UNITAR, University of Geneva and Open Geneva Hosted 2022 Geneva Trialogue – Open Innovation for Education

Geneva, Switzerland. On 17 March 2022, UNITAR, the University of Geneva, and Open Geneva hosted the fourth edition of the Geneva Trialogue under the theme of Open Innovation for Education, launching the 2022 Open Geneva Festival.

In a novel hybrid format, 12 lead partners from academia, international organizations, and the private sector from Geneva and around the world, brought their sustainability challenges under the 2022 theme, and developed practical outcomes of new educational and learning approaches that culminate in positive social and environmental impact, through an engaging Discovery and Design process.

A total of 140 participants representing more than 60 Geneva Trialogue actors, took part in the thematic roundtables, joining at the Geneva Campus Biotech, and online, and shared in plenary about progress of their discussions. The roundtables discovered in parallel about challenges, opportunities, and potential good practices that can elicit scaling through the Discovery phase process, and they collectively designed an innovation process, applying impact design methods, to address the roundtable challenge. Five roundtables put their Geneva Trialogue innovation process in full hands-on action during the Open Geneva Festival.

Jonas Haertle, Chief at UNITAR’s Office of Executive Director, and François Grey, Director of the Geneva Tsinghua Initiative of the University of Geneva, hosted the event as Masters of Ceremony. UNITAR’s Executive Director and UN Assistant Secretary-General, Nikhil Seth, delivered welcome remarks through a video message, highlighting the role of open innovation in building forward, as the compass, and with education as the means, to address the global challenges with resilience, during this Decade of Action. In a keynote speech, Yves Fluckiger, Rector of the University of Geneva, focused on the importance of innovating for better education, and on sharing and learning from our experiences, as we assess our learnings from the pandemic, and from our transition to new hybrid ways of collaboration.

An engaging panel discussion followed around the 2022 theme, with panellists Yao Ydo, Director of UNESCO’s International Bureau of Education, Mireille Betrancourt, Dean of Faculty of Psychology and Sciences of Education of the University of Geneva, Dannie Ivanova, Partner at Deloitte Consulting AG, and Merlyn Hurtado representing the youth voice as Data Scientist, Agriculture engineer, and Master student in Technologies and Strategies for Development at the Learning Planet Institute.

The roundtables covered a wide range of Sustainable Development Goals Topics:

The roundtables shared their final progress out of the Design phase, and their commitments to implementing the designed innovation approach to further address their challenges.

At the closing ceremony, keynote listeners and inviteees, Trine Schmidt, Advisor at the UN SDG Lab, and Nicholas Niggli, Deputy Secretary General at the Republic and State of Geneva shared the stage, exchanging in a dynamic dialogue about the potential of taking the roundtables’ innovation approach further, and about connecting the Geneva Trialogue outcomes to the 2022 Building Bridges Week coming November.

The Geneva Trialogue launched the 2022 Open Geneva Festival, which concluded on the 27 March 2022, with Geneva Trialogue partners transforming their roundtable ideas and synergies into concrete plans for implementation.

The 2022 Geneva Trialogue was supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.

Welcome Remarks by UNITAR Executive Director, Nikhil Seth

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