The 12th annual World Public Forum (WPF) concluded on Rhodes on Sunday. This year’s event – themed “Preventing World War through Global Solidarity – 100 years on”– opened Thursday night and featured approximately 400 delegates from 60 countries over the course of four days.
Co-founded by Dr. Vladimir Yakunin from Russia, J.C. Kapur from India and Nikolaos Papanikolaou from Greece, the Rhodes Forum seeks to bring together world experts and international leaders to discuss various political issues and to propose ways of dealing with them. The event’s co-chairmen are former Austrian Chancellor Alfred Gusenbauer and Professor of Notre Dame University Fred Dallmayr.
In his closing remarks, the forum’s founding president Dr. Vladimir Yakunin said that the presidency of the World Public Forum “Dialogue of Civilizations” is deeply concerned about the recent deterioration in global concord and about structural trends that jeopardise both humanity and nature.
Yakunin said that the presidency will use all its powers and resources to support public efforts against the threat of global confrontations and even war. He also aims to work out new, sustainable socio-economic models.
The WPF will set up several programs and initiatives to achieve this goal. These include the Schools of Intercultural Dialogue, digital courses in “civilization dialogue” and a dedicated WPF think-tank.
The forum’s first annual session took place on Rhodes in September 2003. Since 2013, the World Public Forum’s “Dialogue of Civilizations” event has had a special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council.