Japan
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A - Renewed political commitment for sustainable development
Experiences
Question 1
Are there objective ways of measuring political commitment? What are the relevant indicators? Which indicators are most useful from your perspective? (e.g., New legislation enacted, Policy announcements, Budgetary allocation and support, Prominence of relevant institutions, Level of media interest, etc.)
Question 2
Based if possible on these indicators, how would you evaluate the political commitment today to sustainable development in the country(ies)/region(s) of interest to your group, compared to 1992? How would you evaluate the political commitment of the international community compared to 1992?

Success Factors
Question 3
What actions have been introduced in your country or region to strengthen political support for sustainable development?
Question 4
Are there specific industry sectors or resource areas (e.g., water, energy, biodiversity, other) where national political commitment to achieve sustainable development goals has been especially strong? If so, what factors explain that commitment?
Question 5
What examples or experiences from other areas demonstrate how political support for critical issues was enhanced (e.g., MDGs, climate change)? How could they be applied to SD?

Challenges
Question 6
Looking forward to the next 10 years, what are your government?s / organization's highest priorities for accelerating progress towards sustainable development?
Question 7
How can international cooperation strengthen support for sustainable development? What are your expectations for UNCSD in this regard?

Risks
Question 8
Among your country?s senior national policy makers, would you say the predominant view of the three pillars of sustainable development is that: ____there are difficult trade-offs among them? ____ they are strongly complementary? Please briefly elaborate on your answer.

B - Assessing progress and remaining gaps in implementation
Success Factors
Question 5
Has your country / organization / the country(ies) or region(s) of interest to your group introduced or promoted integrated planning and decision making for sustainable development? If so, under what title (NSDS, PRSP, Five Year Plan, NCS or NEAP, Other)? What are the lessons from this experience?
Question 6
Are there examples of strong public-private partnerships for sustainable development in your country / the country(ies) or region(s) of interest to your group? How have these been promoted?

Challenges
Question 9
What steps need to be taken to address these barriers in an effort to bridge the implementation gaps?
Question 10
What are the main difficulties experienced in promoting integrated planning and decision-making?
Question 11
What further actions could be taken to promote effective voluntary actions and partnerships?

Risks
Question 12
What are the risks to sustained progress towards convergence among the three pillars of sustainable development?

C - Addressing new and emerging challenges
Experiences
Question 1
What five new and emerging challenges are likely to affect most significantly the prospects for sustainable development in the coming decade? Please rank in order of importance.
Question 2
What mechanisms have been put in place in your country / organization / the country(ies) or region(s) of interest to your group to address these challenges: At the local level? At the national level?
Question 4
What new and emerging challenges should be acted upon at UNCSD?

Challenges
Question 7
How can the link between scientific research, education, and policy be strengthened to address the new and emerging challenges, especially those identified above?

Risks
Question 9
Do the new and emerging challenges pose a fundamental risk to the prospects of economic growth and development in the country(ies) or region(s) of interest to your group?
Question 10
How can the risks to the poor and other vulnerable populations be addressed?

D - A green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication
Experiences
Question 1
Is there a consensus among policy makers in your country on the meaning of the term green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication? If so, how is it defined? [If relevant, please provide any official publications or analytical studies on the concept of green economy or its operational or social implications, together with a short abstract]

  • What are the main examples of green economy policies that are currently in place in your country? (e.g., government expenditures on green infrastructure, incentives for private investment in green sectors, subsidy reform, pricing of pollution, public procurement, other)
  • Which policies, or types of policy, do you consider to be most effective in promoting a green economy and why?
  • Are poverty and other possible social impacts explicitly considered in the design of green economy policies? If so, how?

Question 2
Are these policies being implemented as part of a coherent green economy, or green growth, strategy?
Question 3
What are the main perceived benefits of implementing a national/regional green economy strategy? Are these benefits being tracked, measured and reported?
Question 4
What economic sectors do you consider to be most important to building a green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication?

Success Factors
Question 5
From your own experience, what green economy policies would you rate to be most effective?
Question 6
How have those policies contributed to poverty eradication, sustainable consumption and production, protection of the natural resource base and other sustainable development goals?
Question 7
What in your view are the principal reasons for their success? (e.g., economic efficiency, availability of relevant institutional or technical capacity, strong political support, broad engagement of business and industry, NGO support, international support)
Question 8
What steps and actions have proven effective in building political and popular ownership for green economy measures?

Challenges
Question 10
Based on all of the above, what is (are) the key outcome(s) you think could emerge from the UN Conference on Sustainable Development in 2012 with respect to a ?green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication??

Risks
Question 11
What is the relationship of green economy policies to other policies and policy domains (e.g., poverty, growth, employment, trade, etc.)? Are there cases of conflict and, if so, how have these been addressed?

E - Institutional framework for sustainable development
Experiences
Question 2
How can the institutional framework ensure effective synergies between the CSD and other existing inter-governmental instruments and processes, including different multilateral agreements, UN programmes and funds, and regional processes?
Question 3
How can the institutional framework ensure effective coordination among different agencies and organizations responsible for aspects of sustainable development?.
Question 4
Does your country / the country(ies) of interest to your group have an active national sustainable development council (NSDC) in place? Yes/No. Do you think an active NSDC could facilitate national preparations for UNCSD? If so, how? Provide contact of Focal Point for country's NSDC.
Question 7
In your country / organization / the country(ies) of interest to your group, what role have sub-national and local government played in implementing sustainable development since Rio? What role has your group played in such councils?
Question 8
Since the UNCED (Rio) in 1992, has the participation of major groups and other relevant stakeholders in national decision-making processes on sustainable development significantly increased? Yes/No
Question 10
Name the governments/major groups with which your group/government has had the closest collaboration. For each, briefly describe the main features of the collaboration.

Success Factors
Question 14
What in your experience have been the most effective means of strengthening major groups? and other stakeholder?s participation in national sustainable development efforts?

Challenges
Question 15
What are the most significant challenges facing international institutions charged with promoting sustainable development?

Risks
Question 17
What decisions should UNCSD aim to reach on the institutional framework for sustainable development? What are the main risks threatening a successful UNCSD outcome on the institutional framework?

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