Young Bled Strategic Forum

Young Bled Strategic Forum (Young BSF)

7 – 9 September 2018

The Young Bled Strategic Forum (Young BSF) is an annual conference bringing together young leaders to engage in lively discussion and develop out-of-the-box solutions to some of the most pressing world issues. The Young BSF model has been growing and changing and has become a unique meeting place for a diverse array of young leaders, entrepreneurs, bloggers, thinkers and socially active individuals, offering them a platform to share their visions, exchange ideas and connect with one another.

The Young BSF 2018 will host young leaders under the title “Sustainable Security: The Role of Youth in Bridging the Divide”. A ‘sustainable security’ approach prioritises the resolution of the interconnected underlying drivers of insecurity and conflict, with an emphasis on preventive rather than reactive strategies. The central premise of the sustainable security approach is that we cannot control all the consequences of insecurity successfully, but have to work to deal with the root causes of instability.

Special emphasis at the Forum will be given to cross-regional cooperation. A new generation of leaders will demonstrate that such cooperation is not only necessary, but inevitable for positive next steps in democratisation, fighting corruption, terrorism and climate change, and fostering social, economic, and cross-cultural sustainable development. To do this, young leaders have to learn from their peers from different regions, sharing their knowledge, ideas and know-how. Sustainable regional cooperation programmes are the key to a comprehensive, inclusive, and innovative approach that engages youth. The 2018 Young BSF will link the themes and role of youth with the main event, Bled Strategic Forum.

Three topics from the main event will be selected and discussed from the youth perspective, while three outstanding young leaders will be selected to participate as speakers at the main event. This will add value to BSF, bringing innovative solutions and shedding light on youth perspectives. Youth will have an opportunity to meet the leaders from the governmental, business and non-governmental sectors and join them in discussions addressing salient issues.

For any additional inquiries, do not hesitate to contact us at


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08:00 AM

Gathering & Welcome Speech

by Jamie Hefford

09:00 AM

Getting back into the deliverables business

by George Burton

10:00 AM

Successful Marketing Strategy

by Carol Wood

12:30 PM


01:30 PM

Predict the future with an old trick

by Cody Nesbit

03:00 PM

Closing Thoughts

06:00 PM

Topical/Industry Breakfasts

09:00 AM

Postcss: the future after Sass and Less

by Andrey Sitnik

10:00 AM

Stylish Slippy Maps: Creativity With Cartocss

by Aurelia Moser

12:00 PM

The Missing Slice

by Lea Verou

11:00 AM

Buffet Lunch

01:00 PM

Dragging WordPress Core Css Into The 2000s

by Michael Mifsud

02:00 PM

Workshops & Vote of Thanks

03:00 PM

Registration and Gathering

City Hotel, Ljubljana

12:00 - 14:00

Sightseeing tour of Ljubljana

14:00 - 15:00


City Hotel, Ljubljana

15:00 - 15:30


by Peter Grk, Zoran Jankovič, Meliha Muherina

Ljubljana Town Hall


16:00 - 16:30

Exceptional Leadership in the Next Decade

by Ravi Chaudhry

Ljubljana Town Hall

16:30 - 17h45

Keynote speech

by Melanie Seier Larsen

Ljubljana Town Hall

17:45 - 18:00

Bridging The Divide Between Generations

by Melanie Seier Larsen, Tjaša Sobočan, Tin Kampl, Edita Hasanović, Matej Repič, Anja Fortuna (Moderator)

Ljubljana Town Hall

Powered by the National Youth Council of Slovenia – Mladinski svet Slovenije – MSS.

The structure of the global population has radically changed over the past years. While one part of the world faces rapid population ageing, the other has a high fertility rate. Changed demographic conditions, combined with technological progress, have presented many challenges to the economic, social, transport, and health-care sectors. As a result, intergenerational relationships are undergoing drastic change which, in turn, will shape the way we understand society and affect all aspects of life. Intergenerational cooperation must be focused on ensuring a decent life in all life periods. Predictions show that in the next few years, there will be more people over the age of 65 than children under 5. As a result, the disparity between these two population groups will constantly increase.

