Our Thoughts

This is our space to share with you new ideas, innovations, actions and other exciting things that are happening around the world. Sometimes, its also a space to share some more serious thoughts about news events and leadership decisions being made that affect us all. We hope it inspires you, motivates you or even mobilises you for action!
Universities as a catalyst for global change

Universities as a catalyst for global change

How important are universities in advancing sustainability, and in fact, the Sustainable Development Goals? Very. In Namibia, there are some (albeit slow) moves to integrate sustainability into the overall curriculum...

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The Power of Advertising in Shaping Our Aspirations

The Power of Advertising in Shaping Our Aspirations

When it comes to our value system, advertising must be the most dangerous form of manipulation of past and present generations. Our economic growth model argues that supply is based...

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Namibia's Sustainable Development Awards 2017

Namibia's Sustainable Development Awards 2017

Last Thursday (21 September 2017), the Sustainable Development Awards were announced at a gala event in Windhoek. The initiative was coordinated through the Environmental Investment Fund of Namibia, the Sustainable...

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Life shapes and preserves life on our Planet

Life shapes and preserves life on our Planet

Travelling on the train towards Czech Republic, I would like to share a thought with all of you on your Tuesday morning. The air we breathe, the water we drink...

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Stories from Sweden: Pushing the sustainability agenda

Stories from Sweden: Pushing the sustainability agenda

On my way out of Sweden today on the train to Copenhagen, passing the rolling forests and red painted wooden houses of the countryside. So naturally, I will decide to...

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Tackling Framing Effects of Dominant Knowledge Systems in Transformations

Tackling Framing Effects of Dominant Knowledge Systems in Transformations

And we find ourselves this week in Stockholm, Sweden, representing our work on For Progress Namibia at the Resilience Conference, Research Frontiers for Global Sustainability. Justine, together with other members...

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Plastic Bags. Let's stop.

Plastic Bags. Let's stop.

You drive anywhere close to a town in Namibia, and you will undoubtedly see non-biodegradable polythene bags stuck to a bush, or blowing across our desert landscape. Did you know...

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Global Transformation starts with I

Global Transformation starts with I

'The story of industrial civilization tells us that limitless economic growth, advanced technology and material affluence are the pathways to prosperity. But as we reflect on the world today, it...

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Namibia's Policy for Education for Sustainable Development is Coming Together (by Reinhold Mangundu)

Namibia's Policy for Education for Sustainable Development is Coming Together (by Reinhold Mangundu)

People are not entirely sensitized and empowered to play a role in protecting our environment. If we all take responsibility in shifting our own behaviour, we will be able to...

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Seven ways to Think Like a 21st Century Economist

Seven ways to Think Like a 21st Century Economist

This morning, I was inspired by a tweet shared by Kate Raworth, an economist who wrote the book 'Doughnut Economics: Seven ways to think like a 21st century economist'. Her...

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Let's talk about Real Economic Transformation in Africa

Let's talk about Real Economic Transformation in Africa

This week, acclaimed author and political economist Lorenzo Fioramonti is joining us in Windhoek. Progress Namibia has organised various platforms for him, including meetings and interviews with media, politicians, and...

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What is a Blue Economy?

What is a Blue Economy?

Our fifth National Development Plan has recently been launched and through it we aim to achieve inclusive, sustainable and equitable growth. Well, there is not such thing as 'sustainable growth', but if we...

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Trump Fails the World

Trump Fails the World

Progress Namibia was asked to contribute to developing a civil society response from Namibia to Donald Trump pulling out of the Paris Agreement. This is what we put together: President...

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As Trump smacks the climate, world must do better (Guest Author: Lorenzo Fioramonti)

As Trump smacks the climate, world must do better (Guest Author: Lorenzo Fioramonti)

As Donald Trump’s America drops out of the Paris Agreement, it’s high time to ask whether conventional approaches to sustainable development are enough to deal with the multiple crises facing...

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Towards wellbeing indicators in Africa: A Case Study from Namibia

Towards wellbeing indicators in Africa: A Case Study from Namibia

Some of the work from our project 'For Progress Namibia' has been published in the leading popular academic journal Solutions. With the upcoming meeting of the Wellbeing Economy Africa Lab taking place next...

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The great kidnapping of water by plastic

The great kidnapping of water by plastic

The other day I was having an interesting conversation with a friend in Nairobi. We were, at the time, complaining about the use of plastic bottles in a workshop that speaks about...

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Serving society rather than growth: Business in a wellbeing economy (by Lorenzo Fioramonti and Justine Braby)

Serving society rather than growth: Business in a wellbeing economy (by Lorenzo Fioramonti and Justine Braby)

One day an African fisherman had an American visitor join him on his small fishing boat. As they gently cruised the Atlantic ocean surface, the American visitor watched him catching...

