SWITZERLAND: In the Natural Collaborative Advantage — How Leaders of Tomorrow and Today Shall Strive to Reconstruct Intergenerational Social Contract Amid Challenging Facts?
MAY 2022 — Collaborative Advantage — as the main theme of the St. Gallen Symposium, highlights the importance and strategic values of “Intergenerationality” in various social forms, including social contract, future employment, political participation (representation), public policies and business innovations. In the participation the 51st St. Gallen Symposium, Andre Kwok, the Founder of Good City Foundation was invited again (2nd time) as Leaders of Tomorrow (LoT) by the Knowledge Pool to attend the Symposium and engage in various key sessions.
A New Intergenerational Contract
“The Limits to Growth” was published by the Club of Rome and subsequently presented at the 3rd St. Gallen Symposium in 1972. The report highlighted the threats of infinite (economic) growth on a society of limited resources and capacity. Upon the 50 years of “The Limits to Growth”, the communities are uniting to launch a joint initiative — “A New Generational Contract” — which will foster dialogue and, subsequently, encourage actions that will elevate a wide range of concerns on intergenerational fairness, putting them firmly at the centre of decisions taken during “our time”.
The Symposium provoked an open and inclusive environment that will unite researchers, activists, and decision-makers from business, policy, and technology, so that young leaders voiced their priorities, explored their ambitions, and decided what type of actions will enable us to transition from insights to impact.
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Passing on the Baton? Transfer of Decision-making, Priorities and Collaboration across Generations of Leaders
For many generations, a common idea has been that children will be better off than their parents. Yet today, at least on a global scale, such intergenerational “convention” may no longer hold. Financial debts and looming climate collapse pose serious social threats to the next generation’s freedom, health and safety.
The report “Voices of the Leaders of Tomorrow” shedded light to over 600 Leaders of Tomorrow and 300 Leaders of Today for their voices to prioritise and rank various largest shared concerns:
1. Shared concerns about increasing polarisation and financial burden on the next generation.
2. Agreement on “too many sacrifices” but disagreement on who is doing the sacrificing.
3. The Broken Intergenerational Contract — Are The Leaders of Today reluctant to let go — or are the Leaders of Tomorrow reluctant to take on real responsibility?
4. Climate and education top desired future scenarios — yet leaves a striking gap of likelihood of outcomes among the generations of leaders.
5. The common objectives and optimism for intergenerational collaboration must be turned into action.
6. Strategy without execution is just hallucination — time to keep each other honest.
Read More About the Report: Click Here
China Perspectives — More Listening Needed Than Ever
China and (De)Globalisation — there is a wide variation of understandings of the current foreign policy reactions positioned by Mainland China and various Asian countries towards the deglobalisation, energy crisis and others caused by the Ukraine-Russia Conflicts.
As indicated by Prof. Feng Zhongping of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, in the hub session of “Europe and China: Competition and Interdependence”, China is still eager to conduct global collaboration especially on key issues such as Carbon Neutrality, Climate Change, Global Trade resilience and peace as to various border conflicts. Yet, there remain to be more conversations and in-depth dialogues where the rest of the world, especially European and American economies have to strike neutral understanding, where fundamental societal values, philosophies and ideologies are much different.
There leaves more room for constructive and representative dialogues and conversations where the Mainland China could be better proxied by young international but patriotic leaders in Hong Kong, with strong familiarity and understanding of Chinese political cultures and societies.
As (a) corresponding action(s), Good City Foundation could be dedicated to conceptualise the principles and values of “intergenerational contract” on various key matters where the Foundation highlights that are considered suitable and valuable in the Asia-led (also aligning to the Africa and Europe context / networks) communities:
- Hence establishing the “Intergenerational Board of Contract”, whereby the “Contract” defines an interlinked relationship in the context of political representation, youth voices to be heard and sufficient empowerment to be provided in the future jobs.
- Debates and discussions on “intergenerational contract in the future jobs and welfare” shall continue in the panel session in the upcoming Hong Kong Social Enterprise Summit 2022, which is co-organised by the Good City Foundation, where practices of various cities in Asia and Europe would be invited to speak.
- More Chinese (young) perspectives needed to be heard than ever — Leaders of Tomorrow (LoT) (current and the alumni) would be dedicated to collaborate closer with the St. Gallen Symposium in Switzerland to establish the Hong Kong and Greater Bay Chapter to continue to facilitate the alumni network (knowledge pool) of the LoTs in Hong Kong and Greater Bay Area of China.
About the St. Gallen Symposium:
In 1968 worldwide protest arise against capitalism, the economic and political elite, racism and the Vietnam war. Moved by these protests five students initiate the first symposium. The St. Gallen Symposium promotes cross-generational dialogue to foster mutual understanding and joint action.
The St. Gallen Symposium aims to serve as the seismograph of the issues that divide and those that unite generations and as the key platform, where cross-generational dialogue fosters mutual understanding and joint action. Through our annual main symposium each May at the University of St.Gallen, our year-round dialogue initiatives, as well as cutting-edge research and publications on next generation concerns and ways to renew the ties that bind generations.
More About the St. Gallen Symposium: Click Here