What are the biggest challenges facing different generations regarding the labour market, housing and involvement in social decision-making? What needs to be done to enhance intergenerational cooperation? What are the inspiring best practices of intergenerational cooperation? The answers to these questions and more will be provided at the panel.

18:00 - 19:30


City Hotel, Ljubljana

20:00 - 20:30

How Can Smart Communities Drive Sustainability?

by Simon Mokorel, Ladeja Godina Košir, Massimiano Tellini, Martin Mössler, Vesna Kuralt (Moderator)

City Hotel, Ljubljana

Powered by Club Alpbach Senza Confini.

The advent of new technology has brought about the emergence of smart cities and smart tourism, which aim to provide advanced technology-based solutions that ensure an efficient use of resources and optimal user experience. As a result, more and more types of smart communities are emerging, and these are determining the direction of development of digital services and business models, since the engagement of stakeholders brings value to any platform. This leads us to think that residents and tourists should be the drivers of sustainability, and that flourishing smart communities should be built bottom-up. On the other hand, all platforms need significant financial investment, which suggests a top-down approach to creating a smart community. Where is the balance? What are the most frequent concerns of investors, and when is a platform a good investment? How should circular economy models be designed, evaluated and implemented? Which segments show most disruptions? Which stakeholders drive sustainability in a smart community? How do we motivate users to opt for more sustainable mobility and energy-efficient use of services and products? What are the key resources and challenges of the sustainable ‘smart’ future?

20:30 - 22:00

Meet & Greet


22:00 - 00:00

Alone we fail: Working together for a sustainable future

by Timotej Šooš, Khalifa Al Ansari

IBM Slovenia

Powered by the Government Office for Development and European Cohesion Policy of the Republic of Slovenia. 

2030 Agenda for sustainable development is global agreement for the future that will fairer, greener, more inclusive and with opportunities for everyone to flourish. It is a realistic hope and call to action for all people to co-create the futures we would like for ourselves and generations to come. An interactive session during the 2018 Young BSF will take the 2030 Agenda as a blueprint for in-depth discussion for one of the global challenges such as food waste, social inequality, and cybersecurity. We will look at these challenges from various perspectives, as entrepreneurs, politicians, bureaucrats, and activists with the goal to chart out the ways how can these global challenges be addressed by cooperation rather than by each actor alone.

9:00 - 12:00

Disrupting Gender Stereotypes: are you a born leader?

by Kaja Primorac, Nina Pejič

IBM Slovenia

Powered by the Gender Equality Research Institute Slovenia – Inštitut za proučevanje enakosti spolov – IPES.

Gender inequality in different environments results in various severe human rights violations. To meet this global challenge, it is vital that both men and women take part in discussions about its root causes. While increasing the recognition of women’s accomplishments is essential to creating a more gender-balanced world, challenging gender stereotypes and achieving gender equality is just as important for men.

As the title suggests, gender stereotyping assumes that there is inequality in the talents of both genders. The stereotype that women are not good leaders leads to the idea that there is some innate difference between men and women, which causes this discrepancy. Stereotypes feed prejudice and discrimination in many contexts, but they also infiltrate individual self-images to produce gender identities, influencing the way we dress, our choice of career and, finally, our actual abilities to perform.

Research has devoted a great deal of attention to ways in which we take on ideas about gender and, especially, ways in which we are affected by these ideas. People who hope to foster gender equality often wonder where to intervene in this system of cultural, social, and personal processes.

This workshop seeks to understand, critically assess and deconstruct gender stereotypes: personal assumptions about what it means to be a man and what it means to be a woman. The workshop will help participants reflect on the implications of gender stereotypes, consider social inequalities that influence their everyday life and affect their own performance in the academic sphere or workplace.

12:00 - 13:30

Making A.I. Work – Exploring Practical Ways For Human–Machine Co-operation

by Filip Muki Dobranič, Lazar Džamić, Elena Sinel, Dénes András Nagy, Pika Šarf, Simon Sovič (Moderator)

Triglav Lab 

Powered by MUNSC Salient.

