United Nations Office in Geneva - World Academy of Art & Science

Global Leadership in the 21st Century

There is an urgent need to fill the global leadership vacuum in order to address the complex, pressing challenges confronting humanity today. Leadership is needed at all levels in all fields. Leadership is a catalytic process that can accomplish what leaders cannot. The leadership needed must be inspired by universal values and visionary ideas, energized by high goals and awareness of untapped opportunities, given expression by courageous individuals, implemented by innovative organizations, and fulfilled by awakening and unleashing the aspirations of the whole society.

The World Academy of Art & Science, in partnership with the United Nations at Geneva, is conducting a multi-stakeholder, multi-sectoral project highlighting innovative strategies and effective principles to accelerate the emergence of dynamic leadership for successful implementation of the SDGs. The project will involve consultations with IGOs, nation states, business, scientific research and educational institutions, civil society and youth organizations. It will culminate in a major two-day conference at UNOG in October 2020, followed by a report to the UN, educational and other outreach strategies. The overarching objective of the project is to become a catalyst to accelerate the emergence of dynamic leadership for global development. Its strategy is to consciously apply at the global level essential principles of effective leadership that have previously served as catalysts for rapid transformation at the level of organizations, nation states and international organizations.

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Global Leadership Questionnaire:

We seek to learn from successful leadership initiatives in order to devise and refine more effective strategies for the global community to advance on humanity’s urgent priorities. Please share your valuable experiences and input for the greater collective process. Click here to access the questionnaire form.

Global Leadership in the 21st Century

Concept

There is urgent need to fill the global leadership vacuum in order to address the complex, pressing challenges confronting humanity today. Leadership is needed at all levels in all fields. Leadership is a catalytic process that can accomplish what leaders cannot. The leadership needed must be inspired by universal values and visionary ideas, energized by high goals and awareness of untapped opportunities, given expression by courageous individuals, implemented by innovative organizations, and fulfilled by awakening and unleashing the aspirations of the whole society.

The World Academy of Art & Science, in partnership with the United Nations at Geneva, is conducting a multi-stakeholder, multi-sectoral project highlighting innovative strategies and effective principles to accelerate the emergence of dynamic leadership for successful implementation of the SDGs. The project will involve consultations with IGOs, nation states, business, scientific research and educational institutions, civil society and youth organizations. It will culminate in a major two-day conference at UNOG in October 2020, followed by a report to the UN, educational and other outreach strategies. The overarching objective of the project is to become a catalyst to accelerate the emergence of dynamic leadership for global development. Its strategy is to consciously apply at the global level essential principles of effective leadership that have previously served as catalysts for rapid transformation at the level of organizations, nation states and international organizations.

The unanimous adoption of the SDGs by 193 countries is an unprecedented achievement affirming a global consensus regarding a comprehensive set of universal values and practical goals all nations commit to achieve. But the affirmation of these shared values and common goals represent only one essential element of what is required to realize them in practice. Other essential requirements for effective leadership need urgently to be addressed. Governments alone cannot provide the leadership required to achieve these goals. Global institutions are not sufficiently equipped, funded or empowered to be held accountable for realizing them. Development is a social process, not a government program. Realization of these goals will require unprecedented levels of commitment and coordination by all stakeholders in all sectors of society at the local, national and global level. Effective leadership is required to generate, unleash, align and integrate a vast multitude of initiatives. Inspiring ideas, individuals, innovative organizations and dynamic initiatives all have essential roles to play. A powerfully motivating vision of the world the SGDs cab bring about is also needed to generate the energy and momentum required to overcome the resistance of vested interests, obstacles and inertia. A broad-based global social movement will be needed to fill the vacuum and achieve the goals in a timely manner.

In 2013 the World Academy of Art & Science was invited by the UN Office in Geneva to co-organize and conduct a highly successful conference of 200 political leaders, diplomats, scientists, educators and civil society leaders on the nexus of global challenges confronting humanity today. Since then WAAS has conducted over 30 conferences and roundtables around the world and published more than 100 papers examining different dimensions of these challenges. This new project represents the next step in a process designed to evolve a comprehensive effective strategy to address these challenges.

The current project will involve consultations and contributions from a cross-section of organizations and individuals to draw insights from successful leadership initiatives of different types, at different levels and in different fields that have served as effective catalysts for rapid social progress up to now. It will seek to make more conscious the deep drivers of social evolution to meet the urgent demands of the world today. The consultations will involve dialog with leaders of international organizations, government, business, academia, civil society, youth and the media. The research findings, conference conclusions and practical recommendations for implementation will then be presented in a final report. Perspectives and insights draw from the project will then be widely disseminated through creation of university level courses and the media.

Scope: The project will consist of six phases:

  1. Launch Phase – to identify and forge partnerships with a cross-section of representative organizations and groups of individuals able to collaborate on the project;
  2. Consultation and Research Phase – to learn and appraise ourselves of emerging patterns, to conduct briefings, an on-line consultation, workshops and conferences with representatives of international organizations, national governments, academic and research institutions, business, youth, media and NGOs;
  3. Prep-Con Phase – to open a debate around selected themes and prepare think pieces and position papers drawing insights from the workshops and research reports and planning for the conference;
  4. Conference Phase – to hold a two-day conference at the UN in Geneva on 27-28 October 2020 at the time of the UN 75th Anniversary celebrations;
  5. Report Phase –  to prepare a final report presenting insights, strategies, examples and practical guidelines for fostering global leadership; and
  6. Out-reach Phase – to set in place educational and training courses on global leadership for delivery through universities and training programs and for dissemination through partners and academia with the support of the media.

Timeline: The first 5 phases will be completed by the end of 2020.

