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A vision for the Virgin Islands post Irma- Part 2

- The following story is the second in a three part narrative
Dickson Igwe. Photo: Provided
Dickson Igwe

OK. There can be no real economic recovery for the Virgin Islands without a clear vision, mission, and plan for a Post Irma future. And post Irma, in a highly competitive, predatory, scientifically driven, global economy, VISION and strategic economic planning alone, will rescue the Virgin Islands from permanent underdevelopment.

Now, vision and purpose are synonyms. Both, vision and purpose fuse together the various components of national effort. The national effort is a combination of the individual, family, community, and society combined effort. It is a complex mix of all of the exertions, energies, thinking, and enterprise, within a country. Vision, mission, and plan drive the national effort towards desired objectives and goals.

A country is organic. It is never static. Constant change is the result of human beings who coexist, and attempt to live together in peace, harmony, and law. Change is the only constant.

In an ever changing environment, the absence of a vision results in waste, misdirection, and the dissipation of the combined effort. The lack of a vision leads to poor outcomes, and even complete failure, for a community, society, or country.

Then vision drives the national mission. A country’s well defined vision should drive the economy in the direction of that vision. There can be no successful economy, and successful national outcomes, without a clear and well defined vision.

Absence of vision leads to ambiguity, lack of clarity, poor planning, mismanagement, and ultimately poor governance.

OK. The national vision is the country’s ultimate destination: the national dream. Then, the strategic plan or national strategy is the road map that takes the country to that dream, to the proverbial El Dorado: the place of milk and honey.

The strategic plan is the road map. The vision is the destination. Without the road map, or a GPS- global positioning system- and a clear destination, a country, instead of heading to the lush and safe place, can easily end up on the rocks. That is what happens when there is no vision, mission, and plan: "the people perish."

And daily effort is required, in adopting a strategy that leads to national goals that in turn reach the vision. The goals are many if Virgin Islands society is to transform into a modern and developed scientific community. A number of goals add up to one unique vision. Without a vision there are no goals or objectives, only meaningless exertion and effort.

The vision is that unique national dream that rests in the heart of the visionary. It is the task of the visionary politician to define the vision. Then he or she must design a plan to reach that vision. That plan contains the national goals.

Then the political leader must convince constituents that the vision is desirable, and worth fighting for. Without wide acceptance, a vision cannot be realised, as it takes all hands on deck to get the ship to shore.

OK, as stated in the preceding article, I offer my vision for these Virgin Islands: My own personal vision for the [British] Virgin Islands over the coming 30 years is of a society that re-establishes a cohesive and compassionate community, based upon an eco-friendly and sustainable, vibrant and innovative, maritime and nautical sciences economy. The vision will empower citizens through full employment in a maritime oriented economy, and see the country fully developed, through a sustainable and eco-friendly economic model.

The country will build a sailing, boating, and shipping culture that becomes part of the communal DNA, and an economic type, that fully defines its maritime status as a world class sailing and boating destination, sited in a pristine geography.

The country will foster an international maritime economy through learning, and collaboration with older shipping and boating oriented world economies, and global research.

That maritime culture will be one that attracts new skills and technologies. Nautical and maritime sciences will become integral to the learning culture, and drive the wider economy.

The [British] Virgin Islands will further engineer a commercial environment that prioritises renewable energy, recyclables, organic farming, and its own unique and pristine ecosystem, as critical to its sustained medium and longer term development.

To be continued…

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2 Responses to “A vision for the Virgin Islands post Irma- Part 2”

  • Quiet Storm (28/04/2018, 11:46) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    Mr. Igwe provides an invaluable service to the community with his weekly commentary on a myriad of local issues. They provide food for thought on charting the national course and setting the national compass. No doubt vision is the destination; it is what an organization wants to become. It is something that an organization wants to approach, ie, a limit in mathematics. A vision is dynamic; the destination is never reach; it is not a project, ie, with a start and end date. Conditions are constantly changing. A vision must be simple (the KISS method) so that employees and customers can easily embrace it. The VI is in crisis and urgently needs a strategic and tactical action plan to plot it way out of crisis. This article is very theorectical; it contains all the buzz words one will hear in a strategic management class. Perhaps, the follow on commentaries will flesh out an action plan.
  • confused (28/04/2018, 12:15) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    You hit the nail on the head, Mr Igwe. The question is; how do we know there is no plan- no vision in place? The NDP seems to abide by a hard line capitalist 'free market' dogma that is in theory, no government intervention or support and privatization of public services. We have no government transparency policy in place- so how do we know that talk of privatization of airport, the mess at the ports and lack of debris clean up ISN'T part of their plan? I know it sounds strange, but forcing the citizens into a position where we have no choice other than privatization of public services is the only explaination I can come up with for the state of entropy in which we now find ourselves.
    I pray I'm wrong.

    I'd like to see your next narrative discuss ways we can come together to establish a vision and a plan. How do we make a cohesive, shared vision the central issue in our next elections?


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