State of the Community 2017 Program


Go Okui

Intern within the secretariat of the MOST programme in UNESCO, as a part of the credited PhD course work at Graduate School of Advanced Integrated Studies of Human Survivability of Kyoto University. Read More Here

James S. Fishkin

Janet M. Peck Chair in International Communication, Professor of Communication and (by courtesy) Professor of Political Science, and Director of Center for Deliberative Democracy at Stanford.

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John Crowley


Chief of Section of Research, Policy and Foresight and Sector for Social and Human Sciences at UNESCO

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(names in alphabetical order)


Tuesday, Sep 12, 2017

9:30- 10:00 Registration
10:00-10:10 Opening Remark by Dhillon Marty Foundation
10:10-10:20 Opening Speech
10:20- 10:30 Opening Speech
10:30-11:30 Keynote Speech
11:30-13:00 Panel I: Technology: Opportunities and Challenges
13:00-14:30 Lunch Break
14:30-16:00 Competition: 2017 Phrase of the Year
16:15-16:30 Visual Arts Performance

Vin d’honneur



Wednesday, Sep 13, 2017

9:30-10:00 Lyon Conference Presentation
10:00-11:00 Keynote Speech
11:00-11:30 Award
11:30-11:45 Coffee Break
11:45-13:15 Panel II: Identity of Humanity
13:10-14:45 Lunch Break
14:45-16:30 Panel III: Deliberative Democracy
16:30-16:40 Closing Remarks
16:40-16:50 Closing Remarks

Closing Remarks by Dhillon Marty Foundation



Salle IV, UNESCO, Paris

The conference will take place in French and English, and simultaneous interpretation will be provided. Program subject to change without prior notice.


Technology: Opportunities and Challenges

Exploring the solutions and challenges introduced by technologies - robots, artificial intelligence, and internet of things. In the 21st century of disruptive technologies, our need for security, food and shelter, and emotional contact are being addressed in rapidly changing ways. Brings new options to exercise democracy while undermining its survival. Technologies are allowing us to nurture our many identities with people from all over the world, thus creating many layers of complex portraits of human identities sharing physical and virtual space in very close proximity to people of many diverse identities.

Identity of Humanity

Why do we care about identity? Going beyond communal identity - while individuality is important, when group identity is overemphasized, it creates the same dangers as the damaging nationalism of WWII. This is especially explosive in the economically strained conditions of OECD nations. Human needs, the reasons we need identities, and how they are developed are far more fundamental. For security and protection, we seek out community. For emotional support and expression we need the company of others. We must be fearless to embrace individuality when it opposes normative group identity and confident that the expression of one’s true self will find communal acceptance. At the same time, individuals must be subjected to limitations when value systems revert back to antiquated religious beliefs that encroach on democratic ideals. Archaic ideology must never supersede the “civic religious conviction” required for a thriving democracy. Therefore, identity is our primal need for our social wellbeing, security and safety. This cannot to overridden by communal identities.

Deliberative Democracy

Deliberative democracy seeks to engage the general public in thoughtful and informed discussion. The process of deliberative democracy upholds key democratic values including political equality and deliberation. Critical thinking citizens can sustain and maintain democracies. Today's advances in technologies allow us to build much more inclusive democracies.