Multilateral dialogue and cooperation is more necessary now than at any time in the United Nations’ 75-year history. Following the UN’s milestone general assembly in September and preceding the pivotal US election in November, the DOC will explore the future and discuss how to effectively reinvent the multilateral system on 1 & 2 October 2020.
As global cooperation proceeds in fits and starts in the search for a Covid-19 vaccine and political leadership falters amidst a hegemonic ‘battle of the giants’ and the populist backlash, the values and institutional mechanisms underpinning international cooperation are in need of revival.
By focusing on the headline theme of reinventing international cooperation, the DOC expects to cover a number of component themes, including but not limited to: global solidarity and the need for shared values; digital power and new international actors; the economic response to Covid-19 amidst de-globalisation and the new global recession; and the value of civil society and other global actors in mitigating both US-China polarisation and the decay of global institutional cooperation.
The purpose of the Rhodes Forum is to promote shared worldviews through constructive dialogue and thereby contribute practical recommendations to a vital global conversation. The DOC’s decades-long heritage of inter-civilisational engagement will be enriched this year as our invited discussants include Fabrizio Hochschild Drummond, UN under Secretary-General; Robert Malley, former US National Security Council member and CEO of International Crisis Group; influential scholars Kishore Mahbubani and Chen Dongxiao; Nobel Laureate Esther Duflo; and former French Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin.
Convened online from the DOC’s Berlin HQ, the Rhodes Forum will comprise two days of lively roundtable discussions, ‘hard-talk’ debates, and exclusive key-note messages among policy advisors and influencers joining from multiple time-zones and from across the political spectrum.
This year’s online format will enable the DOC to use its unique convening power to reach out to an even larger and more diverse audience and develop even more interactive and substantive discussions.