Global Affairs Conference brought professionals from around the world to St. Pete – The Crow’s Nest at USF St. Petersburg

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The conference has offered numerous panels on topics such as climate, corruption and equality since 2013.

Courtesy of the World Affairs Conference


By Jasmine Jarrett

The 2022 St Petersburg Global Affairs Conference brought together professionals from around the world to discuss pressing hot topics in areas such as migration, equality, climate and corruption.

Held at USF St. Petersburg from February 15-18, the conference included notable speakers such as Paul Farmer, a renowned medical anthropologist and physician who received the $1 million Berggruen Prize in 2020, and Lee Weiner, l one of the original members. of the Chicago Seven.

The St. Petersburg Conference on Global Affairs was founded in 2013 by former US Ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina Douglas McElhaney and USF political science professor Thomas Smith.

According to the World Affairs Conference website, its mission is to create “a forum of international experts to educate, engage and empower members of our community and beyond, focusing on the areas of international relations, economy, environment, culture, humanity and health”. .” It also aims to create “knowledgeable citizenship” to maintain “a vibrant democracy”.

According to Diane Seligsohn, president of the St. Petersburg Conference on Global Affairs, the conference aims to provide attendees with an unbiased, multi-layered view of the issues discussed.

“For each of these discussions, we hope to provide both global and historical context that will give our community a deeper insight into the issue from all sides,” Seligsohn said.

This year’s ‘COVID Impacts Part 2: Disrupting Education’ discussion, presented by Chance Cook and Smith, offered an alternative perspective on the importance of educational institutions amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Panelists argued that schools are responsible for much more than providing a learning environment for students.

Due to the increased pressure placed on schools by the pandemic and the growing importance and relevance of these facilities, Cook believed that the status of schools and teachers should improve in the near future.

Due to the ongoing pandemic, the conference was held in a hybrid modality for the first time – instead of being completely virtual last year.

Despite the challenge, the virtual nature of the conference made it possible to broaden its audience and include speakers from around the world.

“The virtual format allows us to transfer speakers that we wouldn’t normally be able to bring in,” Smith said last year in an interview with The Crow’s Nest.

Like last year, the hybrid modality of the conference lends itself to visual accessibility. All panels have been recorded and will be uploaded to the World Affairs Conference website, allowing viewers to attend the sessions virtually at any time.

“Being able to record all of these conference sessions is going to be an incredible resource, allowing us to grow our audience exponentially,” Seligsohn said in an announcement last year.



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