Former Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday advocated what she described as “the third stage of community development.”
“Especially now, the third stage of community development is important to Taiwan because the current state apparatus is no longer capable of resolving problems such as the wealth gap, democratic disorder and government malfunction,” Tsai told a civic forum on community development.
She encouraged people to “dare to dream” because they are able to influence government policies.
The first stage of community development did not begin until the early 1990s under former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝), in which people broke free from the one-party authoritarian regime and became true citizens, Tsai said.
Community development was incorporated as part of national policy in the second stage, which began during the DPP administration, and stressed civic participation in fields including social welfare, healthcare, education and the environment, among others, she said.
The enormous challenge in the third stage would be the so-called “glocalization” — how to construct local spirit and characteristics within a global network, Tsai said.
Tsai said local economies and industries should be developed with innovation from the younger generation and people should participate in every aspect of local governance. She also said communities should play a critical role in the country’s social welfare framework.
All the hardships and problems Taiwan faces today will only be resolved “when we look at those problems from the perspective of community and when people take matters into their own hands,” Tsai said.