El sociólogo hindú Dipankar Gupta acaba de publicar un libro titulado Revolution from Above — India’s Future and the Citizen Elite. En él analiza la responsabilidad que tienen las élites sociales de su país, en realidad de cualquier país, para liderar las mejoras sociales de su sociedad.

El último capitulo del libro se titula The Basque in Spain: From a Basket Case to a Model of Development. En él se plantea como ejemplo a tener en cuenta, el papel que han jugado los lideres de la sociedad para sacar a esta parte del País de los Vascos de la crisis de finales de los ’70 y principios de los ’80 y convertirla en un referente internacional económico, cultural y social.

El explica el porqué de esa influencia:

More recently (read 1980s), the world saw that happening in Basque Spain. “I was fortunate to be appointed a visiting professor at Deutso University in Bilbao. I spoke to many Basque nationalists to understand how their region moved from poverty to prosperity so soon. Basque Spain of 1980s usually arouses in you images of terrorist, of the ETA, a polluted river, ugly chimney stacks along the banks, a grim and grey place. But today it has left the rest of Spain well behind it. Among other achievements, it is the leader in alternative energy. I asked the people at the top, ‘So you did this because people wanted it?’ they said, ‘No, we did what we thought was good and let people judge us.’” (Más recientemente (léase 1980), el mundo vio que sucede en el País Vasco de España. “Tuve la suerte de ser nombrado profesor visitante en la Universidad de Deutso en Bilbao. Hablé con muchos nacionalistas vascos para entender cómo su región pasó de la pobreza a la prosperidad tan pronto. El País Vasco de España de 1980 por lo general despertaba imágenes de terroristas de ETA, un río contaminado, feas chimeneas a lo largo de las orillas, un lugar lúgubre y gris. Pero hoy se ha dejado el resto de España muy por detrás de él. Entre otros logros, es el líder en energías alternativas. Le pregunté a la gente en la parte superior, “Así que hice esto porque la gente lo quería?”, Dijeron, ‘No, hicimos lo que pensamos que era bueno y que la gente nos juzgue. “

La verdad es que sus reflexiones están llenas de interés. Por ejemplo es sorprendente en un primer momento, su oposición, profundamente razonada y lógica, a las políticas de “salud para pobres” que se mantienen en su país. Él afirma que eso nunca da buenos resultados, que lo único que funciona es un sistema publico y de calidad para todos, para los ciudadanos, sea cual sea su situación económica o social.

Reivindica, en un tiempo en que esto parece que suena muy mal, el papel impulsor y de liderazgo de las élites ciudadanas para liderar los avances de la comunidad. Tal y como ha ocurrido en todos los grandes avances sociales.

The Hindu – 19/7/2013 – India

We can still dream it!

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A point of view: Eminent sociologist Dipankar Gupta at his residence in New Delhi. Photo: V. Sudershan (foto: The Hindu )

 

It is no news anymore that poll time has now been reduced to one-upmanship. You see political parties and their governments sprouting policies and counter policies in an all too familiar mine-is-better fashion. All done to attract votes, and thereby seize power, in a scenario where power and public money have long become hostage to corrupt beings. Those without the necessities are increasingly being stripped off their basic rights as citizens and are always at the mercy of the elite in charge.In a near hopeless situation comes well-known sociologist Dipankar Gupta hammering the point that this citizen elite — the cream of the crop embracing power, money and all the electoral calculations, can actually make a positive difference and turn the state into a true deliverer of services to all.

(Sigue) (Traducción automática)

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Live Mint – 19/7/2013 – India

Policies towards the poor don’t work: Dipankar Gupta

In his new book, Revolution from Above: India’s Future and the Citizen Elite (Rainlight Rupa, Rs.495), sociologist Dipankar Gupta makes the case that India can deliver quality services to all its citizens only through the active and forceful intervention of an elite that has the courage to leap over the short-term profit of electoral politics. Gupta, a former member of the faculty at Jawaharlal Nehru University, has written and edited 17 books. The most recent was in 2011—Justice before Reconciliation: Negotiating a ‘New Normal’ in Post-riot Mumbai and Ahmedabad. The ideas for Revolution acquired a substantial shape after Gupta was appointed visiting professor at Deusto University in Bilbao, a city in Spain’s Basque region. During a three-month-stay in 2009, he met many Basque nationalists “who took enormous pains to further my understanding of how their part of the country grew out of poverty to prosperity”—the book’s final chapter is titled The Basque in Spain: From a Basket Case to a Model of Development.

 

 

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