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Cambridge Central Asia Forum


Speakers: Professor Peter Nolan CBE and Chong Hua Chair in Chinese Development, University of Cambridge

Dr Siddharth (Montu) Saxena, Director Cambridge Central Asia Forum, Jesus College, University of Cambridge

The Beijing Forum aims to stimulate academic studies and research in the humanities and social sciences throughout the world thereby contributing to human progress. The forum was launched in 2004 with the inaugural theme:"The Harmony of Civilizations and Prosperity for All",which has remained the main theme for each successive forum. 

Beijing Forum aims at promoting the study of humanities and social sciences around the world. It endeavors to promote academic development and social progress across the world in order to contribute to the development and prosperity of humankind. Beijing Forum believes in promoting and safeguarding the progress of the human society through the peaceful integration of civilizations.

In 2017, global order and international patterns are undergoing profound adjustments. The UK’s exit from the European Union, the strifes in the US presidential election, the emerging Black Swan Events, all raised wide concerns of isolationism and reverse-globalization. The migrants and refugees influx, the ecological crisis and the economic downturn have caused a feeling of loss. Will this world be better?

A fundamental challenge brought about by this changing world is the threat to values and order. Sets of values have been the essential feature of human society since the beginning of civilization. Some of today’s international values and order were developed after World War Ⅱ. Different sets of values may clash or encourage co-operation; global order may produce competition and communication. What remains unchanged is change itself. Until now, ideological breakthroughs, technological innovations, social revolution, climate change, financial crisis and extremism, have all had a strong impact on existing ways of thinking and on traditional global governance. An important dichotomy has been created: frequent interactions via the Internet and an anarchic situation in the real world. Mankind has reached a new crossroad.

The renewal of global governance has become critical. Countries and communities in the international society are both the defender of traditional values and order, as well as the creator of values and order for the future. Ways to establish a global governance system that will cope with these new challenges concerns not only the security of each country, but the common destiny for all mankind. Naturally, while promoting an international order and global governance towards a fair and rational future, we shall have to identify common points while accepting differences through multi-lateral dialogue and communication. This is a common responsibility not only for political figures, but also for entrepreneurs, educators, scholars and for forward-looking men.

During the G20 Summit, the Chinese President Xi stated that “Partnership is the most valuable asset of the G20 and the choice of all countries as they rise up together to global challenges”. China has proposed an innovative perspective and a thorough blueprint to build a win-win global partnership that is anchored in the concept of mankind’s common destiny in order to initiate a bright future.

In accordance with its theme “Harmony of Civilizations and Prosperity for All”, Beijing Forum 2017 will continue to explore values and order in a changing world, and endeavor to seek more ways of communication between civilizations, in order to open new paths of development.


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