University for a Night 2004

New Approaches to Solving Complex Global Problems

Above: Opening plenarya at University for a Night 2004
Below: Paulo Zucula of the Foundation for Community Development of Mozambique, Peggy Dulany of Synergos and David Rockefeller

[W]orking with others and creating effective partnerships has been an activity central to my business career, and indeed to all of the civic involvements during my life. I continue to believe that the only realistic way to achieve positive, enduring change is through partnerships.
--David Rockefeller

This event and this award give us more responsibility in terms of delivering service to the poorest of the poor in the country. It also gives us more of a commitment in developing our community and the country as a whole.
--Paulo Zucula Executive Director Foundation for Community Development of Mozambique

Despite the divide between rich and poor, the developed and the developing worlds are in fact profoundly dependent on each other. This means that if we are to create a better and safer future, we must bridge the divide, we must join together to build a fairer and more inclusive world.
-- Kjell Magne Bondevik, Prime Minister of Norway

I believe that it is possible to mobilize our people to solve the real problems of our society, with responsible governments...that allow us to advance [with respect to] the new challenges that the processes of regional and global integration have imposed on us.
-- Mario Conejo Maldonado, Mayor of Otavalo, Ecuador

The honorees this evening...remind us that there are real solutions out there to poverty and conflict, if we only have the courage and vision to seek them out. Through their lives and their work, they provide the evidence of the power of collaborations to bring healing, reconciliation and sustainable development to communities in need.
-- Richard Gere, Actor and Philanthropist

We need to look at women and girls not just as victims, but as part of the solution, to invest in bringing them to the peace table, but more importantly, to the reconstruction process. In fact, many of them that I've worked with have said that crisis for them also means opportunity.
-- Noeleen Heyzer, Executive Director, United Nations Development Fund for Women

I recently took 200 of my leaders in Asia to India and let them work for three days in communities. We brought them all together in the desert in Rajasthan, and in that desolate, hot space, we asked them, "who are we?" We started to redraft what we thought Unilever Asia should be all about, and we said we will...make sure that young Asians get the right food in order to have mental and physical development like everybody else.
-- Tex Gunning, President, Unilever Foods Asia

Left: Dinner discussion at table on Peace, justice and reconciliation -- Bridging divides in Colombia and South Africa with María Eugenia Garcés of Fundación AlvarAlice, Tokyo Sexwale of Mvelaphanda Holdings and Paul van Zyl of the International Center for Transitional Justice

Above: John C. Whitehead of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, David Rockefeller and Michael Sonnenfeldt, Dinner Committte Co-Chair

For all of you who are involved in finding peaceful solutions and getting agreement among people, I think the most important thing is to be a good listener. The importance in trying to find agreement among groups of people who don't agree, is to listen to what they don't agree about. And if you don't do any listening, you never reach that point.
--John C. Whitehead, Chairman Lower Manhattan Development Corporation

Synergos has found that successful bridging leaders possess a number of key traits including listening skills, compassion, credibility, and well-developed networks of relationship capital. John Whitehead combines all these skills with an international outlook which have given him wide-ranging impact at the global level.
--Michael Sonnenfeldt, Dinner Committee Co-Chair