The inaugural Thought Festival UNTHINK, organized by the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College has been deemed a tremendous success. The one-day virtual discussion on globalization and sustainability brought together a stellar cast of thought leaders from around the world and within the region to weigh in on critical issues affecting the future of the Caribbean region and developing countries.
Sponsored by 1st National Bank, the Thought festival was staged to memorialise the work of Sir William Arthur Lewis on the anniversary of his passing. The Bank’s invaluable support of the SALCC organised Festival is indicative of its commitment to national development and support of the College’s initiatives.
Dr. Hyginus Leon, President of the Caribbean Development Bank and keynote speaker of the Festival set the tone, explaining that the Festival had special significance for himself and the Caribbean Development Bank given Sir Arthur’s link to the bank.
Sir Arthur’s ideas suitably reimagined, remain relevant and applicable today and can form the basis of a reimagined post-COVID future and propel countries up the ladder of economic development.
Dr. Hyginus Leon during his Keynote Address
Minister for Education, Innovation, Gender Relations and Sustainability, the Honourable Dr. Gale Rigobert, described the initiative in her opening remarks as “bold,” and suggested that UNTHINK become a social movement.
Presenting panelists came from over 14 countries including Estonia, South Korea, Columbia, the Caribbean and Africa. The Festival had a reach in over 25 countries with participants joining the live discussion via Zoom and Facebook.
All the panels can be viewed here.
One of the highlights of the Festival was the Youth and Social Entrepreneurship panel which featured dynamic young St. Lucian entrepreneurs and social activists who illustrated unthinking in practice and outlined the key dimensions of the next normal.
The UNTHINK Thought Festival will become an annual activity on the College’s calendar to be observed on June 15 every year – the anniversary of the passing of William Arthur Lewis.