Our panelists (L to R): Sughra Ahmed, Aliyah York, Lucy Stephens, Kayleigh Wainwright, Jo Wells

By Lucy Stephens, Founder and Co-Headteacher of The New School and Aliyah York, Founder of Pupil Power

This webinar explored how often young people are ahead of adults in their thinking around how to build a good society but how structural problems, and some unfounded fears, too often prevent us from listening to what they have to say. The speakers invited us to consider our responsibility as adults to challenge the status quo in this way and create space for young people to be heard.

Sughra Ahmed, Director of Education UK, spoke about the ‘Speak Truth to Power’ programme of…


Our panelists (L to R): Sara Minkara, Manal Ataya, Dr. Heidi Alaudeen Alaskary

In crafting the good society, we seek to leave no one behind. The phrase “to leave no one behind” is a popular slogan, one often used to characterize the mission of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). At its core, the phrase evokes a shared commitment by all members of society to ensure each and every individual feels valued and is able to live to their full potential. In practice, what would a society that leaves no one behind actually look like?

On December 2, 2020, the Good Society Forum hosted a webinar on disability inclusion to hone in on…


The COVID-19 pandemic has cost millions their livelihoods, upended everyone’s daily routines and habits, and brought pain, suffering, and losses to many. The new normal, along with sweeping changes to policies, is exacting a tremendous toll on the emotional wellbeing of individuals and communities alike. According to a Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence study, over the last eight months the number one word that people have been using to describe how they are feeling is the word “anxiety”. …


The panelists for our September 30 webinar

Twenty-one billionaires in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) saw their wealth increase by nearly $10 billion since the start of the COVID-19 crisis, according to a recent Oxfam report “For a decade of hope not austerity in the Middle East and North Africa: Towards a fair and inclusive recovery to fight inequality.” The region’s richest amassed more than double the regional emergency funds provided by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to respond to the pandemic, and almost five times the United Nation’s COVID-19 humanitarian appeal for MENA.

Before the virus hit, the Middle East was already one of…


By the early 2010s, social media platforms had connected the world and provided a platform for those voices that had previously been muted. There was a tangible excitement for the potential that platforms like Twitter and Facebook represented in the fulfillment of the democratic values of free speech, equality and participation. Movements such as the Arab Spring seemed to support this techno optimism.

However, by 2020, we have learned that social media platforms can be used for brutal oppression and against democratic values — clear examples of this are the incitement to genocide in Facebook against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar


By Luke Grenfell-Shaw

In February, I went for a jog with a running group with a difference. Each person had a cancer diagnosis, and was dealing with it in a hugely positive fashion, through the power of exercise. As we ran, I heard stories of incredible fortitude, bravery and positivity. 5K Your Way, the small charity behind the group, helps to empower these individuals, who are literally facing the challenge of their lifetime. This prompted me to reflect on the power of exercise to help those facing great challenges in our society. …


Although there has been considerable progress since the 1995 conference on women in Beijing, gender equality has yet to be attained particularly in the Arab world, reflected Tunisian politician Samia Melki, at a Good Society Forum webinar on 8 July. Samia, who is president of Kadirat and member of the steering committee of Solidarity for African women’s rights network, observed that women’s political participation in the region is hindered by male interpretations of the Quran, traditions and culture.

photo by Mostafa Meraji

In some countries, the Arab uprisings helped women achieve greater rights through revised constitutions and increased representation in parliament and government. The…


“Our visions for racial equity are so small that we’re asking only to die at the same rate as others”. This unsettling truth from our most recent webinar encapsulates how the coronavirus pandemic has exposed deep racial fault lines in our societies, including entrenched inequalities that have led to disproportionate health and economic impacts on minority communities, with Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Groups more likely to die from COVID-19 than their white counterparts in the UK, and the same being true for African-American and Hispanic communities in the United States.

The brutal murder of George Floyd captured this tragic…


As the human and economic toll of the coronavirus crisis continues to reveal itself, there has been little to celebrate. One positive story, however, has been the way local communities right across the globe have responded, from coming together to clap for our nurses, doctors and key workers, to locally self-organising and providing mutual support to help our most vulnerable neighbours. It has shown us the potential for positive relationships between different groups in society and that a new social contract with each other is possible.

But as our recent Good Society Forum Webinar on building inclusive and welcoming societies…


The spreading of a virus from a wet market in Wuhan to all corners of the globe has shown how interconnected the world is. And yet in the face of the pandemic, multilateral institutions were slow to respond.

At a Good Society Forum webinar on 10 June, Michel Rentenaar, the Netherlands Deputy Permanent Representative to NATO, asserted that NATO — a 70-year old organization comprising 30 allies — prides itself on providing security to almost a billion people. Yet when COVID19 hit Europe, this was a threat it was not prepared to face.

However, NATO officials quickly realized that the…

Good Society Forum

The Good Society Forum is a community of change-makers around the world with a common quest to building the good society.

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