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Agenda 2015


- Assessing Global Financial Risks

- Is an Atlantic Energy System Emerging?

- China, India, and Japan: Asian Actors in the Southern Atlantic

- Delivering Prosperity and Security: An Agenda for Cities

- Driving a Green Revolution in Africa

- Elements of a Counter-Extremism Strategy: Containment, Engagement, or Roll-Back?

- Entrepreneurship in the Wider Atlantic: The Sky is the Limit

- Leveraging Trade Agreements

- Humanizing Security: Protect, Connect, and Empower

- Can We Manage? Migration and Asylum Policies in Times of Humanitarian Crises

- Mobilizing Investments for Africa

- The Future of Prosperity

- The Future of Security

- Thinking through the Unexpected: Perspectives from Emerging Leaders on the Atlantic World in 2025



Prosperity and Security Across Latitudes

Four Seasons Resort, Marrakesh, Morocco

October 30 - November 1, 2015 

Draft Agenda

All times are subject to change


Friday, October 30

15:45 – 16:00 Opening Remarks (on the record)

  • The Hon. Lahcen Haddad, Minister, Ministry of Tourism, Kingdom of Morocco

16:00 – 16:15  Welcome Remarks (on the record)

  • Karen Donfried, President, The German Marshall Fund of the United States, and Karim El Aynaoui, Managing Director, OCP Policy Center

16:15 – 17:30  Plenary Session: The Future of Prosperity (on the record)

  • Mark Brantley, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Aviation, St. Kitts and Nevis
  • Lahcen Haddad, Minister of Tourism, Kingdom of Morocco
  • Christian Leffler, Deputy Secretary General for Economic and Global Issues, European External Action Service
  • Marta Lucía Ramírez, President, Action Citizens
  • Moderator: Alan Kasujja, BBC  

18:00 – 19:15  Plenary Session: The Future of Security (on the record)

  • Assia Bensalah Alaoui, Ambassador at Large of HM the King of Morocco, Kingdom of Morocco
  • Greg Craig, Partner, Litigation, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom
  • Jean-David Levitte, Ambassador, Institut de France
  • Aminata Touré,  Special Envoy to the President, Republic of Senegal
  • Moderator: Lourival Sant’Anna, Associate Director, Fernand Braudel Institute of World Economics


22:00 Night-Owl Sessions

Leveraging Trade Agreements (off the record)

  • Yonov Agah, Deputy Director-General, World Trade Organization
  • Dominique Bocquet, General Supervisor, Ministry of Finance, France
  • Adriana de Queiroz, Managing Partner, A2 Global Trade
  • Julissa Reynoso, Partner, Chadbourne & Parke, LLP
  • Moderator: Andrés Rozental, Emminent Ambassador of Mexico, Centre for International Governance Innovation

China, India, and Japan: Asian Actors in the Southern Atlantic (off the record)

  • Mohammed Benhammou, President, Moroccan Center for Strategic Studies
  • Masafumi Ishii, Ambassador to Belgium and Representative of the Government of Japan to NATO, Embassy of Japan
  • Alfredo Valladão, Senior Fellow, OCP Policy Center
  • He Wenping, Director, African Studies, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences
  • Moderator: Dhruva Jaishankar, Transatlantic Fellow, The German Marshall Fund of the United States


Saturday, October 31

9:15-10:30 Plenary Session: Can We Manage? Migration and Asylum Policies in Times of Humanitarian Crises (on the record)

  • Jorge Castañeda, Global Distinguished Professor of Politics, and Latin American and Caribbean Studies, New York University
  • Katrin Hirseland, Chief of Staff, Federal Office for Migration and Refugees
  • Aziz Mekouar, Senior Fellow, OCP Policy Center
  • Moderator: Ali Aslan, TV Host and Journalist

11:00 – 12:30 Plenary Session: Driving a Green Revolution in Africa (on the record)

  • Cheikh Tidiane Gadio, Founder and President, Institute for Pan African Strategies
  • Joaquim Vieira Ferreira Levy, Finance Minister, Brazil
  • Olusegun Obasanjo, Board Member, African Progress Panel and Former President, Nigeria
  • Dr. Mostafa Terrab, CEO and Chairman, OCP Group, President, OCP Foundation
  • Moderator: John Yearwood, World Editor, Miami Herald

