IMF and World Bank Group Annual Meetings: Day One Wrap-up

The official meeting agenda begins Tuesday so delegates had the opportunity to attend small one-on-one meetings arranged by the Global Voices Executive Team.

The Atlantic Council

The day kicked-off at the Atlantic Council HQ with a round-table discussion between Global Voices delegates and the Director of the Millennium Leadership Program Jonathan Silverthorne and Program Assistant Molly Murry. The Atlantic Council is a foreign affairs think-tank, formed after World War Two to facilitate cooperation between the United States and Europe. The Council is a preeminent forum in which private, public and academic sectors can come together to discuss and offer solutions to global issues.

(Left to right) Susan Deng (UNSW Co-op Scholar), Tom Perfrement (UNSW Co-op Scholar), Almira De Vera (University of South Australia), Dominic Rose (Sir Walter School of Public Policy and International Affairs), Tony Chen (University of Melbourne, Faculty of Business and Economics), Sarah-Joy Pierce (QUT Business School).

(Left to right) Susan Deng (UNSW Co-op Scholar), Tom Perfrement (UNSW Co-op Scholar), Almira De Vera (University of South Australia), Dominic Rose (Sir Walter School of Public Policy and International Affairs), Tony Chen (University of Melbourne, Faculty of Business and Economics), Sarah-Joy Pierce (QUT Business School).

Prior to joining the Atlantic Council Jonathan worked at the US Department of Homeland Security and as a campaigner for President Barack Obama. The Millennium Leadership Program allows people aged thirty-five and under to engage meaningfully with foreign policy, build their networks and work with world leaders.

Jonathan’s extensive knowledge across a number of intersecting policy areas facilitated a a conversational style session with topics including; the role of public private partnerships (PPPs); building trust in multilateral institutions; the role of big data in engaging citizens in policy decision making; the importance of authentic and genuine messaging when communicating complex policy ideas; and the role of the United States as a global peace keeper.

The delegates then joined the Atlantic Council staff and civil society groups for an exclusive panel discussion; ‘Banding Together: How the World Bank, the Humanitarian Community, and the Private Sector are Linking Up Strategies to Support Refugees and Promote Community Resilience’. The panel included World Bank US Executive Director Dr. Matthew T. McGuire, United States Institute of Peace Associate Vice President Manal Omar, and Entrepreneur and Author Christopher Schroeder. Needless to say the experience at the Atlantic Council has set an incredibly high bar for the rest of the week!

Barry Sterland: Executive Director of the IMF Board

In the afternoon delegates met with Mr. Sterland, Australia’s Executive Director for the IMF Board. Mr. Sterland represents a number of nations for the Asia-Pacific region including Korea, Mongolia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Vanuatu. He was previously the Deputy Secretary in Treasury and Australia’s G20 Finance Deputy during Australia’s G20 Presidency.

(L-R) Dominic Rose (Sir Walter Murdoch School of Public Policy and International Affairs) Almira De Vera (University of South Australia), Susan Deng (UNSW Co-op Scholar), Mr Barry Sterland (IMF Executive Director), Sarah-Joy Pierce (QUT Business School), Tom Perfrement (UNSW Co-op Scholar), Tony Chen (University of Melbourne, Faculty of Business and Economics)

(L-R) Dominic Rose (Sir Walter Murdoch School of Public Policy and International Affairs) Almira De Vera (University of South Australia), Susan Deng (UNSW Co-op Scholar), Mr Barry Sterland (IMF Executive Director), Sarah-Joy Pierce (QUT Business School), Tom Perfrement (UNSW Co-op Scholar), Tony Chen (University of Melbourne, Faculty of Business and Economics)

The session covered a number of topics, including Mr. Sterland’s own career as many of our delegates expressed an interest in pursuing a similar path! We also discussed gender diversity in the IMF and Mr. Sterland’s collaboration with the representative from Zambia in leading a commitment for more female Executive Directors on the IMF board. Delegates also posed questions about the growing role of the Asia-Pacific in the World Bank Group and bolstering of supervision mechanisms as financial systems become increasingly sophisticated and complex.

Canadians for dinner

The day ended in Georgetown with a get together over tacos and nachos with the Young Diplomats of Canada. This informal meal was a great opportunity to meet to other like-minded individuals with an interest in foreign policy and changing the world for the better! 

Delegates with the Young Diplomats of Canada

Delegates with the Young Diplomats of Canada