Since 1990 TED conferences around the world have been inspiring innovation through engaging talks on a variety of topics. Over these last two decades the TED universe has continued to grow and in 2011 3,200 TEDx events took place over 126 countries in 42 different languages.
In October the fantastic TEDx Baghdad demonstrated the innovation and creativity coming out of Iraq. In November three other TEDx events will continue this trend with TEDxErbil, TEDxYouth@Baghdad, and TEDxBaghdadWomen.
On October 22nd the second annual TEDx Baghdad was held at the Al-Rasheed Hotel focused on the topic “The Beginning Begins”. Speakers came from a diverse range of backgrounds and included artists, youth activists, diplomats, and environmentalists. Videos can be watched of many of the sessions
Martin Kobler, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Special Representative for Iraq and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), was the event’s headlining speaker.
Kobler began his talk with the question, “What are your dreams for Iraq?”. He then went on to discuss his own dreams for the country, highlighting the importance of educating Iraq’s huge youth population–an issue we also hold dear here at EPIC. “Education is the primary concern of this country because the young people of today are the adults of tomorrow.”, Kobler explained.
Kobler continued to highlight the importance of youth saying, “My message to you, the young people, coming from this experience, take your own way! And my message to the fathers and mothers that are listening is to tolerate.”
Take a few minutes to read more about Kobler’s talk and his dreams for the future of the country.
TEDX Erbil is on November 10th and focuses on the theme “Our Future is Now”. The line-up of speakers includes singers, photojournalists, mine clearance experts, and many more. These TEDX events continue to inspire us here at EPIC!
EPIC's 2012 fall intern. Specializing in youth and development, she is a master's candidate at American University's School of International Service.