13:30 – 14:45  AD In-Focus Sessions

Humanizing Security: Strategies to Protect, Connect, and Empower (off the record)

  • Deborah Birx, U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator and U.S. Special Representative for Global Health Diplomacy, U.S. Department of State
  • Patricia Espinosa Cantellano, Ambassador to Germany, Foreign Ministry of Mexico
  • Colonel Birame Diop, Chief of Staff, Air Force, Senegal
  • Sheldon Himelfarb, President and CEO, PeaceTech Lab
  • Moderator: Jonathan Capehart, Editorial Board Member, The Washington Post

Delivering Prosperity and Security: An Agenda for Cities (off the record)

  • Cristina Barrios, Senior Analyst, European Union Institute for Security Studies
  • Hassan Benabderrazik, Senior Fellow, OCP Policy Center
  • Gregory Randolph, Deputy Director, JustJobs Network
  • Yassine Moustanijdi, Architect and Urban Planner, Klaus Müller GMBH
  • Moderator: Geraldine Gardner, Director, Urban and Regional Policy, German Marshall Fund of the United States

15:15 – 15:45 Conversation with: (on the record)

  • Joaquim Vieira Ferreira Levy, Finance Minister, Brazil
  • Moderator: Lourival Sant’Anna, Associate Director, Fernand Braudel Institute of World Economics

15:45 – 16:30 Conversation with: (on the record)

  • Rabi Mohtar, Senior Fellow, OCP Policy Center
  • Thione Niang, Co-Founder, Akon Lighting Africa
  • Moderator: Jim Kolbe, Senior Transatlantic Fellow, The German Marshall Fund of the United States

17:00 – 18:15 Plenary Session: Is an Atlantic Energy System Emerging? (on the record)

  • Rolake Akinkugbe, Vice President, Head, Energy and Natural Resources, FBN Capital
  • Amina Benkhadra, Managing Director, National Office of Hydrocarbons and Mines, Morocco
  • Winston Fritsch, CEO, Petra Energia
  • J. Robinson West, Senior Advisor, Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Moderator: John Yearwood, World Editor, Miami Herald


21:45 Night-Owl Sessions

Elements of a Counter-Extremism Strategy: Containment, Engagement, or Roll-back? (off the record)

  • Major General Obed Boamah Akwa, Commandant and Executive Director, Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Center
  • Zineb Benalla, Director, Transnational Initiative Countering Violent Extremism
  • Peter Pham, Director, Africa Program, Atlantic Council
  • Alexandros Rondos, Special Representative for the Horn of Africa, European Union
  • Moderator: Ian O. Lesser, Executive Director, Brussels Office and Senior Director for Foreign and Security Policy, German Marshall Fund of the United States

Entrepreneurship in the Wider Atlantic: The Sky is the Limit? (off the record)

  • Greg Horowitt, Founding Partner and Managing Director, T2 Venture Capital
  • Hicham Mhammedi, Co-Founder, Experience Ventures, Morocco
  • Gabriela Macagni, Managing Director, Endeavor Global
  • Simon Schaefer, Co-Founder and CEO, Factory
  • Moderator: Aubrey Hruby, Non-resident Senior Fellow, Africa Center, Atlantic Council

Assessing Global Financial Risks (off the record)

  • Olukorede Adenowo, Co-Head, Financial Institutions, Africa, Standard Chartered Bank
  • Karim El Aynaoui, Managing Director, OCP Policy Center
  • Fatima Hadj, Investment Manager, Tikehau
  • Christopher Smart, Former Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for International Economics, Trade & Investment, U.S. National Security Council
  • Moderator: Arturo Sarukhan, Non-Resident Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution


Sunday, November 1

10:00 – 11:15  Plenary Session: Mobilizing Investments for Africa (on the record)

