The establishment of an institute that will help enhance sustainable development may very well be what the country needs to complement its plans of action to deal with the various dimensions of the issue.

Her Majesty Queen Rania, who supported the creation of this institute right from the start, said at the recent ceremony that launched the Institute for Sustainable Development Practice that “in order for Jordan to grow and prosper, it is crucial to identify the roots of our development challenges, whether poverty, unemployment, health or education”.

The institute is projected to research the underlying causes for the inability to meet the various challenges to sustainable development and progress in the country. The know-how provided by Columbia University, the initiator of the institute, together with the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation, will undoubtedly be pivotal to making the goals of the institute achievable.

As other stakeholders will be invited to play roles in the new initiative, including local NGOs, universities and other specialised organisations, the tasks ahead will assume the form of teamwork, which usually is a guarantor of comprehensive reach and success.

Most causes of poverty, like unemployment and lack of access to health and education, for example, are pretty much known. The factors with an impact on the conditions in the country and, by extension, on sustainable development have been identified by local and international organisations, including some specialised UN agencies. The greater and more daunting task is what and how to do something about these causes.

The biggest hurdle on the road to redressing the situation is lack of funding. But there are other constraints. Therefore, recognising the main challenges and identifying the means to deal with them is the right way of starting to address the issue of sustainable development, and that the new institute is expected to do. From there, things should be easier to deal with.