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Two students from Okayama University participated in “One Young World Summit 2019: The Global Forum for Young Leaders” representing Japan

November 19, 2019

 The international summit for youth “One Young World Summit (OYW) 2019: The Global Forum for Young Leaders” was held from October 22 to 25 in London, the United Kingdom. Mr. MATSUMOTO Sota (3rd year, Faculty of Law) and Mr. KISYABA Tomoki (1st year, Medical School) from Okayama University participated in the event as members of the Japan team.

Okayama University has served as an official partner since OYW 2015 held in Bangkok, Thailand, and has dispatched two students and, Vice President YOKOI Atsufumi for Global Engagement Strategy as an observer each year. Prior to the summit, a send-off party for the Japan team was held on September 18 at JT Art Hall Affinis located in JT’s Headquarter in Tokyo. On October 22, the opening ceremony of the summit was held in Royal Albert Hall in London. Attendees included Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, and Mayor Sadiq Khan of London (the first Muslim Mayor of London). With the proactive involvement of the British Royal Family, the welcome event was held as a national commitment.

Mr. MATSUMOTO and Mr. KISYABA participated in the plenary sessions, workshops and networking sessions, among other events. Under the framework of the SDGs, they took part in the discussions on a wide variety of topics, including climate change, war and peace, education, human rights, leadership and global business. At the plenary sessions, they listened to speeches by incumbent global leaders and national representatives, such as Dr. Muhammad Yunus (a Nobel Peace Prize laureate), Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland (former Prime Minister of Norway who chaired the U.N. World Commission on Environment and Development (Brundtland Commission) in 1987, which is known as the origin of “Sustainable Development”), and Sir Richard Branson (founder and president of the Virgin Group). Furthermore, the U.N. Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth Jayathma Wickramanayake , who leads the Young Leaders Initiative that promotes the SDGs, presented the progress of Lead 2030. Lead 2030 is a platform for supporting businesses and projects of young people which contribute to the SDGs, run with the involvement of the U.N., OYW, and some of the world’s leading businesses. Through these experiences, the participating students were also able to learn directly about the latest global initiative supported by industry-academia-government collaboration. Most notably, Mr. Kisyaba was selected as one of the representatives of the world youth in the plenary session titled as “One Young World Interfaith Dialogue,” and took the platform together with incumbent leaders. He was the third Japanese person and the first Okayama University student selected and went onto the platform.

OYW 2019 (the 10th OYW) attracted approximately 2,000 participants from over 190 countries around the globe. The next summit will be held in Munich, Germany from October 14 to 17, 2020.

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