Updated: Nov 15, 2022
The events organized by the Young World Federalists to celebrate the 9th Annual Week for World Parliament were a huge success!
Young people gathered in four time zones across the globe to explore global issues and world federalist principles like world citizenship, global democracy, and subsidiarity. At YWF, we aim to capture the momentum by coordinating a follow-up global event in the summer of 2023 to train local organizers to mobilize support for world federalism and global governance reform in their communities. With a resilient network of organizers around the world, YWF can achieve long-term mobilization goals surrounding the UN Summit of the Future in 2024.
Thank you to all of the sponsors, organizers, and volunteers who made this event a success. We went larger and more complex than ever before and managed to pull off a series of unique, educational, and impactful youth events on four continents. Let's keep this momentum going, use it to foster active chapters in more countries, and build mass support for world federalism.
These events demonstrate YWFs growing network of young people around the world committed to governance reform as a key tool for addressing the multiple, overlapping global crises we are facing as a species. These dispatches from the organizers represent an interest in changing the system
On October 21st, the East African chapter of the Young World Federalists (YWF), with the support of Democracy Without Borders - Kenya, World Federalists Movement - Institute of Global Policy, YouLead Africa, and other partners, organized the East African edition of the Week for World Parliament on October 21 in Nairobi, Kenya. The event was held at
Strathmore University and focused on the planet, environment, and East African integration with the theme of "The prospects and challenges of green transition for sustainable development in the East African Community." The event brought together young people, civil society organizations, and other experts to discuss issues relating to regional economic integration and green energy. The event centred on a model United Nations General Assembly meeting, with four committees for participants to choose from: Green and clean energy, opportunities for smart agriculture, sustainable blue economy, and a circular economy in manufacturing. Each committee produced a poly paper on a chosen topic and presented them during the event.
The Indian associate chapter of the Young World Federalists, the Global Federal League organized a zoom meet-up to commemorate the Week for World Parliament, open to the general public. Titled "Anjuman-E-Aman", the event was characterized by intense discussions on the prospects of global governance and the role of the youth in the same.
On the weekend of the 22nd of October 2022, Brussel’s Week for World Parliament event took place. The event was a great success. Being the first of its kind in the European capital it took place in Lagrange Points, located in one of the hippest parts of vibrant multicultural Brussels.
Day 1 opened with a collective discussion around UN reform that culminated in drafting a youth declaration on the state of the world, suggesting much-needed changes and stirring up meaningful conversation amongst the attendees.
High-level speakers from academia, the field and headquarters were invited in order to share their knowledge regarding topics of Global Relevance such as Humanitarian aid, the functioning of supranational institutions, global health and decision-making:
Emilia Merenmies, a technical advisor and subject matter expert and trainer on Gender, Violence Against Women and Girls, Humanitarian Action, Civil-Military Coordination, and Project Management. She is backed by twenty years of field experience across three continents working for the UN, EU, NATO, OSCE, the Red Cross Movement, and other international NGOs as well as local civil societies in international humanitarian assistance and development, in natural disasters and conflict and post-conflict environments.
Georgios Kostakos is the Co-founder and Executive Director of the Foundation for Global Governance and Sustainability (FOGGS). About half of his thirty-year work experience has been with the UN, including with the Executive Office of the UN Secretary-General, the High-level Panel on Global Sustainability, and UNFCCC. He has also held various positions at the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP), organized courses at the University of Athens, was a visiting lecturer at the Brussels School of International Studies / University of Kent and served as LIFE Climate Action Sector Coordinator at NEEMO EEIG. He is a Mechanical Engineer by training and has a PhD in International Relations, specialising in global governance, sustainability, and resilience.
Juuso Järviniemi is Vice-President of Young European Federalists (JEF-Europe) since 2021. He is the JEFEurope contact person for health policy, and for world federalism. During the Conference on the Future of Europe, Juuso authored a proposal for an EU Treaty reform to strengthen the Union's health competencies, which translated into an official proposal adopted by the Conference. Originally from Finland, Juuso studied European Political and Governance Studies at the College of Europe in Bruges and currently resides in Brussels.
Thomas-Julian Irabor is an Assistant professor at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Veterinary Management of Animal Resources, University of Liège. He is a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, holding a Master of Science in integrated management of health risks, and he is currently a PhD candidate in Serious Game Design for Systems Thinking Development. His research interests focus on exploring learning contexts to develop systems thinking skills in a One Health approach to health risk management. He also obtained a certificate in game design and culture of video games
All in all, this first success has served its purpose regarding outreach and public engagement. It has also managed to consolidate the brand new Brussels chapter of YWF (composed of Gilberto Cancela, Sarah Ketri, Isabella Introvaia and Pablo Gómez de Mayora) as well as to create new links with other organizations such as the Human Rights Association for the Promotion and Defense of Fundamental Human Rights (ADU) and Lagrange Points Collective (LP).
