This event has now finished.
  • Date and time: Sunday 9 June 2024, 1.30pm to 3pm
  • Location: In-person only
    Ron Cooke Hub, Campus East, University of York (Map)
  • Admission: Free admission, booking required

Event details

For centuries, the world has been dominated by a West-centric/Eurocentric viewpoint, but the world order appears to be changing.

Shocks that are having a global impact – coronavirus, economic fallout from Ukraine and the deepening climate emergency - have highlighted the inequities at the core of the world economy and the vulnerabilities of lower and middle-income countries to political and ecological crises not of their own making. This is throwing into sharp relief the economic and political shift taking place as the countries of the Global South begin to assert themselves on the global stage.

The Global South is a term for a collection of 77 disparate countries mostly located in the southern hemisphere; most were subject to imperialism and colonial rule. Around 88 per cent of the world’s population lives there and it’s projected that by 2030 China, India and Indonesia will join the US as the world’s four largest economies.

The power of the Global South is growing and challenging the current world order. Countries in the Global South make decisions based on their own priorities. They do not align themselves with any one world power - aligning with the West on some issues and with Russia and China on others. They have no one leader and there is unlikely to be one in the future – although both India and South Africa are positioning themselves in this space.

Our expert panel of speakers examines if it is time for the West to realise that its relationship with the rest of the world has changed and to adapt accordingly. What would a multipolar international system look like? Should we be rethinking relationships that the West has taken for granted? The coming decades may belong to the Global South. Can we afford to ignore it?

Speakers include Mohamed Cassimjee, a senior diplomat for South Africa for over 26 years; Ambassador Androulla Kaminara, the first female European Union (EU) Ambassador to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan; Rahul Roy-Chaudhury of the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) and Sultan Barakat of the Qatar Foundation’s Hamad Bin Khalifa University.

This event is part of the Festival Focus ‘2024: A new world order?’ presented in collaboration with the Morrell Centre for Legal and Political Philosophy. You may also be interested in ‘Global Security in a Year of Electionsand ‘Are Elections Safe and Do They Even Matter?’ which are taking place the same day.

About the speakers

Sultan Barakat is a Professor in Public Policy at Qatar Foundation’s Hamad Bin Khalifa University and an Honorary Professor at the University of York. He is also a Senior Associate Fellow of the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI). Sultan is a world-renowned scholar, known for pioneering the study of war-torn societies and their recovery. Sultan founded the Center for Conflict and Humanitarian Studies at the Doha Institute for Graduate Studies and directed it between 2016 and 2022. Previously, he served as the Director of Research at the Brookings Institutions Doha Center. At the University of York, he founded and led the Post-war Reconstruction and Development Unit between 1993 and 2019. His book After the Conflict: Reconstruction and Development in the Aftermath of War, published by IB Tauris, was reprinted twice, in 2005 and 2010. He has also written books on the reconstruction of both Afghanistan and Iraq. His most recent books include Russia’s Approach to Post-Conflict Reconstruction (Palgrave Macmillan, 2023) and Understanding Influence: The Use of Statebuilding Research in British Policy (Ashgate, 2014). He is regularly engaged in providing guidance as a Senior Adviser and Consultant to the United Nations, the World Bank, the European Union, the Red Cross and a variety of governments. He has led major evaluations, peace negotiations and programming initiatives in Afghanistan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kosovo, Lebanon, Libya, Nepal, Palestine, Philippines (Mindanao), Somalia, Sri Lanka, Sudan (Darfur), Syria, Uganda (Moyo and Adjumani) and Yemen.

Mohamed Cassimjee was a senior diplomat for South Africa for over 26 years. He served as Deputy Ambassador to Germany from 2016-2020, and prior to that served abroad in Washington DC, Uganda and Senegal.  He has served in various positions at the Department of International Relations including: Director of the African Union; German Speaking Countries/Nordics/Baltics; Latin America/Caribbean and the European Union. Prior to joining the foreign service, he was an Advocate (Barrister) in South Africa. He is a mentor at the Blavatnik School of Government and a Research Associate at the Centre for African Studies at Oxford University. He is also a Director at the SA/UK Chamber of Commerce. He has consulted and presented on geopolitics and has written on foreign policy, the Global South and on political developments in South Africa. Mohamed has recently been appointed ‚Äčan Associate Fellow  at The British Foreign Policy Group (BFPG) focussing on the Global South. 

Rahul Roy-Chaudhury is the Senior Fellow for South and Central Asia Defence, Strategy and Diplomacy at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), where he has worked for over 20 years. His research and publications focus on India’s domestic politics and foreign policy, South Asia security and UK-India defence relations. His policy-relevant work focuses on facilitating ‘face to face’ ‘track 1.5’ meetings and dialogues, involving the participation of high-level government and security officials of South Asia. These meetings take place on a regular basis in Muscat, Manama, New Delhi, Islamabad, Singapore, Istanbul and London. Rahul is a Member of the UK-India Advisory Council, chaired by the UK Minister of State for South Asia in the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), and also a Member of the FCDO’s Advisory Board on South Asia. He is the author of two books on the Indian Navy and several articles published by the IISS and in academic and policy journals. Earlier, Rahul served in the National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS) in the Prime Minister’s Office in India, during India’s first BJP government.

Ambassador Androulla Kaminara is the inaugural Distinguished-Diplomat-in-Residence at Georgetown University in Qatar (GU-Qatar). She has 40 years of exceptional leadership in public service, management, and in diplomacy. She was the first female European Union (EU) Ambassador to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Breaking the glass ceiling and working in multi-cultural, multi-national, and multi-disciplinary fields have been the trademark of her career. Androulla served as Director of Humanitarian Aid Operations for Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Pacific (ECHO) for five years. Previously she was the Director for the Quality of Programs and Projects globally of EU International Cooperation and Development with an annual budget of ten billion euros. Always interested in the link between academia and practice, she has served as the EU Fellow to St Antony’s College, Oxford University, and as a Research Associate at King’s College, London focusing on EU policies and the geopolitics of energy. She was the recipient of the Global Ambassador Award in 2021 and of the International Peace Award for her work on interfaith harmony.  

Professor Matt Matravers is Director of the Morrell Centre for Legal and Political Philosophy at the University of York. Matt joined York Law School in 2015 as Professor of Law having been at the University of York, UK, since 1995 serving as Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, and Professor in the Department of Politics. He is on the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Peer Review College and is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences. Matt works on contemporary legal and political philosophy. His books include Justice and Punishment and Responsibility and Justice. In addition, he is the editor of six edited collections and the author of numerous papers in legal and political philosophy.




University of York

Venue details

  • Wheelchair accessible