Potential future leaders usher in Bled Strategic Forum
The slogan of the main event, scheduled for 10 to 11 September, is Bridging the Divide, while Young BSF, running between 7 and 9 September, will be held under the banner of Sustainable Security: The Role of Youth in Bridging the Divide.
Young BSF programme director Meliha Muherina says it was a conscious decision to bring the youth meeting to the main event, since "it is odd to discuss solutions to youth issues when you don't hear what youths have to say about that".
Muherina says the young have perhaps even more to say about certain topics, for example artificial intelligence, while in issues such as intergenerational solidarity they should be treated as equals in any case.
Friday's intergenerational solidarity panel, a panel on smart communities as a potential driving force of sustainability, Saturday's debate on the social and economic implications of artificial intelligence and Monday's panels held in Bled will be open to the general public.
The two Young BSF panels in Bled will actually double as side events of the main forum. One, in partnership with Doshisha University from Japan, will focus on conflict prevention and peace building, the other, in cooperation with the Italian Embassy in Slovenia, will debate the Mediterranean dimension of the OSCE.
Moreover, Young BSF participants will be selected for the first time to participate as panellists in three panels of the main event.
Meanwhile, the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development and potential-limiting gender stereotypes are also on the list of topics to be taken on as part of Young BSF.
The forum will also feature several workshop-type sessions, for instance Sunday's Log In, Reach Out: Building a Digital Bridge to Your Audience meet, which is supported by the US Department of State.
A total of 65 participants aged from 18 to 35 from a total of 35 countries will attend Young BSF. In previous years the participants were nominated by embassies and other institutions, this year they were selected in an open call for applications.
Like the main event, Young BSF is organised as a joint effort of the Centre for European Perspective and the Slovenian Foreign Ministry, with the involvement of other partners sponsoring individual events.