Agenda 2016

The themes and topics discussed at One Young World Summits are generated by consulting with the community of One Young World Ambassadors and incoming delegates. The organisers do not dictate the topics and One Young World always attempts to respond to the demands and concerns of the One Young World community. For this reason, this agenda remains fluid and subject to change.

For a more detailed view of the agenda,  please download the app.

Wednesday 28 Sep Thursday 29 Sep Friday 30 Sep Saturday 1 Oct

Wednesday 28 September

Opening Ceremony


One Young World founders Kate Robertson and David Jones offer a parliamentary welcome to the 2016 delegation in Ottawa.

Taking place at the seat of Canada’s Government, Parliament Hill. The Opening Ceremony will include a performance by Orkidstra, a children’s orchestra with a mission to empower children and build community through the universal language of music.

The Mayor of Ottawa will deliver a welcome address, One Young World Counsellors will be introduced onto the stage as 196 members of the delegation, each bearing the national flag of their country, take part in the symbolic flag laying ceremony.

Kofi Annan, Sir Bob Geldof, Professor Muhammad Yunus & Mary Robinson will deliver keynote speeches.

Thursday 29 September

Founders Welcome, introduction to voting device & Convene App


Kate Robertson and David Jones, One Young World Founders.

Building a positive world - Solutions Journalism


Sparknews and 20 Editors-in-Chief of leading global publications will address the importance of giving visibility to positive innovations around the world. In 2012, they launched the annual Impact Journalism Day where media outlets simultaneously publish special editions highlighting social and environmental initiatives. This past June, 60 newspapers in 50 countries reached 120 million readers with more than 100 stories of change.

In and Out of Extremism


Maajid Nawaz, Founder & Chairman of Quilliam Foundation, will be joined by three former extremists to explore their journeys in and out of extremism. This Session will mark the first occasion where a former Islamist, far-left and far-right extremist gather to discuss life after abandoning their radical affiliations. The panel will shed light on shaping countering violent extremism policy. 

#ExtremelyTogether: A Kofi Annan Foundation Initiative


10 young leaders from all over the world have come together under the guardianship of the former Secretary General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan, to lead their generation in countering violent extremism. From countries all over the world, and each with their own unique stories and approaches in this domain, they are united against a common threat in this global and generational struggle, and want to engage, inspire and empower One Young World Ambassadors to pick up this vital work.

Peace & Security - Are young people the key to countering extremism?


Keynote: John Simpson, World Affairs Editor, BBC

1. How can young people prevent the radicalisation of their generation?

2. Can we create a truly inclusive civil society?

3. Global politics is increasingly extreme – how do we amplify moderate voices?

Networking Break


Exhibition Hall Theatre Space: Questions & Answers with Maajid Nawaz

Mary Robinson: Climate Justice dialogue


Mary Robinson, Former President of Ireland, Catherine McKenna, Canadian Minister of Environment and Climate Change, and One Young World Climate Justice Prize Winner, Barkha Mossae will discuss equitable solutions in the face of global climate displacement. The Climate Justice Dialogue will highlight the need to bridge human rights with development policies.

The 3 Zeros: zero poverty, zero unemployment & zero net carbon emissions


Nobel Peace Prize-winning Professor Muhammad Yunus will return to One Young World and lead a Session on his ‘Three Zero’ theory. With the aim of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, he will discuss steps to improve lives and achieve zero poverty, zero unemployment, and zero net carbon emissions.

For a more in depth view, click here.
Read more about Towards Building a New Civilization.

Networking Lunch


Exhibition Hall Theatre Space: Questions & Answers with Professor Muhammad Yunus

Make real what matters!


Mariel von Schumman, Head of Governance & Markets for Siemens, will build her Session around the company’s core mission: to ‘make real what matters’. She will highlight the impact of healthy societies on markets, and the importance of ensuring the advancement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Environment - Can technology save the planet?


Keynote from Minister Garneau, first Canadian Astronaut & Minister of Transport

1. How can economies be developed without damaging the environment?

2. Which new technologies will support sustainable economic growth?

3. How do we stop climate change devastating vulnerable communities?

Carlos Brito


A keynote speech from CEO of AB InBev, the world's largest brewer with the dream of being the best beer company bringing people together for a better world

Gender Equality: Challenging Stereotypes from the Ground Up


A prominent activist leads a Special Session on gender equality, challenging stereotypes in communities where women and young girls still suffer from widespread discrimination in education, employment and access to services. She will be joined by delegates who are leading positive change in this field.

Networking Break



ME to WE: Engaging the next generation of change makers


How can we successfully engage young people in shaping our future? Founder of We Day, Mark Kielburger, shares his insights on empowering this generation to maximise their impact with social media. Having grown WE Day to become the largest charity on Facebook, Mark will discuss positive content and its ability to create global ripple effects. 