The looming spectre of Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) seems to be omnipresent, with only a few professions still unaffected by the practices and solutions introduced by machine learning and other related technologies. While some hail the advent of machines, others remain sceptical, warning that at least in the short term, large-scale automation may not avoid having a negative impact on the job market and the nature of work as we know them today.

One way to offset some of the disruptive tendencies seemingly inherent in A.I.-related technologies is to explore how humans and algorithms can work side by side and complement each other. However, for such deliberations to retain their practical merit, they need to be grounded in at least a basic understanding of how A.I. may be applied in particular fields, sectors and contexts, each of which is determined by its own idiosyncrasies, while still keeping sight of the wider socio-economic perspective. To this end, the panel brings together leading experts from academia, technology, business, NGOs and policy-making, and challenges them to engage in a productive exchange that will delineate the potential as well as the limits of human-machine co-operation.

15:00 - 18:30

The World in 60 Minutes: A Fireside Chat with Ali Aslan, International TV Presenter and Journalist

by Ali Aslan


18:30 - 19:30

Night-Owl Session – Western Balkans Café

by Krisela Hackaj, Blaž Grilj, Dafina Peci, Emir Hasanović, Ljubiša Mičić, Mak Selimović, Meliha Muherina, Adnan Čerimagić

City Hotel, Ljubljana

Powered by the Western Balkan Youth Cooperation Platform – WBYCP.

Western Balkans Café aims to enable participants to engage in peer discussion, share ideas and provide input required to critically assess salient issues in the region.

Five different tables will be available to all Young BSF 2018 participants to discuss the following topics: reconciliation, internal and external security, economic development and youth participation. Discussions will be moderated and conducted over two blocks of 90 minutes, with one break of 30 minutes between blocks. This will allow participants to select topics that most interest them, and to learn from their peers from around the globe.

All five topics are interconnected in terms of regional and global prosperity and sustainable development. Discussing sustainable economic development without taking into account youth participation is a Sisyphean task; discussing collective security without discussing reconciliation is equally difficult. Therefore, the Western Balkans Café will be set up to enable participants to engage in ideas, share their thoughts and reach lasting solutions.

The peer-to-peer discussions will promote regional cooperation, provide an excellent networking opportunity and promote efforts to engage with civil society in constructive, yet innovative ways to find answers to pressing regional issues.



20:00 - 00:00

Morning brief with Khalifa Al Ansari, research analyst at the Prime Minister’s Office in the United Arab Emirates

by Khalifa Al Ansari

ABC Accelerator

9:30 - 10:00

Creating Policy Recommendations

ABC Accelerator

10:00 - 12:00

Vision of the Present

by Jose Antonio Morales, Skrivnostni Otok

ABC Accelerator

Powered by the Lincoln Island Initiatives.

1. Lecture on framework for innovation based on the fear-and-fail methodology and philosophy. The lecture presents a practical foundation for understanding and establishing the conditions to set up human-friendly cultures.

2. Create your personal vision of the present (VoP) based on the canvas provided. Creating the Personal Vision of the Present WALL.

3. Lecture on the entitled Vision of the Present. Explanation of the methodology, philosophy, and understanding of time.

4. Create a Vision of the Present for your selected TOPIC. Three groups, each working on one topic (up to 13 participants in each group). Big groups will be divided into three smaller ones (up to 5 participants). Nine small groups will work on creating one VoP. We end up with three VoPs for each topic. Everyone then votes for the best vision of each group on a WALL. We get the best solution for each challenge.

5. Discussion and conclusion.

12:00 - 16:00


ABC Accelerator

16:00 - 16:30

Log In, Reach Out: Building a Digital Bridge to Your Audience

by Matthias Luefkens, Marko Zoric, Matthew Jacobs

City Hotel, Ljubljana 

Powered by the Centre for European Perspective and the U.S Department of State.

