THE ESTORIL CONFERENCES’ PLEDGE FOR RATIONAL DEBATES AND INFORMED CHOICES
Our debates are based on respect and recognition. This is not merely a method, it is the very foundation of justice as it stands. With an emphasis on the defense of pluralism and diversity, we are committed to establishing dialogue as the main engine of change, engaging the audience in a unique opportunity to discuss the topics that matter the most to our collective life.
Participants are thus requested to respect their fellow speakers’ opinions and to closely follow time limits, allowing our audience to join in the debate. Together, we will turn this into a moment that truly honors the democratic values anchored on rational discussions of pluralistic views. We embrace contestation and dissent as inherent features of contemporary polities – we envisage our stage as part of an aggregating public sphere where respect and recognition are the only red lines allowed.
This public sphere can no longer be an unmediated imaginary space, which merely promotes the survival of the fittest. We are committed to the creation of a realm of social life where all perspectives are welcomed, challenging the status quo and the grand narratives of the elites. The way we see it, political participation is an intrinsic part of our collective lives, hence an individual right and duty.
The Estoril Conferences invite everyone to unbiasedly test the shortcomings of their positions. To confront them with other perspectives. To inevitably bump against dearly held dogmas. And find out new meanings for treasured concepts. This, we believe, is the starting point of any genuine will to promote peace and equality in a globally just world.