2010 Themes

The plenary sessions of the third edition of the World Policy Conference (WPC) will focus on the five following major themes.

1. The problem of the medium- to long-term interaction between demographic trends, climate change and public health challenges. Each of these topics is generally the object of separate in-depth research work and certain specialised international institutions are very concerned about each of them. However, although these three topics make up a whole, they are rarely treated as such. The purpose of the plenary session dedicated to this theme in Marrakech will be to formulate the problem properly and to identify the institutional improvements likely to strengthen world governance within the framework of the overall issue of development.

2. The second plenary session will be dedicated to global monetary and financial governance. Since the start of the financial crisis in 2008, the G20 has been established and measures have been taken, first, to prevent a great depression or, at least, to mitigate the deflationary impact of the crisis, and second, to reduce the likelihood of another recession. This second point is all the more important as the leeway given to governments and central banks is now extremely limited. The aim of this session will be to assess the progress made and to identify the remaining shortcomings. Particular attention may be paid to the lessons that are to be drawn from the euro crisis triggered by the Greek debt crisis.

3. This year, we are introducing a theme of fundamental importance, which has hardly been explored yet: the governance of digital information or, to use the terminology we prefer, the governance of cyberspace. The purpose of this session will be to identify the major challenges of the Internet, such as cybercriminality or digital warfare. We shall also attempt to formulate properly the issue of Internet governance.

4. The ongoing institutionalisation of the G20 poses two problems. First, this new entity may be considered too light for its job and too heavy to do it. We therefore need to think about its future in terms of effectiveness and legitimacy. Second, the emergence of the G20 calls for a review of the overall architecture of global governance and, in particular, a re-assessment of the reform of the United Nations system.

5. The global move towards multipolarity is accelerating year by year. A plenary session will therefore be dedicated to the views of powers such as China, India, Brazil, Turkey and South Africa on the subject of their responsibilities in terms of linking regional and global governance.

6. A sixth plenary session will allow key figures to discuss the issues of current international affairs from the point of view of global governance.

Finally, we plan to hold three workshops, each of which will deal with a fundamental facet of global governance:

  • · Energy, raw materials and the environment;
  • · Food security and nutrition;
  • · Global monetary and financial governance.

The first two workshops will tackle questions of literally vital importance relating to the overall issue of development. The third one will be a natural follow-up to the second plenary session. Each of the plenary sessions and all of the workshops will be introduced by leading figures who occupy high positions of authority or who participate actively in international brainstormings. The interactive debates with participants will be facilitated by journalists and commentators of worldwide repute.

A number of top public figures will also be speaking at extra meetings to be held during the conference.