Initiative for Equality and 18 partners in Asia, Africa and Europe conducted Equity and Sustainability Field Hearings in to gather voices from poor communities. We spoke with over 2700 people in 34 communities, using a questionnaire asking what they experience, want, and are willing to do regarding the transition towards greater equity and ecological sustainability. In June 2012 we published the preliminary results (see uploaded document). We are now expanding the project, seeking additional partners on every continent.
The preliminary results (summarized in chapter two in the report) are highly relevant to establishing goals for sustainable development. Most poor communities reported worsening inequality, income insecurity, social breakdown, environmental degradation, and corruption. They attributed these to the diversion of resources and development assistance to those with wealth and political connections. All expressed extremely modest and sustainable aspirations, hoping for a future in which their basic food, housing, health care, education, and job security needs could be met. Many were eager to work with partners towards these goals.