Annual Policy Dialogue


Leading in a World of Converging Crises

31 October- 1 November | Bertelsmann Representation “Unter den Linden 1”


Deeply aware of the current megacrisis, Club de Madrid (CdM) has organised its 2022 Annual Policy Dialogue in partnership with the Liz Mohn Center, one initiative of Bertelsmann Stiftung, bringing key stakeholders to Berlin for a timely discussion focused on solutions to address the food, energy and financial crises afflicting the world in 2022. 

The Dialogue has offered a unique platform for urgently required action-oriented conversations, gathering a carefully curated list of 40 participants, including democratic former Heads of State and Government, thought leaders, policy experts and representatives of governments, multilateral organisations, business and academia with the experience, expertise and access necessary to inform and inspire change.

Please find below the document resulting from the discussions held in this year’s Annual Policy Dialogue: 

The challenge we face


The world is facing a confluence of emergencies, unlike anything we have seen in decades. Just as we were beginning to focus on recovery from the substantial social and economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, 2022 unleashed the rage and dangers of the war in Ukraine and its swift and profound impact on food security, energy prices and the global economy, leading to mounting social and political unrest and to rising geopolitical tensions.

Food and energy prices, as well as increasing debt, are worrying developments on their own. Still, when they interact with each other, they create vicious cycles of poverty, hunger and inequalities. This is not a new phenomenon, but the war in Ukraine has exacerbated the risks for many countries.

This situation will create social unrest and increase the pressure on democratic institutions and values, especially in low and middle-income countries. It will also widen the gap between citizens and governments and create political space for populism and authoritarians in a general context of democracy deterioration.


Need for a coherent and coordinated response


Multilateral efforts to respond to the humanitarian crisis, avoid more profound economic fragmentation, maintain global liquidity, manage debt distress, address climate change and end the pandemic remain essential.

Club de Madrid wants to take advantage of its unique position to mobilise a critical mass of support to strengthen the multilateral system. Leveraging the political experience and agency of our Members – more than 115 democratic former Heads of State and Government from over 70 countries – to promote a conversation that generates concrete proposals to help governments and international institutions respond in a coordinated manner to the megacrisis of 2022.

Club de Madrid’s Policy Dialogue will assess the impact the energy crisis is having at a global level, identify coping strategies to avoid jeopardising international efforts and commitments toward a Net Zero economy and propose sustainable long-term recommendations that help the international community prevent future crises.

The event will contribute to the understanding of the causes and dimensions of the unprecedented hunger that the world is set to face, identify policy recommendations for short-term international response, and develop proposals for sustainable and long-term international food policies able to prevent future food crises.

Participants will reflect on the causes, characteristics and consequences of the current debt crisis and identify proposals to facilitate immediate relief to highly-indebted developing countries, as well as long-term measures to guarantee resilience and debt sustainability, including the reform of the international financial architecture.

For more information, please contact: