Our world is divided along many fault lines including environmental, social and economic divides. The Victoria Forum will tackle these divides from three intersecting perspectives: Turf, Truth and Trust.

The University of Victoria will host the 2020 Victoria Forum “Bridging Divides: Turf, Truth & Trust” from November 12-14 in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada to discuss global divisions and develop innovative solutions to these challenges.
The Victoria Forum will bring together different groups with disparate perspectives to talk, listen and think about the forum themes with the aim to:

  • Deliver ideas for action – for government, business, academics and civil society.
  • Provide an open, accessible, inclusive space, including differing viewpoints, for evidence-based dialogue.
  • Build bridges between policy makers, business leaders, civil society, academics, and youth.

Thematic Structure
The 2020 Victoria Forum will revolve around three intersecting perspectives that will resonate throughout the event; economic, social and environmental perspectives. Forum sessions will be led by two co-chairs and a partner organization, this structure integrates different perspectives and promotes inclusiveness to generate ideas for a better world for all.

Our sense of place, land, territory, physical landscape or home shapes our identity, behaviour, culture, social norms and sense of belonging. Turf reflects the relationship of people to place and directs us to consider ownership, protection and rights over such place. Questions relating to turf lie at the heart of contemporary divides and conflicting definitions of truth.

What is “truth” and whose “truth” is “true”? The diffusion of diverse perceptions corresponding to the same reality, particularly with the advent of social media, is undermining social consensus and exacerbating the fault lines in our society. Concepts of alternative truth and post-truth are accelerating the erosion of trust in institutions, in others and in the future.

Trust serves as the foundation for building social relationships, prosperity, and institutions. Lines of divide between members of different groups are systematically reshaping the degree to which people extend trust to others. Bridging divides starts with (re)building trust.

Forum Audience
The Victoria Forum is committed to inclusion and diversity in its speakers, organizers and forum delegates. This holistic approach will highlight different points of view and expertise to integrate, innovate and propose new ideas. Organizers are reaching out to the following audiences: policy makers, business leaders, civil society, scholars, students, youth, and the public.

Forum delegates will engage with a broad range of contributors during the two-day gathering – business leaders, international visionaries, activists, politicians and cultural influencers – as participants discuss bridging economic, social and environmental divides to help make a better world for all global citizens.

At this international gathering, through a series of panels, plenaries and think-tank style sessions, delegates will assess global challenges that divide us and, together, chart a way forward.


  • An opening plenary featuring leaders and visionaries to provide their perspectives on environmental, social and economic divides in Canada and abroad.
  •  An opening gala reception featuring youth performers and local delicacies.
  • Plenary sessions, moderated by a scholar and a practitioner over the course of two days.
  • Think-tank style, allowing participants and experts to engage in constructive conversations to develop solutions and chart a way forward. These sessions will identify 3-10 recommendations that may include policies, open research questions and calls for action that will be compile and presented to policy makers post-forum.
  • Social events (banquet, lunches, breaks, opening and closing ceremonies) for networking.
  • Public exhibits and cultural events to display Canadian and international solutions and ideas.
  • Youth engagement events to encourage youth participation


Join Us in 2020

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