President’s Report 2012 – 2013
Letter from the President
Salzburg Global Seminar is a modest, globally connected institution with outsized influence. The following pages illustrate how this is accomplished. Questions about our impact are best answered by the people who contribute to and benefit from our programs, and by examples of how our strategic sessions shift the terms of debate and lead to actions that create change at scale.
Those we serve include leaders of all ages and institutions of all sizes – communities and coalitions from local to global scale. What we provide for them is precious – undisturbed time and a safe place to think differently about what they do and how they do it; the means to connect and collaborate across borders, sectors and cultures; insights and tools useful in making change and for realizing bold dreams.
Our story began in one of those moments when destruction led to opportunity – the immediate post-WWII period when three young men dreamt of a “Marshall Plan for the Mind” and organized Salzburg Seminar Number One. Their founding vision – of an architecture supporting peace in Europe and beyond – built on their belief that progress is possible only through the courage and resourcefulness of individuals.
Much has changed in the world since 1947. Every year, our own institutional focus evolves, our partnership network grows and our impact deepens. Salzburg Global’s founding vision, however, remains the same. We hope these pages bring our story to life, and will inspire your interest and support.
We have re-envisioned our program around three interconnected clusters: Imagination, Sustainability and Justice. These clusters are not silos; rather they help illuminate critical questions and points of leverage where concerted action can accelerate change. They serve as a “triple lens” through which we view all our programs; in our view, the most powerful solutions are simultaneously imaginative, sustainable and just. As ever, our mission remains to challenge current and future leaders, as individuals and through their institutions, to tackle issues of global concern. Our Imagination programs examine education across the lifespan, asking how art and science can inform strategies that enhance human potential and much-needed innovation. Our health and environment programs are grouped under Sustainability and ask how green solutions can support meaningful work at scale. Within our Justice cluster we explore relationships among democracy, economy and rule of law, asking how societies can at once be fair and just as well as innovative and sustainable. You can read more about our model of strategic convening and architecture of impact.
We have strengthened our global presence with Fellows coming from 136 countries, new scholarship schemes with partners in Korea and Mexico, and programs running on four continents. In Europe, we had programs not only in Salzburg, but also in Berlin, The Hague, London, Strasbourg and Vienna. In North America, programs were held in Boston and Washington, DC, in addition to our Mellon Community Fellows Initiative events in Georgia and West Virginia. In Africa, a weekend program in Cairo examined “next generation leadership for Egypt”; and we had our first ever full-length session in Asia, in Kyoto and Tokyo, to mark 25 years of partnership with The Nippon Foundation.
We have renewed and expanded our commitment to young leadership under the new umbrella of the “Salzburg Global Academies.”
The long-running International Study Program became the Global Citizenship Program. It has always been a program that helps college students, faculty and administrators to develop a greater understanding of their personal and institutional roles in global citizenship; the name now better reflects this objective
Our Academy on Media and Global Change continues to go from strength to strength. Our students come from diverse regions, bringing their already extensive experience to Salzburg and returning to their home countries further empowered to be change agents now and in the future. I serve on the Media Academy faculty and sat down with five of our students during this past summer to explore their current projects and how they intend to use their Salzburg experience. You can find excerpts from that conversation on
We also launched the Cutler Law Fellows Program in honor of long-serving board member, super lawyer and mentor Lloyd N. Cutler, bringing together some of the brightest young legal minds from top US law schools to consider the future of private and public international law.
As well as college students, our young leadership programs now include our Young Cultural Innovators Forum, a new ten-year program that will foster those employing the arts to transform urban environments and broaden cultural access in ten “hubs” around the world.
You can read more about some of our most remarkable Young Salzburg Global Fellows.