12th Annual Symi Symposium

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12-16 July 2009

The 12th annual Symi Symposium took place on the Greek island of Skiathos from July 12-16, 2009. An intimate retreat held under the aegis of The Andreas Papandreou Foundation, our symposia bring together leading academics, entrepreneurs, politicians, religious leaders, diplomats, scientists, and activists to develop progressive policy solutions to global challenges. Our first symposium was held in 1998 on the island of Symi, which has lent its name to our retreat ever since.

Our theme this year was ‘Putting People First – Progressive Governance for a Green Economy and a Just Society’. We are living through an unprecedented economic, social and political crisis. The challenge for progressives is to turn this crisis into an opportunity to reform the neo-liberal economic philosophy that has brought the global economy to the brink of collapse. Our aim on Skiathos was to explore the steps required to lay the foundations for stable economic growth, environmental protection and social cohesion, including practical options for a global regulatory framework for markets, specific steps to improve accountability and transparency in political and economic institutions, innovative initiatives for green development, and building bridges with grassroots movements through participative policy-making.

Once again, the Symi Symposium allowed participants to learn from each other in a more personal and substantive way than is usually possible. Participants came from all over the world, and their widely divergent interests and backgrounds enlivened and enriched our deliberations.The executive summary of the Symposium discussions will soon be published in this webpage.