Category Archives: Summit Blog

A Call for Courageous Leadership: Responding to the Refugee Crisis by Arleen Westerhof


A recent study about citizen’s concerns in the EU showed that while those in the Mediterranean countries were primarily worried about unemployment, those in the economically stronger nations were more worried about the effects of debt.1 The one thing however that unites us all is our concern about the refugee crisis and our inability to tackle it at a European level. Anti-immigrant violence is growing in countries that have shouldered the largest burden while fears are the highest in countries that have received the least amount of immigrants. If there ever was a time to champion a relational, values-based  approach to dealing with this situation it is now.

In this blog I would like to suggest a few things that we can do.
>> more

Changing religions, changing economies by Brian Grim and Phillip Connor

Religious Freedom and Business Foundation

Religious populations are projected to outgrow religiously unaffiliated populations worldwide by a factor of 23 between 2010 and 2050. This will increase religious diversity and alter the distribution of wealth, according to new study by the Religious Freedom & Business Foundation, Changing religion, changing economies. [ See link below].*

This growing religious diversity can be an economic strength if national and business leaders promote interfaith understanding, protect minority groups’ human rights, and advance freedom of religion or belief, thereby ensuring sustainable and peaceful development for all.

Among the report’s main finds are that the rising economic fortunes of Hindus and the rising numbers of Muslims in particular will produce a more economically and religiously diverse planet, while the relative position of Christian populations will be weakened overall. >> more

New Capitalism by Peter J. Briscoe

Churchill said, “”Capitalism is the worst economic system, except for all the others.”

“The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings; the inherent virtue of socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.”

Although the Bible dopes not explicitly promote or defend the capitalist system, it is the best we have …  but it needs to be strongly influenced by Gods economy.

Last week, I was privileged to be with Bruno Roche, Chief Economist of a major multinational company at a meeting of the European Economic Summit,  who proposed an economics of mutuality. This is based on the value of the individual. >> more

Erklärung des Europäischen Ökonomischen Gipfeltreffens 2015 (German)

Das Ziel des European Economic Summits (Europäisches Ökonomisches Gipfeltreffen) ist, neue Denkmodelle für Finanzen und Wirtschaft, die auf christlichen Traditionen, Glauben und Gedankengut basiert sind, bekannt zu machen und sich verändernde Unternehmen als neue Modelle für Armutsbestreitung und langfristige Lösungen vorzustellen.

>> more

Déclaration du Sommet Economique Européen (French)


En septembre 2014, 175 personnes faisant partie de 26 nations se sont ramassés à Amsterdam pour le premier Sommet Economique Européen. Le but du sommet : introduire des nouveaux paradigmes sur les finances et l’économie fondés sur l’héritage chrétien, la foi et la pensée ; et présenter des affaires transformationnelles comme un nouveau modèle pour le soulagement de la pauvreté et des solutions durables. >> more

Summitul Economic European – Declarație (Romanian)

În Septembrie 2014, 175 de persoane din 26 de națiuni s-au adunat în Amsterdam pentru primul Summit Economic European. Scopul Summitului: să introducă noi paradigme în finanțe și economie bazate pe gândirea, tradiția și credința creștină, și să prezinte afacerile transformaționale ca model nou pentru reducerea sărăciei și pentru găsirea unor soluții sustenabile. >> more

Picketty? Smart book but it’s wrong

By Phillip de Witt Wijnen, Economics Editor NRC Handelsblad, Sat. 14 June 2014

Gerrit Zalm was right. Back in the summer of 1999 when Secretary of State, Willem Vermeend,  showed him the new tax reforms, Zalm, then Minister of Finance, thought that it was a good plan but he said, “You need to choose another title.”  Vermeend had chosen the title: A Tax Plan for the 21st Century. “There’ll be other reforms after this” said the Minister. Vermeend still laughs about that. “Yes, I may have been a little ambitious. Gerrit brought me back down to earth.” Vermeend did eventually present the plan to the Dutch Parliament, but under the title: A Tax Plan for 2001”, named after the year in which it was implemented. >> more

Budapest … Lessons from the Crisis

What lessons can we learn from the financial crisis of the past 5 years? How can we avoid making the same mistakes in the future? Einstein famously quoted, “we cannot solve problems using the same thinking that originally caused the problems.”  How can we think differently about personal and corporate finance in a vulnerable economy. It is also said that money will not solve financial problems  – only alleviate the symptoms for a short time – and that the financial crisis is, at its core, a problem of the human heart, not a technical problem. We need a new way of thinking, both collectively and individually, >> more

Pope Francis slams our economic system

I am not a Roman Catholic but I just love Pope Francis! His humility, humour and insights are so refreshing! This past week, I had the privilege of being asked to address a number of Members of the European Parliament in Brussels, who were asking for input on a new paradigm for our economy. I spoke on the economics of the Kingdom as our new paradigm.
In a speech this past week, Pope Francis called for a global economic system >> more

Matters of the heart

By Dr. Arleen Westerhof

There can be no doubt that one of the major roots of the current economic crisis is that we have a crisis of the heart. Jesus said, “A good tree cannot produce bad fruit and a bad tree cannot produce good fruit.” What is in our hearts determines what and how we think. These, in turn, determine our actions. The global economic crisis that we are now in is therefore only a symptom of something deeper. It indicates that we have a crisis of values and a crisis of the heart.
In order to change things >> more