Events

Upcoming events

26 May: Is the End in Sight? The Monarchy and Commonwealth Realms
This Institute of Commonwealth Studies seminar will consider the enduring constitutional links between Britain and its former imperial possessions which have chosen to keep the British monarch as head of state. It discusses republican movements across Commonwealth realms, and the likelihood that the ‘divisible monarchy’ will not last beyond this Elizabethan age.”

26 May: The Commonwealth in the 21st Century
An online discussion exploring the relevance, role, and utility of the Commonwealth in the post-colonial era. Webinar organised by iDERA (the International Development Empowerment and Representation Agency), the African leadership Centre and TCSS (the Taiwan Centre for Security Studies).

 

Round Table logo27 May: Is the Commonwealth working?
In the run up to the long-delayed Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting (CHOGM), now scheduled to be held in the week beginning 20 June 2022, this conference will draw together a wide range of international panellists to consider ‘Is the Commonwealth working?’ in terms of leadership, values, mandates and networks.
Organised by The Commonwealth Round Table and the Instutute of Commonwealth Studies, in partnership with the Commonwealth Foundation and the Commonwealth Association.
Find out more about this event. Ticket registration for in-person attendance closes on 20 May.
Please note: Online participation will now also be available, but registration must be before 25 May.

7 June: The Kigali CHOGM 2022: Is Rwanda serious about the Commonwealth Charter?
This seminar considers the ‘cost-benefit ‘of Rwanda as host, potential impact on the reputation of the Commonwealth and the implications for this soft-power association. Organised by the Institute of Commonwealth Studies in collaboration with the Commonwealth Journalists’ Association.

15-17 June: International Symposium on Cultural Diplomacy in the Commonwealth
“Cultural Diplomacy as a Means to Build Bridges between the Commonwealth & the World”
The event, organised by the Academy for Cultural Diplomacy, will address issues related to cultural diplomacy in the region, and look for methods by which cultural bridges and dialogue can be improved between the Commonwealth and the rest of the world.

20-24 June: Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting – Rwanda
CHOGM and associated civil-society Forums (People’s, Business, Youth, Women’s).
Details at https://www.chogm2022.rw/.

21-22 July: Race to the Commonwealth and Beyond, Birmingham 2022
The Commonwealth Lawyers Association and the Birmingham Law Society will co-host a 2-day Law Conference in Birmingham, England to coincide with the 2022 Commonwealth Games. The conference will cover a range of topical issues, including access to justice and human rights, IT solutions in a post-pandemic world, gender equality, arbitration and mediation and human trafficking and modern slavery.
Save the date link.

28 July – 8 August: Commonwealth Games
More about the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

 

Transcripts and audio/visual links to previous Round Table events and events of interest

27 April: The Commonwealth and media freedom: Where do we stand?
Article V of the 2013 Commonwealth Charter declares the commitment of all Commonwealth states to the values of freedom of expression. This Institute of Commonwealth Studies seminar assesses the Commonwealth’s current track record on freedom of expression, as 2022 marks the 10th anniversary of the UN Action Plan on the Safety of Journalists. What more can and should be done for the Commonwealth to live up to the norms and aspirations in Article V? [Video now available].

Round Table logo 7 April: Falkland Islands: 40 years on
This event launches The Round Table journal’s special section on the Falkland Islands, 40 years after the conflict with Argentina. It evaluates the road travelled by the Falklands over the last four decades and the nature of the islands today. Several authors featured in the special section will discuss their papers, alongside Teslyn Barkman, Member of the Falkland Islands Legislative Assembly. [Report now available].

15 February: Climate Reparations: Opportunities and Obstacles for the Commonwealth’s Small Island States
A Commonwealth Foundation virtual event.  A report and video available at https://www.commonwealthroundtable.co.uk/general/climate-change/lossanddamage-the-next-step-for-the-commonwealths-small-states/.

26 October: ‘Black Lives and the “New” Commonwealth in Post-War Britain: Decolonisation, Race and Justice’
Baroness Usha Prashar, Sunder Katwala (Director of British Future) and communications consultant, Mischa Manderson Mills. Chaired by communications Specialist Joel Kibazo.
This event has been organised by The Round Table, the International Development Department of the University of Birmingham, the Association of Commonwealth Universities, Democracy in Africa and the College of Social Sciences at the University of Birmingham.
A report and the video can be found at https://www.commonwealthroundtable.co.uk/commonwealth/the-friendly-games-as-an-education-launch-pad.
This is the second part of a series. Click here to catch up on part one.

18 October: Prospects for Sustainable Development in a Post-COVID Commonwealth
Online discussion organised by the Royal Commonwealth Society, Canada in collaboration with RCS Sri Lanka. Feature speaker: Professor Mohan Munasinghe. The report and video are now available.

22 July: The People’s Commonwealth – the first Patsy Robertson Memorial Lecture by Dr Anne Gallagher, Director-General of the Commonwealth Foundation
Amid a global pandemic and faltering multilateralism, can the ‘People’s Commonwealth’ of multiple civil society, professional and Commonwealth organisations bring vitality and purpose to the Commonwealth’s global mission? Lecture organised by the Commonwealth Association.  Report now available.

24 June: Media briefing forum about the devastating impact of the Covid pandemic on Commonwealth countries’ finances
The briefing forum with speakers, including Commonwealth Secretary General the Rt Hon Patricia Scotland, is in association with the London Press Club. Report now available. You can now read the Commonwealth Universal Vulnerability Index report.

