Past Event

President Tharman Shanmugaratnam of the Republic of Singapore

November 28, 2023
5:00 PM - 6:10 PM
Low Library, 535 W. 116 St., New York, NY 10027 Rotunda

Building Common Ground

A conversation with

Tharman Shanmugaratnam
President of the Republic of Singapore


Fareed Zakaria
Host of CNN's Fareed Zakaria GPS, The Washington Post Columnist, and Bestselling Author

Welcome by:
Minouche Shafik
President of Columbia University in the City of New York

Closing Remarks by:
Keren Yarhi-Milo
Dean of the School of International and Public Affairs


The world we knew is steadily unravelling.

Our central task must be to build resilience and optimism at a time of radical uncertainty. It requires new orientations, and finding common ground, within our own societies and internationally:

  • To build the more inclusive social compacts needed in a globalised world – through a refreshed role of the state and a culture of deeper respect for each other.
  • To avoid a destablising rollback of development, and uplift a large young population entering the global workforce.
  • To invest at much higher levels and for longer, and speed adoption of breakthrough technologies from food production to batteries to water recycling – indispensable to avoid tipping points in the earth system in the next decade and a half.
  • To arrest the continual erosion of a rules-based order, and ensure a multipolar world does not become a polarised world.

Columbia University students are invited to participate in a moderated question and answer session.

This program is cosponsored by the Institute of Global Politics (IGP) at the School of International and Public Affairs as part of the Gabriel Silver Memorial Lecture. 

The Gabriel Silver Memorial Lecture at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs was established in 1949 to foster greater international understanding and world peace. The inaugural lecture was delivered by Dwight Eisenhower in 1950, when he was Columbia University’s president.

Over the decades SIPA has welcomed distinguished visitors including Konrad Adenauer, West Germany’s first chancellor; Rajiv Gandhi, prime minister of India; Madeleine Albright, then former U.S. secretary of state, and several current or former United Nations secretaries general. Among the diverse speakers of recent years are US Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines (Spring 2023), World Bank president Jim Yong Kim (2017) and U.S. Supreme Court justice Stephen Breyer (2016).

Thank you for your interest in joining us for the World Leaders Forum. This event has reached capacity. We encourage you to watch the live stream on the World Leaders Forum website.


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