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Create new world based on social feeling: Dr Yunus tells global audience

‘More money, more happiness – it’s a very wrong way of looking at happiness’

Create new world based on social feeling: Dr Yunus tells global audience

Photo: Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus speaks at the opening ceremony of the two-day 9th Social Business Day at the Centara Grand & Bangkok Convention Centre on Friday, June 28, 2019.

“Let’s transform the society, nation and the world,” he said expressing much hope about the desired change with young generation ready to take the challenge.

Talking about often misunderstood of happiness, Prof Yunus said happiness should not be measured by money or bank balance as it is a crude way of looking at happiness.

“More money, more happiness- it’s a very wrong way of looking at happiness,” he said while addressing at the opening ceremony of the two-day 9th Social Business Day at the Centara Grand & Bangkok Convention Centre.

It is jointly being organised by Yunus Centre, Dhaka, Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) and Kasetsart University, Thailand.

This year, theme of the event is “Making Money is Happiness, Making Other People Happy is Super Happiness” where some 1500 delegates from 59 countries, including far from Antarctica, are attending.

Terming the current global economic theory a real culprit for the greed-driven civilization, Prof Yunus said it does make damage in the society fundamentally discarding the purpose of the whole society.

He cited environmental degradation, massive migration and wealth concentration globally as the outcome of the current system pushing people to become money-making robots.

“We want to bring social dimension into the centre of economics avoiding profits maximizing tendency which is not helpful to the society,” Prof Yunus said.

He said human beings are packed with unlimited creative power that can transform the society and create a world that they want.

Shedding lights on sports, Prof Yunus said Paris 2024 is going to a Social Business Olympics for the first time. “The serious issue is coming up fundamentally changing the whole idea of Olympics. So, sports and International Olympic Committee, together long way to go.”

On environmental front, Prof Yunus said there is a message of urgency and they do not have much time to protect the planet. “We’ve to act very quickly. Otherwise, we may not exist on this planet.”

He said it is a challenge for all to make sure all people survive with “dignity and glory” leaving behind the “stupid past.”

Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific and Mechai Viravaidya, Chairman, Mechai viravaidya Foundation, Father Enzo Fortunato Spokeperson and Communication Director of The Holy Convent of Papal Basilica of Assisi, AIT President Dr Eden Y Woon and Secretary General of Southern Border Provinces Administrative Centre Rear Admiral Somkeart Ponprayoon, among others, spoke at the event.

Yunus Centre Executive Director Lamiya Morshed delivered the welcome speech.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, Nobel Laureate Malala Yousafzai, Director General of Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN Jose Graziano da Silva and International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, among others, sent video messages on the occasion.

Delegates from across the world shared their experiences encouraging social business activists, supporters, partners, and investors.

Panel discussions are designed on a range of topics related to the social business ecosystem ranging from food and agriculture, deforestation, green energy to education, health, technology, sports, culture and arts.

Social Business Day is an annual event of experience sharing and goal setting for social business activists, supporters, partners, and investors and getting ready for the coming years.

International and local social business activists, corporates and social leaders, leading NGOs, students, innovators and early adopters of the social business philosophy that looks to tackle socio economic problems at its core to update themselves on the social business frontier are attending the event.

It also creates an opportunity for participants to engage in different plenary sessions and workshops, broaden the social business network and gain a holistic understanding of the operational, financial system that drives social businesses globally, say organisers.

Delegates are looking for new ideas and new partners for their next social business initiatives.

The eighth social business day event took place in Bangalore. All other previous social business days were held in Dhaka.

Notable plenary speakers include Corinne Bazina, General Manager, Danone Communities, France, Noppadol Dej-Uddom, Chief Sustainability Officer CP Group & Vice President of the Executive Committee, True Corporation, Thailand, Eric Lesueur, Chief Executive Officer, 2EI-VEOLIA, France, Dr. Nico Rose, Professor, International School of Management, Dortmund, Germany, JuergenNagler, Co-Founder of the United Nations Transformation Network and Happiness Researcher, Enzo Cursio, Coordinator, FAO Nobel Alliance for Food Security and Peace and OPC, Food and Agriculture, Claire Lyons, Senior Strategist, International Partnership, Water.org, Amy Dahmen Co-Founder of Kabubu, Ge Yang, Paralympic Gold Medal Winner, France, Pierre-Antoine Lefevre, Manager of Social Business Initiatives, Peace & Sport.

Besides, there will be nine country forums ranging from Bangladesh, China, Australia, Japan and Europe where delegates from individual country will have separate conferences to address the most pressing socioeconomic issues plaguing their nation and try to come up with social business solutions to tackle those problem and review the existing social business in in their country.

There will also be the Pre-Conference of the Social Business Academia Network on June 29 in order to prepare for Social Business Academia Conference 2019 which will take place in November in Germany.

Many of the representatives from Yunus Social Business Centres in 74 Universities in 34 countries are attending the conference.