UPCOMING CAMDEN CONFERENCE FOCUS: INDIA, AMBITIONS AND CHALLENGES
The Camden Conference, Maine’s highly regarded global affairs forum, is putting this year’s focus on India, with the upcoming Conference, INDIA: Rising Ambitions, Challenges at Home, February 16 – 18 at the Camden Opera House.
“India has a large population, one of the fastest growing economies, and is undergoing dynamic changes, but it is a nation we do not know well,” said Wayne Hobson, president of the Camden Conference. “We hope to begin to correct that by bringing to Camden some of the top world experts on India.”
Leading off the Camden Conference as the keynoter is Nirupama Rao who has served as India’s Foreign Secretary and its first woman ambassador to the United States, China, and to Sri Lanka. Another featured speaker is Arvind Subramanian, an Indian economist who served as Chief Economic Advisor to the Government of India. He has been named by Foreign Policy magazine as one of the world’s top 100 global thinkers.
Some facts about India:
- India is on track to have the world’s biggest population and the second largest economy. In recent years, India has outperformed most other major nations economically.
- India has the youngest population of any nation of in South Asia. India’s population is growing, while China and Japan have aging populations that are in decline.
- While serious poverty still exists, under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, India has substantially cut poverty, according to an analysis published by the Financial Times.
- While India is ranked as a democracy, opportunities for women are notoriously in short supply, and democracy watchdog groups have downgraded India’s rankings on basic freedoms over the past 10 years.
- Press freedoms are highly limited and are sometimes compared with those of Russia. Indian journalists have faced criminal charges or jail time in what watchdog groups describe as a crackdown on free expression.
- India’s long-standing ethnic problems between Hindus, Muslims, and Christians remain a major challenge to national unity.
- India is a nuclear power that attempts to maintain a neutral stance in geopolitics with China, Russia, and the United States. How India plays this role is the subject of much debate.
The Camden Conference, one of the largest public forums in the United States specializing in foreign affairs, will be moderated by the popular host of public radio’s Marketplace Morning Report, David Brancaccio.
The 2024 Camden Conference, INDIA: Rising Ambitions, Challenges at Home, will be held live at the Camden Opera House and live-streamed to venues in Portland, Rockland, and to classrooms and households around the world. For the full roster of the 2024 Conference speakers, please click HERE.