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Eye of Riyadh
Eye of Riyadh
Culture & Education | Monday 3 February, 2020 9:25 am |

Hegra Conference of Nobel Laureates 2020 concludes in Saudi Arabia's AlUla

The Hegra Conference of Nobel Laureates concluded on Saturday in AlUla, in northwest Saudi Arabia.
Running for three days, the conference brought together 18 Nobel Laureates of peace, economics, literature, physics, chemistry, physiology and medicine.
Other social and political leaders from 32 different countries also took part in the conference to discuss and offer solutions to improve the state of humanity and the world.
The conference was hosted by the Saudi minister of culture and governor of the Royal Commission of AlUla (RCU), Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan.
“Throughout history, AlUla has represented a cultural beacon and a crossroads of many different civilizations, where people of all religions, cultures and ideologies gathered to exchange ideas, knowledge and trade. Today, we meet in the same place, driven by the same passion that characterized our ancestors,” he said in his opening speech.
“This reflects our deep belief in the role of inspiring and creative people, who provide solutions to global problems and conflicts, advocate peace and prosperity and contribute to the development of humanity and sustainability at all levels. We hope that this conference provides Nobel Laureates a unique platform to revive the historical role of AlUla in the global cultural exchange,” he added.
The Hegra Conference was aimed at seeking the development of clear-cut solutions to problems in the futures of education, health, agriculture and economics.
Outcomes and recommendations from discussions included the need for convening a global conference on world debt, pooling global AIDS research, and the creation of the Middle East Science Fund (MESF).
Previous editions of the conference focused on a wide variety of complex issues, such as the role of education in combating terrorism, nuclear nonproliferation, poverty, economic empowerment, culture and the impact of globalization on societies around the world.
This year’s theme “Transmission: A Shared Heritage” examined how the transmission of ideas was a fundamental principle for humanity.
As the site of the 2020 Hegra Conference of Nobel Laureates, AlUla, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is committed to developing new industry and empowering women and young people to create new businesses, in a sustainable model and with an environmentally friendly philosophy.
“The immense diversity and cultural and human richness that we are witnessing here in AlUla confirms that heritage is a major catalyst for peace, education and much more. It is necessary for us to recognize the different aspects of history and to embrace how heritage has a role in peaceful discourse and creating a great diversity of ideas,” said Audrey Azoulay, director-general of UNESCO.
Amr Al-Madani, CEO of the RCU, said: “AlUla has served as … a place where ideas and innovation have been debated for thousands of years.
“In keeping with the conference’s theme of transmission, we are actively reinventing the cultural landscape of AlUla as nature and the arts come together. Today we’re convening some of the world’s greatest thinkers in a contemporary place in an ancient land: for discovery, intellectual expression and cultural exchange that can bridge the past to the future,” he added.
Richard Attias, executive chairman of Richard Attias and Associates and curator of the conference, said: “Understanding and appreciating our history and culture while sustainably sharing it with new generations is crucial to improving the state of humanity.
“In these current uncertain times driven by political, economic, cultural, health and social crises around the world, hosting this conference in a thousand years old site will allow us to go back to our roots with humility and humanism.”

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