A 6am Friday kick off saw me make my way to Grischa Hotel, to speak at the Barclays breakfast discussion on youth unemployment. I was speaking alongside Anthony Jenkins, Group Chief Executive of Barclays – who promised to do more about raising awareness among his peers about the problems of youth unemployment and lack of opportunities for graduates. It was good to hear a CEO of a global company back up this issue, but it’s clear that more needs to be done to push stakeholder government businesses and NGOs to help find solutions.
Following breakfast it was time to meet with Mark Rutte, the Prime minister of Netherlands. He had invited myself and a few YGLs to brainstorm ideas around ways to boost entrepreneurship and support startups to grow. It was great to see the PM’s interest and commitment around this agenda -one which I’m sure you know I’m very passionate about. We discussed the ways in which we can boost “knowledge transfer” between academia and business as well as ways of boosting access to finance for early stage companies.
Next stop was the British Business Leaders Lunch hosted by the CBI with Mayor Boris Johnson as keynote. The Mayor was on his usual fine form and had the audience in fits of laughter (many a time at the expense of the French and their tax regime) and it was soon meet the benefactors of the YGL Harvard Module to discuss leadership with an illustrious panel including Ariana Huffington and Howard Cox
With the evening fast approaching it was time for a quick interview (this time for Hub Culture – watch here) followed by a dinner session on The Future of Global Philanthropy. This was a great workshop hosted by Sean Parker and Mark Benioff, centred around brainstorming fresh solutions for global issues. In small groups looked at ways of tackling a global social problem, with the task of coming up with a plan action to address them.
Our table decided to focus on access to basic education for all children. We built on the success of the One Laptop Per Child concept to integrate the development of online learning. From places such as Khan Academy as well as bundling peer to peer mentoring to come up with our proposition which we called “learning journey.”
Not to put too fine a point on it, but our table was very much victorious.
So, the grand finale is still ahead – the Saturday night “Magic Mountain soirée” is meant to be pretty spectacular – can it possibly out-do the glow of our win? We’ll have to wait and see…
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