AGTO launched at the Third Paris Peace Forum


On November 13, 2020, the Alliance of Global Talent Organizations (AGTO) was launched at the third edition of the Paris Peace Forum, accompanied by an expert panel to discuss the main objectives and perspectives of the AGTO.

Supported by the President of France Emmanuel Macron, the Paris Peace Forum was founded in 2018 to tackle global problems and strengthen multilateral cooperation. In 2020, for the third consecutive year, the Paris Peace Forum assembled global leaders including heads of state and governments, CEOs of major multinationals, as well as civil society actors to advance concrete solutions to the enormous challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, and to rebuild a better and more sustainable world.Participants included Emmanuel Macron, president of France; António Guterres, secretary-general of the United Nations; Audrey Azoulay, director-general of UNESCO; Thierry Breton, European commissioner for the Internal Market; and Tedros Ghebreyesus, director-general of WHO. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the third edition of the Paris Peace Forum was held in digital format.

At the Paris Peace Forum, the Alliance of Global Talent Organizations, an international non-governmental organization proposed by the Center for China and Globalization (CCG), completed its soft launch with an expert discussion on November 13. As a new platform for knowledge-sharing and capacity-building and to facilitate international dialogue on global talent mobility, the AGTO addresses a significant gap in global governance and responds to challenges in global cooperation on talent flow, now further intensified by the global pandemic.

During the soft launch and online panel, five AGTO experts from different countries discussed various paths to develop this promising alliance.


Wang Huiyao, Director General of AGTO and president of CCG, elaborated on AGTO’s role in policy advice and informing enhanced governance of talent mobility. According to Wang, in the future, AGTO would like to establish talent management as a distinct competitive advantage, matching talent to global needs and facilitating international mobility.

Denis Fred Simon, chairman of the AGTO and senior advisor to the president of Duke University, outlined the structure of AGTO. The main operational body will include the AGTO Council, a steering committee, a secretariat, a research body, a consultancy, and a fund management department.

David Zweig, AGTO’s director of research and professor emeritus at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, discussed AGTO’s research agenda to turn itself into a hub for talent-related research. This includes efforts to create common terminology and standardized, internationally-accepted definitions for key terms and data to inform all discussions, comparisons, and dialogue about global talent issues.

Mehri Madarshahi, member of the International Steering Committee of AGTO and UNESCO International Center for Creativity and Sustainable Development, stressed the need to identify stakeholders to enhance cooperation on talent mobility. Mehri proposed boosting mechanisms for talent governance to fully utilize talents and to facilitate credentials at their destination with the help of different entities like NGOs, private sectors, and policymakers.

The launch and panel were moderated by Martin Geiger, deputy secretary-general of AGTO and associate professor of ‘Politics of Migration and Mobility’ at Carleton University. Before the launch, Martin Geiger presented the AGTO project via the online Paris Peace Forum platform, during which he outlined the motives and mission behind the AGTO.

AGTO has participated in the Paris Peace Forum for three consecutive years since its inauguration. With the support of CCG, AGTO has organized a series of events such as a roundtable discussion in Hong Kong and webinars on talent mobility amidst COVID-19. The project has earned widespread support from different sectors of society, including government officials, representatives from influential international organizations, NGOs, and renowned scholars.

2019 AGTO has held the sub-conference about talent mobility during PPF

In terms of international membership, the AGTO welcomes all relevant entities to join with the AGTO’s activities in the area of talent mobility, human resource management and provide innovative policy and governance solutions. For the next step, AGTO is expected to hold the first session of the Conference of the Steering Committee, develop membership, conduct data- and topic-based talent research, and publish the Global Talent Mobility Report. AGTO is also engaged in holding the first edition of the Global Talent Conference in Hong Kong.