In conversation with Carl-Henric Svanberg, Chairman, BP and AB Volvo


Chairman of AB Volvo and BP, Carl-Henric Svanberg, will look to the future and answer questions about the long-term implications of technological advancement. In conversation with Former BBC World news anchor, Keshini Navaratnam, he will discuss the evolving energy sphere and the leadership required to adapt to these emerging trends. They will then open to the floor for a question and answer session. 

Human Rights - Why are the Lesbian Gay Bisexual & Transgender (LGBT) communities still being persecuted in 2016?


Keynote Speech: Mark Tewksbury, Olympic Champion Swimmer, Canada

1. How can young people end the abuse and discrimination of LGBT minorities?

2. Which tools can we use to defend the rights of LGBT people?

3. How should global business protect LGBT employees and community groups?

Friday 30 September

Remarks by Peter Schiefke, Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister of Canada (Youth) and Member of Parliament for Vaudreuil—Soulanges.


Queen's Young Leaders: The Power of Collaboration


The Queen’s Young Leaders Programme seeks to discover and celebrate the accomplishments of young people aged 18-29 from across the fifty-three Commonwealth nations. Set up in honour of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, the Queen’s Young Leader Award recognises their achievements as changemakers in their communities. Chief Executive of The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust, Dr. Astrid Bonfield CBE, will join three Award winners from Canada, the Maldives and Sierra Leone to discuss the power of collaboration.

Transformation & Innovation in Latin America


Chaired by policy strategist Barry Featherman, a panel of Latin American presidents will shed light on democracy, regional cooperation and socio-economic development in the region. With political turmoil emerging in several countries including Brazil and Venezuela, they will reflect on their own leadership and examine the impacts of these geopolitical shifts throughout the continent. These former Presidents include Vinicio Cerezo of Guatemala, Carlos Mesa of Bolivia, and Omar Torrijos of Panama.

Aboriginal Canada: The Peace & Reconciliation Process


The Honourable Senator Murray Sinclair, Chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, will reflect on the history of Aboriginal rights in Canada. After decades of marginalisation, Aboriginal communities suffer from high levels of poverty, lower life expectancy and an alarming suicide rate. Senator Sinclair, the first Aboriginal judge appointed in Manitoba, will share his lessons on renewing and restoring pride in Aboriginal cultures across the globe.

The Energy isn't the Idea, It's in the Execution


Today, 663 million people, 1 in 10, lack access to safe water; 4 billion people, 1 in 3, lack access to a toilet. To address this inequity, Gary White, CEO and Co-founder of, will discuss sustainable conservation solutions in order to remove the barriers between people, safe water, and sanitation. 

Inequality and the Global Economy: Technology and the Path Ahead


Dr. Dambisa Moyo, international economist and author of Dead Aid, will examine the issues and solutions surrounding socio-economic inequality. Around the around, we see persistent weak economic growth, growing income disparity, and the prevalent threat of joblessness, all of which pose a risk to the global economy. Dr. Moyo will discuss the importance of public and private sector collaboration in improving living standards, and will explore solutions in boosting economic prosperity.

Global Business - How can young employees help global business become a force for good?


Keynote speech: Ronan Dunne, former CEO of Telefonica & Next Group President of Verizon Wireless

1. How do we make global businesses fulfill their promises to be good global citizens?

2. Can young employees drive businesses to create genuine social change?

3. Can community stakeholders become as important to companies as shareholders? 

Learn, Act & Give Back


Education is key to overcoming challenges facing the world day. For every $1 invested in education and skills, we see $10 in economic growth. Without universal access to quality education, particularly women’s access to higher education, we will not see any improvements in poverty rates or social mobility. CEO of Barry Callebaut, Antoine de Saint-Affrique will explore how companies can and should play a role in facilitating global education, and will stress the importance of young, educated people in driving change around the world.

Social Consciousness and Cinematic Storytelling


As a filmmaker, Jon Landau’s first responsibility is to entertain. But as a steward of our world, he shares the responsibility to present issues and ideas that challenge the moviegoer to see things differently and motivate them to take action. Jon will discuss how making a movie is hard enough, but educating and empowering the moviegoer can be even more difficult.

Preventing Pitiful Prisons #FreeTheWild


Singer and Oscar-Winning Actress, Cher, launches her #FreeTheWild campaign, a campaign to cease the mistreatment of wild animals in captivity. 

Lunch & External Breakout Sessions


Interactive, practical sessions run by Ambassadors, Counsellors, special guests and Sponsors. These sessions take place outside the main convention centre at various locations across the host city, Ottawa.

Home Dinners


Members of the Ottawa community will host One Young World young leaders for dinner in their homes.

Sound and Light Show on Parliament Hill


A thematic journey through Canada’s history. Combining bold digital technology with the architectural splendour of the Parliament Buildings, the show illuminates Canadian stories of nation-building, partnership, discovery, valour, pride and vision at the heart of our country.

