File photo: World Trade Organization Director-General Roberto Azevêdo addressing delegates at a session “The Outlook for Global Trade in a Hyperconnected World” at World Government Summit 2018 in Dubai last year. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

When heads of state, Nobel laureates, leaders of international organisations and decision makers from more than 120 of the top global companies gather in one place, you know they have some important things to say and key decisions to make. That’s exactly what’s happening when 4,000 delegates representing 140 nations gather at the seventh edition of the World Government Summit beginning Sunday in Dubai — the largest such event to discuss ways of shaping the future of governments.

Over the past six years, the summit has provided a platform to allow decision makers and governmental officials to discuss new ways of dealing with and shaping change and the decision-making process, analysing the social, political, economic and technological factors that shape decisions and policies, and how to pre-empt, predict and process those changes — all to improve and enhance the lives of the more than seven billion of us who share this planet, live together, our interactions and our use of its precious resources. That’s a huge ask, and this year’s edition will focus on the development of human life, and how governments’ efforts can shape a better future for us all.

Pope Francis, the leader of the Roman Catholic church whose visit to the UAE this week inspired millions living on the Arabian peninsula, will also address the gathering by video conference. Certainly, the pontiff’s address highlights the significance of the august gathering which will hear from the UAE leadership and important stakeholders from around the world.

In today’s world underpinned by an organic interdependence of nations towards a global good, the summit offers an invaluable platform on which to exchange ideas and solutions to tackle common challenges and learn from each other.

From the fields of technology, environment, governance to sciences, social emgineering and human upliftment, there are breakthroughs, innovations and learning processes that, every day, are shaping us and the way we live. These must be promoted, shared and made to work for all and the World Government Summit is playing a stellar role in enabling this.

As we, the people of the world, who are part of the fraternity of nations, move towards the challenges of the future, what will bind us will be our commonalities of purpose. The summit is reaffirming that purpose.