Aspen Seminar at Cartagena de Indias
At the beginning of March 2020 we have held an Aspen Seminar in Cartagena de Indias in collaboration with the Aspen Institute Initiative for Colombia and the McNulty Foundation, which promote the creation of a new Aspen in Colombia.
The seminar brought together a group of prominent Colombians from very diverse fields: businessmen, academics, senior officials, photographers, social activists, philanthropists and engineers, among others. It was moderated by Miguel Herrero de Jáuregui, Professor of Classical Philology at the Complutense University of Madrid and Aspen España Fellow and by José M. de Areilza Carvajal, Secretary General of Aspen Institute España. The seminar took place entirely in Spanish.
The moderators proposed as readings for the seminar texts by Gabriel García Márquez, Mario Vargas Llosa, Jorge Luis Borges or Marcela Serrano, as well as other classic and contemporary authors such as Tucidides, Henrik Ibsen, Michael Ignatieff, Michael Sandel, Rachel Botsman or Fernando Vallespín. Based on these texts, the participants addressed issues such as power and leadership, intergenerational justice, the economy, technological change or the future of democracy for three days through a Socratic dialogue. As is proper of an Aspen Seminar, the participants’ discussion constantly linked the current Colombian context with different global perspectives.
“Aspen is a suitable place to discuss the most important challenges facing the society in Colombia and try to identify what can keep us together; [Aspen] can offer programs on public policy, conservation and biodiversity, identity and post-conflict reconciliation, and can also work in other fields, such as art, culture or health.”