Past Program

Jun 25 - Jun 28, 2015

People and Power: Will We Recognize the World in 2030?


This event is by Invitation Only

2015 is a pivotal year. It marks the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, the 70th anniversary of the United Nations and key milestones for ASEAN and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. It is also a critical test for international vision and leadership as nation states attempt to reach a new climate change agreement and Sustainable Development Goals to 2030. By that year, the global population is predicted to swell to over 8.3 billion, with over 5 billion of us living in towns and cities.  

Outside the governmental arena, radical shifts in allegiances and attitudes to power are accelerating with technological change. There is widespread cynicism about the ability of “elites” – political, corporate, financial, media – to collaborate on long-term decisions for the common public good. The rule of law is far from universal, and social and economic inequality has skyrocketed. System-wide stresses and generational pressures strain public institutions trying to balance divergent interests. Yet many cities are spearheading a wave of creative entrepreneurship and dynamic citizenry. New partnerships connect players across sectors and scales. Technology and data analytics are revolutionizing everything from housing, energy and transport to health and education.

Back in 2000, when global leaders set the Millennium Development Goals – which were supposed to be achieved by 2015 – the world looked very different. 9/11 had not happened – and nor had hybrid cars, 3D printing, mapping the human genome, China’s and India’s space programs or YouTube, the iPhone, Facebook, Wikipedia and Skype. As we look another 15 years further into our future, will our inventive genius launch a new golden age to revitalize the social compact and allow us to flourish within planetary boundaries?

This gala program invites speakers to look back to 2000 and forward to the transformations they expect or fear by 2030 – and to challenge received wisdom, using Salzburg Global’s triple lens of Imagination, Sustainability and Justice. Our speakers from around the world combine voices of experience with young changemakers shaping ideas and innovation for their countries and communities. Together, we will explore what opportunities exist to accelerate positive change over the next 15 years and who can drive it.