The Humanistic Management Network hosted its 8th international conference between 4th and 6th November. In common with other events that went ahead this year, the conference migrated online through the University of Lucerne, with the theme "Unity in Diversity". Through its association with the Network, AMED was a supporter of the Conference.
Over the three days, HMN global chapters from as far afield as Columbia, South Africa, Nigeria, Japan, China, Poland and the UK organised two-hour presentations and workshops across different time zones. Many presentations addressed both the theme of the conference and the concerns of individual countries.
The organisers decided that as the event was an online event it would be free, which presented anxieties as often people register and then do not attend. However, early fears about absent delegates did not last long as registrations soon mounted to over 1,000 with most of those attending and staying for more than one session.
There were sessions on digital inclusion, well-being, sustainability, leadership, inclusive workplaces, and responses to the pandemic. A significant theme running through the conferences was that of the role of leadership in providing responses to crisis and building inclusive societies.
Participating universities encouraged students to submit academic papers on the themes of leadership education, managing diversity, and management in the Anthropocene.
During breakout sessions, guest speakers from organisations whose purpose aligned with the conference theme spoke about their work in supporting local economies, vulnerable citizens, and refugees. Although the schedule was full, the Columbian guitarist Airton Preta provided live entertainment and the conference finished with a recently released video of British composer, Sir Karl Jenkins’ glorious ‘Adiemus’ from the global Stay At Home Choir, a massed group of singers from over seventy-five countries.
There was much to learn and enjoy in the Conference and the organisers are looking forward to planning for 2021. The Conference website is still open and the programme of events and downloadable documents at these links:
If you want to hear the uplifting ‘Adiemus’ by the Stay At Home Choir, whose organisers have just received a Royal Philharmonic Society inspiration award, then follow this link: https://youtu.be/hiMmLG1E1I4
This conference was truly inclusive and representative of what humanistic management principles can achieve: the unconditional respect for the dignity of life, the integration of ethical reflection in management decisions and the active and ongoing engagement with stakeholders.
Dr Ruth E Slater
Excellent summary and beautiful video/choral music, Ruth. Thankyou.