Lasting two days, filled with insightful talks, one-to-one interviews and featuring a who's who of world personalities, the Doha Forum tried to find a solution to all that is wrong with the world. His Highness Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani, the Amir of Qatar, and H.E. Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani (who is Chairperson of Qatar Museums, Doha Film Institute, Reach Out to Asia, and Qatar Leadership Centre) were both on on hand along with other members of the State of Qatar royal family to welcome a groundbreaking group of VIPs and celebrities to the Region.
From David Beckham, attending in his official role as UNICEF Ambassador but also as the former football legend he is, to Malala Yousafzai, the activist and Nobel Prize laureate, from Bill Gates, the co-founder of Microsoft and co-chairperson of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation who attended virtually, but also former U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who is now the United States Special Presidential Envoy for Climate along with several other current and past political leaders, this was the forum to attend, if you are seriously committed to changing the world for the better.
Kerry said: "When it comes to climate change, it’s not the time for understanding, it’s time for action." While Malala pointed to the downfall of countries where women's voices aren't featured and encouraged.
Considering the powerful sessions which were moderated by media giants like Becky Anderson from CNN's Connect the World, Doha Debates correspondent Nelufar Hedayat and Jamal Elshayyal, a senior correspondent at Al Jazeera, this was a quiet affair. Meaning, if you weren't an insider, it would not have been on your radar. That's because at Doha Forum the focus was on doing, achieving, not talking and publicising.
Lasting through the weekend of March 26 and 27, 2022, and taking place inside the Sheraton Grand in Doha, this year's Doha Forum theme was held under ‘Transforming for a New Era’, with a focus on four core areas:
- Geopolitical Alliances and International Relations
- Financial System and Economic Development
- Defense, Cyber and Food Security
- Climate Change and Sustainability
The official statement for the Forum stated: "As the world recovers from the largest shock to the global economy since the Second World War, leaders and policymakers must come together to develop policy innovations aimed at saving the most lives and avoiding permanent damage. There are more than 200 million COVID-19 cases worldwide, 4 million deaths so far and countless more lives have been affected. Nonetheless, changemakers have paved the way for advancements in various different spheres such as technology, medicine, sustainability and racial equality."
While we wouldn't change a thing, being who we are we would have liked to have seen a couple of filmmakers on the panels, to add their voices as they always seem to have their finger on the pulse of world events.
With Iran being represented, Yemen having voice and Ukraine participating in the Forum, it's no wonder there was an undeniable air of hope palpable. And MIME's valued contributor Ammar Abd Rabbo was there to capture it all.
For more informations and to watch some of the sessions virtually, check out the Doha Forum website.
All image courtesy of © Ammar Abd Rabbo, used with permission.