Conference 2010

Bridges to Breakthroughs: How Partnerships and Innovation are Changing the World

Melanne Verveer, US Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues, US State Department

As a hub of diverse and active international development players, the state of Washington is creating a model for collaboration in the global development sector, providing innovative strategies and cross-sector, cross-issue partnerships to build a better world. On November 15th and 16th, 2010, 430 members of the global development sector convened on the Microsoft campus in Redmond, Washington for Bridges to Breakthroughs: How partnerships and innovation are changing the world, a two-day conference hosted by Global Washington.

Bridges to Breakthroughs, Global Washington’s 2ndAnnual Conference, brought a wide array of actors in the sector together to network and to learn from dynamic speakers, including representatives from USAID, Global Impact, Interaction, The Grameen Foundation, PATH, World Vision, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The United Nations Millennium Campaign, and many other innovative companies and organizations. Over the two days of the conference, these leaders discussed strategic approaches for strengthening cross-sector partnerships; promoting scientific and technological

Akhtar Badshah, Senior Director, Microsoft Community Affairs (left) and Dean Karlan, Professor of Economics, Yale University (right)

breakthroughs; and harnessing the collective leadership of the region’s scholars, entrepreneurs, business leaders, scientists, philanthropists, and advocates.

The two days of the conference were packed with great information about the most relevant issues facing the global development sector; attendees and speakers also explored how Global Washington can best achieve its mission to promote, support, and advocate on behalf of the development community in the state and beyond. The organization has put together a recap report summarizing each conference session, as well as overall trends and future steps for Global Washington and the development community. This conference will help put Washington State on the map as an example in partnerships and innovations that will hopefully be followed by other states in the near future.