– 22 May 2023, EU Parliament Brussels –

The challenges of today – the aftermaths of the global pandemic, growing societal divisions, economic and political uncertainty, climate change, and war – in the midst of Europe but also in other parts of the world – continue to strain individuals and societies world-wide. The world is facing an unprecedented rise of depression, suicide and mental health issues. According to the WHO World Mental Health report published in June 2022, depression and anxiety rose by 25% in the first year of the pandemic, bringing the number of people living with a mental disorder to nearly one billion people.

In 2020, governments worldwide spent an average of just two per cent of health budgets on mental health, with lower-middle income countries allocating less than one per cent.  However, poor mental health costs the world economy an estimated USD 2.5 trillion a year in reduced economic productivity and physical ill-health.

Mental disorders are on the rise in every country in the world and will cost the global economy an estimated $16 trillion by 2030. The economic cost is primarily due to early onset of mental illness and lost productivity, with an estimated 12 billion working days lost due to mental illness every year. Mental health disorders cut through all nationalities, race, social backgrounds, religion and gender. In our fragmented yet interconnected world, it is inevitable to boost mental health efforts for a healthy and vital society. It is only through true collaboration of all stakeholders that this issue can be addressed.

This 2-hour high-level Think Tank will invite participation from key stakeholders, Members of European Parliament, mental health experts and civil societies to showcase and discuss:

  • Innovative solutions to address and improve mental health that can be scaled up for global impact
  • The interconnection between mental health and peace-building
  • Latest research
  • Mental health efforts as a competitive advantage: “The future workplace – Best practices of mental health initiatives for boosted performance”

Think Tank Chair: Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Founder, World Forum for Ethics in Business

Organizer: World Forum for Ethics in Business

Host: MEP Mr. Ryszard Czarnecki, European Parliament Brussels

Confirmed speakers:
• Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Founder, World Forum for Ethics in Business
• Hon. Mr. Ryszard Czarnecki, Member of European Parliament
• Hon. Mr. Adam Niedzielski, Minister of Health, Republic of Poland
• H.E. Mr. Santosh Jha, Ambassador of India to Belgium, the EU and Luxembourg
• Mr. Alojz Peterle, Former Prime Minister of Slovenia; Board Member, WFEB
• Mr. Pablo Ciano, Chief Executive Officer DHL eCommerce
• Prof. Anand Narasimhan, Shell Professor of Global Leadership and Dean of Research, IMD Business School
• Prof. Dr. Ulrich Hegerl, President, European Alliance Against Depression; President, German Depression Foundation
• Mr. Bart Janssens, Managing Director & Senior Partner, The Boston Consulting Group
• Dr. med. Petra Bracht, Founder, The Liebscher & Bracht Pain Therapy
• Mr. Roland Liebscher-Bracht, Founder, The Liebscher & Bracht Pain Therapy
• Moderator: Mr. Christoph Glaser, Managing Director, World Forum for Ethics in Business

Download the agenda here.

About the Chair
The Think Tank will be chaired by Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Founder, World Forum for Ethics in Business, International Peace Ambassador and recipient of multiple international awards, state honors, doctorates, and appreciations. Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar has been a global advocate for mental health for the past 43 years. He has facilitated numerous projects on local, regional, national and international level and has worked with global institutions, multinationals, but also with highly vulnerable, at-risk people and in conflict zones to increase emotional resilience by putting the individual’s mental health at the core of all activities.  His work has been driven by the conviction that inner peace and the individual’s mental health and wellbeing are the basis for outer peace and societal prosperity. An estimated 500 million people across 180 countries have been reached by his initiatives.

About the Organizer: World Forum for Ethics in Business

The World Forum for Ethics in Business (WFEB) is a registered public interest foundation based in Belgium. Through dedicated programs at the European Parliament and collaborations with institutions such as FIFA, United Nations Geneva, Max Planck Institute, FC Union Berlin, Anti-Doping Norway, DPMA, EPO and the Technical University Munich, as well as through global leadership interventions, WFEB has been advocating and acting towards ethics, sustainability, good  governance and shared value globally for 20 years. The World Forum for Ethics in Business holds a special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. WFEB was founded by Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and is governed by a global Board of Directors. Further information is available on www.wfeb.org .

How to participate
Registration is now closed.

Press C
World Forum for Ethics in Business
Cirstin Ehlers
Tel: +49 151 43101428
E: cirstin.ehlers@wfeb.org