Posted on September 23, 2011

From December 11th to 13th, a powerful network of Heads of States, foreign ministers, young people, civil society organizations, business leaders and global media - more than 2000 in total - will convene in Doha to make United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) 4th international forum a turning point, taking into account the past and current achievements in Madrid, Istanbul and Rio De Janeiro.

A turning point because of its particular format, as for the very first time in UNAOC's existence, the Civil Society will actively contribute to the forum's debates and outcomes (Doha Pre-Forum for Civil Society organized in May 2011 brought together 190 participants from 80 countries).

A turning point also because at Doha, the UNAOC will anchor itself as the source of strong convictions and impactful actions that promote peace and development of societies through intercultural dialogue, evidenced by the Doha Forum's baseline "Intercultural Dialogue to boost Development."

As Qatar is taking for one year the UN General Assembly Presidency, the country is more than ever investing energy and strategic vision to become one of the most vibrant, knowledge-based economies in the world. The Doha Forum is a concrete example of the strategic role that Qatar is having at a worldwide level, setting new standards for dialogue and diplomacy at the service of a better governance and human development.

Doha Forum, Intercultural Dialogue to Boost Development:

From its creation, UNAOC is guided by the hard work of his Group of Friends (around 130 States and organizations) and members of the High Level Group, to which the First Lady of Qatar, HH Sheikha Moza, has made major contributions. Indeed, it is Sheikha Moza's involvement that led to the Forum's 4th edition being held in Qatar.

"With the Dialogue of Civilizations, we have come closer today to the pulse of the human being regardless of where we live and how different our values and cultural roots are. We should make our primary target to support the Alliance in order to meet the MDGs by the date we have set. The year 2015. The Doha Forum will mark a turning point in the history of the Alliance of Civilizations, by proposing a comprehensive and ambitious roadmap for a more sustainable, balanced and peaceful world and by giving the word to NGOs, CSOs and Youth. The Doha Forum will strongly reinforce and strengthen the role and the need of this unique institution." Said HH Sheikha Moza.

After Madrid, Istanbul and Rio De Janeiro, The UNAOC's annual Forum in Doha will be a milestone in the UNAOC's existence. In Qatar, the UNAOC will define the conditions that will allow global intercultural dialogue to emerge as a key driver for development, security and peace. The Doha Forum will indeed place culture at the heart of the world's development agenda.

"All Forums (Madrid, Istanbul and Rio de Janeiro) of the Alliance have brought new perspectives and fresh thinking to the Alliance. All Forums have been a unique opportunity to engage in a global conversation on topical issues. All Forums have opened up new avenues for intercultural dialogue and cooperation. The same will happen with the Doha Forum and I am truly convinced that it will be a turning point for the Alliance in terms of raising its visibility, integrating it more into the global agenda and reinforcing commitments for action." Says United Nations High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, President Jorge Sampaio.


This ambitious positioning will have the added benefit of increasing synergies between the UNAOC's mission and the Millennium Development Goals, for which HH Sheikha Moza is a vocal supporter. Reinforcing the cultural and intercultural approach in each of the MDGs can strengthen social cohesion and harmony, accelerate positive change and improve the sustainability of initiatives.

"By hosting the Fourth Forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations in Doha, our objective is to work closely with the UNAOC Secretary, the Member States and the Group of Friends to bring the achievement of the UNAOC and the Millenniums Development Goals together." Says Dr Khalid Bin Mohamed Al-Attiyah, Qatar's Minister of State for International Cooperation.

Transformational initiatives for a fast evolving world:

Under an impactful baseline - Doha Forum, Intercultural Dialogue to boost Development -the Qatari event will be punctuated during 3 days by debates, discussions and exchanges.The recent changes taking place in the Arab world have conducted the Qatar Committee for the UNAOC and the Alliance to make the Doha Forum a platform for the common values expressed during the so called "Arab Spring".

Moreover, by leveraging the complementarities and synergies of the Millennium Development Goals and the UNAOC, a richer, more effective framework will emerge built on common values such as Human Dignity, Democracy, Justice, Fairness, Mutual understanding, Tolerance and Respect.

Building a legacy:

The Doha Forum will build a results-oriented set of recommendations, by proposing a comprehensive and ambitious roadmap and by designing monitoring and impactassessment tools with political and corporate leaders, mayors, Civil Society representatives, Youth, journalists, Academics, Foundations, Intercultural Organizations and religious leaders (around 2000 attendees).

In order to pursue this new ambitious goal, the Doha Forum will be the time to promote the success stories and best practices and to share tools for the dissemination of efficient programs.

Leveraging Qatar cultural values and heritage within Katara Village:

The Cultural Village Foundation - Katara Village - is an exceptional project of hope and human interaction, a project made possible thanks to the vision, solid faith and renowned leadership of HH Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa AL Thani, Emir of the State of Qatar.

As guardian of Qatar's heritage, Katara will establish itself as a cultural hub and a fertile ground for different cultures to meet and blossom. From December 10th to 13th, the 2000 Doha Forum attendees will have the opportunity to discover cultural attractions and cutting edge art and music through an Intercultural Festival specially created for the occasion.

source: Ameinfo