Prize competition for innovative models of global governance

Secretariat, 6. February 2017
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Laszlo Szombatfalvy, founder of the Global Challenges Foundation

The Global Challenges Foundation, founded in 2012 in Sweden, announced last November the launch of the ‘New Shape’ competition. The prize rewards the model of international governance which would address most efficiently urgent global threats such as “climate change, large-scale environmental degradation, violent conflict and extreme poverty”. At stake are US$5 million in prizes for the best ideas that re-envision global governance for the 21st century.

The Foundation’s objective is to raise awareness about political and environmental risks, as well as encourage innovative thinking. Its founder, Swedish investor Laszlo Szombatfalvy, became a billionaire by developing a new method of risk management on the stock market. Today, he is convinced that the consequences of global warming are severely underestimated by world leaders and that the old system of international governance is unable to cope with the challenges which lie ahead.

“We urgently need fresh new thinking in order to address the scale and gravity of today’s global challenges, which have outgrown the present system’s ability to handle them”, stressed Mr. Szombatfalvy in an open letter on the competition.

The competition is open to all. Participants can register their interest until February 15. Proposals have up to May 2017 to be submitted, and the final decision will be made in November 2017 by a panel of academics and experts. Meanwhile, the Foundation hopes to generate worldwide debate and momentum around the idea of international reform.

Despite being disappointed by the short-sightedness of the global community regarding global warming, Mr. Szombatfalvy remains hopeful: “Our industrial development has indeed caused some of the problems we now face, but I firmly believe that human ingenuity, having brought us this far, will also manage to find solutions to them”.