Millennial Motion: The Next Generation of Leadership

By SEN, 30th May 2016 

It is critical to focus on where hope and potential lies. The hope of new generations. Especially during these pressing times in the world on multiple levels, we are in need of new and hopeful perspectives.

In that light, the Millennial Motion: The Next Generation of Leadership launch took place on the 14th of April at the Centre for Innovation, Hague Campus Leiden University in collaboration with the Millennial Research Team, Synergized Earth Network (SEN), OYWTheHague, HagueTalks and supported by the Municipality of The Hague, Impact  Economy program, herebysupporting​ ImpactCity-The Hague Innovators. 

The purpose of this launch was a natural fit to the city of The Hague as the international city of peace and justice.

A Pioneering Scientific Study on Millennial Leadership 

This launch was based on a pioneering study conducted on Millennial Leadership worldwide by the initiator of MillennialMotion and doctoral researcher Seren Dalkiran at the University of Notre Dame Australia, Utrecht University, Varna University of Management with the support of Professor emeritus Geert Hofstede and in partnership with TNS-NIPO and Synergized Earth Network (SEN) and the Millennial Research Team. 

A preliminary report ‘MILLENNIAL MOTION: How to Transform Leadership for the Next Generation to Tackle the Pressing Global Challenges of our Time?’ of Seren Dalkiran's​ scientific study in search of an alternative leadership paradigm responsive to tackling global challenges was released during this launch. 

This study builds an evidence-based bridge between theory and practice and the nexus between science and society. It gives a framework to also redefine the role of science, education and knowledge generation in terms of its practical application across stakeholders. In addition, it addresses the implications this can have for human societies and new forms of leadership as the launch reflected.


Kick-off Millennial Talks

During this event a platform to shed evidence-based light on the importance of the role of Millennial leaders in global change processes has been kicked-off. A diverse intergenerational world community of Millennial leaders, change agents, (future) decision-makers, (social) entrepreneurs, thought leaders, innovators as well as stakeholders, elders and mutual mentors gathered in The Hague.

The first MillennialTalks was introduced by a wonderful first line of Millennial leader speakers worldwide who represented valuable voices within the Millennial Generation. They inspired the audience with their vision, work and contributions across various impact areas. 

The break-out sessions also enabled space to extend their talks. In these sessions action-oriented conversations on the various impact areas took place. They addressed how to generate possible solutions for the challenges we are facing on multiple levels. 

The Millennial speakers represented the following diverse impact areas by sharing their vision, personal stories, initiatives and Call to Action across:

▶ Impact area Civil Society by Ezequiel Jimenez, a Millennial leader and human rights practioner from Argentina

▶ Impact area Business Tariq Al-Olaimy, a Millennial leader, social entrepreneur and biomimicry specialist from Bahrain

▶ Impact area by Public Policy Mahmoud El-Refai, a Millennial leader, public policy analyst and social entrepreneur from Egypt

▶  Impact area Education by Jonathan Fritzler, a Millennial leader, educator and social entrepreneur from Hawaii

▶ Impact area Technology by Remco Bloemen, a Millennial leader, digital nomad and social entrepreneur from The Netherlands

Impact area Grassroots Leadership by Benedetta Mwongeli, a Millennial grassroots leader and  community leader from Kenya


Intergenerational and Multi-Stakeholder Dialogue & Collaboration

Both intergenerational dialogue as well as a multi-stakeholder cooperation has been enhanced during this event. Various stakeholders, elders and mutual mentors for the younger generation responded to the MillennialTalks:

▶ Ignaz Anderson, Director Iona Foundation

▶ Jan van den Herik, Director Strategy & Innovation Sector Leader KPMG

▶ Joshua Malkin, civic worker and social entrepreneur from the Network of Wellbeing

▶ Gerrit Bartus Dielissen, Assistant Professor Utrecht University

▶ Marcello Palazzi social entrepreneur and co-founder B Corp Europe

▶  Fried Keessen, Director of Education University College Utrecht

There were two break-out sessions in which the Millennial leaders discussed their input with the community that was present at the MillennialMotion event. Insightful possible solutions have been harvested and suggested for follow-up.


Future Prospect

Overall, MillennialMotion brought together a global community of emerging and existing leaders, change agents and (social) entrepreneurs across stakeholders, sectors and industries. They share a collective cause to transform the challenges we are facing into new possibilities to work towards a more just, peaceful and sustainable world.

The pioneering scientific study on Millennial Leadership worldwide provided evidence-based ground to add a new dimension to the ongoing global debate around this matter. As such it has enhanced the importance of it on The Hague agenda.

