News Release

High-Profile Summits Will Take On

For several days beginning Jan. 31, two global summits — one in Manhattan, one in Porto Alegre, Brazil — will offer dramatically different visions for the future of the world economy.

The World Economic Forum in New York City:
According to its website (www.weforum.org/site/homepublic.nsf/Content/Annual+Meeting+2002%5CAbout+the+Annual+Meeting), the WEF was established in 1971 as a “member-based institution comprised of the 1,000 most powerful corporations in the world.” Annual meetings — billed as “the world’s global business summit” to “shape the global agenda” — have taken place in the Alps in Davos, Switzerland, where they faced growing protests. This year, sessions have been relocated to New York City. Meetings will be held at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in a “unique club atmosphere,” closed to the public and the media. However, there will be an “External Media Center.”

Labor, community, environmental, student and other groups are planning parallel events, teach-ins and protests in New York City during the WEF’s meetings. These groups oppose the WEF’s vision of corporate power over the world economy.

Contact:

KATE COOPER
Cooper is a member of the Another World Is Possible coalition.
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The World Social Forum in Porto Alegre, Brazil:
Initiated a year ago, this event (www.worldsocialforum.org ) is “an open meeting space” created as an alternative to the WEF. It is designed for “reflection, democratic debate of ideas, formulation of proposals, free exchange of experiences and planning of effective action among entities and movements of civil society that oppose neoliberalism and a world dominated by capital and any form of imperialism.” The World Social Forum is “engaged in building a planetary society centered on the human being.” Last year there were upwards of 10,000 participants from 120 countries. This year, WSF organizers are expecting tens of thousands of delegates. Planned marches are being embraced by Porto Alegre’s city government.

Contacts:

MARIA LUISA MENDONCA
Mendonca is a member of the WSF organizing committee in Brazil and director of the Social Network for Justice and Human Rights.

SARAH ANDERSON
A fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies, Anderson is coauthor of “Field Guide to the Global Economy.”
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; Norman Solomon, (415) 552-5378