This past weekend, up-and-coming young leaders from across the globe gathered together in Bogotá, Colombia for the One Young World Summit 2017. Since forming in 2009, the UK-based nonprofit has staged the annual Summit to bring together young talent from global and national companies, NGOs, universities, and other organisations to network with other like-minded individuals and meet world leaders who act as One Young World Counselors. As in former years, the latest Summit was a forum for debate on and sharing of innovative ideas for addressing serious global issues, including corruption and human rights.
Tackling Corruption Takes Center Stage
More than 1,300 young leaders from 193 countries converged on Bogotá to participate in the Summit this year—and we were fortunate to have 'boots on the ground' to capture the event. The Summit's speakers and counselors included recognized leaders for integrity in business and government, social justice, and human rights, among them:
- President Santos, President of Colombia
- Kofi Annan, 7th Secretary General of the United Nations (1997-2006)
- Professor Muhammad Yunus, Founder, Grameen Bank and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate
- Emmanuel Lulin, Senior Vice-President and Chief Ethics Officer of L'Oreal
- Salil Shetty, Secretary General, Amnesty International
- Hassan Jallow, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the Gambia & former Prosecutor of the UN International Criminal
Tribunal for Rwanda
The line-up wasn't limited to government, NGO and corporate leaders, either. Musician/activists like Bob Geldorf, Cher, and Iron Maiden lead singer Bruce Dickinson were joined by former NASA astronaut and Founder of Fragile Oasis Ron Garan, Olympic Gold Medal Winning Footballer Hope Solo and Black Lives Matter activist DeRay McKesson.
One topic that was raised repeatedly throughout the four-day summit—corruption. One Young World founder David Jones said, "One Young World did a survey of young people in Colombia about what they thought were the causes of poverty—the number one cause was corruption. Corruption hits the poorest the hardest, denying them access to basic rights." Global problems, such as modern slavery, are rooted in corrupt practices and most often victimize poor and disenfranchised populations. One senior European Commission official noted, "The European Commission does a lot of work on global development and encouraging countries to fight corruption. We raise issues of corruption in less developed countries, and we provide tools which they can use in cooperation with us to build their own system to fight corruption."
We've only scratched the surface of what took place at One Young World Summit 2017. Watch for more posts in the coming weeks, including our exclusive interview with Emmanuel Lulin, Senior Vice-President and C840501hief Ethics Officer of L'Oreal.