Billed as the "People's Summit," the Group of Six Billion Conference will be held at the University of Calgary June 21–25, 2002.
"The world doesn't need another club like the Group of Eight telling it what to do, working mostly behind closed doors," said G–6B Conference Coordinator Lynn Foster at a press conference on Wed., April 3. "We wanted a voice for the other six billion people on the planet and a conference for debate on the issues that touch us all."
The theme of G–6B is "One World, One People" and will provide a forum to generate and discuss economic solutions for the entire world. The conference will mirror the G-8 Summit in Kananaskis on June 27–28.
"G–6B is here to raise our voices as global citizens and get the public into the debate," said conference organizer Cathy Little. "We are having speakers come in from around the world who are very knowledgeable on the issues."
The keynote address will be delivered by Canadian Stephen Lewis, who is the well-known United Nations Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa. Prominent Harvard economist Jeffrey Sachs and other international experts and activists will also present at G-6B.
"[The U of C] sees the [G–6B] conference as an excellent opportunity for students, the faculty and community at large to become engaged in a critical exploration of the issues before the G-8," said Coordinator of the University G-8 Office Bill Warden.
The G–6B will address global peace, justice and equality with particular attention to the needs of the peoples of Africa.
Recommendations resulting from dialogue at the G–6B regarding equitable trade, human rights, environmental concerns and sustainable development will be forwarded to G-8 governments.