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Programme of 2021 - TRT World Forum

Programme of 2021

Opening Ceremony

12:00 – 13:00 (09:00 – 10:00 GMT)

Public Session 1:

The Future of Sovereignty in an Interdependent World

Since the end of the Second World War and the dissolution of European empires, the nation-state has become the universalised and dominant form of political organisation and the primary holder of sovereignty. The dominance of the nation-state was reinforced as it came to be seen as the best vehicle for achieving economic development and modernisation, otherwise known as ‘nation building’. From this point forward, strategic outlooks have, in theory,

13:00 – 14:30 (10:00 – 11:30 GMT)

Expert Roundtable 1:

Towards New Realignments in the Middle East: The Future of Turkish-Arab Relations

The Arab Spring and its aftermath led to profound changes in the Middle East, paving the way for the emergence of new actors and reconfigured alliances. As Turkey supported the region’s quest for democracy, more synergies were developed with emerging political and social actors, making Istanbul a privileged destination for many Arabs. While many proponents of the uprisings looked to Turkey as a model, others who held a counter-revolutionary

13:00 – 14:30 (10.00 – 11:30 GMT)

Public Session 2:

Climate and Global Health Crises as Strategic Threats

With the social, political, economic and public health impact of the Covid-19 pandemic still reverberating around the globe, strategists are already thinking about how to guard against the next pandemic. As the scale of the economic and human costs of Covid-19 become further apparent, the threat posed by infectious disease to the strategic interests of states is no longer in question.

15:00 – 16:30 (12:00 – 13:30 GMT)

Expert Roundtable 2:

Europe’s Grand Strategy after Brexit: Old Challenges and New Realities

As the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union settles into political and economic normality, Europe continues to face both old challenges and new realities. The unprecedented nature of Brexit and the years-long negotiation process has shed new light on the inner workings of the EU, operational strategies, and the key individuals and states involved in the decision-making process.

15:30 – 17:00 (12:30 – 14:00 GMT)

Public Session 3:

Global Governance and the Challenges and Opportunities of Multipolarity

In an interdependent world characterised by global challenges, the question of how we should govern the world and build systems of governance designed to address both present and future challenges have come to the forefront.

17:00 – 18:30 (14:00 – 15:30 GMT)

Expert Roundtable 3:

The Taliban Returns: Lessons Learned and Lost

World politics have substantially changed since the September 11th attacks. In their wake, George W. Bush declared a global ‘War on Terror’ and called the global effort to defeat terrorism a moral obligation. Soon after, the US announced the invasion of Afghanistan.

18:00 – 19:30 (15:00 – 16:30 GMT)

Public Session 4:

International Economic Development: A New Age of Global Inequality?

As the long-term socio-economic consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic threaten to undo years of progress made on global poverty reduction and inequalities, there has been a renewed focus on developing equitable and sustainable models of economic development, particularly in the world’s poorest countries.

19:00 – 20:30 (16:00 – 17:30 GMT)

Expert Roundtable 4:

Biden’s Foreign Policy: Implications for Eurasia

Under the Biden Administration, the US national security strategy has begun a process of switching its focus from non-state actors, e.g. terrorist organisations, to traditional state actors. For Washington, states which pose the greatest threat to US national security include China, Russia, and Iran, indicating the extent to which Eurasia has come to occupy a central place in US foreign policy.

20:00 – 21:30 (17:00 – 18:30 GMT)

Public Session 1:

Digital Governance: Policymaking and Statecraft in the Digital Age

Former US President Donald Trump may have been the first ‘Twitter President.’ However, the phenomenon of the digitalisation of governance and policymaking goes beyond the question of ‘policy-by-tweet’ and include pressing issues related to governance and state capacity in an era of misinformation campaigns, digital infrastructure vulnerabilities, machine learning and big data.

12:00 – 13:30 (09:00 – 10:30 GMT)

Expert Roundtable 1:

Grasping the Contours of Russia’s Grand Strategy: The Cases of Ukraine and Georgia

Russian foreign policy is not merely a reflection of major power relations but is also a measure of dynamics in neighbouring countries. Several tenets underpin Russia’s grand strategy, namely national interests, great power ambitions, and historical grievances towards the Western dominated global system.

12:00 – 13:30 (09:00 – 10:30 GMT)

Public Session 2:

The Trans-Atlantic Relationship and the Future of the ‘West’

Europe-US relations have been through their ups and downs over the last few decades, particularly since the end of the Cold War and the accompanying convergence of strategic interests. More recently, the Brexit saga and the turbulence of the Donald Trump era has led to questions about the future of the relationship.

14:00 – 15:30 (11:00 – 12:30 GMT)

Expert Roundtable 2:

Turkey’s Grand Strategy: Regional and Global Challenges

Turkey’s regional security environment remains a challenging one as the region’s ongoing conflicts, most notably in Syria, continue to pose security and humanitarian threats. The tensions in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea also pose potential threats to Turkey’s national security objectives.

15:30 – 17:00 (12:30 – 14:00 GMT)

Public Session 3:

Great Power Rivalry and the Future of the Middle East

Over the course of the last year, much attention has been paid to the ‘Abraham Accords’ as representing a fundamental alteration of the strategic environment in the Middle East. While the agreement has been upheld by its signatories and supporters as a ‘game changer’ for the region, it also caused significant backlash amongst Palestinians and beyond.

16:00 – 17:30 (13:00 – 14:30 GMT)

Public Session 4:

The Rise of Eurasia and the Remaking of the World Order

The notion of the ‘West’ has largely defined our understanding of global political, economic, and cultural life for centuries. It has played a prominent role in describing the bipolarity of the global order during the Cold War, as well as the subsequent hegemony of Western power following the fall of the Soviet Union.

18:00 – 19:30 (15:00 – 16:30 GMT)

Expert Roundtable 3:

Racism, Culture Wars, and the Polarisation of Global Politics

The increasing risk of social polarisation has been identified by strategic forecasters as potentially one of the most pressing threats to global stability over the course of the next decade, particularly as the world enters a period increasingly marked by compounded economic, environmental, and geopolitical risks.

19:00 – 20:30 (16:00 – 17:30 GMT)

Public Session 5:

The Responsibility to Protect: Human Security as Statecraft

The United Nations describes the responsibility to protect as embodying a political commitment to end the worst forms of violence and persecution, seeking to narrow the gap between member-states’ pre-existing obligations under international humanitarian and human rights law and the reality faced by populations at risk of genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity.

20:00 – 21:30 (17:00 – 18:30 GMT)
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