Our planet faces unprecedented environmental, social, economic, and cultural challenges. Challenges which the 20th century political and economic systems have failed to address. The materialistic and consumerist model of the past decades has ignored human values and depleted our earth of its natural resources. Institutional trust is at an all-time low, income inequality is at an all-time high, and climate change an undeniable reality. Our priority is to reinvent ourselves, individually and collectively. We urgently need new, innovative solutions, a new paradigm for our shared future.
Planet Earth is a tiny, fragile ball of life. A life which needs to be protected by building a human community based on what unites us as citizens of one planet. We need to replace walls with bridges. To overcome geographical, religious, and social differences in order to emphasize the things we, humans, have in common: love, fear, hope, suffering… Acknowledge that for the world to become a better place, each one of us has to engage in the process of becoming a better human being.
Neither states nor markets can overcome alone what are global challenges. We need to move beyond the World Economic Forum (Davos) and the World Social Forum (Porto Allegre), beyond the current economic, political, and social analysis and refocus on human beings. We need to reinvent our forms of government, reconnect to nature, and become human-centric and earth-respectful. We need to think differently, lead ethically, and act humanely.
We have to foster fundamental human values such as altruism, empathy, and cooperation to help us reinvent the way we live with ourselves, others, and nature. The 21st century scientific progress will force us to reassess the meaning of being human in an era of exponential scientific progress and digital growth. We need to question if GDP is the indicator of human prosperity and redefine what is a “good life”.
We believe that, when basic human needs are met, increasing material consumption is not relative to the level of human happiness and well-being. A realization that has led us, and an increasing number of people from around the world, in search for a more meaningful life. To this end, we believe that the way forward is by assuming our personal responsibility, becoming engaged citizens, and co-creating the much-needed social capital.