  • Ezana Bocresion, Senior Fellow, OCP Policy Center
  • Marieme Diop, Desk Manager, President’s Delivery Unit, Senegal
  • Yacine Fal, Resident Representative, African Development Bank
  • Tokunboh Ishmael, Managing Director, Alitheia Capital
  • Moderator: Guillaume Xavier-Bender, Transatlantic Fellow, The German Marshall Fund of the United States

11:15 – 12:00

Investing in Human Capital (on the record)

  • Nayé A. Bathily, Head, Global Parliamentary Relations, World Bank
  • Teocah Dove, Youth, Gender and Community Development Consultant, The Teocah Dove Legacy Foundation
  • Carlton Yearwood, Senior Partner, True Blue Inclusion
  • Moderator: Lindo Mandela, Director, Stakeholder Relations, Mandela Legacy Foundation

12:00 – 13:30  Plenary Session: Thinking through the Unexpected: Perspectives from Emerging Leaders on the Atlantic World in 2025 (on the record)

  • Emerging Leaders
  • Moderator: Nik Gowing, International Broadcaster

13:45 – 14:00 Closing Remarks

14:00 – 15:00 Closing Reception


Session Descriptions

Assessing Global Financial Risks

Seven years after the outbreak of the financial crisis, the stability of the global financial system continues to be a topic of concern to stakeholders and policymakers alike. As commodity prices remain low, and the disruptive effects of China’s ongoing economic rebalancing are felt globally, financial market volatility could once again increase. In addition, remaining uncertainties over the precise timing and extent of the expected interest rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve are adding to an ambiguous outlook.

Given this ambiguity, questions over the ability of governments, supervisors, and international organizations to accurately assess global financial risks are becoming increasingly relevant.

Guiding Questions

  • Have post-financial crisis reforms across developed and emerging economies sufficiently prepared financial systems for future shocks?
  • With global economic growth failing to meet expectations, can the world economy absorb increased financial volatility?
  • What measures can be taken to increase international cooperation to mitigate the contagion of financial risks?
  • How will increased financial volatility affect the growing influence of emerging economies on global markets?


Is an Atlantic Energy System Emerging?

New renewable and fossil fuel technologies and partnerships are transforming trade relationships across the Atlantic. Solar panels and wind parks along the Atlantic coastlines provide solutions to energy scarcity and climate change challenges from Massachusetts to Morocco. In addition, more efficient and responsible methods of production for traditional and unconventional fossil fuel resources are helping to develop industry, build new partnerships, and overcome governance challenges in the energy sector. These energy developments are especially vital in the Southern Atlantic.

Improving access to energy is essential for achieving development goals. Increased access to electricity in the South Atlantic is tied to better healthcare and education opportunities and promotes entrepreneurship and economic growth. In the past, improving energy access has been difficult, but new technologies such as solar power are helping speed things along. In order to build this momentum in the South, regional and international cooperation is crucial. But this does not mean that the benefits of cooperation are limited to the South Atlantic. Energy cooperation can also benefit North Atlantic states. North-South partnerships that develop energy technologies and improve traditional production can help drive growth and strengthen energy security in the North and South alike.

Guiding Questions

  • How can Northern Atlantic countries promote greater cooperation with Southern Atlantic countries on energy? What are the best practices in cooperation on renewable energy, fossil fuels, and research and development?
  • Is political cooperation necessary to better leverage investment?
  • What are examples of successful South-South Atlantic cooperation initiatives in the energy sector?
  • What are the implications of potential offshore energy discoveries in certain countries of the Atlantic Basin? How can these discoveries be game changers?
  • How can South Atlantic countries help improve energy security and access across the Atlantic Basin, including in the North?


China, India, and Japan: Asian Actors in the Southern Atlantic

Asia’s rise is one of the leading stories of our time. China, in particular, is increasing its involvement in Africa and Latin America, and is already the leading external power in terms of trade, investment, and development financing. Particularly since the 2008 global financial crisis, China has pioneered public-private partnerships in Latin America and Africa, with much of its activities driven by its resource needs. At the same time, changes to the Chinese economic model are increasingly pushing it toward large-scale investments in infrastructure as it looks to develop new markets and outsource its industrial capacity.