Participants of the Young BSF will disseminate prepared policy recommendations via digital campaigns. A digital component is one of the most dynamic and influential ingredients that can be added to a campaign. Digital campaigns are the cornerstone of any successful messaging strategy. However, the process of developing a successful digital campaign requires training and mentoring.

A workshop led by an international group of experienced communicators will be held to equip young enthusiasts with appropriate knowledge. The aim of the workshop is to reveal the dimensions of digital art and bring participants’ existing skills to a new level. The first step to this end will concern why, to whom and how to produce actionable messages and best practice recommendations to disseminate proactively. Digital plan creation will lead the participants through the process of researching and clearly articulating the aims and goals of their digital ideas, along with a clearly defined audience, and teach participants which channels they should use and how.

The practical work will be divided between three groups of participants, whereby each group will be challenged to prepare a digital campaign by using a different digital channel. Although each platform would offer a unique product, all digital campaign creations should complement one another in order to achieve the larger objective.

17:00 - 19:00

Gala Dinner

AS Aperitivo

Powered by the Center For European Perspective and the U.S Department of State. 


20:00 - 00:00

Conflict Prevention, Peace Building and Mediation

by Maja Dolinar, Miro Haček, Akihiro Ienaka, Mostafa Khalili, Faris Kočan, Rok Zupančič, Nina Pejič (Keynote), Masanori Naito (Moderator)

Rikli Balance Hotel, Bled

Powered by the Doshisha University, Japan, and the Faculty of Social Sciences, Slovenia.

Many divides that we observe today are the result of conflicts, which often cause divides not only between countries but also between people. Some of them take the form of war; others create a border between inclusion and exclusion from a group. For a harmonious society, we cannot avoid resolving problems that cause conflict; however, the nature of conflicts is changing, and we need to tackle newly emerging problems with new perspectives.

The panel will try to find the ways to prevent conflicts, build peace and use mediation, by focusing on contemporary cases in the Balkans and the Middle East – from the political, cultural and social aspects. What is the role of democracy? What can international and regional organisations do? How can we bridge divides within a country?

9:00 - 11:00

Mediterranean Dimension of the OSCE – Youth and Security

by Iztok Mirošič, Matjaž Nemec, Paolo Trichilo, Abdelhamid El-Zoheiry, Ana Bojinovič Fenko, Ettore Greco, Matteo Pugliese, Holger Fabian Sahl, Meliha Muherina (Moderator)

Rikli Balance Hotel, Bled

Powered by the Embassy of the Italian Republic in Ljubljana. 

The round table event will be held in the light of the Italian OSCE Chairmanship and its commitment to working under the motto of “Dialogue, Ownership, Responsibility” to build a “genuine partnership” of Mediterranean countries. Partnership will be achieved through enhanced political dialogue, more concrete collaboration on security issues and the promotion of a holistic approach to protecting human rights and fundamental freedoms, as well as investment in education and culture, whereby more attention will be devoted to women and young people.

The panel will address the role of youth in resolving interconnected security issues in the Euro-Mediterranean region, such as radicalisation, climate change, migration, gender equality, freedom of media, etc. The event is also intended to shed more light on the role of youth, who are often left out of official debates and resolutions, while their voice is often neither heard nor included in the resolving of current issues in the region. The debate should be broadened by forging new links between different generations and sectors in the Euro-Mediterranean region.


11:00 - 13:00

Young BSF Sponsors

Nature Addicts
Danube Transnational Programme
Visit Ljubljana
ABC Accelerator
Central European Initiative
City of Ljubljana
Government Office for Development and European Cohesion Policy
Triglav Lab


Young BSF Partners

Center For European Perspective
Club Alpbach Senza Confini
Doshisha University
Embassy of the Italian Republic in Ljubljana
Faculty of Social Sciences, Ljubljana
Gender Equality Research Institute Slovenia
Lincoln Island Initiatives
MUNSC Salient
National Youth Council of Slovenia
U.S Department of State
Western Balkan Youth Cooperation Platform
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