Launch of the 2019 Global Pluralism Award Selections

Launch of the 2019 Global Pluralism Award Selections

On March 1, an international jury, chaired by the Rt. Hon. Joe Clark, former Canadian Prime Minister, will meet in Ottawa to choose finalists for the second biennial Global Pluralism Award. The Award recognizes individuals and organizations who are tackling the challenge of building more peaceful and inclusive societies around the world.

In describing the inaugural award in 2017, Mr. Clark said, “Recognizing the ground-breaking work of these individuals is one of the most important things I’ve done in my career. Each of them, working in incredibly difficult contexts, is paving a road towards mutual understanding and respect for human dignity.”


Jury members are renowned in fields including human rights, education, technology, public policy and corporate social responsibility. Through their work, they have a deep understanding of the effort it takes to build societies where differences are valued and respected. Their expertise will inform a rigorous, multi-stage selection process. Three awardees will be named at a ceremony in Ottawa in November 2019. Each recipient will receive a prize of $50,000 (CAD) to further their work in support of pluralism. A longer list of finalists will also be honoured.

The jury includes:

  • The Hon. Joe Clark (Canada – Jury Chair), former Prime Minister of Canada
  • Ms. Ory Okolloh (Kenya), Director of Investments at the philanthropic investment firm Omidyar Network;
  • Ms. Paula Gaviria Betancur (Colombia), former Presidential Advisor on Human Rights;
  • Dr. Siva Kumari (USA), Director General of the International Baccalaureate;
  • Dr. Tarek Mitri (Lebanon), Director of the Fares Institute on Public Policy and International Affairs at the American University of Beirut;
  • His Worship Naheed Nenshi (Canada), Mayor of Calgary, currently serving his third term;
  • Ms. Pascale Thumerelle (France), founder of Respethica, which provides consulting to investors committed to social impact.



In all, from a total of 538 nominations and applications, 300 eligible entries from 74 countries were received for this year’s award, representing fields as diverse as peacebuilding, education, the arts and interfaith dialogue. Jurors will review a longlist of 42 entries.

The inaugural Global Pluralism Award was presented at a ceremony in Ottawa in November 2017 to three winners: Alice Wairimu Nderitu (Kenya), a conflict mediator and gender equality advocate; Daniel Webb (Australia), a human rights lawyer working with asylum seekers; and Leyner Palacios Asprilla (Colombia), an advocate for social justice and for victims of the Colombian conflict.

The Award is a program of the Global Centre for Pluralism, an international research and education centre founded by His Highness the Aga Khan in partnership with the Government of Canada.

For more information:
Daniel Cervan-Gil
Program Manager
Global Centre for Pluralism
[email protected]

For media inquiries:
Mary O’Neill
Communications and Public Affairs Manager
Global Centre for Pluralism
[email protected]