MOST Academy on Inclusive Social Development in the Philippines
A MOST Academy on Inclusive Social Development will be organized in Manila, the Philippines, from 21 to 23 March 2018. It will bring together researchers and policymakers to explore ways to improve the availability, accessibility, and usage of evidence that is necessary for promoting social inclusion through public policies.
The commitment to “leave no one behind” is the cornerstone of the 2030 Agenda and a crosscutting theme of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Yet, despite the widespread agreement on the importance of social inclusion as a principle, its practical application to resolve real-world problems raises complex questions:
• Where do we look for evidence on “what works” when it comes to fighting inequalities and promoting social inclusion?
• How do we achieve, maintain, and measure social inclusion in different areas of social and economic life?
To support the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and its inclusive social development goals, UNESCO has launched projects in Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines to improve the availability, accessibility and usage (commonly referred to as valorization) of evidence needed to design and monitor inclusive policies.
The Philippines Working Group (PWG) composed of researchers, public officials, and NGOs has focused on government programs addressing the shortage of primary care health workforce in the country. Health care is a human right – an entitlement for all. Millions of Filipinos have limited or no access to it, especially the poor and other socially excluded groups like the elderly population, persons with disabilities, abused women and children, the LGBTI community, persons living with HIV, and those in geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas (GIDA) including indigenous people. Those in the lowest income quintiles suffer most from the inequities in access and health outcomes. As the Philippines Coalition for Primary Care puts it: “there is no universal healthcare if there are no health workers to take care of the citizenry”.
The Center for Integrative and Development Studies at the University of Philippines spearheaded the intensive six-month research and analytical effort to produce the Situational Analysis to identify the prevailing practices in using evidence for health workforce-related policies, and the Operational Protocols to improve these practices and to promote rational, rights-based, and evidence-informed decision-making.
The MOST Academy on Inclusive Social Development will use the knowledge produced during the research phase of the project to enhance the capacity of professionals from different backgrounds (academia, government, and civil society) and to strengthen the research-policy interface towards the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.
A MOST Academy is a capacity-building module within UNESCO’s Management of Social Transformations (MOST) Programme, designed to strengthen the competencies for evidence-informed decision-making in Member States.
The project is funded by the Malaysian Government (Funds-in-Trust for UNESCO).