World in Focus – warsaw international gathering

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Idea

Where is the world headed? How can citizens shape their social, economic and environmental circumstances? How can Poland make its mark on a changing Europe? Will we be able to stop the climate change? These are just some of the questions we will attempt to answer in order to better understand global problems that impact is in our daily life.

“World in Focus” is an event specially designed to encompass meetings, dialogues and panel sessions which will tackle questions about Poland, Europe and the world. Questions we want to ask, but which offer no obvious answers. This is a two-day journey through fascinating and important international problems of our times – a journey taken together with prominent intellectuals, outstanding experts, practitioners and a diverse cast of participants from around the world. Discussions, film screenings and workshops devoted to developments in Poland’s and Europe’s neighbourhood will allow us to sharpen our focus and take a different perspective on contemporary challenges.

Power is the lead topic of this year’s, third edition of “World in Focus”. Power that constantly shapeshifts, unmooring itself from traditional politics and penetrating our daily life. Governments are no longer capable of reigning in economic, social and technological processes that change our life. There is a temptation to regain control by moving the cock back and closing our communities to the word. Another solution would be to cooperate more closely on an international level, as exemplified by the European Union. We wish to invite you to a discussion that will help us understand the processes that determine the future of the world and find a way to keep them under control.

“World in Focus” is a meeting open to everyone who shares our fascination with the world and a concern for its future. We invite you to join us on October 12th and 13th in the Centre of Creativity Targowa in Warsaw.

Themes in Focus

Please check themes of the current edition below.

Power

The notion of a nation-state, whose government regulates social and economic life within well-defined borders, allows us to feel in control and relatively secure, but is progressively revealed to be an illusion. Power, formal and informal, is now diffuse and can be found wielded by international organisations, global corporations, transnational social movement and Big Data analysts. Even organised crime and terrorist groups partake in power when the use fear and subterfuge to influence governments’ decisions and social processes. We invite you to a discussion on how can we find our footing in a world of a multidimensional web of power.

Democracy

The End of History has failed to arrive and the liberal democracy has lost steam, facing an internal crisis, as well as challenges from authoritarian regimes. During World in Focus, we will discuss how to restore faith in democracy and reinforce its mechanisms. We will also talk about democracy in the European Union, its defence in member-states and about the importance of the European Parliament. Marking the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage in Poland will be a discussion on how women worked to gain full political rights.

 

 

Environment

Humanity has profoundly transformed Earth’s natural environment and cannot now deny the responsibility for its future. We now directly experience the consequences of climate change, forcing the question: are we capable of quick enough action, to stop them. We will discuss what are the limits of individual and local action and where political pressure and solutions are necessary. Food will be another topic, as we ponder who manages its production and think about ways we can maintain control over what we eat.

 

 

Poland

What we are witnessing is the most heated dispute over Poland’s future since 1989. At stake is our understanding of democracy, while we argue over which socioeconomic model to follow and strive to answer challenges posed by our ever-changing world. We have invited intellectuals representin a wide variety of views to discuss the direction in which Poland is moving, relations between citizens and the state, and the place of our country in Europe and in the world.

Europe

Reacting to last decade’s crises, the European Union has begun a slow, painful, yet necessary, process of internal reform. Under intense discussion are issues of solidarity between member-states, the EU’s budget’s size and priorities, political integration of the Eurozone and – perhaps most importantly – values fundamental to the Union. In this year’s World in Focus we will talk about cases that warrant the EU’s intervention in member-states internal affairs and about the importance of next year’s European Parliament election. We also will close the conference with a debate on how Poland can find make its mark on a changing Europe.

World

Our life is increasingly shaped by global processes. As international corporations, social media, transnational actors and global governance structures grow in importance, more decisions are made outside government halls. Global warming, one of the fundamental challenges of our times, know no national borders. We will talk about changing our models of political activity in order for citizens to retain their agency and control over processes that impact them. We will also debate how to find an effective, global solution to climate change.

 

 

New technologies

New technologies are an old story: the speed in which they change our world keeps us talking about them year after year. The topic du jour: our personal data, which are collected and automatically processed on an once unimaginable scale. We will ask the best Polish experts about the opportunities brought by the data revolution and how to retain control over our lives in a world where algorithms are omnipresent. We will also hear about the technical basis for these changes and about the future of artificial intelligence.

Tekst końcowy – EN

You are welcome to register to the event.

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