The challenges people in the g7+ have faced so far are, first and foremost, the challenges of dealing with people and politics. Before joining the g7+, they were already civil servants and professionals who believed in planning and implementing public policy, in the possibility of mobilizing political will for peace and development and, in many cases, in the viability of engaging international partners in more equal dialogues. Being part of the g7+, these beliefs are challenged by many difficulties. Meetings can’t be outcomes; assessments can’t be results; travels can’t become the modus operandi for any truthful collective changes; there can be no template that will solve complex issues; and one needs to impact narratives, frameworks and agendas while making sure there are changes on the ground.
Whatever practices are designed to achieve this, they will be profoundly cultural. How to nurture social bonds capable of propelling positive change will vary from context to context, as the g7+ emphasizes, but it clearly includes a commitment to value one’s culture – which also means cultural diversity – and to make sure this message is passed on to the next generations. Unfortunately, in a field full of templates and frameworks, people and their cultures can be forgotten. This book has attempted to show their importance in a very specific context.