Other powers in Asia — including India and Japan — are also playing an important role. India is expected to surpass the United States as Africa’s third largest trade partner, after China and the European Union. Japan has substantially increased its development aid to the region. Both have also increased their diplomatic activity in the Southern Atlantic, with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi hosting African leaders at a major summit in New Delhi, and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe taking part in a swing tour through Latin America in 2014.

Asia’s leading powers are no longer just engaged in trade and economic issues. China is now a significant arms supplier to many countries in both Africa and Latin America. India is developing naval bases in African island countries. Even Japan, which had long been reluctant to deploy troops overseas, now has peacekeepers in South Sudan. Debates continue to rage over how increased Asian activities will shape the international system, and what kind of opportunities they present as partners.

Guiding Questions

  • How is the growing influence of Asian powers being perceived in Africa and Latin America? To what extent does their presence generate new opportunities? How is it a cause for concern?
  • What are China’s top priorities, objectives, and concerns in its engagement with the Southern Atlantic?
  • What kind of economic and political engagements in the region are being prioritized by Japan and India? In what ways do they present alternatives to China and Western partners for many African and Latin American countries?


Delivering Prosperity and Security: An Agenda for Cities


  • Cities and regions are often on the front lines of addressing the impacts of national and global situations, from economic crisis and conflict-fueled migration to climate change. Consequently, local leaders are increasingly calling for policy and program approaches that bridge the gap between the local, national, and global levels. This session will follow on the themes from the two opening prosperity and security panels to explore the roles of cities and regions in shaping policy and leading change.Guiding Questions
    • In what policy areas are cities and regions innovating more rapidly than their national counterparts? In what areas are they lagging behind?
    • How can stakeholders at the city, regional, and national levels collaborate to achieve prosperity and security across latitudes? What are some positive examples of collaboration?
    • What are the challenges to creating more opportunities for collaboration across levels of government and across sectors?
    • What is a greater threat to the stability of cities and regions across the Atlantic: disruption due to instability and security or disruption due to rising economic inequality?
    • What insights from the opening plenary panels are relevant for the city and regional context?


Driving a Green Revolution in Africa

Food security is a growing concern for many parts of the world, with countries in Africa in particular facing serious challenges to ensure an adequate supply of domestically produced food. Africa’s current agricultural yields are less than half the global average, and only about 25 percent of what they could potentially yield. To address the demands of population growth, the effects of climate change, and the depletion of soil, agricultural practices will need to be modernized to increase yields and productivity, and to deliver nutritious food to the continent.

During the 1960s, the “Green Revolution” introduced scientific and technological advances into the food production system, which led to a substantial reduction in poverty, spurred economic growth, and addressed food security challenges on an unprecedented scale.

However, the success of this model has yet to be replicated in Africa, despite numerous attempts to build on previously successful projects and considerable investments in agricultural development. From natural resource scarcity to limited irrigation facilities, low soil fertility to overreliance on rain fall, there are no shortages of challenges to realizing a Green Revolution in Africa. Against this background, it is crucial to adapt inputs, technologies, and distribution models to the diversity of soil and the heterogeneity of agro-climatological zones across the continent. In order to address those challenges, a new Green Revolution is needed.

Guiding Questions

  • How can African governments engineer a Green Revolution to increase food productivity and build a sustainable food production system?
  • How can traditional smallholder and family farmers benefit from a Green Revolution, and how can modern agricultural technologies and practices be made more affordable?
  • How can the benefits of agricultural growth, prosperity, and sustainable food production be more equitably shared across African societies?


Elements of a Counter-Extremism Strategy: Containment, Engagement, or Roll-Back?

