TED Summit 2019: A Community Beyond Borders

By Magdalena Obmalko

The TED-curated TedSummit provides a critical convening space for its speakers and organisers to map our new ideas and develop opportunities for its “Community Beyond Borders” to drive impact. We were invited to attend the Edinburgh summit this year to experience talks on the TED stage, engage in thoughtful debate through the discovery sessions and explore the city of Edinburgh and its coastal communities. Attendants deep-dived into wide ranging topics covering everything from shifts in global geopolitics, emergent technologies and the climate emergency. With no signs of these themes diminishing in their relevance and urgency, speakers and workshop facilitators wove compelling narratives, provided more evidence and re-imagined possible futures to catalyse change.

Speakers Nicola Sturgeon (The First Minister of Scotland) and Tshering Tobgay (former Prime Minister of Bhutan) resonated with the audience on the basis of their deep awareness of the systemic responses required to address some of the ecological crises we are facing. Nicola Sturgeon gave an inspiring TED talk on how in partnership with the governments of Iceland and New Zealand, Scotland was shifting policy away from measures of growth based on GDP to those which priorities health and wellness instead. An environmentalist, Tshering Tobgay gave an honest and self-critical account of his personal journey to acknowledge the climate crisis as its effects began to unravel ecological and economic stability at home. Visit TEDSummit 2019 for an overview of the event.

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