Arendalsuka 2021


Arendalsuka is where the most powerful figures in Norway get together. Arendalsuka has a clear mission to strengthen the belief in political empowerment and democracy through open debate and involvement. 

Norway is now in the 3rd stage of the government's reopening plan. It has been the first time in 18 months we could meet in person and conduct an in-person seminar. Given this, we are pleased to see that our events had more than 1800 page views.

We are excited that more than 100 people took time off to join our events. To have people asking to reserve seats and calling hours in advance was nothing less than a pleasant surprise given that this was our debut at Arendalsuka.

Our profuse gratitude goes to our guests and our partners: UN Global Compact Norway and Agderposten. 

How India will redesign the world

The world was last designed seventy-five years ago. In the late nineteenth century, the three great powers were imperial Britain, the United States, and a rising Germany. In the mid-twentieth century, the US, Britain and the Soviet Union formed the dominant troika. As the twenty-first century enters its second quartile, the three most important nations will be the US, China, and India.

The most remarkable phenomenon in Asia in the 21st century is arguably the economic rise of China and India. Amazingly, the two most populous countries in the world are uplifting millions of their citizens annually from poverty through rapid economic growth. India will be the third largest economy in the world by 2030.

We had with us Ms Shabnam Siddiqui, Executive Director at UN Global Compact India, and Mr Sam Pitroda.

Sam Pitroda is a true front runner! He is an internationally recognized telecom inventor, entrepreneur, development thinker, and policy maker who has spent fifty years in information and communications technology (ICT) and related global and national developments. Credited with having laid the foundation for India's telecommunications and technology revolution of the 1980s, Mr Pitroda has been a leading campaigner to help bridge the global digital divide. He was also the founder and first chairman of India's Telecom Commission. Recently, Mr Pitroda served as adviser to the Prime Minister of India on public information infrastructure and innovation, with the rank of cabinet minister. In addition, Mr Pitroda is a serial entrepreneur having started several companies in the United States. He holds over fifteen honorary PhDs, close to 100 worldwide patents, and has published and lectured widely in the United States, Europe, Latin America and Asia.

In this seminar we addressed the following:

USA, China and India: What will this new world order look like over the next quarter century?What will be key for India when shaping the new G3?E-governance will connect billions of Indians; how can India use hyperconnectivity to realize its ambitions of becoming the next global leader.How can hyperconnectivity be an opportunity to redesign the world and take humanity to the next level?What role will business and finance play? And how does this look like from India?

The seminar is uploaded on Youtube and the podcast.

Indias population policy


We are proud to have with us Dr. Parakala Prabhakar, a well known Indian political economist and political commentator in economic and social affairs, for an event on Indias Population Policy. Dr Prabhakar was an advisor to the Andhra Pradesh government from 2014 to 2018. Dr Parakala Prabhakar does not shy away from being critical of the government while being the Finance Minister’s husband. 

India, home to one-sixth of all humanity, holds the key to the success of the 2030 Agenda. Dr. Parakala shared his views on Indias population policy.

For this event we also had with us: 

Kim Gabrielli, CEO, UN Global Compact NorwayKaroline Myklebust Linde​, CEO, Laerdal Global Health

The core of Arendalsuka is the democratic dialogue that allows the people to ask questions and share their thoughts.

We can not understand the world without understanding China, India, the US and Indonesia

According to KPMG's 'The World in 2050' report, 🇨🇳, 🇮🇳, 🇺🇸 and 🇮🇩will be the world's four largest economies by 2050. The geopolitical challenges ahead stand in queue - The current global order is being strongly challenged. States that will have the strongest economies will require more influence. 

Opening remarks was be held by the Indian Ambassador, Dr Bala Bhaskar. 

We touched upon:

  • How does Norway relate to the emerging nations with their three billion people? 
  • We may have wished that the growth of China and India would not challenge us, but they are there. Emerging economies will shape this century. Can we afford to get on edge with the great powers that rise? 
  • Is it in our interests to align ourselves with the United States? 
  • Can Norway take a more active role and follow its own path independently of the USA? Is it not more important what we, Norway, should think, and dampen the enemy image of the west against the east? 
  • How much do we know about the countries in Asia? 
  • What attitudes do we have towards emerging nations in Asia?

The panel: 

  • Bala Bhaskar, Ambassador, Embassy of India
  • Stig Traavik, Director Environment and Climate, Norad
  • Erik Solheim, Previous Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme
  • Morten Bøås, Research Professor, NUPI

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