As a wave of violent extremism continues across the Middle East, Africa, and Eurasia, many countries in the Wider Atlantic are being directly affected and struggling to contain its spread. Beyond these regions, Europe, North America, and China are also experiencing a direct impact with refugees fleeing extremist forces. From the strengthening of Boko Haram, to the Boston bombings, to the Paris attacks, there is a consensus from both government officials and the public that this global situation continues to deteriorate. In most cases, ideology, lack of economic opportunity, crime, and social exclusion are prime motivating factors for individuals to join radical groups. To prevent the further spread of violent extremism, affected nations must use a spectrum of national and multi-national policies to counter the roots and financial tools extremist groups utilize, including but not limited to trafficking, piracy, and drug trade. Moreover, national borders are providing little barrier for preventing contagion. New technologies such as social media make it increasingly complex to stem the spread of violent extremism. This widespread instability has fostered additional crises, most notably, the refugee and migration crisis confronting Europe, Eurasia, and Africa, which has the potential to further exacerbate an already untenable situation. These multi-faceted challenges may soon overwhelm those leaders who focus solely on addressing the immediate crisis, but continue to neglect the root causes and more immediate symptoms.

Guiding Questions

  • How can Wider Atlantic societies craft holistic, multilateral approaches to combat extremism, not just the symptoms, but also the root causes?
  • How can they also address immediate challenges such as the pan-regional migration crisis and terrorist threats at home and abroad?
  • In stemming the spread of violent extremism, do partners need to pursue a policy of containment, engagement, or a mix of the two?
  • How do leaders in the Wider Atlantic proactively engage nations not yet overtaken by the wave of violent extremism to create resiliency in their societies and prevent contagion?
  • In nations that are already widely suffering from the impact of violent extremism, what policies and tools are available that would help contain and ultimately eliminate the crisis?


Entrepreneurship in the Wider Atlantic: The Sky is the Limit

Entrepreneurship has received its share of attention in the past several years as recession-hit countries in the global North and South contemplate ways to grow their economies. With a looming economic slowdown in emerging economies, and the developed countries of the North Atlantic still trying to navigate patterns of slow growth, public and private stakeholders alike are looking for new ways to provide economic opportunities. Politicians, economists, and venture capitalists from all over the globe want more and better entrepreneurship, and there have been fervent efforts in many cities and regions worldwide to create the next “silicon valley.” While this model may be inspiring, government officials, academics, and even entrepreneurs themselves understand the importance of having in place grass-roots economic ecosystems based on each region’s core attributes and competencies, rather than imported models and replications of ecosystems successful elsewhere that ultimately prove difficult to duplicate.

From initiatives like Start Up Chile, to women’s entrepreneurship programs in West Africa, to the EU’s Entrepreneurship 2020 efforts, there is heavy investment in entrepreneurship. But how can leaders create meaningful and robust economic ecosystems within their countries, regions, and cities by tapping into the local and regional attributes that build them from the ground up? What are the best ways to achieve growth through entrepreneurship, and how can leaders from the Atlantic learn from each other and work together to create these areas of high growth? This session will get to the heart of what drives entrepreneurship in organic, sustainable, and competitive ways.

Guiding Questions

  1. What are the key ingredients for successful entrepreneurship ecosystems in different parts of the Atlantic? Who are the key actors that need to be involved?
  2. Are there specific roles for governments, civil society, and financial institutions in the development of entrepreneurship environments? How can they better work together to achieve their common goal of better and smarter growth?
  3. What can Europe and North America learn from the global South about entrepreneurship and economic ecosystems?
  4. For policymakers, are there some key ingredients for spurring entrepreneurial activity that are transferable in most cases?


Humanizing Security: Protect, Connect, and Empower

The increasingly complex and interconnected nature of security threats within the Atlantic Basin directly affects the dignity, livelihoods, and survival of its peoples. From climate change and gender-based violence to public health crises and trafficking in persons, there is no shortage of factors driving human insecurity.

These cross-cutting challenges require holistic approaches that balance traditional and non-traditional security concerns, while protecting and empowering the most vulnerable populations. This “top-down, bottom-up” approach is best encapsulated in the human security paradigm, which advances a proactive agenda to address the root causes of vulnerability.

As policymakers try to identify solutions to human insecurity, significant opportunities for cross-sector collaboration are being explored and seized upon to build and sustain a peaceful, prosperous, and secure Atlantic space.

Guiding Questions

  • What tools are available to connect stakeholders to prevent violent conflict, promote human rights, and overcome development challenges?
  • How can resources be aligned to meet the immediate and localized needs of populations under stress?
  • What are the limitations of the human security framework?
  • What role can natural resource management and adaptation play in reducing climate vulnerability?


