Every year the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) hosts its annual conference. For us, who are part of the CIGI family, it is a special time of the year. Our annual gatherings are extraordinary and, as the years go by, they improve with age – like a fine wine. The participants are engaged individuals, the setting is unique, the presentations thought-provoking, and the conversations fascinating. For all who are there it is learning by doing; and it reflects the growing maturity of the organization. This year’s annual conference – Towards A Global New Deal, promises to be the best yet for CIGI.

CIGI '09 was designed, as the theme suggests, to address the systemic impacts of the global economic crisis and the long-term prospects for international economic governance. The conference will focus on two broad themes:

  • First, we will look at the impact of the global economic crisis on the world’s finance, trade and investment, food security and poverty, and environmental challenges and what those crises suggest for managing them through the global governance organizations that currently exist; and
  • Secondly, we will explore the shifting role of the state in economic governance, the role of policy coordination and the long-term impact of short-term policy reactions to the crisis.

This time around, however, instead of keeping the conversation restricted to the individuals who come to Waterloo, we are counting on your participation as well. It is in this spirit that we have created this blogging space – which we plan to host as “conductors.” We will invite many guests to contribute their thoughts; ask pointed questions; engage you, and look for the answers you pose.

In anticipation of our CIGI09 discussion – which will take place on the weekend of October 2nd, we are going to start by sharing some relevant work produced by our CIGI colleagues. One, Flashpoints for the Pittsburgh Summit – edited by Andrew Cooper and Daniel Schwanen was assembled for this week’s G20 meeting in the US. The other, Environmental Sustainability and the Financial Crisis: Linkages and Policy Recommendations, edited by Jennifer Clapp and Linda Swanston takes a broad view at the interaction between environmental and energy issues and their impact on global governance.

And that is just the beginning!

We look forward to the next few weeks and we hope you will find the time to join us – let’s hear from you - in this journey.


Alan and Annette

The opinions expressed in this article/multimedia are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of CIGI or its Board of Directors.