IIAS-EUROMENA Conference 2022 | 27-30 June 2022

Next Generation Governance and Young Global Public Administration

Keynote Addresses


  • The top priority is to better understand how to navigate in difficult times.

  • Building bridges is essential and we need trust to have a solid partnership to address all the challenges of our society.

  • We need young people and young disciplines such as digital sciences, anthropology, and behavioral science in order to face contemporary challenges.

  • Training public servants for managing the crises and sustainability aspects is crucial.

  • Young public administration professionals must be courageous and propose new ideas and innovations for a sustainable future.

The first plenary session closed with keynote addresses by Enrico Giovannini, Minister of Sustainable Infrastructure and Mobility; Francesco Rocca, President of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies; João Salis Gomes, ISCTE-IUL; Boas Erez, Former Rector of Università della Svizzera Italiana; and Geert Bouckaert, Conference Rapporteur.

After an introduction by Prof. Denita Cepiku (Tor Vergata University of Rome), Francesco Rocca introduced the International Red Cross as a dynamic global network and presented the key priorities for the 2030 agenda. He underlined that IFRC has key priorities: supporting people to anticipate, survive and quickly recover from crises, encouraging people to lead safe, healthy, and dignified lives and have opportunities to thrive, but also supporting them to be mobilised for inclusive and peaceful communities. He also mentioned the importance of strengthening the foundations of the Red Cross with a National Societies as strong and effective local actors, a strong network of volunteers, and influencing humanitarian action by localization.

Rocca identified the five global challenges as the most pressing existing and emerging risks that confront our network: climate and environmental crises, crises and disasters, growing gaps in health and wellbeing, migrations, values, and inclusion. He underlined the importance of global solidarity and the actions of young volunteers as they can provide the Red Cross network with new ideas for transforming ways of action and bringing innovations. Ukraine war reminds us of the importance of the neutrality of the volunteers of the Red Cross in such a particular context. He also stated that the top priority is to better understand how to navigate in difficult times.

Prof. João Salis Gomes mentioned that the objective of the IIAS-EUROMENA 2022 Joint Conference is to look at the challenges of our societies from different perspectives and cultures – it is also the first time that IIAS Conference and EURO-MENA Dialogue are organised simultaneously. Addressing all these challenges is also: creating “bridges over troubled water”.

Prof. Boas Erez, the Former Rector of Universitá della Svizzera Italiana, presented the experience of USI with MEM: Middle East Mediterranean Summit and stressed the importance of young local actors in changing the future. He mentioned that the MEM Summer Summit aims to offer a platform for young leaders and change-makers to lay out a vision for their common future. Coming from public and private institutions, non-profit organisations, social enterprises, media, art, and culture, they evaluate, innovate and develop innovative approaches to tackle persistent problems in society. The Summit is designed as an intellectual and human exchange across borders, cultures, and languages. It seeks to create friendships, enduring networks, and ideas. The next MEM will be organised in Lugano on August 18-27, 2022.

Building bridges is a priority!

Prof. Geert Bouckaert, as Conference Rapporteur, provided the participants with key ideas for addressing the Conference theme: Next Generation Governance and Young Global Public Administration. He mentioned the necessity to change the paradigm to organise PA. He underlined the fact that solving problems is the new normality. The new governance model has simultaneous focuses: basic service delivery and crisis management. He also underlined that we globally agreed on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and the 5Ps: People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace & Partnership. The Conference Rapporteur mentioned that the SGD17 Partnership is an objective by itself. He underlined the importance of the whole-of-society approach. We need trust to have a solid partnership to address all the challenges of our societies. Trust cannot be asymmetrical trust in PA trust in our partnership. Next generation also means people and ideas. Geert Bouckaert said that State is back with crises. He also emphasised the need to develop a solid framework – lawyers are back! For facing all these challenges, we need young people (with competencies and skills) and young disciplines such as digital sciences, anthropology (new in PA), behavioral science, etc.

Geert Bouckaert said that Rome is the perfect place to address this topic as Romulus and Remus were young people whose story tells of the events that led to the founding of the city of Rome! Rome's history is the history of resilience and as mentioned by Prof. João Salis Gomes we have to create a bridge but be an ambitious aqueduct bringing water, hopes, and life!

Enrico Giovannini, Minister of Sustainable Infrastructure and Mobility, mentioned that without sustainability, resilience, and solidarity capitalism will not survive crises. He confirmed that crisis is now the new normal. He underlined how difficult is to tell people that the future will be full of shocks and crises. In this context, it is important to prepare, prevent, and anticipate being able to absorb the shocks. Minister Giovannini highlighted that good governance is fundamental otherwise, the 5Ps cannot be obtained. Due to the sequence of crises, the next generation's governance is so important. Today, the sentence “one objective one instrument” is not applicable anymore and one instrument had to serve several objectives. For Enrico Giovannini, the importance of training public servants for managing the crises and sustainability aspects is crucial.

Then, he shared with participants his experience at the Ministry of Sustainable infrastructure and Mobility deciding about investments with a huge amount of money and how to introduce the 17 SDGs and their impacts on public investments as carbon footprint of their projects or impacts on conditions of accessibility for all to services. He mentioned the creation of a centre for research on sustainability to facilitate the exchanges between civil servants and researchers and underlined the change of mindset requested (behavioral changes) to develop this kind of cooperation.

Giovannini also mentioned two interesting initiatives in Italy: the creation of a network of universities for sustainability (research mission & SDGs focus) allowing a transdisciplinary approach on key issues; and recent changes in the Italian Constitution in order to protect the environment and rights for future generations.

For young PA people, he recommended:

“Be courageous and propose new ideas and innovations for a sustainable future!”

More information about IIAS-EUROMENA 2022 Conference will be provided in the next IIAS Insight. Stay tuned!

Intuit Mailchimp logo
Facebook icon
Instagram icon
Twitter icon
LinkedIn icon

© 2022 | International Institute of Administrative Sciences