Education broadens our minds, enhancing our ability to hold different perspectives, which will shape our decisions and our actions when we go out into the world. Education increases innovation and productivity, it fosters positive social change, encouraging political participation, social equality or environmental sustainability – not only individually, but in a broad spectrum of our shared society. As Nelson Mandela said, “education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”. How can education change the world?
Representative of the European Union at Y20 – Summit of Young Leaders of G20 in Tokyo 2019 (Portugal)
Global justice issues such as structural economic inequalities, technological development and climate emergency are also matters of intergenerational justice. A new generation of politicized youth is starting to claim their entitlement to a dignified future. While states and institutions become increasingly aware of young people’s voices, they are yet to acknowledge that unsustainable models of governance must be abandoned, and that change must start now. What can we do to fulfil our duties towards the new generations?
The World Bank’s 2018 World Development Report noted that we are living in a global learning crisis. Yet the international community does not perceive education as an urgent global challenge because it needs long-term solutions. Teach For All is a global network of 50 independent partners around the world that share a unifying mission of developing collective leadership to ensure all children are able to fulfill their potential. What do they have to tell us about how investing in the development of local leadership and sharing solutions across borders can help achieve the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, particularly SDG4 — ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education?
An inclusive society means everyone has what is necessary to develop their life projects according to their culture and beliefs. This can be achievable through a paradigm shift in the way education is promoted, which is precisely the mission of Scholas Occurentes. Can the world be changed by changing the education we provide our youth?
Future Politics: Living Together in a World Transformed by Tech tries to answer the question of how digital technology will transform politics and society in the future – and on what terms. In a world in which certain technologies will hold high power over us, those who control these technologies will increasingly control the rest of us. They will set the limits of our liberty, their algorithms will resolve questions of social justice, and they will decide on the future of democracy. What will it mean to be free and equal, in the future?
Author of Future Politics: Living Together in a World Transformed by Tech (Estoril Global Issues Distinguished Prize 2019) (United Kingdom)
Full Professor of Economics and International Business at Nova School of Business and Economics (Portugal)
The Lusophone community is built on shared values, history and language and it stands as an example of cooperation between countries working together to overcome their differences. However, a fiercer effort is required to meet the sustainable development goals, including the eradication of poverty and the rejection of inequalities. One of the main challenges faced by Lusophone countries is the development of a global justice space deepening this real sense of community. How can we achieve this global justice Lusophone arena?
Architecture is deeply intertwined with our day-to-day lives, both reflecting and producing social inequalities, as it influences the way we lead our routines. As such, it is also endowed with the ability to build better lives for struggling people, and thus help construct a fairer world. Two of the world’s most renowned thinkers and professionals in the field will come forward to discuss the complex ways architecture relates with and impacts global justice matters – namely poverty, technology and climate change issues – by sharing their personal experiences and projects.
Architect & Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Architecture of the University of Lisbon (Portugal)
Architect & Author of the Project of Nova School of Business and Economics
Ever since its first edition in 2009, the Estoril Conferences have proved that local answers can provide solutions to our shared global challenges by establishing dialogue as the main engine of change. We are here to change the world, and we will not settle for anything less than that. Are you ready to join us?
Denis Mukwege has become a leading activist for human rights and gender equality, increasing protection for women and advocating that those responsible for sexual violence shall be brought to justice. Over the years, he has helped thousands of victims of sexual violence in armed conflicts, while condemning the impunity to war crimes made possible by the absence of the rule of law and the collapse of traditional values. In 2018, alongside Nadia Murad, Denis Mukwege was laureated with the Nobel Peace Prize, and in his Nobel lecture, he raised a sharp and straightforward question: What is the world waiting before taking sexual violence as a weapon into account?
Accommodating different perspectives and interests is probably the most arduous task when discussing global justice. Heads of state and government are the primary agents when it comes to responding to such a challenge, and are expected to voice global concerns with adequate integrity. What unites them to activists on the field when it comes to protecting human rights and accomplishing global justice? The answer must inevitably start by leaving no-one behind.
Venezuela’s opposition figurehead will join us via livestream to analyze the country’s power struggle and economic paralysis. As global powers take sides in the conflict, Guaidó is willing to risk greater instability in the country in the name of freedom. Could his be the best solution to the Venezuelan crisis?
