The 2019 Rhodes Forum welcomed one of the biggest and most diverse audiences in its 17-year history of the event for an inclusive and inspiring two-day programme of innovative and interactive sessions to debate key current global challenges and the future of the world order.
The Forum leveraged the convening power of the Dialogue of Civilizations Research Institute (DOC) and brought together more than 400 participants from over 50 countries including a serving African President, a recent President of the European Parliament, former heads of government and senior policymakers from around the world including delegations from China, India, Argentina and numerous other countries.
They were joined by – among others – members of the expert community and leading think tankers, NGO and civil society representatives, leading philanthropists from emerging economies around the world, as well as more than 40 journalists from almost 20 countries.
The Forum was broadcast online, attracting hundreds of thousands of views. Sessions are available to view on demand on the DOC’s website, along with an extensive photo gallery. The DOC’s Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn presences will be updated with further coverage including interviews with distinguished participants over the coming days and weeks.
Niger’s President Mahamadou Issoufou called for more inclusive dialogue on key issues in West Africa and described his attempts to seek greater global commitment to countries across the region during a keynote interaction with OECD Chief of Staff Gabriela Ramos and leading Malaysian economist Jomo Sundaram, a former UN Assistant Secretary General for Economic Development. The exchange was moderated by Stefan Grobe, Brussels correspondent for Euronews, who also conducted a one-on-one on-stage interview with the President.
The DOC today published a video interview with President Issoufou covering topics including global governance, security and international cooperation in the Sahel, major African development projects and the challenges of climate change.
Other distinguished speakers at Rhodes 2019 included former President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz; Bruno Maçaes, best-selling author of “The Dawn of Eurasia” and former Europe Minister of Portugal; Shada Islam, Director of Europe and Geopolitics at influential Brussels NGO Friends of Europe; and former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.
The Forum hosted its traditional “media roundtable” with a distinguished panel of journalists debating diplomacy and governance in the age of social media. Discussing the interation between social media and public opinion on geopolitical issues were speakers including major global publications from TIME and USA Today to Africa News and Greece’s Fileleftheros, as well as Rhodes Forum media partners CGTN and GoNews, the Indian digital news channel.
Other topics addressed included the future of education and learning; multilaterism and globalisation, as well as the role of religion in politics and ideology. A strong business programme included sessions on the future world order from a business perspective and how to encourage sustainable private investment into cultural initiatives to support inclusive development. The Forum also hosted the awards ceremony for the DOC’s essay competition “My Country – Our World 2030”, designed to give young people a voice and a platform for engagement on key issues shaping the future of their world.
The DOC in September published the inaugural Rhodes Report, an evaluation of the current state of world (dis)order in a time of growing populism and nationalism. In Rhodes, Professor Christopher Coker, Director of the LSE IDEAS think tank, interviewed the Report’s author Professor Richard Higgott live on stage in the Forum’s Jupiter Room.
The DOC thanks all of its partners and sponsors, and is grateful for the support of the Greek authorities and the island of Rhodes for their support and hospitality.
The full programme and speaker line-up of the 17th Rhodes Forum, “Global (Dis)Order: Towards Dialogue-Based Worldviews”, can be found at www.rhodesforum.org
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About the DOC
The Dialogue of Civilizations Research Institute is an independent non-partisan think tank based in Berlin. The DOC’s mission is to be an independent platform for dialogue that brings together perspectives from the developed and developing worlds in a non-confrontational and constructive spirit. The goals of the DOC are to forge shared worldviews through dialogue and to contribute to a fair, sustainable, and peaceful world. In view of these goals, the DOC believes that globalization should have humanity, culture, and civilization at its heart. For more information please visit www.doc-research.org
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