The ninth edition of the Aspen Young Leaders Program took place on August 29 – September 1, 2019 in the Beskid Mountains in Poland. A diverse group of thirty-three young Central European leaders from various sectors gathered for this four-day event organized by Aspen Institute Central Europe to discuss challenges our society is facing and the role they play in them.
“People who want to improve society need to be connected to inspire each other and develop new ideas. This is why we support their development and open dialogue addressing critical issues facing civil society.,” said Michaela Bakala, who together with her husband participated in founding the Central European branch of the Aspen Institute in 2012.
As always, there was a wide range of formal and informal activities for the participants to engage in. Workshops provided a platform for sharing experience, which was a highlight of the program, allowing the young leaders to dive into meaningful conversations about their jobs, mission and values. Respectful discussions, diversity among the speakers and exposure to new topics challenged and pushed the participants to self-reflection. The informal activities contributed to networking and recognizing the value of dialogue among the peers that are facing similar challenges in their jobs and personal lives. Part of the program were also empowerment workshops focused on developing leadership skills.