With a 2-day Kick-off Conference on 1-2 February 2018, the Think20 (T20) – the think tank engagement group of the G20 – launched its work under the Argentinian Presidency. Ten thematic Task Forces were constituted and presented their work plans for the year to around 200 delegates from think tanks, research institutes and international organisations worldwide.
Since September 2017, EMSD has supported the two Argentinian T20 Chairs CIPPEC (Centro de Implementación de Políticas Públicas para la Equidad y el Crecimiento) and CARI (Consejo Argentino para las Relaciones Internacionales) during the transition phase from the German G20 Presidency, and is one of the T20 Strategic Partners this year. Apart from advising on T20 process and management, EMSD remains a content and knowledge provider through its networks in three of the ten established Task Forces:
A three-country scenario-building exercise on employment effects in specific sectors in 2030 in India, South Africa and Argentina will be submitted to the Task Force on the Future of Work and Education in the Digital Age, one of the high priority topics of T20 Argentina in line with the government priorities set out for the G20 Agenda this year. EMSD will also continue to contribute country analysis and pilot implementation cases for sustainable infrastructure to the Task Force on Climate Change and Infrastructure for Development, building on its work and partners throughout the last two years. Furthermore, EMSD supports the Task Force on Migration in its second year, co-chaired by Astrid Skala-Kuhmann for GIZ, and particularly seeking to bridge the T20 knowledge community with GIZ’s vast experience and communities of practice in this field. Envisaged are contributions as well as commentary and peer-review of policy briefs around the following topics: 1) successfully building and implementing regional migration partnerships, 2) providing access to education for children and adolescent migrants, 3) improving conditions for care and service occupations as a particularly vulnerable and large migrant group. Last not least, as a Strategic Partner to Women20 (W20), EMSD is also participating in the T20 Task Force on Gender Equality and the Economic Empowerment of Women in order to bridge activities and efforts of the two engagement groups and accompany a joint W20/T20 research on the economic benefits of closing the employment gender gap.
During the conference and Task Force meetings, the participation of Argentinian government officials was particularly notable, opening up a dialogue about their priorities. Marcos Peña, Chief of Cabinet of Argentina, engaged in an open 1h discussion with conference participants. He stressed the importance of the G20 Presidency for Argentina, and pledged to make a mark not only by increasing the voices and perspectives of developing and emerging regions in the G20 discussions, but also by taking G20 closer to peoples and societies at large, beyond exchange with the G20 engagement groups.