October 27, 2016
The 3rd Global Think Tank Summit was held from Sept. 28 to 30 in Montreal, Canada. The summit was launched by the Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) at the University of Pennsylvania in 2014, and the 2016 summit was co-sponsored by Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI), an independent think tank in Waterloo, Ontario. The JICA Research Institute (JICA-RI) served as a member of the Planning Committee and JICA-RI Director Naohiro Kitano chaired a session on free trade and gave the session report on the plenary session.
"Responding to Globalization and Its Discontents: The Role of Think Tanks" was the theme of the 2016 summit. Participants discussed how to respond to economic stagnation and growing inequality as globalism develops on the one hand, while on the other hand populism, nationalism, and protectionism rise around the world and the existing political, economic and social order is challenged.
Approximately 100 people participated in the summit, including researchers from 85 think tanks in 42 countries.
Kitano chaired a session on free trade agreements and economic nationalism. Rebecca Fatima Sta Maria, senior policy fellow at the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) and Willem Pieter de Groen, research fellow at the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS), gave presentations, and there was a discussion of the state of multinational free trade agreements, the effects of economic nationalism, challenges to be addressed and the future outlook.
At the summit there were also lively discussions on how think tanks should propose policies to address the problems facing the world and on specific plans for strengthening the influence of think tanks.
The 2017 summit will be held in May in Yokohama, Japan, in conjunction with the 50th Asian Development Bank Annual Meeting.