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The FRACTAL LAB: a learning experience for me (by Reinhold Mangundu)

The FRACTAL LAB: a learning experience for me (by Reinhold Mangundu)

In the beginning of March, I attended the Future Resilience for African Cities and Lands (FRACTAL) project workshop at the beautiful Heja Lodge in Windhoek Namibia. The learning lab aimed at advancing...

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What type of growth do we want? Stories from Bhutan and India

What type of growth do we want? Stories from Bhutan and India

When you travel around Bhutan, a small country squeezed in by the Himalayas on one side, and the two giants India and China on the other, you immediately see small colourful flags on...

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You can't have an economy without ecosystems

You can't have an economy without ecosystems

I was inspired the other day by the words of Phoebe Barnard and Lorenzo Fioramonti who co-wrote an article in The Conversation about how it makes sense that ecosystem restoration...

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Justine visits Governance Innovation Centre to talk about future of Africa

Justine visits Governance Innovation Centre to talk about future of Africa

Justine Braby met with colleagues of the WE-Africa Lab at the Center for the Study of Governance Innovation at the University of Pretoria this week to discuss work towards transforming...

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Envisioning sustainable neighbourhoods with the Physically Active Youth (PAY) (by Reinhold Mangundu)

Envisioning sustainable neighbourhoods with the Physically Active Youth (PAY) (by Reinhold Mangundu)

Our Reinhold Mangundu has been volunteer teaching youngsters at the Physically Active Youth Centre in Katutura on sustainability. Here is what he had to say about his first few sessions:...

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The Privilege Walk: A first of the 'Games for the SDGs'

The Privilege Walk: A first of the 'Games for the SDGs'

Progress Namibia, along with partners Hanns Seidel Foundation (Think Namibia), Namibian Youth Coalition on Climate Change, National Youth Council, and the Namibia University of Science and Technology, hosted the first of what...

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Why We Should Value Trust First

Why We Should Value Trust First

Those of you who have been reading our Weekly regularly might remember the work we are doing on moving towards a wellbeing economy. As part of this we have developed some indicators...

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The Spinach King of South Africa

The Spinach King of South Africa

For some of you this story might be old news. But this is for those of you have not yet been inspired by the Spinach King, and Dan The Director,...

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Envisioning a Sustainable World

Envisioning a Sustainable World

I have had two experiences now in the past three months where I am participating in a working session with some really bright people and we are tasked with the following hypothetical...

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Water Scarcity Dominates Our Agendas

Water Scarcity Dominates Our Agendas

Windhoek, and the northern regions (our bread basket), have at last been getting some rain. And there has been much jubilation on social media. But this should not take away from the...

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The Economy for the 99%

The Economy for the 99%

The new Oxfam Briefing Paper (An Economy for the 99%) is out. The briefing paper was launched during the World Economic Forum last week. Some of you might remember last year's paper that...

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The Ecopolis: The Future of City-Living

The Ecopolis: The Future of City-Living

Have you ever critically thought about Windhoek (or any other city or town you live in), and if you are happy the way it has been planned, built, and lived in? Where...

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What is Education for? (by David Orr)

What is Education for? (by David Orr)

We were reminded the other day by the very powerful essay (it was a speech given to graduating students in 1991) by David Orr, that has become quite famous over...

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Our love and hate relationship with the word 'Sustainability'

Our love and hate relationship with the word 'Sustainability'

As we embark on a new year, we must seize the opportunity to look at our methods and term uses when we are communicating for systems change. In many circles over the...

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The World Should End (sort of)

The World Should End (sort of)

Below is a poem. Well, this is not actually (strictly) a poem. It is a song (sort of). Written and rapped by Prince EA. I found it quite powerful. Obviously the song...

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Why every graduating student should understand systems thinking, sustainability and the sustainable development goals

Why every graduating student should understand systems thinking, sustainability and the sustainable development goals

Recently, I have been in many discussions about how to mainstream sustainability and the sustainable development goals into university curriculum frameworks. After doing some research and speaking to a whole bunch of very...

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Building Wellbeing Economies in Africa

Building Wellbeing Economies in Africa

Economic instability, social inequality, poverty and depletion of our natural capital (the base of our survival) make it necessary to call into question the conventional development paradigm based on the exploitation of nature,...

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Creating a Circular Economy using Flies (Guest Author: Toivo Thomas)

Creating a Circular Economy using Flies (Guest Author: Toivo Thomas)

Modern society produces enormous volumes of organic waste on a daily basis stemming from agriculture, breweries, food industries, as well animal manure. This waste is then accumulated and dumped in landfills, burnt, or...

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Youth Power against Climate Change

Youth Power against Climate Change

Climate change poses major challenges for society. However, in Africa we are at cross-roads in our development. We could copy the same destructive development path used thus far, or use...

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What do we want out of COP 22? (Guest Author: Reinhold Mangundu)

What do we want out of COP 22? (Guest Author: Reinhold Mangundu)

Climate change is a global phenomenon experienced by all countries in the world, regardless of the level of development each country possesses. This has prompted urgent efforts of joint actions...

