Khazanah Global Lectures
Professor Joseph E. Stiglitz

Kofi Annan
Former Secretary General of UN & Nobel Peace Laureate

Kofi Annan served as United Nations Secretary-General from 1997-2006. During his tenure, he made his mark as an advocate for human rights, the rule of law, and the revitalization of the United Nations. He has been a key player in the fight against HIV/AIDS and a leader of the multilateral response to the global terrorist threat.
"Sharing the Dividends of Development
with the Thoughts on Malaysian Merdeka"

12 July 2007
Istana Hotel, Kuala Lumpur
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Inspiring Lecture

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"Globalization is a fact of life. But I believe we
have underestimated its fragility."

When elected to the Secretary-Generalship in 1997, Mr. Annan became the first UN Secretary-General to come directly from the United Nations staff, and the first from a black African nation to hold the position.

In 1962, Annan took his first United Nations job with the World Health Organization in Geneva. Over his long career at the UN, Annan held a wide array of leadership posts, working in the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Geneva and serving as the Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping from 1992-1996, amongst other positions. Annan also worked on special assignments abroad, visiting global hotspots such as Yugoslavia and Iraq on behalf of the UN.

As Secretary-General, Annan worked to bolster the United Nation's relationship with businesses and civil society groups, sponsoring a Global Compact initiative to promote corporate social responsibility. He was instrumental in laying out the Millennium Development Goals, a strategy to meet the needs of the world's poorest by 2015.
In 2005, Mr. Annan succeeded in persuading the United Nations to establish the Peacebuilding Commission and the Human Rights Council, new intergovernmental bodies dedicated to global peace and welfare. Annan was also a chief proponent of the creation of the Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. On 10 December 2001, Annan and the United Nations received the Nobel Peace Prize.

Born in Ghana in 1938, Annan studied in Kumasi, Minnesota and Geneva, before receiving a Master of Science in Management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

His Talking Points

Kofi Annan spoke on international development with respect to Malaysia’s socio-economic growth and multi-racial society. As a former United Nations Secretary General, Annan’s in-depth experience with multilateral institutions provided an insight into possibilities for Malaysia to pursue its development goals without having to yield to the ‘one size fits all approach’ or sacrifice its national development interests to realize equality, freedom and justice in Malaysian society.

Additionally, Annan offered his outlook on Malaysia and the Asian region with regards to new emerging economic and political powers and their influence on the region, international relations as well as possible shifting of international issues that will shape Malaysia and the world in the near future.

Past Speakers