2019 Skoll World Forum | Highlights | SkollWF

2019 Skoll World Forum | Highlights | SkollWF


– Accelerating Possibility happens when optimism meets urgency, when imagination encounters grit, and when ambition converges with humility. – In the Skoll World
Forum’s humble beginnings, we invited about 250 social entrepreneurs to a three day program here in Oxford. Our hope was that we
could support a community where social entrepreneurs
would help each other. We are delighted to welcome you, the world’s finest and most dedicated people, to a week of discoveries made, and friendships formed. This week in Oxford, in this gorgeous theater and beyond, we will celebrate your
new stories of triumph. – Einstein famously said, “Imagination is more
important than knowledge,” “for knowledge is limited,” “but imagination encompasses
the entire world”. You are an extraordinary gathering of people working for equality, and justice, and our country needs you more than ever. We need your ideas, your experiences, we need your internationalism, and thank you for sharing them with us. – If we look to the margins, we can find clues, indicators of what’s to come, and we can also find incredible solutions. – We all have a role to play in shifting our thinking to a way that’s not a white
dominant way of thinking, but a way that is inclusive
of all perspectives and that’s only going to happen
when we sit down together and begin a conversation around things that are often uncomfortable. – We’ve realized that out of school girls tend to be concentrated
in certain geographies, and now with our smartphone and our data and tech approach, we’ve actually come to this point that five percent of the villages in India have 40% of the out of school girls. – Together, we could
find the necessary tools to transform our greatest challenges into our greatest triumphs. We can be remembered as the generation that looked the future
square into the eyes, and acted upon what it saw. – In Ghana, people usually
say education is expensive, forgetting that ignorance
is expensive too, it costs way more money than education. – The fake news rubric,
the fake news framework is actually being utilized
by authoritarian leaders around the world to justify
their own repression. – We live in a world where men
control the tools of power, be it economic, social,
political, cultural, and although women participate
in different facets of life, men control the keys to the real power. – If we’re not reaching the
youngest refugees with education how do they have a chance to go forward, to rebuild their societies, to reach their potential? – I know education can help me, and help my society and also help my country, because I cannot go back to Syria one day, without education. – There will be three billion people that will be living in unsafe housing, substandard housing by 2030. That’s a third of the
entire global population. – It’s smarter to be
closer to your investees than your investors. That’s how you create greater impact. – I believe we need to move this century from being growth addicted, to becoming growth agnostic, so that we stop having institutions that are financially, politically, and socially addicted to endless growth, and that we can actually
instead have economies that learn to thrive. – How can we be human? How can we exist? How can we take space if we are unable to even be acknowledged as people? That’s what happened when we’re not expressing our experiences. – The elephant in the room is
the current business model, the data, the way that it’s captured, the way that it’s harvested,
without people’s consent. It feels to me a little
bit like we’re talking about the cherry on
the cake a huge amount, which is the algorithm, and how does it look, how does it taste, and then we start talking
a little bit about the ingredients that go into
the cake, that’s the data, and we’re missing the fact that the cook is just a psychopath. And no one’s talking about it, and nobody wants to eat that cake. – These social entrepreneurs, like all the others in the
Skoll awardee community, start with a keen
understanding of the present, its deficiencies, and its opportunities. – So now, it’s time for us, and by that I mean all of us, to do our work. And all of you in this
room that are committed to solving the world’s
most pressing challenges, our work is to keep falling
in love with the problem, and not staying in love
with our solutions. – Strangers helping other strangers in their darkest moments,
all by text, works. I hope that everybody
who’s ever texted us knows that you are stronger than you know, and if you ever doubt that, if you ever doubt how
strong you are, we got you. – I hope that one day
I can stand before you and truly deserve your applause when mPharma ensures that every African is not denied access to high quality medicine because of their socioeconomic background. – A bit of being naive can open up some incredible
possibilities for innovation. It forced us to partner deeply
with those on the front lines who did know. – This is the social entrepreneurs that are anti-social entrepreneurs. Just as we are committed and we are driven, and some of us are smart, they are also committed, and driven, and smart, but they lack one thing. And that thing they lack is that they don’t have the trust and the solidarity that binds this room. – These leaders envision a future where equality and justice and access to the basic
human needs prevail. They are not mere possibilities, they are reality. – If you feel uncomfortable, lean into that and just sit in that and know, wow, like I’m actually growing and stretching as a person
because I feel uncomfortable. We are all related, our
suffering is mutual, and our thriving is mutual.

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