In January 2007, in a common, yet separate effort to improve the state of the world, both the World Economic and World Social Forums were held – one in Switzerland, the richest country on earth, and one in Kenya, East Africa, flanked by civil wars, droughts and refugee camps.
Both forums held meetings on how to increase GDP for those living below a dollar a day. Yet, those with the economic and political force to shape global policies were at one event, while those most vulnerable were at another.
In the midst of this disparity, the threat of increasing Climate Change, depletion of the earth’s primary resources and other environmental challenges, hung in the balance. To address the growing social divides and communication gulfs between those most in need of systemic change, and those with the capacity to create it, a new, remarkably inclusive framework for collaboration was called for.
Nov. 16-18, 2008, 200 environmental, humanitarian and business leaders gathered in San Francisco to lay the bedrock of a new system for collaboration with the potential to change history– one that harnesses the unique strength of each citizen, business, and organization to build a sustainable future.