President of the National Assembly of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela & Interim President designated by the same National Assembly (Venezuela)
* to be confirmed
The question regarding the definition of human rights seems to have been rehabilitated by recent socio-political developments, from the United States’ migration policies to Chechnya’s alleged intolerance towards sexual minorities, leading the world to question the achievements of multilateralism. Moreover, arbitrary high-level action raises questions about the actual legitimacy of universal rulings as extreme events such as terrorist acts or the murderous war in Syria spark temptation to dismiss these abstract principles. What are human rights? Why should we defend them? How do they relate to human duties?
President of the Republic of Slovenia 2007-2012 & Member of WLA – Club de Madrid (Slovenia)
Founding Director of the Tsinghua Institute for Advanced Study in Humanities and Social Sciences (China)
Assistant Professor of Communication, Leadership and Ethics at Nova School of Business and Economics & Columnist at Observador (Portugal)
Globalization has in many ways undermined States’ sovereignty, preventing the implementation of more progressive fiscal policies. If we agree that tax justice is tantamount to progressive taxing, tackling tax evasion and implementing higher taxes on wealth, property, inheritance and top incomes are in order. These are poignant demands in the European Union where the uncompleted Fiscal and Banking Union promote competition between the Member States and promote inequalities and domestic resent. How can we fight tax evasion while upholding the European values? Is the European social model still fiscally sustainable?
Women have long been blatantly absent from decision-making tables that keep favouring hard power, military and law enforcement strategies. These are often at odds with developments in the same communities they are meant to act upon. Prevention of violence and extremism must therefore involve a security architecture centered on building trust and access at the local level. What is the role of women and mothers in preventing violent extremism at the community level?
In a world where capitalism and traditional institutions are increasingly called into doubt as efficient and sustainable models, political theorists and citizens are both looking for new alternatives. A reframing of the socialist theory adapted to the needs of the 21st century has become increasingly appealing. While we need a model capable of resolving our global justice problems, we have by now learnt about the dangers of a statist society which takes away its citizens’ agency and political participation. The Latin American cases of democratic socialism are the most recent historical examples of the perils of the socialist promise. Can socialist theory ever materialize into a successful political experience?
This panel addresses the relation between global justice and recent gender equality claims. In contemporary societies, women’s movements have become one of the leading voices fighting against institutionalized discrimination of all kinds. Organizations and activists advocating feminism for the 99% are increasingly engaged with global ethics, human rights, disabilities studies, bioethics, climate change, and international development, with a crescent focus on the intersectionality of oppressions. What can global feminism do for a truly fair world?
Head of the Policy Planning Unit in the Office of the Secretary General at NATO (Italy)
Lawyer, Social Entrepreneur & Member of the Estoril Conferences 2019 International Advisory Board (Saudi Arabia)
José Velez Caroço – Executive Director of the North-South Centre of the Council of Europe (Portugal)
Corruption remains one of the most significant challenges of our democracies, preventing people from leading dignified lives under the consecrated protection of their states. Given its negative impact on human rights enjoyment and development performance, it begs us to question the very political models we abide by. As such, speakers will not only address measures to tackle corruption, as they will also analyze the structural changes required for the problem to be eradicated. Is it possible to find alternative ways of political participation that allow for greater scrutiny of governmental activities?
To think about global injustice is to acknowledge the contingency there is in being born in a specific place, at a particular time, within a peculiar context. To recognize privilege is then the first step to feel responsible towards the well-being of others, namely those who have circumstantially been born within a disadvantaged framework. However, how can individual and collective bodies effectively abolish structural inequalities? What are the most powerful ways to achieve real change?
Founder of African Children’s Aid Education and Development Foundation and the Center for Children Land of Hope in Nigeria & Member of the Estoril Conferences 2019 International Advisory Board (Denmark)
The repercussions of the world wars have had a lasting effect in the way individuals perceive justice and peace, and the ideological disengagement purported by the iron curtain is still felt today. As new walls are now being lifted all over the globe, we must address the ways how political actors can act to put differences aside in order to reach agreements in fundamental matters of global justice. We must ask ourselves what can be done to expose the demagogic rhetoric behind hate speech, while adequately addressing people’s real needs. How far have we come since the tragic events of the XX century and the fall of the Wall?