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Reinhold Mangundu visits Marrakesh for Young Africa Leaders Summit and COP22

Reinhold Mangundu visits Marrakesh for Young Africa Leaders Summit and COP22

Today we said good-bye to Reinhold Mangundu at the airport as he was on his way to Marrakesh, Morocco to join the dialogue for young ecologists called The Inner Dimensions of...

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Playing the World Climate Game

Playing the World Climate Game

On Friday last week the Namibian Youth Coalition on Climate Change teamed up with the National Youth Council, Hanns Seidel Foundation's Climate Project (Think Namibia), the Namibian University of Science and Technology and...

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Measuring Progress - How should we do it?

Measuring Progress - How should we do it?

In Africa, we are working hard at 'progressing'. But what do we mean by progress? A happy, healthy, resilient society? Or growing our economy as fast as we can? Are the two synonymous?...

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Dealing with Migration: Two Faces of the Same Coin (Guest Author: Omnia Abbas)

Dealing with Migration: Two Faces of the Same Coin (Guest Author: Omnia Abbas)

In the span of one month, between September and October 2016, I've participated in two events related to migration. In one, in Hungary, the majority of the participants were Western academics and policy...

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Our NUST has built the first Namibian Solar Taxi

Our NUST has built the first Namibian Solar Taxi

Africa is facing rapid urbanization, and if we look at Namibia, our public transport needs a lot of work. Currently, 50% of us take taxis to get around. Cars, generally,...

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Are the SDGs winning?

Are the SDGs winning?

It has been one year since the Sustainable Development Goals were agreed to by 195 countries at the United Nations. Our ambitious goals for global development that is sustainable, resilient and inclusive. Has...

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Why don't we care about climate change?

Why don't we care about climate change?

I am sure those of us who work in and feel the urgency and reality of climate change have often wondered why, despite our scientific understanding of climate change and...

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Katutura East Discusses a Well-being Economy

Katutura East Discusses a Well-being Economy

With the new era of Sustainable Development Goals and our Harambee Prosperity Plan, Namibia needs to embark on a new and innovative way of measuring progress in Namibia. A well-being economy looks at...

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The Assumptions We Make

The Assumptions We Make

As I ride the train in Austria on my way to the yearly Balaton Meeting in Hungary, I think of humanity as I peer out at the rolling hills. In the early...

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Next stop...Oranjemund.

Next stop...Oranjemund.

Ever wondered what goes on in that little town on the south coast called Oranjemund? No? Me either.I am sure, though, that it immediately conjured up Namdeb and the diamond...

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Will Harambee bring Prosperity to Namibians?

Will Harambee bring Prosperity to Namibians?

Our Young Professional Trainee, Reinhold, recently wrote a review on the Harambee Prosperity Plan and its implementation with the backdrop of our previous development plans. Enjoy the read!Namibia has certain plans...

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Southern Africa Regional Workshop on Climate Research Partnership Concludes

Southern Africa Regional Workshop on Climate Research Partnership Concludes

A two days’ workshop on climate change research and development organized by Climate Research for Development (CR4D) in Africa came to a conclusion with delegates agreeing to pursue focused climate research in Agriculture....

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Mainstreaming climate science into Africa's development

Mainstreaming climate science into Africa's development

Progress Namibia Associate, Mr Ezilon Kasoka, is on his way to Gaborone to represent Dr Justine Braby at the Southern Africa Regional Workshop for the Climate Research for Development (CR4D)...

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For Progress Namibia presents wellbeing results to Shandumbala

For Progress Namibia presents wellbeing results to Shandumbala

The Shandumbala community workshop is a workshop that was conducted at the multipurpose centre on the 16th of April 2016 with the citizens of Shandumbala (a suburb in Katutura, Windhoek). It was...

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Stiglitz visits Namibia to advise our Government

Stiglitz visits Namibia to advise our Government

Working on our 'For Progress Namibia' project for a few years now, which you can read more about here, we are delighted that our President Hage Geingob's A-Team enlisted Joseph...

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GDP and Well-being: Toward more holistic measures of Namibia's progress

GDP and Well-being: Toward more holistic measures of Namibia's progress

As part of our 'For Progress Namibia' Project that is partnered with #livesmatter, we have at last published our study on well-being indicators - towards more holistic measures of Namibia's...

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An Economy for the 1%

An Economy for the 1%

We are living in a world which encourages productivity and efficiency in the name of economic growth. But on the back-end, our economic system also often encourages profit over life...

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Is Littering Really Such a Big Deal?

Is Littering Really Such a Big Deal?

If you have ever thought 'if I just toss a bit of plastic, what harm does it really do? I mean really? ', then this is a picture sequence for...

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HUMAN, a film by Yann-Arthus Bertrand

HUMAN, a film by Yann-Arthus Bertrand

Someone shared with us the recently released "Human", a beautiful film by Yann-Arthus Bertrand that was directed by a variety of different people in multiple countries. Essentially, it is a...

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