Together with leading global academics, the T20 launches its 2018 agenda

Think 20, the G20-associated civil society group that brings together think tanks, began a two-day seminar to discuss a variety of global issues.

The workshop “Vision & Strategies for 2018” opened today in Buenos Aires. The two-day seminar is organized by the T20, the G20 engagement group that brings together think tanks from around the world.

Experts from 150 think tanks representing 45 countries embarked on the agenda of the T20 working groups, which will assemble and submit public policy recommendations to G20 world leaders. Day one was attended by Argentine Treasury Minister Nicolás Dujovne, while Chief of the Cabinet of Ministers Marcos Peña will address the seminar at midday (local time) tomorrow.

The opening remarks at the San Martín Palace, home to the Argentine Ministry for Foreign Affairs & Worship, were given by the 2018 chairs of the T20: the Argentine Council for International Relations (CARI), and the Centre for the Implementation of Public Policy Promoting Equity and Growth (CIPPEC).

“We are making the G20 a global governance torch for a global equitable society,” said Adalberto Rodríguez Giavarini, President of CARI. Jorge Mandelbaum, President of CIPPEC, outlined two objectives for the T20: “to show our foreign friends today’s Argentina and its enormous potential going forward,” and to “consolidate a network of think tanks around the world that can establish a common, continuous agenda.”

After the opening, Minister Dujovne highlighted the T20’s role in the wider G20 process, “Think tanks and academia make a significant contribution to the G20 dialogue via the T20. I am looking forward to working together with the T20 during our presidency.” During his remarks, Dujovne emphasized the relevance of the G20 and presented the objectives of the Argentine presidency. “The G20’s work to drive international policy coordination and to address global economic challenges is as critical as ever…We are keen on promoting inclusive growth.”

The Minister declared that leading the most relevant forum for international economic cooperation is “a great honour” for Argentina, “an honour that we accept with a great sense of responsibility and humility.”

“We are convinced it is a great time for Argentina to take on this huge international challenge. We are again connected to the global economy and deepening our relations with rest of the world,” he added.

Argentine finance deputy Laura Jaitman went on to explain the priorities of the Finance Track in 2018: the future of work and infrastructure for development.

On the future of work, she said, “We need a common understanding of the impact of technology, a clear diagnosis, and we will focus on aspects related to skills development”. On infrastructure for development, she outlined the goal of seeking “private resources that can finance infrastructure and bridge the infrastructure gap.” She called on establishing a roadmap that can serve other presidencies to continue the work in the future.

The rest of the agenda

The seminar continues today with plenary sessions on food security and sustainable agriculture, and on the future of work and education in the digital age, in line with the priorities of the Argentine G20 presidency.

At 6.30pm local time, US economist Jeffrey Sachs will give a speech on employment, education, the distribution of wealth, and the role of governments and companies in the digital age. Mr. Sachs is an expert in the economic challenges posed by globalization, and serves as Director of the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University.

Tomorrow, experts will discuss infrastructure for development and climate change, and analyse what the G20 can achieve in 2018, among other issues.

In addition to tomorrow’s official opening by Marcos Peña, the keynote speaker later in the day will be Alfonso Vergara, architect, economist, and sociologist who specializes in urban design and innovation.


Photos available here


About the engagement groups

The T20 is one of the seven independent engagement groups comprised of civil society organizations from the G20 member countries. The engagement groups convene in tandem with the G20 and ensure that the position of civil society on important issues is taken on board by the G20 leaders.


About the G20

The G20 started out in 1999 as a meeting of finance ministers and central bank governors. In 2008, amidst the global financial crisis, it evolved into what it is today: a major forum that seeks to develop global policies to address today’s most pressing issues. The G20 summits are attended by the heads of state and government of 19 of the world’s leading economies and the EU. Together, the G20 members represent 85% of global GDP, two-thirds of the world’s population and 75% of international trade.