Twenty five finalist teams chosen for Mondialogo School Contest 2005/2006Twenty-five partner teams representing 50 schools from 37 countries have been selected as finalists for this year’s Mondialogo School Contest. The finalists were selected by a panel of experts and endorsed by the contest’s international jury, who met at UNESCO headquarters on Wednesday 20 September. Some 2,537 teams - totalling 35,000 students - took part the contest this year.
The contest, initiated by DaimlerChrysler and UNESCO in 2003, is the world’s largest global contest on intercultural dialogue. Its aim is to encourage dialogue between students from different cultures, paired with each other to work across continents on a joint project. The cooperation is intended to develop understanding, tolerance and friendship between people with different cultural, religious and linguistic backgrounds.
The finalists this year come from Argentina, Australia, Bangladesh, Belarus, Brazil, Bulgaria, China, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Dominican Republic, Fiji, Georgia, Germany, India, Indonesia, Islamic Republic of Iran, Italy, Japan, Lebanon, Mexico, Nigeria, Oman, Palestine, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Republic of Korea, Romania, Russian Federation, South Africa, Senegal, Sudan, Turkey, USA, Uzbekistan and Yemen. The use of creative and innovative approaches to different topics was one factor influencing the selection of the finalist teams, as well as the intensity of dialogue between them. An exhibition of their projects is on display at UNESCO Headquarters until 29 September.
The jury, whose members include Jean Ping (Gabon), Countess Setsuko Klossowska de Rola (Japan), Vigdis Finnbogadottir (Iceland), Mounir Bouchenaki (Algeria) and Lourdes Arizpe (Mexico), also selected the three winning teams. The laureates, who will receive cash prizes to be used for the benefit of their schools, will be announced at the Mondialogo Symposium in Rome, Italy from 4 to 7 November.
In addition to its worldwide school contest, Mondialogo also includes the Mondialogo Engineering Award, a contest aimed at fostering knowledge transfer between engineering students from developed and developing countries. The Mondialogo Internet Portal in five languages is the communication platform for all participants and the Mondialogo community.
The Mondialogo partnership also benefits from the support and advice of a number of international personalities who have agreed to serve as Mondialogo Ambassadors. They include the Brazilian author Paulo Coelho and Swedish writer Henning Mankell.