Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus last night opened the One Young World Summit 2015 in Bangkok, addressing an audience of 1300 young leaders from around the world.The Summit was founded in 2009 by David Jones and Kate Robertson, a UK-based non-profit organization that gathers together the brightest young people from all countries around the world, empowering them to make lasting connections to create positive change. The One Young World, hosted this year by the Governor of Bangkok and the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration, who welcomed the audience at the opening ceremony.
In his speech Professor Yunus told the young people that they are the most powerful generation in the history of humankind and had all the power and creativity to create a world with three zeroes – zero poverty, zero unemployment and zero net carbon emissions. Professor Yunus arrived on stage to standing ovations from the 1300 strong audience.
The other two key note speakers at the opening were 7th UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and rocker turned poverty activist Sir Bob Geldof. Professor Yunus, Kofi Annan and Bob Geldof were joined on stage by Counselors to the young delegates from around the world which include luminaries from around the world including Avatar-famed Hollywood producer Jon Landau and legendary cricketer Steve Waugh.
The One Young World Summit 2015 focuses on social issues such as environment, women’s empowerment, education, youth unemployment and role of global business. The summit is being attended by 1,300 young leaders from 196 countries across the world, including a 10-member delegation from Bangladesh.
A team of ten bright young Bangladeshis, nine of whom are young women, joined Professor Muhammad Yunus to attend the One Young World Summit, selected by Yunus Centre through a competitive selection process organized over several months. They are working in the field in youth development, climate change, human rights among others. Executive Director of Yunus Centre, Lamiya Morshed will lead the delegation to Bangkok.
This is the third year that the OYW has sponsored a ten member team to attend the Summit with Professor Yunus. Last year’s delegation attended the Summit in Dublin, Ireland.
On the second day of the Summit Professor Yunus will address a special plenary session on social business. There will also be presentation of social business plans by four teams of Thai social entrepreneurs who are the finalists in the Thai Young Leaders Program organized by Thai Social Enterprise Office. The program included more than 100 social business designs from around the country. Professor Yunus and his team have been invited to judge the social business competition to choose the winner who will be awarded two million baht to initiate their social business.