History of the Event

About the 24-hour Global Peace Conference

It was a time of great upheaval. The events of 2019 and 2020 – Australian bushfires, the COVID-19 pandemic, global economic recessions, and the Black Lives Matter marches – brought home the fact that our lives are intricately and intimately woven together.

This upheaval prompted us, Rotary Peace Fellows from around the world, to reconsider what this meant for us as peacebuilders. What does a world grounded in peace look like? How can we galvanise our differences to work for the greater good? Who must we listen to if we are to work towards building a world where everyone is respected and able to flourish?

Guided by a desire to enable more social connection and collaboration during a time of social isolation, the Rotary Peace Fellowship Alumni Association (RPFAA) launched its inaugural peace conference on 27 June 2020.

The 2020 Conference

From the far corners of the Pacific to the urban cities of Asia, the inaugural conference was arguably the biggest gathering of peacebuilders with the widest global reach. It drew over 1500 participants and featured 75+ hours of peacebuilding content. Notable speakers included:

  • John Paul Lederach (internationally renowned peacebuilder and author of The Moral Imagination)

  • Holger Knaack (2020-21 Rotary International President);

  • Irene Santiago (Nobel Peace Prize nominee and Executive Director of the historical NGO Forum on Women in China in 1995);

  • Senator Penny Wong (Leader of the Opposition in the Australian Senate and Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs);

  • John Charles Bryan Barnes MBE, the legendary Jamaican-born English international former professional footballer, manager, pundit, and the Show Racism the Red Card activist;

  • Yasmin Sooka (Chair of the UN Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan to the Human Rights Council); and

  • Uzra Zeya (CEO and President of Alliance for Peacebuilding).

Where to now?

Building on this momentum, our 2021 Global Peace Conference promises to be an exciting, interactive convergence of thought-provokers, peacebuilders and everyday people building peace in their spheres of influence.

The event will be a convergence of:

  • Over 1,500 participants

  • 400 experts

  • 140 break out room facilitators

  • 50 panel sessions and workshops

  • 75 hours of content on issues

...all within 24 hours!