In 2006, three Young Global Leaders began a conversation at the World Economic Forum about how polarized the world felt.
John Hope Bryant, CEO and Founder of Operation HOPE, based in the United States, Pekka Himanen, author, professor and advisor to the former Finnish President, and Crown Prince Haakon of Norway, met for the first time at the World Economic Forum in 2006 and felt compelled to do something that would spread the values and principles behind this powerful concept of “dignity.”
During the World Economic Forum gathering, they wrote the Founding Principles for a new non-profit organization, Global Dignity. Muhammad Ali was the first person to sign on. Next, they found a school down the mountain in Switzerland and led the first immersive, storytelling-based workshop on dignity in just one classroom. Bishop Tutu left the Forum to join them in the school, and when Sir Richard Branson and musician Peter Gabriel saw Bishop Tutu leaving the conference, they joined too.