Un événement organisé par

Bridging our worlds

… towards a reconciliation


A global pandemic which has affected the whole humanity, inflation at levels unseen since the oil schocks, the return of live war in several clusters: in the space of only three years, our world has undergone within it a precipitate of systemic upheavals of a total cumulated intensity perhaps unmatched since World War II. The sum of these upheavals, the effects of which bump into one other and are measured squarely, gave birth to a knocked-out, fractured, worn out world.

Our world is furthermore marked in the beginning of this XXIst century by four fundamental “violences” which bring about an hitherto unseen slowing down of growth: the technical progress enigma at least until the current decade which puts a brake on innovation and slows down productivity ; the curse of aging in a large part of the world which poses a risk on the labour market, on the funding of the health systems and on the intergenerational bonds ; a boom of inequalities which damages our very social cohesion ; a de-industrialization shock for the western world which disorientates its economies and job structures. On top of that, we must urgently find how to fund in billions yearly three huge undertakings to succeed in our demographic, environmental and technological transitions. The situation is thus rather complex, but it is by acting without further due and by making strategic thorough and accountable choices that we shall put every chance in our side to overcome the whole of the challenges we are facing.

If it was dear to us, during the last edition of Les Rencontres Economiques d’Aix-en-Provence, to evaluate the conditions allowing to recreate hope, the theme that imposes itself today is of course, in the presence of so many fractured worlds: how to bridge them back? For it is and should be only about that if we are paying attention well to the world’s heart beats, to our worlds’, fractured as never before. Bridging our worlds: a large-scale program and, above all, an imperative for humanity. That is the reason why we have organized our Rencontres on three days, the division of which matches with the three big themes we wish to address: the walls that separate our world, the bridges that bring them together and the reconciliations that could be implemented.

The walls that separate our world are thus visible at several levels: it is first the reappearance of wars, of today’s wars – in Europe, in the Middle East – and, perhaps, so it should be dreaded, of tomorrow’s; but also, the division lines created by global warming between hemispheres and States. The world of structures and institutions is not to be left out as bear witness the threats that hover namely on the democracies. The effects of these upheavals are of course to be felt on groups of individuals: poverty, access to housing but also youth in escheat are all the many fractures visible at bare sight.

The bridges that connect our worlds are thankfully bearers of hope. For the national and supranational world, new globalization of trade but also ecological planning are all the many footbridges that must be underlined, thought through again or beefed up. Regarding our structures and institutions, the role of the central banks or that of our health systems must them too be reconsidered. Last, it is namely upon the corporate world that our sights and our common thinking need to converge.

The reconciliations are possible at several levels. Diplomacy between countries, the sports bearer of reconciliations but also the preservation of biodiversity are as many fields to farm at the international level. Artificial intelligence but also the role of the medias must be bearer of appeasement promises within our very common structures. Last, at the individual and groups of individuals levels, intergenerational solidarity but also the reconciliations between the countryside dwellers and urban dwellers or between work and the workers are as many appeasement tools that must be activated for our world, and thus accompanied by our debates.

While the worlds we just went over only tend to define each other as an opposition to one other, international cooperation, knowledge, innovation, the solidarities and a vision of the future can bring them back together, bridge them again. The program of the 24th edition of Les Rencontres Economiques d’Aix-en-Provence will be rested on these five essential pillars to answer during three days to the means to implement in order to bridge our worlds towards a reconciliation.