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Tongans Think About the Future
Source: matangitonga.to
Source Date: Tuesday, August 19, 2014
Focus: Citizen Engagement
Country: Tonga
Created: Aug 26, 2014

Around 100 people from various sectors attended a “Tonga Foresight Xchange 2014” held today, 19 August, which aims to discuss and agree upon future priorities they want to see implemented through government policies.

The event is supported by the UNDP Global Centre for Public Service Excellence in Singapore.

The Prime Minister Lord Tu’ivakano who opened the dialogue at the Kalofiama ‘o Epworth Hall in Kolofo’ou said this was a milestone for Tonga where the people are involved in the exercise of finding ways to rebuild a resilient government.

He said an outcome document from this dialogue would help government draft effective strategies for policies the future and it was timely because Tonga’s next Strategic Development Framework is being looked at.

A second workshop, a Cabinet retreat will be held on Friday, 22 August where these outcomes from this workshop will be presented.

Government

Peter Van de Pol a policy advisor for UNDP said they brought people together from various sectors young and old to discuss and explore from their own perspectives how they want their world to look like in 20-30 years time. He said for example for an university student it could mean more employment opportunities as their priority they want to see happen in the future.

“For the second part on Friday the findings will be presented to the Cabinet and we are going to discuss how these aspirations might be incorporated into planning phases in terms of policies,” he said.

The PM will present the outcome to the 3rd UN International Conference on Small Developing States in Apia next month.

The workshops are being organized by the Tongan Government. The foresight xchange uses a range of foresight methods to generate dialogue and insights that can and might contribute to crafting government policy towards a prosperous future.

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