International Symposium on Cultural Diplomacy in the Commonwealth 2015

"Developing Initiatives to Promote Cultural Understanding, Global Human Rights & World Peace within the Commonwealth"

(London; July 22nd - 24th, 2015)

Symposium Overview

The historic day of November 9th 2014, which marked the twenty-fifth anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the summer of 2015 which will mark the 70th anniversary of the end of the last world war as well as the establishment of the UN, represent the major transitions that have taken place globally in the development of global human rights towards a more peaceful, prosperous, equal and protected society.

As we celebrate these historic occasions together throughout the world, and in particular, at a time when new forms of violence are currently on the rise, we must remember and learn from the global cooperation and diverse initiatives of that time, which have allowed us the privilege to no longer live in a region of peoples divided, cultures suppressed and voices oppressed.

The Commonwealth which covers almost a quarter of the world’s entire land area  serves as an influential regional player in global political, economic and cultural affairs and it has a rich and diverse experience of best practices in cultural diplomacy. In addition, the Commonwealth constitutes a global community where all members have an equal voice regardless of size and population. Such a community, with its shared values and history, is the ideal forum for fostering mutual understanding and cooperation through cultural exchange and open dialogue.

The Institute for Cultural Diplomacy has therefore created the International Symposium on Cultural Diplomacy in the Commonwealth 2015 in order to build on this past experience and to formulate new initiatives, which will strengthen international relations and encourage cooperation between diverse communities based upon values of peace, democracy, human rights and the rule of law within the Commonwealth of Nations.

Symposium Speakers & Delegates

Speakers during the symposium will include leading politicians, diplomats, governmental officials, senior academics, journalists, and celebrated artists. These speakers will include a large number of individuals from the ICD Advisory Board. To learn more about the ICD Advisory Board, please click here.

Speakers for the Symposium include:
Hon. Lawrence Gonzi
Former Prime Minister of Malta
Rt. Hon. Lord Jack McConnell
Former First Minister of Scotland
Hon. Bertie Ahern
Former Prime Minister of Ireland
MP Keith Vaz
Member of the British Parliament
Rt. Hon. Lord David Triesman
Member of the House of Lords
Rt. Hon. Lord Michael Bates
Minister of State, Home Office, UK
Rt. Hon. Lord Frank Judd
Member of the British Parliament
Sir Simon Hughes (MP)
Member of the British Parliament
MP Jim Fitzpatrick
Member of the British Parliament
MP Chris Bryant
Member of the British Parliament
MP Mark Pritchard
Member of the British Parliament
MP Stephen Gethins
Member of the British Parliament
Amb. Andris Teikmanis
Ambassador of Latvia to the UK
Amb. Ivan Romero Martinez
Ambassador of Honduras to the UK
Amb. Diego Gómez Pickering
Ambassador of Mexico to the United Kingdom
Rt. Hon. Lord Chris Holmes
Member of the House of Lords
Sir James Mancham
Former President of the Seychelles
Rt. Hon. Baroness Judith Jollly
Member of the House of Lords
Rt. Hon. Lord Swraj Paul
Member of the House of Lords
Hon. Natalie Louise Bennett
Leader of the Green Party
Hon. Agbéyomé Kodjo
Former Prime Minister of Togo
The Rt. Hon. Baroness Elizabeth Berridge
Member of the House of Lords
The Rt. Hon. Baroness Jenny Randerson
Member of the House of Lords
Prof. Deborah Bull
Director, Culture at King's College, London
H. E. Amb. Carlos dos Santos
High Commissioner of Mozambique to the UK
MP Bill Wiggin
Member of the British Parliament
MP Mark Pritchard
Member of the British Parliament

Symposium Locations

The Symposium is based in a number of important political, historic, and cultural locations across London such as House of Lords.

Symposium Participants »

Participation in the conference is open to governmental & diplomatic officials, academics, artists, journalists, civil society practitioners, private sector representatives, young professionals and students as well as other interested individuals from across the world.

Certificate of Attendance - All conference participants will be awarded an official certificate of attendance upon completion of the program, which will provide details of the speakers who took part and the topics discussed.

If you would like to reserve a position and participate in the conference, please click on the link below and fill out the online application form:

Symposium Agenda

The International Symposium on Cultural Diplomacy in the Commonwealth 2015 will analyze the relations between the UN and the Commonwealth and how the UN has historically supported positive developments in the Commonwealth over the past decades as well as how the UN can further support the development of the Commonwealth In addition, best practices and successful of cultural diplomacy experiences from the Commonwealth will be analyzed in order to implement them globally.

The Symposium will include keynote addresses, lectures, and interactive panel discussions and debates in order to create a platform for new initiatives to be created and proposed.

Participant Papers »

The Conference Committee encourages academic research and analysis of issues related to the goals of the Conference. The Conference Committee would therefore like to welcome the participants of the conference to submit a paper they would like to be considered for presentation at the conference as well as being included in the proposal document that will be issued following the conference and will be sent to all governments and leaders of the international community worldwide.

Sustainable Network »

During the program participants will have a number of opportunities to network with one another, with the speakers, and with ICD Board Members and partners. Conference participants will become part of the ICD Alumni, a growing international network of people of diverse interests and backgrounds from around the world who share a commitment to intercultural exchange. Members of the ICD Alumni Group will benefit from the following opportunities: Alumni online forum, Advisory Board Networking, ICD support for individual Leadership Initiatives, free access to all ICD research, videos and photos as well as other event documentation. Participants will be able to remain in touch with each other through the ICD Networks. (more)