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International Decision-Makers Debate Global Security Risks at Munich Security Conference

Each year in February, the Munich Security Conference (MSC) opens up a platform for an intensive debate on critical security challenges engaging hundreds of international decision-makers from across the globe.

News from Feb 20, 2017

Over the past five decades, the MSC has established itself as one of the leading annual gatherings for the discussion of security policy. More than 30 heads of state and government, over 80 foreign and defense ministers, leading personalities of international and non-governmental organizations, as well as high ranking representatives of industry, media, academia, and civil society — from February 17 to 19, 2017, the 53rd edition of the MSC brought together numerous stakeholders facing the issue of how to promote international cooperation and dialogue in a time of global crisis.

Among this year’s participants were German chancellor Angela Merkel, US Vice President Mike Pence, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, as well as Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Germany's outgoing Federal President Joachim Gauck who was awarded the Ewald von Kleist Award. Under the chairmanship of Ambassador Wolfgang Ischinger, the MSC offered an important opportunity to focus on the future of transatlantic relations and NATO after the election of Donald Trump, relations with Russia and the war in Syria, while also focussing on matters of terrorism and information warfare.

In the light of the current security situation, the question of the foundation for a strong international security community has gained new urgency. "We are confronted with an international security environment that is arguably more volatile than at any point since World War II," MSC Chairman Ambassador Ischinger said. "The liberal order many of us have taken for granted is increasingly threatened from within and without. That is why it is so important to find ways to defend and strengthen the fundamental values of the West, and the institutions of a rules-based international system.“ Given the increasingly troubling state of the international order, thinking and acting globally emerge as key strategies in a growingly complex world. In the 21st century, young professionals and leaders in finance, economics or the civil society sector need to take on these challenges collectively. Dedicated to a flexible blended-learning experience, the Center for Global Politics provides you with the knowledge for tackling a wide array of issues in international affairs. Learn more about our program opportunities and take the first step to navigating a world of global risks and new uncertainties.