Queen urges Young Global Leaders to become force of change
Her Majesty Queen Rania delivers an address at the Forum of Young Global Leaders Inaugural Summit, in Zermatt, Switzerland, on Sunday (Photo courtesy Aqaba Railway Corporation)
AMMAN (JT) — Her Majesty Queen Rania on Sunday called on the world's young movers and shakers to claim their stake in how the future unfolds, challenging them to become the dynamic engine of change and global progress.
“For all of us here,” Queen Rania said, “the next 15 years have immediate, urgent relevance — in all our roles, as business leaders... politicians... public figures... or perhaps as parents.”
The Queen was addressing a group of 238 young leaders who gathered at the Forum of Young Global Leaders (YGLs) Inaugural Summit in Zermatt, Switzerland, to formulate a vision for the world in 2020.
Speaking during the awards ceremony, Queen Rania stressed that YGLs have a moral responsibility and obligation towards the making of the future.
The Queen encouraged the leaders to work together towards the realisation of their goals, irrespective of their individual differences, as only then could they achieve what they have set out to do.
“... Although you come from around the world, and each have different agendas,” she said, “you're linked by a shared commitment to make tomorrow better for all... In order to fulfil this commitment, it is imperative that you demand and promote a high level of ethical integrity and social responsibility in all you do,” she added.
Queen Rania said the reason the Young Global Leaders initiative is unique is because it gathers distinguished individuals from the four corners of the world, regardless of their differences, to engage within one unified platform.
“You are special, and the vision, drive and determination that have made you successful individuals can be combined to lift the lives of millions around the world,” she continued.
The 2005 YGLs, all aged 40 or younger, represent 68 countries: 71 from Europe, 63 from North America, 49 from Asia, 19 from the Middle East and North Africa, 19 from sub-Saharan Africa and 17 from Latin America.
They include four heads of state and four future monarchs, 80 CEOs and founders/entrepreneurs and 12 chairpersons. Women make up 30 per cent of the group.
The Queen urged YGLs to act as a “network that enables collaboration across boundaries of culture and concern.”
The Forum of Young Global Leaders, spearheaded by the World Economic Forum, is a newly formed, unique, multi-stakeholder community of exceptional young leaders, who share a commitment to shaping the global future. Each year, the forum brings together 200-300 young leaders, selected out of 8,000 candidates, who are currently internationally prominent, to serve for a period of five years, and eventually becoming part of a 1,111-member community by the year 2009.
The 238 leading entrepreneurs, scientists, artists, journalists, economists, politicians and NGO representatives who have been selected, launched the 2020 Initiative, during the annual WEF meeting in Davos, in January of this year.
The group gathered in the Swiss mountain resort under the theme The World in 2020, to draft strategies to address the most pressing challenges facing the world today, with a specific focus on five main areas of concern: Poverty, health, environment, education, global governance and security.
The four-day summit will work on the identification of concrete actions, both short- and long-term, to translate the aspired vision, and the results will feed into WEF 2006 in Davos.
As the head of the YGL Nomination Committee, and the only Arab member of the WEF Foundation Board, Queen Rania also encouraged the YGLs to guide the leaders of tomorrow in their quest for success.
“I hope you'll extend your influence down as well as up — mentoring and coaching the young men and women who want to grow up to be you.”
Among the attendees were HRH Crown Prince Haakon of Norway; Prince Bandar Ben Khalid Al Faisal of Saudi Arabia and Prince Zeid Raad, ambassador and permanent representative of Jordan to the UN, amongst other leading representatives.
Earlier on Sunday, Queen Rania attended the YGL Foundation Board meeting, chaired by WEF Founder and Executive Chairman Professor Klaus Schwab.
The eight-member board discussed the role of the YGLs in global affairs, and means to involve them in the formulation of policies on the national, regional and international levels. They also discussed the foundation's governance system and the signing of statutes.
The Queen also attended the feedback session, where five YGLs briefed the board members on key outcomes and proposed actions discussed during each workshop conducted throughout the past four days.
Based in Geneva, Switzerland, the Forum of Young Global Leaders is an independent, nonprofit organisation, supervised by the Swiss government and established by Professor Klaus Schwab in 2004. It acts in close cooperation with the World Economic Forum.
Tuesday, June 28, 2005