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Parliament of the World’s Religions Seeks Host City for 2021

January 3, 2018

As plans for the 2018 Parliament of the World’s Religions continue to develop, we are excited to announce the start of a search for a city to host the 2021 Parliament. Four years ago, the Board of Trustees of the Parliament of the World’s Religions adopted a resolution to host Parliaments more frequently in keeping with the fast-paced development of the interfaith movement throughout the world. We are pleased to open the bid process for the next host city of the 8th Parliament of the World’s Religions and subsequent Parliaments, which we intend to begin hosting in 2021 following the 2018 Parliament of the World’s Religions in Toronto, Canada. Since the last Parliament took place in 2015 in Salt Lake City, U.S.A., and next year’s event will be held in Toronto, Canada, we are looking for prospective international cities with a preference for those outside of North America for the 8th Parliament, in keeping with the organization’s commitment to bring our interfaith convenings to different parts of the world.
We are looking for cities that can meet the following basic criteria:

A convention/conference center large enough to accommodate 7,000 -10,000 participants at once, as well as having the capacity to hold at least 30 discrete, simultaneous presentations (workshops, lectures, panel discussions, etc.)

An international-class airport, with direct flights to most of the world’s largest cities

A wide range of hotels and restaurants

Convenient public transportation

A culture which supports diversity and encourages interreligious dialogue

To this end, our Site Selection Committee has released a Request for Proposals (RFP) which describes in detail the process by which interested cities can apply to host the Parliament; this document can be downloaded here.
The chosen city will join a distinguished list which includes Chicago (1893 and 1993), Cape Town (1999), Barcelona (2004), Melbourne (2009), Salt Lake City (2015), and Toronto (2018). To each of those cities, the Parliament has brought thousands of visitors from every corner of the world, representing the most diverse and inclusive participation of religions (200+ unique traditions), races, cultures and nationalities; an impressive array of religious, political, cultural, and academic leaders, as well as artists, visionaries, activists and performers; and important, cutting-edge dialogues on such compelling topics as climate change, global ethics, religious-based violence, women’s leadership, overpopulation, Indigenous rights, and many others.
If you think your city might be interested in hosting the 2021 Parliament, we invite you to download and read the RFP document, to share it with any relevant parties, and to contact the Site Selection Committee at
Andras Corban-Arthen
Chair, Site Selection Committee