2020 should have been a wake-up call.
Instead, we see a world in which there is more competition, and less solidarity and social justice. We “raced” for the vaccine and engaged in “mask” and “vaccine diplomacy”. Social anxiety and public health concerns caused by the pandemic have thinned the fabric of our societies. Countries now find themselves in limbo, unsure of how the long “return to normal” will unfold. Meanwhile, countless businesses, jobs and livelihoods are on the line. All the discussions on how this one sea-change event will help us “change the paradigm” (of how we approach complex problems, do business, engage with others), is still just – talk. People, states, and nations are unwilling, or simply unable to change; and would like to see things returning to how they were before.
From 26th to 28th October, we will meet in Belgrade once again asking the question: will humanity pass this test? The BSF will traditionally begin with the academic event titled “Resilience to Violent Extremism”.