President of the Republic of Latvia 1999-2007 & President of WLA – Club de Madrid (Latvia)
Writer & Special Correspondent in Germany for the Los Angeles Times (United States)
Contemporary societies are increasingly dependent on their external relations and allegiances, and it is now inconceivable for a nation to make decisions in isolation. As the USA has long been a central player in the international arena, analyzing its foreign policy might be a good point of departure to better understand greater connections. Fareed Zakaria will guide us through this mission, pointing to some of the most significant recent socio-political developments in the USA and the world, and helping us make sense of our global community. What sort of duties does a nation have towards the promotion of global justice around the world?
War and conflict have always been present throughout humanity’s history. However, current environmental, economic and technology-related issues tend to aggravate fragile socio-political contexts. Furthermore, contemporary conflicts are heightened by a global conjuncture that allows for an unprecedented circulation of weapons, information and people, prompting the international community to intervene. How can regional security policies be harmonized with humanitarian assistance and the protection of fundamental rights worldwide?
Assistant Professor at UAL and ISCTE-IUL & Research Fellow at OBSERVARE and CEI-IUL (Portugal)
Fellow at the International Institute for Counter-Terrorism & Former Member of the Knesset (Israel)
Press Team Leader at the European Commission Representation in Portugal (Portugal)
Professor of International Relations at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem & Member of the Estoril Conferences 2019 International Advisory Board (Israel)
Climate emergency is one of the most cross-cutting matters on the global agenda. It owes its urgency to the escalation of the problem, which is already directly affecting thousands of people worldwide, while also epitomizing every single dimension of global justice – from economic inequality to technological developments. Closely related subjects further concern the debate on natural resources distribution, including the establishment of clearing house mechanisms, and intergenerational responsibility. Who should be responsible for slowing down global warming and what action should we undertake right now?
Associate Professor of Economics at Nova School of Business and Economics (Portugal)
In our 2019 Nobel panel, three laureates will discuss one of the most pressing global justice problems: extreme worldwide poverty. As it becomes increasingly evident that nations have the necessary resources to join efforts to eradicate global poverty, the reasons for its prevalence in the XXI century should be addressed. What kind of interests are at play when it comes to creating a world where everyone is allowed the same opportunities and material conditions? Is it really in our hands to end global poverty once and for all?
Co-Founder of Médecins Sans Frontières and Médecins du Monde & 1999 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate (France)
The rise of so-called populist parties should be taken seriously as a clear sign that people feel wronged and betrayed by the State and traditional elites in ways that largely surpass ideology, leading them to support nationalist, xenophobe and misogynist policies. The emergence of illiberal democratic regimes all over the world introduces questions regarding the way democracy is perceived. We must then ask: what kind of changes does democracy need to endorse in order to prevail and protect fundamental rights and needs?
Today, it is inconceivable for a nation to project its future in isolation. Globalization has connected humanity through cooperation and collaboration, inclusiveness and a sense of shared responsibility in a world we have built together, collectively seeking answers to global challenges. However, the distribution of wealth has not been equal and some of us have been left behind. New narratives presenting new alternatives have been popping up virtually everywhere in the world, inspired by similar fears and needs we all share. Is globalization still the answer or are these new alternatives capable of achieving a better world?
Prime Minister of Belgium 1999-2008 & Chair of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe in the European Parliament (Belgium)
Notwithstanding the improvements technology has brought to industrialized societies in the last century, it has also originated unprecedented challenges to humanity. Access to technology remains largely unequal on a global scale, accentuating disparity among countries. On the other hand, wealthy nations are now confronted with issues related to their extreme dependence on technology and questions arise regarding the future of work in societies where such reliance is increasingly preponderant. Because it is undeniably reconfiguring the way people share information and express their will as citizens, is technology hurting global democracy or helping to save it?
Those who can make a connection between past and present and who can measure the peculiarities of their own time against the recognized value of history, will be able to gather lessons from the past and to prepare for a stronger future. With their unique insights into the world of politics and governance, former political leaders of the XXI century will share their experience and their thoughts on current forms of government and on how prepared we are to take on the upcoming challenges of a globalized world. What lessons should we learn from the past to take with us into our collective future?
On its 6th edition, the Estoril Conferences have appointed a Special Rapporteur who is in charge of monitoring the three days of meetings and discussions. Signaling the end of our debate sessions, this is the moment to reflect on our global dialogue.
The report will be presented to the audience and will sum up the overall conclusions of our debates, highlight our points of convergence, and promote further reflection on matters of divergence. Hopefully, the Estoril Conferences will have contributed positively for the discussion regarding our collective future.