10 June: Decolonisation and Black Lives: The case of the UK and the Commonwealth
As Birmingham prepares to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games, where does the Commonwealth stand on the current debate on decolonisation and race? Registration is essential for the keynote event and series launch. The series has been organised by The Round Table: The Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs and the International Development Department, University of Birmingham, supported by the Association of Commonwealth Universities and Democracy in Africa. A report on this event is now available.

11 March – Webinar: The Road to CHOGM
The Royal Commonwealth Society will explore the road to CHOGM 2021 with Rwanda’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Vincent Biruta and International Cooperation and UK Minister of State for South Asia and the Commonwealth Lord Tariq Ahmad. Report and video now available.

8 March: Empire into Commonwealth: The Past, Present and Future role of Britain’s royal family in a global context
Video now available.

7 March: A Celebration for Commonwealth Day
This BBC broadcast includes the annual Commonwealth Day message from The Queen.

25 February: Neither Free Nor Fair’? The Ugandan Elections of January 2021
This panel discussion will bring the audience up to date with developments in Uganda and continued violence and intimidation against the political opposition and raise the important question, What more should the Commonwealth to ensure its values are upheld? Report with video and podcast is now available.

19 January 2021: ‘In Conversation’ with Sir Malcolm Rifkind
Virtual discussion. Report and video now available.

2020 events

20 October:  A Commonwealth for All: Acknowledging the Past – Reimagining the Future.
Report now available.

23 September: ‘Election tourists’ or the spearhead of democratic development? Forty years of Commonwealth election observation
Analysis now available.

10 September – The Commonwealth: Towards Kigali 2021
What will be on the trade and investment agenda for the UK, and the Commonwealth more broadly, during this period? What are the business opportunities? How has Covid affected the Commonwealth and Africa? Discussion includes Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, Minister of State for South Asia and the Commonwealth. A report on this event is now available.

2 September: A Call to action for sustainable cities
Report and recommendations now available.

24 June: Launch of the Sustainable Cities programme
Report now available.

2019

25 November 2019 – Evelyn Wrench Lectures: The Relevance of the Commonwealth in the 21st
Century
HE Ms Yamina Karitanyi, High Commissioner for Rwanda to the United Kingdom, discusses Rwanda as a modern Commonwealth nation, the challenges of reconciliation after conflict and the opportunities presented by being the host of CHOGM 2020. A report on this is now available.

29 April: [email protected]: The Commonwealth & Resilience in 21st century
Panelists analyse the resilience of the association and consider necessary changes to meet the challenges of the 21st Century for its member states. Article now available.

8-9 January: Round Table conference – The Commonwealth in 2019: Challenges and Opportunities.
Report on this event available at https://www.commonwealthroundtable.co.uk/commonwealth/round-table-conference-the-commonwealth-in-2019-challenges-and-opportunities/

2018

8 October: Peter Lyon Memorial Lecture – Britain, Brexit and the future of the Commonwealth
Speaker: Vince Cable. Missed it? An article on this event is now available. The transcript and podcast are also available.

19 March: Witness Seminar: Britain in the Commonwealth: The 1997 Edinburgh summit. A report is now available on this seminar.

6 March: Round Table-sponsored student debate at London University Senate House. The motion is “This House thinks that Commonwealth commitments for human rights are just for public relations.” (Report now available)

13 February: The Royal Commonwealth Society and Goodenough College host a panel discussion on ‘A Commonwealth Conversation – Rejuvenating the Commonwealth’ at Goodenough College.

7 February: Building a safer world? The Commonwealth approach in comparative perspective.
Taking place at l’Université de Londres in Paris. (Report now available on this conference).

26 January: “This House believes the Commonwealth has no place in the modern world”. There is now a report on the Exeter University debate.

17 January: “This House believes that the Commonwealth prevents the UK from moving on from the past and dealing with the future”. Birmingham students debate the future of the Commonwealth. Report from Birmingham now available.

October 2017: Two-day conference on the plans and challenges for the 2018 Commonwealth Leaders’ Summit. Includes reports, outcomes and video interviews.

April 2017: The Peter Lyon Annual Memorial Lecture by HE Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC, Commonwealth Secretary-General. Chancellor’s Hall, Senate House. Transcript and report.

Video: The House of Lords debate the Commonwealth – 16 March.

Focus on Commonwealth Day – Q&A, our coverage and a look into the Commonwealth Day archives – 13 March.

Nov 2016: Launch of a special issue: Brexit and the Commonwealth: What next?
Special issue of The Round Table The Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs.
This issue is now available online.

Round Table Conference
6-7 January 2016 – The Commonwealth after Malta.
A report of the conference proceedings.

Round Table Lecture
“The Commonwealth, the European Union, the Challenges”
Delivered by Dr Lawrence Gonzi, the former Prime Minister of Malta on
27 November 2015 at the University of Malta.
Click here to read Dr Gonzi’s lecture.

The 2015 Malta Summit, Valletta.
The Commonwealth’s New Beginnings?
A One-Day Conference previewing the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting organised by The Round Table: the Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs and the Department for International Relations, University of Malta.
24 November 2015.
Read Michael Frendo’s keynote address

Speech at Senate House
Read Zaid Ibrahim’s The Fate of Freedom and the Onslaught of Islamisation in Malaysia as presented at the event
Date: October 2015
Venue: Senate House, London University, UK

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