World Academy of Art & Science: WAAS is a non-governmental organization founded in 1960 by eminent intellectuals from around the world to develop new perspectives and innovative approaches to meet the global challenges confronting humanity. It presently has nearly 800 Fellows elected for distinction in their fields of work combined with distinguished service addressing global social challenges from a multi-disciplinary, integrated, value-based perspective. The Academy is incorporated as a tax-exempt organization in California and has been accorded special consultative status with ECOSOC and consultative status with UNESCO. It works in concert with and through a network of centers, partners, universities, national academies and other collaborating institutions.

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Global Leadership in the 21st Century

Team Members

Garry Jacobs, 
WAAS President & Chief Executive Officer
Email: gjacobs@worldacademy.org

Donato Kiniger-Passigli 
WAAS Vice President & GL-21 Project Director
Email: kiniger@worldacademy.org

Mila Popovich
WAAS Chair, Nominations Committee & GL-21 Head of Research and Development
Email: mila.popovich@worldacademy.org

Education:

Remus Pricopie 
Rector, National University of Political Studies and Public Administration (SNSPA)
Email: remus_pricopie@yahoo.com

Science & Youth:

Thomas Reuter
Professor, Asia Institute, The University of Melbourne
Email: thor2525@gmail.com

Technology:

Rodolfo Fiorini 
Professor, Politecnico di Milano University, Italy
Email: fiorini@worldacademy.org

Economy & Finance:

Mariana Bozesan
Founder & Managing Director, AQAL Capital; Chair of Nominations Committee, Club of Rome
Email:mbozesan@aqal-ag.com

Frank Dixon
WAAS representative to UN ECOSOC in New York
Email:fdixon@globalsystemchange.com

Arts and Humanities:

Isabelle Wachsmuth
Universal Health Systems, World Health Organization
Email: hugueti@who.int

 

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Global Leadership in the 21st Century

Working Groups

The purpose of the Global Leadership Project is to identify insightful, innovative strategies and approaches to overcome the barriers and inertia preventing effective action on these global challenges.

The project includes the establishment of a number of working groups to conduct research, participate in preparatory meetings, identify issues and prepare positions for presentation and discussion at the conference at UNOG in October 2020, and to generate core content for the final report to the UN. The groups are intended to explore the potential for applying innovative transformational strategies to accelerate progress at the local, national and global level.

The strategies are of two types. The first type relate to major global challenges—peace and security; governance, law and human rights; economy; environment; education; health & welfare; science and technology. The second type relate to some crosscutting strategies and resources that can be harnessed to accelerate progress on the issues–academia, media, arts, culture, youth and civil society, and transformative processes

ISSUES Groups

1. Governance, Law, Human Rights
2. Peace, Security &  Disarmament
3. Economy Group
4. Education Group
5. Energy, Ecology & Climate
6. Science, Engineering & Technology
7. Business & Finance
8. Wellbeing & Welfare      

Cross-Cutting Agency Groups

9.  Academies
10. Information & Media
11. Civil Society & Youth
12. Cultural Diplomacy
13. Art, Humanities & Culture
14. Social Transformation Movements

 

 

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GL21-Academies

GL21-Art, Humanities and Culture

GL21-COVID-19

GL21-Cultural Diplomacy

GL21-Wellbeing and Welfare

Global Leadership in the 21st Century

Press Release                                                         

Geneva 8 November, 2019

Renewed commitment, initiative and momentum are urgently needed to address the existential, evolutionary, ecological challenges confronting humanity today. Leadership is needed at all levels in all fields. It must be inspired by higher values, visionary ideas, and awareness of untapped opportunities. It has to be energized by courageous individuals, innovative organizations and the rising aspirations of global society.

With these words, Garry Jacobs, CEO of the World Academy of Art & Science, launched an ad hoc joint UN-WAAS initiative in an address to representatives of UN member states, international organizations and civil society at the UN Palais des Nations in Geneva, today. The initiative will culminate with a summit in Geneva on October 27-28, 2020 on the occasion marking the 75th Anniversary of the UN, followed by a report with practical recommendations and an educational and media outreach program.

This initiative is a multi-stakeholder, multi-sectoral project highlighting innovative strategies and effective principles to accelerate the emergence of dynamic global leadership for successful implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The project will involve consultations with UN agencies and member states, leading business and financial experts, international scientific and technology organizations, educational institutions, international civil society and youth organizations. 

The world possesses all the resources and capacities needed to effectively address global challenges. Leadership,  as phrased by Jacobs, is needed to generate awareness of this unutilized global potential. The SDGs represent universal values and practical goals for all nations to strive for, but they are only one essential aspect of effective leadership. Strategies are required to mobilize, engage and align the efforts of different stakeholders, sectors and levels of the global community, to coordinate and integrate policies and actions across national and disciplinary boundaries, to generate global public awareness, realize and mobilize the energies of global society, and channel them to forge a powerful movement for rapid social transformation. 

At the UN briefings today, Jacobs elicited participants’ views on critical leadership questions designed to generate insights from past success stories, innovative initiatives, perceived global challenges and unperceived opportunities. The research and consultation phase of the project will include focus on issues related to governance, security, ecology, economy, education, science and technology. 

World Academy of Art & Science: WAAS is a non-governmental organization founded in 1960 by eminent intellectuals from around the world to develop new perspectives and innovative approaches to meet the global challenges confronting humanity. It is incorporated in California and has special consultative status with UN ECOSOC. The Academy has over 750 Fellows elected for distinction in their fields of work combined with distinguished service addressing global social challenges from a multi-disciplinary, integrated, value-based perspective. In 2013, WAAS and UNOG co-organized a major international conference in Geneva which laid the foundation for the leadership project. 

For more information about WAAS, visit www.worldacademy.org 

For further Information regarding the initiative ‘Global Leadership in the 21st Century’, please contact:

 

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