Annual EPIIC Symposium to feature leading diplomats, scholars on the fate of the liberal world order

United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Amina J. Mohammed headlines impressive lineup of speakers participating in 33rd annual symposium at Tufts
Picture of the globe
The 33rd Annual Norris and Margery Bendetson EPIIC International Symposium will be held March 1 through March 3. Image courtesy of the Institute for Global Leadership.
February 27, 2018

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Patrick Collins

MEDFORD/SOMERVILLE, Mass. (Feb. 27, 2018) – Diplomats, scholars and activists from across the globe, including United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Amina J. Mohammed, former Foreign Minister of Poland Radoslaw Sikorski, and former Canadian Justice Minister Allan Rock, will gather at Tufts University’s Institute for Global Leadership’s annual symposium March 1 through March 3.

The 33rd Annual Norris and Margery Bendetson EPIIC International Symposium will feature practitioners, academics, public intellectuals, activists and journalists who will discuss and debate the symposium’s central topics in panels and small-group discussions. Mohammed and Rock will deliver separate keynote addresses. Rock and Sikorski will receive the Dr. Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award.

The event is free and open to the public; registration is required.

The event is also open to members of the news media, but they must register in advance by contacting Patrick Collins via email at or by phone at 617-627-4173.

The symposium, designed and executed by students participating in the Education for Public Inquiry and International Citizenship (EPIIC) colloquium, will be livestreamed at

“This year’s EPIIC Symposium on the theme “Is the Liberal World Order Ending?” will afford Tufts students and the public to engage in dialogue with a varied group of leaders, practitioners and scholars on the challenges to the Liberal World Order,” said Abi Williams, Ph.D., director of the Institute for Global Leadership at Tufts. “It is at the heart of the Institute for Global Leadership’s mission to prepare new generations of effective, ethical global leaders who can comprehend and help solve the most challenging global issues.  As world events confound traditional tools and institutions, it is also a question which demands urgent answers.”

Among the event’s highlights:

  • On Friday, March 2, Rock, the former Canadian ambassador to the UN who also is president emeritus of the University of Ottawa and former Canadian minister of both justice and health, will speak on the symposium’s key question, “Is the Liberal World Order Ending?” He will also receive the Dr. Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award, established in 1993 in honor of Jean Mayer, 10th president of Tufts University, to challenge and inspire students and the community by bringing to Tufts distinguished scholars and practitioners with moral courage, personal integrity, and passion for scholarship.
  • On Saturday, March 3, Mohammed, the former Nigerian minister of the environment before assuming her UN role, will speak on the topic “Repositioning the United Nations: Reinforcing Multilateralism in a Challenging Global Context.”
  • On Saturday, March 3, Sikorski will receive the Dr. Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award and participate in a panel discussion on “Challenging the Liberal World Order:  The Rise of Alternative Forms of Governance.”

A detailed description of the event, speakers, panel discussions, times and locations can be found here.

Among the topics to be discussed during several panel events are:

  • Beyond Borders: Contending with Transnational Challenges
  • The Changing Social Contract? Globalization and Technology in the 21st Century
  • The Future of R2P (Right to Protect)? Mass Atrocities and the Liberal World Order
  • The Global Nuclear Dilemma: Power, Stability and Proliferation
  • A Loss of Faith: The Rise of Populism and Nationalism
  • Challenging the Liberal World Order: The Rise of Alternative Forms of Governance
  • The Role of the United States in the Liberal World Order: Past, Present and Future

There also will be a series of expert-led small group discussions.


About Tufts University

Tufts University, located on campuses in Boston, Medford/Somerville and Grafton, Massachusetts, and in Talloires, France, is recognized among the premier research universities in the United States. Tufts enjoys a global reputation for academic excellence and for the preparation of students as leaders in a wide range of professions. A growing number of innovative teaching and research initiatives span all Tufts campuses, and collaboration among the faculty and students in the undergraduate, graduate and professional programs across the university's schools is widely encouraged.