The Human Rights Association for the Promotion and Defense of Fundamental Human Rights (ADU) was founded in 2018 in Florence, Tuscany. It is composed of lawyers, jurists, and professionals from the different branches of domestic, European, and international law. ADU pursues its purposes of social utility and objectives by protecting and promoting the Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms embodied in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the European Convention on Human Rights. The Association trains legal practitioners and raises awareness among the public in the following areas: International Law, European Law, Human Rights, International Environmental Law, and European Project Design and Planning.
Lagrange Points Brussels (LP) promotes and celebrates the diversity of Arab culture's creativity and innovation, in Brussels, Europe, and the Arab world. Through its network, dynamic team, and open programs, Lagrange Points brings new and unexpected voices alongside established artists, writers, activists, and researchers, connecting audiences and communities with works of contemporary Arab visual arts, film, music, theatre, dance, literature, and debates. LP employs Art and Culture as a lever for an inclusive and representative society. In Brussels, LP has created a platform for innovative artistic experiments, inspiring cooperatives, substantive conversations, and shared experiences of music, cinema, literature, and visual arts.
New York City
On October 22nd, 2022, young activists met in Queens, New York for the 9th annual Week for World Parliament. The event hosted eight fantastic speakers in person and received multiple virtual addresses.
Manu Bhagavan, historian and professor at the City University of New York Graduate Center, discussed the rise of authoritarianism around the world and the potential of federalism as a means to combat it. Terrie Gyles, President of the UNA-USA Queens Borough Chapter, presented the achievements of the United Nations and our current systems of global governance. Samuel Zipp, historian and professor at Brown University and author of The Idealist, took attendees on Wendell Willkie's journey around the globe in pursuit of "One World." Brian Garvey, Assistant Director of Massachusetts Peace Action, spoke about ongoing dangers and ways in which we can build peace on the world stage.
Yasmina Gourchane, an Advocacy Officer at the Coalition for the International Criminal Court, discussed with attendees the importance of the ICC in addressing human rights issues around the world and the role the US could be playing if they chose to engage more. David Gallup, Executive Director of the World Service Authority, presented on global human rights and the way in which citizenship -- and potentially world citizenship -- can determine one's access to those rights. Tiziana Stella, historian and Executive Director of the Streit Council, presented on the conditions of system collapse and how federation might be necessary to avoid such a global collapse. Richard Ponzio, Executive Director of the Stimson Center, presented on reforms to our global system and the road to the 2024 Summit for the Future.
Attendees had the opportunity to engage intimately with the presenters, who each held open Q&A. Attendees also spent the evening together discussing the events of the day over dinner and drinks. They also went home cloaked in merch including brochures, stickers, t-shirts, pins, and more!
We want to thank all of our speakers, both in person and virtual, for their participation in this event. We also want to thank the UNA-USA Queens Borough Chapter for hosting us at the historic Jamaica High School, which served as a perfect venue for the event.
On October 24th the Foundation for Global Governance and Sustainability (FOGGS) hosted an online event on global resilience. The event was an invitation to youth activists and members of the public to explore and question the Global Resilience Council project from FOGGS, a body they describe as a 'Security Council for non-military threats'.
On October 26th in Buenos Aries, Democracia Global held an event at Organización de Estados Iberoamericanos (OEI) where they presented the recently published Global Democracy and Justice Lecture Series, a free video series on 'why we need a radical re-organisation of the world system, to shift from international competition to global cooperation, and from a system of global oligarchy to one of global democracy'. The video series was produced by One World with support from the Young World Federalists and many others in the movement. On the same day, Democracia Global also organized the XVI Altiero Spinelli Simposium on stronger integration between Mercosur and the EU.
On October 28th in Berlin, the World Parliament Experiment hosted a meeting for volunteers and supporters of the project to discuss the next steps for the online global democracy platform. The Young World Federalists support the Experiment with a dedicated channel in our Discord server to promote and discuss the platform.
Several Week for World Parliament event organizers have expressed a desire to move the event to the summer months as this generally works better for students wishing to participate. The Week for World Parliament is centred around UN Day in October and near the anniversary of YWF on November 5th. For these reasons, it will be beneficial to focus on global in-person event organizing in the summer and global online event organizing for the WWP, UN Day, and the YWF Global Assembly. A viable network of capable local chapters will be key to mobilising during the 2024 UN Summit of the Future. The Summit provides a unique opportunity to highlight the need for global governance reform which requires us to coordinate the world federalist response in order to maximize visibility and impact during the event. An event focused on training young people to organize in their local communities could help unlock the potential needed to build momentum around the 2024 Summit. 👉Sign up for the newsletter to get updates about our future events and how you can get involved.