Today marks the 100th anniversary of the Armistice that ended World War I, at “the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.” In homage to those who suffered and were lost in what was, at that time, history’s worst war, we observe their sacrifice and carry forward the lessons learned and a persistent awareness of our duty to secure the peace they brought.

 

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November 11, 1918, was a day of widespread public celebration, as the impossible-to-describe horrors of the Great War had ended. In 1919, the idea emerged that Armistice Day remembrance include a few minutes of universal silence—a shared pause in all normal activities and an observation of the horrors that had made the end of war such a cause for celebration.

History demands we note that the work of achieving sustainable peace is always ongoing, and connects to all areas of human activity. In the years after the end of World War I, two competing forces would go to work shaping the world that would follow:

  1. an international cooperative effort to avoid future conflict and
  2. border-determined nationalistic urges that viewed cooperation as some combination of peril and surrender.

While the 1920s were a boom time, the 1930s brought hardship to many tens of millions around the world. Cooperation infused with prosperity flourished during the boom; radicalized nationalism flourished when hardship set in. The instruments of sustainable peace had not yet been fully established and secured.

The world’s worst war would begin just 21 after the Armistice of 1918. The lessons of both wars (and their corresponding experiences of working toward peace) generated the most detailed, cooperative international process for negotiated settlement of conflict in world history, and the period of most fast-paced comprehensive expansion of human rights, scientific advancement, and economic prosperity.

100 years after the Armistice of November 11, 1918, the world is still working toward sustainable peace. We now know that this work must include means of empowerment and defense of the humanity of all people, and free societies where investment in humanizing outcomes is rewarded.

Geoversiv is working to achieve critical, interacting innovations in participatory civics, climate-smart energy, and investable resilience-building, to support progress toward a sustainable peace for all people.

This work includes:

  1. substantive support and strategy guidance for the Acceleration Dialogues,
  2. working with partners toward achieving economy-wide resilience intelligence,
  3. generative investment in outcomes at the human scale,
  4. support for an ongoing, always-active Talanoa Dialogue process to bring stakeholders’ critical insights into all such discussion,
  5. a coordinated strategy to achieve 100% climate-smart finance within 20 years,
  6. and contributions to the Global Commission on Adaptation.

We believe policy must be rooted in democratic engagement, and oriented toward upholding the humanity of every person.

  • Exclusion of people and their local, human-scale insights is the removal of practical wisdom from policy.
  • The inefficiency and complication of doing that undermines any added efficiency that might be gained from streamlining processes of high-level negotiation.

We believe the rights of nature are coextensive with the right to intergenerational equity and also with human rights.

  • Nations are not solvent, prosperous, secure, or able to operate fully in good faith, if they are not working toward climate solvency.
  • Climate solvency is a basic human right; everything humanity aspires to achieve becomes harder, if not unaffordable, if climate disruption outpaces our capacity to adapt, innovate, and reduce risk.

To achieve sustainable peace, we need to think about the operational interactions between all areas of human activity.

  • Macrocritical (economy-shaping) influences determine whether we can achieve inclusive, humane prosperity, and so a sustainable peace.
  • The Sustainable Development Goals are a practical map of the interactive landscape of macrocritical influences.

 

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The Peace Synapse is a map of knowledge relationships between individuals, institutions, crisis situations and response scenarios, in relation to climate, peace and security, over an 8-year period.

  • We will carry this work forward, in connection with all of the above elements of the Geoversiv mission, to provide wherever possible the actionable insights sought by decision-makers, to work toward climate-smart future prosperity and sustainable peace.
  • We invite critical thinkers, scholars, innovators, investors, diplomats and public-sector decision-makers, to join us in this effort.

Written by Geoversiv

The Geoversiv Foundation is a nonprofit charitable foundation, based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Foundation exists to support, connect and empower innovative projects oriented toward achieving social good, through promotion of: climate solutions, clean energy innovation and deployment, responsible enterprise, education, peacebuilding, and expansion of the civic space.

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