Leveraging Trade Agreements

International trade today has greatly expanded and become a much more important factor in both domestic and international affairs. Trade liberalization and free trade agreements often bring concerns regarding market opening and the consequences that this may bring in terms of competitiveness and employment.

Economic integration through trade is a crucial aspect of creating a cohesive Atlantic dynamic, and assessing the strengths and drawbacks of this economic integration is essential in understanding the greater picture of the Atlantic space. However, there is a fear among some outside parties that mega-regional trade deals like the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) could have exclusionary and potentially negative effects on emerging economies. This is especially the case in South Atlantic countries that are not involved in TTIP negotiations, but could face pressure to adapt to norms and standards set by the developed economies of the North. In fact, setting the global trade standards for the 21st century is an explicit goal of current mega-regional trade agreements. For third party actors, this provides specific challenges going forward.

Guiding Questions

  • What is the state of play in global trade negotiations?
  • How are South Atlantic countries affected by TTIP and how can they benefit from mega-regional trade agreements?
  • In what ways can South Atlantic countries inform the negotiation process?
  • Given the stalemate in multilateral trade negotiations, what opportunities besides regional trade agreements exist to move the trade agenda forward?


Can We Manage? Migration and Asylum Policies in Times of Humanitarian Crises

Nearly 60 million people have been displaced from their homes due to wars, conflicts, or the search for a more stable livelihood. Countries of destination are tasked with balancing humanitarian protection and border protection while attempting to tackle the “root causes” of migration. At the same time, countries that used to be transit countries or countries of emigration, like Mexico and Morocco, are increasingly becoming destination countries as well, and they have to deal with the same challenges as other destination countries.

Guiding Questions

  • How do regions in the Atlantic manage asylum and migration?
  • What does it mean to tackle “root causes” of migration?
  • How do they build on the positive aspects of migration and try to diminish negative effects?


Mobilizing Investments for Africa

Africa is often described as the growth continent for the 21st century. In addition, by the end of this century, almost half of the world’s children may be African. With lingering and worrying stagnation of the world economy, Africa offers immense opportunities that many around the word seek to seize. While countries on the continent have achieved great results in alleviating poverty, they still need to fully unleash their potential and embrace becoming the game changer many hope they will be. In order to do so, African nations require adequate capital investments, strong political will, and sound institutions and capabilities. In addition, how governments and investors cooperate to fill the infrastructures, governance, and skills gaps will be critical – there is no one size fits all solution for the whole continent.

One of the greatest challenge faced by African investors is to find ways to match their needs with foreign requirements and perception of risk. To achieve this, Africans are changing the perspective of investors from a “doing good” type of investment driven by aid and donations to a “doing good business” type of investment driven by decent returns. The latter also means addressing the two main concerns foreign investors might have on the continent: finding adequate financing instruments and de-risking investments. Indeed, sustainable economic progress very often hinges on the capacity to attract and retain investments. As such, this is as much a question of access to market as a question of design of the market. Whether the key to Africa’s growth lies in indigenous investments, regional or international flows or greenfield initiatives, building confidence in the market’s stability, sustainability, and openness, will be instrumental. In this way, there is much that African policymakers and business leaders could learn from other emerged or emerging regions of the world.

Guiding Questions

  • How can Africans mobilize their savings to finance their growth and how to avoid capital drain? How can Atlantic partners contribute to the development of infrastructures on the continent?
  • What is the role of private equity in unleashing Africa’s potential? What experiences from innovative investments in Africa? What lessons to be learned from Latin America and Asia?
  • What role for institutions (financial markets, regulators, etc.) in facilitating the flow of capital throughout Africa? How can they contribute to diversifying and reducing risk?
  • What types of initiatives can contribute to developing the adequate skills for sustainable and inclusive economic development in Africa? How can targeted investments contribute to training local populations?
  • To which extent could public-private partnerships be a sustainable tool for sustainable and inclusive growth in Africa? How could they help leverage investment opportunities?


