Launching of the third edition of the national conference on the ‘State of the Nation’
President of Malta George Vella launched the third edition of the Survey and the National Conference on the ‘State of the Nation’, taking place on 2nd June 2023 at the Verdala Palace.
President Vella noted that the subjects planned for this year’s conference are all directly related to the citizens’ everyday life. These include the family, the media and its new challenges in society, cultural and religious traditions, rights, and equality. The President said that individuals will once again be given a space to express what they feel, without mincing words, on subjects that sometimes can also be a little uncomfortable. “I think that this spontaneity is a factor that determined the success of the ‘State of the Nation’, and I am convinced that this year there will also be interesting insights and elements,” stated President Vella. He remarked that it would be very interesting to see if there will be any shifts and in what direction, also due to the continuous dynamism in our community, the socio-economic developments, the presence of foreigners among us, and the current international turmoil.
President Vella thanked the Strategic Communication Consultant, Lou Bondì, and the Statistician and Lecturer at the University of Malta, Vincent Marmarà, for their work, determination, and energy.
During the launch, Dr Marmarà explained that the information is already being collected from a sample of 1,064 people aged 16 and over. He said that the main purpose is not to make known the opinions on a particular thing or different events, but to look deeper at what could lead to the formation of the people’s principle and opinion. “This year we will have the opportunity to compare the last three years, and this will start to give better visibility on how certain important views are changing among the people. The discussion will not start until we have heard what the people are saying. This will guarantee that we keep the people at the centre of the discussion,” concluded Dr Marmarà.
Mr Bondì noted that this conference became a point of reference in the national debate about who we are as Maltese and Gozitans. He said that the speakers will once again come from different fields: academics, politicians, entrepreneurs, members of non-governmental organisations, and others. Mr Bondì announced that, for the first time this year, towards the end of the conference he will conduct separate interviews with the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition.
Announcing the results of the third scientific survey on the ‘State of the Nation’
At the Verdala Palace, the results of the third scientific survey on the ‘state of the nation’ were announced by statistician and lecturer at the University of Malta Dr Vincent Marmarà and sociologist Lou Bondì.
The survey was conducted among a sample of 1,064 people aged 16 and over.
Dr Marmarà explained that this study shows the importance of the role of the family in our daily lives, in the decisions we make, as well as in the problems we face. During the presentation of the survey, Dr Marmarà pointed out that currently it seems that people are following less news, in fact a reduction has been observed in almost all sources of different media, with television being the main source for people to follow Maltese news. It emerged that the people believe in God but not with the same level of importance they give to religion. It was also pointed out that the people feel that since the election, politics is less important to them. In this context, the people consider less the opinion of the political party before formulating their own opinion. Another evident impact is that currently there are more people considering voting for different parties in the future. It also emerged that a third of the people are not comfortable with culture mixing, another third of the people are undecided about culture mixing, or perhaps it is better to say that it depends on which culture they are ready to mix with, and only another third is comfortable with culture mixing.
Strategic communications consultant Lou Bondì said that this year there is the advantage of being able to compare the results of the survey with those of the previous two years and see if there were any changes.
At the opening of the one-day national conference, the President of Malta George Vella remarked that two years ago, this initiative “was a long-term vision and not a one-off occasion that leads nowhere.” He stated that now it is our turn to go one step further and see how we can move to the stage of implementing the recommendations that will be made today. The President explained the importance of politicians, representatives of the authorities, civil society and NGOs starting to look at this Conference from the same perspective.
Also addressing the opening of the conference was the President of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola, whose speech focused on the common good, the need for a new economic model with which every person can live a better life through the wealth created and the need to increase everyone’s activism. “I deem the common good as a direction, rather than just a destination. A direction offering a strong framework for people to reach their aspirations. Common good does not mean looking at the majorities and forget the minorities or those who are on the edge,” stressed President Metsola. She added that our country needs a new economic policy: a transformation that brings stability and credibility. “We need a policy that offers hope and a sense of optimism for what we can still achieve,” stated the President of the European institution, while adding that instead of political rhetoric, people want solutions with which they can have peace of mind.
The schedule of the Conference can be downloaded here
The presentation can be downloaded here
You can access the opening speech of The President George Vella during the ‘L-Istat tan-Nazzjon’ – Third Edition Conference here
The President appeals for the information resulting from the ‘State of the nation’ to be utilised for the benefit of society
“I sincerely appeal to you for this valuable information to be utilized for the benefit of society and does not end up in the drawer as a simple academic exercise. The ball is in your court. We have provided you with this tool to be used”, stated the President of Malta, George Vella, at the end of the third edition of the ‘State of the nation’ Conference.
He explained that the Conference enables us to take a ‘picture’ of ourselves and we must now draw conclusions and determine how to move from words to action.
He then addressed the leaders, politicians, authorities, academics, civil society, economic operators and all those who can contribute and explained that they have the responsibility not to lose the interest, knowledge and motivation that prominently emerged through this initiative.
The President also appealed to all entities and individuals who feel they can contribute, to do so in a spirit of cooperation and not competition. “Our collective interest, and that of future generations, depends on all of us today and not tomorrow”, said the President.
He then promised all necessary support where and when the need is felt for this initiative to continue.
The President concluded his speech by thanking the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition for sharing their thoughts.
He also thanked former Prime Ministers Sant and Gonzi, all the speakers who took an active part in this Conference, the members of the public who participated in the survey, and all those who contributed to once again make this Conference a success.
You can access the closing speech of The President George Vella during the ‘L-Istat tan-Nazzjon’ – Third Edition Conference here