

As part of our contribution for World Day of Social Justice, here are two resources, all about the poaching crisis, both written by
Rosaleen Duffy
, Professor at SOAS, University of London.”

Dan Brockington, Director of SIID:
“The World Day of Social Justice is sobering. Pursuing social
justice is our reason for existence. It is why we get up every day,
why we lose sleep at night. The words, images and films in this
blog are hard (just try listening to Billie Holiday again). And
this compilation makes me wonder what purpose does this
collection serve. Perhaps it is to remind us that unless our
work does further social justice then it has little purpose.

My contribution to this collection is therefore the Afterword of a
book I recently completed about celebrity advocacy, which
reflects on just that dilemma of what we are doing things for.”
Dan Brockington, Director of SIID
More insight in to the Celbrity Advocacy project:



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