The Future of Prosperity

Over the last few years, the volatility of the global economy has been particularly acute. In the aftermath of the global financial crisis, the United States has experienced stable economic growth, while Europe continues to struggle with the ongoing debt crisis in Greece. Although many sub-Saharan African economies have experienced steady growth over the past three years, Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone were hit hard by the Ebola crisis, while Nigeria and Angola have had to contend with falling oil prices.

Across the Atlantic, Latin American countries are expected to experience the slowest growth in the past five years, while Caribbean states face the existential threat of climate change, and the challenge of building sustainable economic models. However, GDP is only one way to measure prosperity. Increased equality, improvements in educational systems, access to health services, enhanced security, and greater political stability all contribute to individual, societal, and economic well-being. To increase prosperity across the Atlantic Basin, policymakers and practitioners need to explore non-traditional partnerships with a range of stakeholders, and take a more holistic approach to economic, social, and security-related policies.

Guiding Questions

  • What mechanisms do governments and international organizations currently have in place to promote a coherent approach to policy challenges? Are there other frameworks that could be useful in promoting a more holistic approach to cross-cutting challenges?
  • What are examples of innovative partnerships that address challenges in a new light or bring new ideas to the table?
  • Are solidarity between states and international responsibility viable concepts in a dynamic world order? How can policymakers best balance domestic priorities with the need to protect the global commons and promote development? Can sustainability and prosperity be achieved without greater collaboration?
  • What role does the U.N. Sustainable Development Agenda play in this regard?


The Future of Security

Debates over the role of power and security have evolved significantly in recent decades. Deviating from realist notions of power projection through military might and territorial gains, more emphasis has now been placed on the role of diplomacy and soft-power in attaining security and stability. Meanwhile, chaotic conditions persist, since threats from non-state actors and criminal organizations affect security as much as traditional nation-state dynamics. As states pursue policies that prioritize domestic economic stability in foreign policy, many questions remain regarding the future of power, diplomacy, and security. These evolving challenges leave nations to grapple with the limits of soft-power, as well as how to address unconventional threats.

Today in the Wider Atlantic, the picture is mixed. Nations are still confronted with traditional challenges of deterrence, but are also struggling to cope with transnational, borderless conflict, which has caused pan-regional instability and has constituted a direct security threat to nations along and beyond the Atlantic Basin. As current global challenges continue to compound in difficulty and complexity, responses will require a mix of effective diplomacy, sharp military capability, and a multilateral consensus to drive long-term solutions.

Guiding Questions

  • How do nations approach the problems of today, fully knowing the vast and multi-layered complexity these challenges entail?
  • How do governments create and implement effective strategies to seek long-term solutions? Where are the limitations of these strategies?
  • How can governments work together to establish and promote sustainable development initiatives that support regional security?
  • What role does culture and national identity play in forming responses and strategies?


Thinking through the Unexpected: Perspectives from Emerging Leaders on the Atlantic World in 2025

Most policy discussions — and much of the Atlantic Dialogues agenda — naturally focus on immediate concerns and long-term trends. Both are essential to assess and understand. But the future of societies and relationships around the Atlantic Basin and beyond could also be shaped by transforming developments — shocks rather than trends, perhaps from unexpected quarters. These events and developments may be positive as well as negative. The sources of unexpected change may be social, technical, economic, or political; they may be domestic, regional, or global. Surprise and discontinuity are the common threads.

This session will explore possible “wild cards” through the views of Emerging Leaders at The Atlantic Dialogues. It is meant to be a highly interactive session with the speakers and participants offering their ideas on what to expect from the unexpected over the next decade.

Guiding Questions

  • What lessons can be drawn from past experience of transforming events, from the rapid emergence of the internet to September 11th, from the oil shocks of the 1970s to the fall of the Berlin Wall?
  • What revolutionary technological developments may be on the horizon, in communications, health, energy, manufacturing, or other sectors?
  • What changes in international affairs could fundamentally alter the environment for Atlantic societies? Resolution of long-standing disputes? New great power conflicts?
  • What shocks may be on the horizon in terms of politics, governance, finance, and human mobility?
  • Is change accelerating, or will the durability of current conditions prove characteristic of the next decade?