About G20 Interfaith Forum
The G20 Interfaith Forum offers an annual platform where a network of religiously linked institutions and initiatives engage on global agendas (primarily and including the Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs). The annual G20 Summits are a critical time and place where priority global issues are considered. The G20 process has evolved since it was established in 2008, with various platforms (ministerial meetings, engagement groups) that allow different sectors and communities to present ideas and recommendations to global leaders. Our goal is to contribute meaningful insight and recommendations that respond to and help shape the G20 and thus global policy agendas.
The G20 Interfaith Forum builds on the vital roles that religious institutions and beliefs play in world affairs, reflecting their rich diversity of institutions, ideas, and values. These include interfaith and intercultural organizations, religious leaders, scholars, development and humanitarian entities, and business and civil society actors.
Beginning in Australia in 2014, the G20 Interfaith Forum has convened annually in the G20 host country. The Forums have considered wide-ranging agendas, including economic models and systems, the environment, women, families, children, work, humanitarian aid, health, education, freedom of religion or belief, global security, governance, human rights, and the rule of law. The agenda for each Forum is framed taking into account the annual G20 priorities (outlined each year by the host government), together with topics that the various networks of religious actors recommend that the G20 leaders address. The forum has met in Australia in 2014, Turkey in 2015, China in 2016, Germany in 2017, Argentina in 2018, and Japan in 2019.
The theme of the sixth annual G20 Interfaith Forum, held in Tokyo (Chiba), Japan from June 7-9, 2019 was “People, Peace, Planet: Pathways Forward.” Information about this event, including Recommendations for Action developed during and after the 2019 Forum is available here.
The G20 Interfaith Forum (IF20) advocates for global solutions by collaborating with religious thought leaders and political representatives.
Global recognition is increasing for the vital roles faith and religion play in promoting peaceful and harmonious relationships within and between nations. Few examples are widely recognized, however, of the positive contributions faith and religion make to social well-being and to policies that impact national and international communities. The G20 Interfaith Forum is an annual event where such contributions can be shared, highlighted, and advanced.
The Forum features both international opinion leaders—including scholars, lawyers, and politicians—and global interfaith activists for three days of discussion and interfaith dialogue, all of which contributes to the annual G20 Leaders Summit.
In showcasing the broad, global impact of various faith traditions and philosophies from around the world, the Forum fills important gaps in the discussions of the G20 Summits. Social cohesion is strengthened between political representatives and religious thought leaders, and new opportunities are provided for relationship building among all participants.
Objectives of the G20 Interfaith Forum include
1. Exploring the links between economic development and religious freedom through informed, scholarly discussion.
2. Facilitating constructive dialogue between societal leaders in faith, government, business, media, education and other social institutions, on how interfaith resources can enhance social, economic. and cultural policies and programs for the well-being of all.
3. Fostering communication channels between the different faiths and sharing ideas, experiences, and “best practices” in building peace and harmony.
4. Discovering and affirming common values, virtues, and principles among diverse faith and philosophic traditions