The Next Generation of Leadership

The Millennial Generation does not only cover more than half of the current world population of 7.35 billion strong. In 2025 this cohort is expected to comprise more than 75% of the global workforce.

This means that it is critical to add a new dimension to the ongoing global debate on Millennial Leadership that is predominantly focused on recruitment and retention of Millennial leaders and young professionals as well as optimizing talent strategy.

The Millennial Motion launch started to make a significant beginning to shift that debate to how Millennials as an emerging generation of leaders and decision-makers can be equipped to become resilient in the face of global challenges. How investments can be made to such an emerging group that has a growing significance, which is inevitable in order ​for them to realize their human potential is a key component that is missing in the current debate.

Together we have started to shape this discussion on transforming leadership responsive to tackle the accelerating, complex and interdependent challenges we are facing on a social, economic and ecological level.

Also how this could contribute to the global knowledge and impact economy from different perspectives has been addressed. ​

This indeed gives ground for new and hopeful perspectives and we look forward to our next editions and to keep contributing towards a better today and tomorrow in such extraordinary times!

For more information:


Reflections by participants and partners on Millennial Motion event on 14th April 2016

"It is easy, at times, to feel disillusioned and overwhelmed with the challenges facing our world today. However, events like ‘Millennial Motion’ and organisations like the Synergized Earth Network (SEN) serve to remind me of just how much there is to be hopeful about.

On Thursday 14th April 2016 a group of us came together to hear from inspiring speakers and also share our own ideas and experiences on how to transform leadership, in order to more effectively tackle the most pressing global challenges of our time. The speakers offered rich food for thought on diverse areas, including civil society, business, public policy, education, technology and grassroots leadership.

I was particularly inspired by the talk given by Ezequiel Jimenez from Argentina, who spoke of the need for us to all participate in building a stronger civil society. “We are change agents in everything we do”, Ezequiel reminded us. He also shared an understanding of leadership as being about carrying and supporting others. This was a sentiment echoed by others throughout the evening; a calling towards new ways and more collaborative forms of leadership.
Overall, the Millennial Motion event offered a helpful reminder that we can all be leaders for positive change, and that there are many others out there working towards similar goals of a fairer, sustainable and more peaceful world."
By Florence Scialom, Network of Wellbeing (NOW)

"Seren Dalkiran is part of the Advisory Board for One Young World The Hague. Her pioneering scientific study on Millennial Leadership fits perfectly in the goal of One Young World The Hague to build a better world. The Hague as the international city for peace & justice will be the host city for the prestigious One Young World Summit for young leaders in 2018.

It is expected that around 1,500 young leaders from over 196 countries will gather in The Hague. We are extremely proud to be part of the launch of Millennial Motion: The Next Generation of Leadership. It was an inspiring event and the upcoming editions are part of strengthening the partnership between Synergized Earth Network, Centre for Innovation The Hague, HagueTalks, One Young World The Hague and the Municipality of the Hague (Impact Economy).  

Remco, Mahmoud, Bena, Tariq, Jonathan, Ezequiel and Seren represented different impact areas and gave inspiring talks with a call to action! Together they echo a call to action find the impact area that we most care about in order to creative positive change and​ challenged us to 'just do it'! "
By Jennie Jouvenaar, One Young World The Hague
"The Millennial Motion Launch was one of those ever more frequent moments of understanding among people, cultures and generations. These moments might still be seldom, but in a global environment that is so diverse, yet so connected and interdependent, these moments are paramount. The launch had several young leaders discuss six themes from civil society, public policy, education, grassroots leadership  to​ business and technology.

Of course these themes were only few of the many global challenges we face as a society, but for me all stories were very much connected. This ranged from Tariq, a young business leader from Bahrain, who showed businesses a different perspective whereby sustainable business can be profitable, Mahmoud who shed light on the importance of Public Policy that is part of all of our responsibility and not something to be rejected as politics or Ezequiel, from Argentina, who showed everyone present a different perspective on Civil Society. At his first question only very few hands went up acknowledging they were part of or working for Civil Society and at the end of his talk the entire room was filled with raised hands. This reflected an overall experience in which different perspectives came together, which was very inspiring.

Everybody is facing challenges and each one of us experiences this in a different way because we ​have our own perspective. However, when we open ourselves up to the perspective of the other, we can recognize that we are very similar from within.

In the end we are all human beings, living creatures sharing a small planet, we need to work together to maintain this planet. To do that, we need to open up our minds, learn about different perspectives and try and understand where the other is coming from.

To me that was what the Millennial Motion Launch was about, about people with different backgrounds sharing their perspective and creating connection and change by bridging different these perspectives. Let us try not to judge, but to keep on learning from each other instead, at least I know that I certainly did this there." 
By Reinoud Clemens, Intrapreneur