Need to Introduce HS in Education
- Human Security is a goal for which all humanity aspires and all nations strive. Education has an essential role to play in achieving that goal.
- Human security is a person-centered approach that addresses both the context in which people live as well as their aspirations, attitudes, hopes, fears and cultural perceptions. Effective education must address both the subjective and objective dimensions in which people live and strive.
- A human centered approach to education can be a powerful catalyst for human security and social transformation.
- A new paradigm in education is needed to reorient both educational content and pedagogy to promote human security.
- An education that provides students with inter-sectorial, integrated perspectives is essential to equip them to meet the challenges of the future.1
- A new paradigm in education needs to be clearly formulated, designed and implemented. The paradigm must be based on a comprehensive global strategy that makes far better use of the existing resources, utilizes the potential of Information and Communications Technology, applies innovative, learner-centered pedagogy to provide affordable, interactive, personalized, relevant, quality education for all. Such a new paradigm in global education will make it a powerful catalyst for social transformation, the fulfilment of the UN SDGs, and the promotion of greater human security for all.2
- An education that provides students with inter-sectorial, integrated perspectives is essential to equip them to meet the challenges of the future.3
- Beyond being a tool for skill development, equity and prosperity, education can also be an invaluable avenue to sensitize/galvanize people to the reality in which we live where threats are multiple, interconnected, regional/global (transcend borders), etc. This reality requires solidarity across all aspects of society as well as an interdisciplinary approach to solving current and emerging challenges. As a result, education for human security can also be an important mechanism to strengthen core values towards a more humanistic perspective where current and future educators and learners can have the capacity to drive the necessary responses which are currently missing due to a propensity to address current challenges with outdated theories and models.
Need for a HS Approach to Education
- HS is an integrated approach. Treating each academic discipline as a separate compartment of self-contained knowledge and pursuing it in isolation results in fragmenting knowledge and limited effectiveness. We need a transdisciplinary education that possesses the depth and insight needed to plumb the rich complexity of life and the world and evolve actions that address to the reality of each situation and not just a unidimensional aspect of it.
- Education based on a human security framework needs to address four issues: the way we teach, what we teach, how we think and how the systems we employ to delivery education to students.
- Treating each academic discipline as a separate compartment of self-contained knowledge and pursuing it in isolation results in fragmenting knowledge. We need a transdisciplinary education that possesses the depth and insight needed to plumb the rich complexity of life and the world.
- We need to bring stakeholders together and facilitate the creation of a global system designed from the beginning with the future needs of all humanity in mind and tailored to deliver world-class education to many students who seek it wherever they are in the world. The creation of such a system of education is one of the most potent and effective means for ensuring global human security.4
Person-Centered vs Subject-Centered Education
- The focus of education should be on empowering people and promoting learning, well-being and resilience by facilitating the development of the potentialities of every individual.
- Education has to be person-centered. Wholesome medicine treats the whole patient and not just the disease or just one symptom. Similarly, education must be for the whole person, not one part of him/her.
- Centering on the whole person, the ills in today’s education can be eliminated.
- Effective knowledge is contextual. Abstract, general knowledge can provide general principles, but application to specific issues and contexts requires an appreciation of the complexity of human relationships, society and life. Contextual education alone can present the right perspective to address the challenges that face humanity today. Contextual education helps students get this perspective.
- Human Security needs are contextual and inter-connected. They cannot be understood or achieved in the abstract. In the same way, education for Human Security must also be context-specific.
- Life knowledge that is reduced to objective principles may be intelligible to the intellect, but can be inadequate or even incomprehensible to the imagination, creativity and emotional intelligence, all of which are important to the full development of personality.
- Human security is a living concept applied to living beings. It changes with changes in context in space, time, age, culture and circumstance. Education for human security can only be fully understood and applied when presented in a living context relevant to those involved.
Transdisciplinary Education vs Compartmentalized Silos
- Education of each part must be in the context of the whole. Knowing the whole context helps one get the right perspective to address the issue effectively. In the education of the future, the gap between abstract concept and social relevance must be bridged.
- Education today remains concentrated in narrow specialized fields. It fails to equip students with the wider knowledge necessary to fully comprehend the complex interactions between different spheres. Education for human security require the broader knowledge requires comprehension of the social consequences and policy implications of our actions on individuals, society and the planet.
- We cannot fully understand or effectively address each aspect of human security independently of the others. If our understanding or approach to even one aspect of human security is faulty, we will fail in human security in its entirety.
- Education empowers. The goal of education is to empower every individual with the knowledge, skills, understanding and attitudes needed for security and accomplishment. Equipping the student with the skills required for a job or any other single aspect of human security is not sufficient. Every human being needs to know how to achieve security in all dimensions.
- Transdisciplinary education that transcends the silos can alone provide the type of education required for comprehensive understanding and integrated thinking.
- The world’s problems rest in the interstices between disciplinary fields of knowledge, where the disciplines remain separate. In order to address these problems, we need a transdisciplinary perspective that bridges the narrow and deeply entrenched boundaries within education.
- The human security needs of a person cannot be separated and satisfied in parts. It is not enough if one has food but no water, job but no climate security, health but no freedom from fear of persecution. Similarly, education must include all dimensions of human security.
- Education for Human Security must develop the whole person – capacities, character and personality – so that one is equipped to realize one’s full potential, and contribute to the community and all of humanity.
- Human Security is a value-based conception that combines objective fact with universal human values. Mechanistic, materialistic, data-based perspectives is never sufficient by itself to address the challenges of human security.
- Education for human security has to integrate the objective and subjective dimensions of reality. Values-based knowledge is essential for a sustainable future.
Integral Thinking in Education
- Concepts such as human security and sustainability are comprehensive, integrated perspectives that can only be fully understood by a more integrated form of thinking.
- True knowledge cannot be conveyed by reducing things into separate, independent, or contrasting, mutually exclusive categories. such as right and wrong, yes and know. Education needs to help students develop the capacity to perceive that contradictions often represent complementary dimensions of a greater truth.
- We need an education that prepares people to live in a world that is full of challenges and opportunities that can only be availed of through a balanced human-centred approach that leaves no one and nothing out, including components of the natural world.
Objective and Subjective Dimensions of Knowledge
- Human Security is not just a physical condition, it contains both objective and subjective dimensions. Our education must include, in addition to objective facts and statistics, the human, psychological and subjective dimensions of knowledge.
- Scientific data alone is not adequate. Education must take into account the impact of science and other academic streams of knowledge on people, society and the environment.
Educational Delivery System to Support Human Security for All
- We need to bring stakeholders together and facilitate the creation of a global an educational system designed from the beginning with the future needs of all humanity in mind and tailored to deliver world-class education to however many students who seek it, wherever they are in the world. The creation of such a system of education is one of the most potent and effective means for ensuring global human security.5
- To ensure no one is left behind, every individual and community must be provided access to quality education through efficient, accessible, affordable, flexible delivery systems.