Betting on Asia’s future problem-solvers with forum in Singapore

SINGAPORE – This week’s inaugural Asia assembly of the International Strategy Forum (ISF) in Singapore is geared toward connecting the following era of leaders who should deal with a few of the world’s hardest issues reminiscent of local weather change and pandemic preparedness, stated Mr Eric Braverman, chief government of Schmidt Futures, on Tuesday (April 26).

He stated Schmidt Futures, the philanthropic initiative of former Google chairman Eric Schmidt and his spouse Wendy, was seeking to join leaders with “extraordinary potential”.

“The primary goal is to create and sustain networks of rising leaders with extraordinary potential in geopolitics, innovation and public leadership, whose relationships will be vital to solving the world’s hardest challenges,” stated Mr Braverman.

“By convening and connecting leaders early in their careers, we hope to play some part in strengthening connections across nations, generations, and disciplines.”

The three-day inaugural ISF programme in Asia, which ends on Wednesday, is being introduced by Schmidt Futures and the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS).

The first cohort of 25 fellows from 10 Asian nations – together with India, South Korea, Japan, Indonesia and Vietnam – from fields reminiscent of know-how, economics and policy-making are participating in the programme. The ISF has pledged to help its leaders by means of networks and mentorships, with the intention of serving to them remedy world issues on a collaborative foundation.

Tuesday’s S Rajaratnam Endowment Dialogue, introduced by Temasek Foundation, ISF, RSIS and The Straits Times marked the second day of the programme. Sarawak’s Premier Abang Johari Openg was the visitor speaker at a closed-door dialogue with ISF fellows held at The Arts House and moderated by The Straits Times affiliate editor Ravi Velloor.

Launched in 2020 in the United States, the ISF programme may even admit its first European cohort of fellows at June’s Salzburg Global Seminar in Austria.

Referring to Singapore’s former deputy prime minister, Mr Braverman stated: “S Rajaratnam stated that Singapore ought to be a democracy of deeds, not phrases, and this similar precept underlies the (ISF) as we speak, which is that communities should create themselves by means of motion.

“We believe that the answers to the world’s toughest problems lie in the imagination of the world’s brightest minds.”

The ISF’s modus operandi of linking up future leaders might contribute to supporting innovation with a spotlight on local weather change, a strategic thrust of the Temasek Foundation, stated its deputy chief government Benedict Cheong.

He stated: “All of us appreciate that we need to work together and collaborate on research, technology, equipment and solutions.”

Mr Warren Fernandez, editor-in-chief of SPH Media Trust’s English/Malay/Tamil Media Group and editor of ST welcomed the prospect of extra such conferences.

He stated: “When they come to Singapore, we are glad to be partners to them, be it in offering our media expertise, in moderating talks or offering our content to the fellows.”

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