Concept of Global Citizenship
Citizenship is usually understood in the context of a specific country and represents the formal link between a country and a concrete person, its citizen. This link consists of rights and responsibilities. In the classic case, the country (the national governments) is supposed to secure my rights as a citizen, while I owe a set of obligations (the classical example – pay taxes). Furthermore, we could easily be sanctioned if we don’t follow these obligations. Pretty easy, isn’t it? However, when we talk about Global Citizenship, things are not that simple. We are all global citizens already, citizens of the world, regardless of whether we realize it or not, because our behaviours influence people on the other side of the globe and we are dependent on different actors and communities across borders and oceans. As there is no ‘global government’ our global citizenship is a link between us and ‘the world’. Again, this link consists of rights (privileges, benefits) and responsibilities. The first category includes stuff we take for granted, but which are easily accessible to us thanks to the globalized world we live in – like the Internet, cell phones, fruits and drinks from the other side of the world, etc. But what about responsibility? What is the set of rules we need to follow to pay our fair share to ‘the world’? And who will sanction us if we don’t?
There’s no book where the exact answers are given. Actually, the global citizens need to ‘write’ their own book – take a path to global citizenship, get aware, get active and learn. We will provide the guidance for that.
To summarise it, the perfect global citizen would be the one that acknowledges their benefits from being part of a global community, but also recognizes their responsibility towards it and acts on it. Global education is then the learning process that supports people to become perfect global citizens.