Realigning Societies: An Overview of the Global Solutions Summit 2023

The Global Solutions Summit 2023 took place on May 15-16 in Berlin and saw spirited participation from diverse policy experts, researchers, and practitioners from over 45 countries.  

It’s time to do a deep dive into GSS 2023. We have curated the best insights and analysis from our community to highlight the key discussions and takeaways from the summit. What is the role of the G20 and G7 in promoting global action on salient issues? How can we make the climate agenda and action more inclusive and equitable? How can Global South and North come together to achieve SDG targets? Are international institutions and forums like the G20 and G7 equipped to deal with a multi-crisis world? 

Want to see the Summit in action? Take a look at our photo and video galleries.  

Keynotes: Global Solutions Initiative 2023 witnessed insightful keynote addresses from German Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Steffi Lemke, German Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection. In his address, Chancellor Scholz underscored the importance of ensuring that the current world order reflects the reality of global multipolarity to maintain the principles of global governance laid down by UN Charter and international law in the twenty-first century. Steffi Lemke emphasized the need for developed nations to play a bigger role in driving global action on the triple planetary crisis of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution. 

Reimagining a more sustainable future: In his opening remarks, the President of Global Solutions Initiative Dennis J. Snower spoke about balancing the logic of economic profit with the goals of environmental and social sustainability to create a harmonious and inclusive society in the future. He highlighted the need for collective efforts from all relevant stakeholders to tackle the global challenges facing humankind. Colm Kelly, Global Leader for Corporate Sustainability at PwC, echoed these sentiments during the opening panel “Realigning Societies: Towards a Sustainable, Inclusive and Common Future,” and argued in favor of reorienting market institutional frameworks and business behaviors to align with outcomes of sustainable development we want.  

Global financial reforms: In the panel “Reforming International Development Finance for Global Resilience,” Mo Ibrahim highlighted the differential treatment meted out in terms of supporting countries facing financial instability in the Global North and South. He advocated for equal treatment by international institutions and global financial support for developing and underdeveloped countries to strengthen global financial resilience. Jochen Flasbarth, State Secretary in the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, underlined the significance of the World Bank and other international banking institutions while arguing for finding alternate solutions to strengthen the international development finance system. 

Calls for international cooperation: Director for Global Relations and Cooperation and OECD Sherpa, Andreas Schaal highlighted how the G7 has reinvented itself, especially in light of the Ukraine crisis, and will continue to be a pivotal forum in fostering multilateral cooperation on global challenges. Assistant Director-General of the World Health Organization Chikwe Ihekweazu spoke about how investing in underdeveloped and Global South economies will safeguard the interests of the global community overall. Managing Director of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) Ingrid Gabriela Hoven advocated for new kinds of international partnerships, where Global North and South can learn from each other, particularly in the realm of balancing energy transitions and economic growth strategies.  

Understanding frontiers of sustainability: GSS 2023 saw various sessions deliberating a deeper understanding of sustainable development issues. Director General at the European Commission Kurt Vandenberghe spoke about the changing paradigm on climate change that goes beyond just protecting the environment, while climate action is also being linked to a new economic strategy that increasingly shifts from fossil fuel-led growth models. Speaking on agricultural innovation, Agnes Kalibata, President of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), showed how digital farming innovations have the potential to support government and private sectors in streamlining food supply chains and safeguarding food security for communities. The Co-founder of iSPIRT Foundation Sharad Sharma advocated for regulating artificial intelligence to ensure cyber security and create an equitable digital ecosystem. President at GlobeWomen Research and Education Institute, Irene Navitad championed the cause of financial inclusion of women for social wellbeing transformation. 

What’s next?  

Stay tuned for Summit 2024 dates. Subscribe to our newsletter to find out first. 

Further reading 

Read more about the Global Solutions Summit 2023 and individual sessions here.  

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