PART III: HIV/AIDS and Global Health - G8 Guidebook

1.The G8 Process

In 1975, the first group of the world's six major industrialized countries met in Rambouillet, France. 33 years later, the G8 grew from a meeting of major developed countries to regulate economic policies, to a year long process filled with series of meetings so that these eight countries that dub themselves a major country can determine policy directions for global issues that affect the rest of the world.

Civil Society and the G8: Shifting Approaches

Traditionally, civil society's approach to the G8 has been to simply oppose the G8, and if possible to stop the G8 from being held. Although remaining highly critical of the monopolistic policies determined by an exclusive group of eight countries, civil society, beginning with the 2005 Gleneagles G8 Summit, changed their approach on the G8. Taking advantage of their economic scale and global influence of their policies, civil society took the approach of calling on them to use this money and influence they have to address and tackle global issues such as poverty and climate change.

Civil Society of G8 countries carry the responsibility of lessening the harmful effects of bad policies created by the G8 countries and imposed on the rest of the world, while strengthening and improving positive aspects of their policies. The cost and workload has been tremendous for civil societies that are seriously confronting this year-long G8 process. Advocacy towards the G8 has usually been led by civil society of the G8 host country, and cooperate and coordinates with civil society from other G8 countries as well developing countries. On poverty and developmental issues, GCAP (Global Coalition for Action against Poverty) was responsible for much of the coordination of activities with civil society from developing and G8 countries. However, information on the experiences and activities of civil society working on global health issue for the G8 is yet to be accumulated.

This guidebook is an accumulation of the experience and information on the global health policy making process of the G8, predominantly using the experiences of the 2008 G8 Summit in Toya-ko, Japan. The purpose of the guide book is to leave an institutional memory to be used by future civil society groups of G8 host countries. The guidebook is divided into the following sections, with each section including the description of the experiences of Japanese civil society and the lessons learned from their experiences:

  1. The General Flow of the G8 Process
  2. Creation of Civil Society Networks for the G8 Process
  3. Global Health as an Agenda Item
  4. Media and Civil Society
  5. Engagement in the Meetings of the G8 Process
  6. Civil Society and the G8 Summit

G8 Civil Society Peace Walk, July 5, 2008
G8 Civil Society Peace Walk, July 5, 2008

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