Calling All Citizens: Join Us in Shaping Our Economic Future

Israel 2021 is convening for the second time. Mandate: To come up with radical ideas.

The inaugural Israel 2021 conference took place in January last year. The initiative sought to change the country's socioeconomic discourse and encourage people to take part in shaping the future. To us the rationale was clear, but we knew that for some people, perhaps many people, the goals might have seemed a bit blurry.

One thing we couldn't have known was that Israel was at the brink of one of its most dramatic transformations ever. Even though such transformations, at least early on, affect mainly the consciousness, we can already spot proof of change; first and foremost, the Trajtenberg Committee and the gradual implementation of its recommendations.

Today marks the second annual Israel 2021 conference, to take place at the Jerusalem International Convention Center. This year we've continued the roundtable discussion format, believing that it encourages all participants to play an active role in the debate.

But this time each roundtable will handle a specific case study on an individual or organization. In an open, public discussion, participants can learn to take an active part in shaping the country's socioeconomic future.

The conference isn't designed for any specific group; it's not tailored to a specific industry or form of activity. The conference is geared to anyone concerned about Israel's socioeconomic future.

Even if you can't attend, you should still think about the conference's concerns and goals. To get a better grasp of the event, consider the following list. If you respond the same way to every issue, maybe you don't need to play an active role in shaping Israel's socioeconomic future:

* If you believe that Knesset members and ministers are fully committed to serving all the country's citizens, not just a small group of people or organizations that represent a particular interest.

* If you think all of us, assuming we're talented and study hard, have the opportunities of someone born with access to power.

* If you think our economy no longer caters to people who suffocate competition and stifle innovation; if you think it genuinely encourages innovators and competitors who want to apply their talents.

* If you feel that all relevant socioeconomic issues are on the table and are part of a decision-making process whose implementation will benefit all citizens for years.

* If you believe that a new culture of public responsibility has taken root and is being deepened by hundreds of thousands of activists; if you believe we're no longer under the influence of an old, decrepit system of socioeconomic discrimination.

* If you believe it's all right to fob off to the next generation responsibility for creating a viable socioeconomic system that truly reflects the public's values; if you believe that such responsibility is not your own.

Shiran Granot