Saturday 1 October

Inside Government Policy


A panel of former Chiefs of Staff will provide insider perspectives on creating, shaping, and implementing policy at the highest level of government. The discussion will juxtapose the contrasting perspectives of governance in both developed and developing countries, providing insight on how they handled periods of crisis and significant change. These Chiefs of Staff include Karen Tramontano of US President Bill Clinton, Beatrice Rangel of Venezuelan President Carlos Andres Perez, and Ambassador Guillermo Gonzales Arica of Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo. Policy strategist Barry Featherman will moderate the discussion. 

Ethics in the context of technological advancement


As technology advances at a pace well beyond legal systems’ capacity, global businesses must embrace and promulgate ethical practice. Integrating and embedding such practice has both moral and strategic value. In a world where 2/3 of consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable goods, innovation is key to driving growth. Emmanuel Lulin, Senior Vice President and Chief Ethics Officer of L’Oreal, will discuss the importance of strong cooperation in addressing ethical challenges today. 

Mother Tongue


Returning Ambassador Hussain Manawer will perform a spoken-word piece, Mother Tongue. In the UK alone, a quarter of adults have been diagnosed with a mental illness. Hussain is a mental health advocate who aims to alleviate the stigma surround the issue. 

Health - How can we halt the rise of depression and suicide among young people?


Keynote Speech: James Chau, UN Goodwill Ambassador & Journalist

1. Can we reduce the 1 million annual deaths from suicide?

2. Why is half the world’s population not receiving effective mental health treatment?

3. How do we ensure mental illness is taken as seriously as physical illness? 

Networking Break


Theatre: Hussain Manawer, Campaigner, Poet & Mental Health Spokesman

Refugee Heroes


Political turmoil has displaced over 7 million people in Iraq and Syria, creating the largest refugee crisis of our time. The OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) will allow young refugees to share their stories of struggle and hope in overcoming obstacles to achieve their dreams. OFID has dedicated its 40th anniversary to the plight of refugees.

Impactful Leadership Beyond Title: Public Protector South Africa Case Study


Public Protector of South Africa and Advocate, Thuli Madonsela, has spent her career protecting the integrity of South Africa’s parliamentary republic. Chapter 9 of the Constitution states that the Public Protector has the power to investigate conduct in any sphere of government alleged to be improper. She will address the importance of leadership in preserving transparent institutions around the world.

What could you achieve?


One Young World Ambassadors are making strides in solving global issues. Four of these young leaders will shed light on their success, ambitions and drivers which helped achieve their goals. They have made vaccines affordable to developing nations, rebuilt sections Sierra Leonian society, reduced youth unemployment, and empowered women in the MENA region. Ronan Dunne, Former CEO of Telefonica and next Group President of Verizon Wireless, will lead the panel.




International Canada


The Power of Partnerships in Action


Entrepreneurial action has the power to create positive change across the globe. Lord Michael Hastings, Global Head of Citizenship at KPMG, will join Enactus Canada’s 2016 National Champions from Memorial University of Newfoundland to discuss how competition and collaboration can deliver sustainable social impact. Enactus bridges students and business leaders across 36 countries to drive entrepreneurship and innovation. 

Education - Why are schools failing to prepare young people for today's job market?


Keynote Speech: Harley Finkelstein, COO Shopify

1. Why are unemployment rates for this generation double that of older generations?

2. How can we teach the next generation relevant digital and professional skills?

3. Which technologies will solve the failings of today’s education system? 

Sport for Good. How Sport has the power to change the world.


Sport has the ability to bridge societies, prevent social exclusion, and spread the values of respect and positive collaboration. The Laureus Sport for Good Foundation has spent over a decade creating social change around the world by supporting sport-related community projects. Olympic gold-medallist Li Xiaopeng and Cricketer Steve Waugh return to One Young World to discuss the merits of sport and its ability to do good. 

How we can help the whole world see clearly by 2035


2.5 billion people around the world suffer from poor vision with no means of improving it. In an age of autonomous vehicles and robotic surgery, we are capable of providing equal access to clear vision globally. 80% of these 2.5 billion simply need a pair of glasses. James Chen will present his Clearly. campaign, a global movement bringing together leading innovators to accelerate a revolution in eye care. 

See Us


One Young World Returning Ambassador Oscar Anderson follows up from his moving speech in Bangkok 2015 with more of his personal views and speaks on the perceptions of others to disability.

Internal Breakout Sessions


Interactive, practical sessions run by Ambassadors, Counsellors, special guests and sponsors. These sessions take place away from the main stage in different breakout areas within the main convention centre. 

Closing Ceremony


The finale of the Summit. The Closing Ceremony will include a Colombian cultural performance, introducing One Young World to the next host city, Bogota, a Ribbon Tying Ceremony in which Summit Ambassadors write their personal commitments to action post Summit on individual ribbons which are then tied together to show unity.