Latest NOW Conferences

NOW4 Kampala 2017

"African Youth and Migration"

September 3rd- 5th 2017

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The 4th NOW Conference brought together participants from more than 10 Sub‐Sahara African countries and European experts and politicians.

During the three days of conference the participants drew attention to the situation and perspective of the African youth, migrants and refugees, with the intention to listen and learn. Key findings and recommendations will be published for the 5th EU‐Africa Summit in Côte d'Ivoire.


NOW 3 Vienna 2017

"Children under the Radar"

January 30th - 31st 2017

At the end of January 2017 the 3rd International Mayors' Conference NOW took place in Vienna. For the first time the meeting of local decision-makers, outstanding experts, EU-parlamentarians and refugees  focused on displaced children.

Under the banner "Children under the Radar" international participants - from Libanon, Jordan, Greece, Turkey, Germany and many further countries - discussed the topic for two days to identify central challenges and promising solutions.


Opening Message and Greeting for the NOW Conference in Athens 2016

“When the NOW Conference was taking place in Vienna in January, I had the pleasure to welcome you as host in the OEBB Austrian Railway factory halls in Spittelau, Vienna. I was very impressed by the spirit of empathy and cooperation, which connected the many mayors, local and regional politicians from Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan, Greece, Austria, Germany and other countries, during these two days.

Mayors are practitioners who often act pragmatically, where others only talk. Mayors make our societies progress, where others only stoke fear.

I hope, no, rather: I am sure, that the NOW Conference in Athens will be distinguished by a similar spirit to that of the Vienna encounter, one of magnanimity, rationality and pragmatic humanity.”

     – Christian Kern, Chancellor of the Austrian Republic

The spirit of NOW ConferenceS

In summer 2015, Act.Now, in cooperation with the Bruno Kreisky Forum for International Dialogue, began preparing their first International Mayors' Conference NOW. It was the starting point of a broad movement of people, from the realms of science, arts, journalism, politics and NGOs.

The NOW initiative was developed during private conversations about the increasing cluelessness and despair, in face of the massive refugee movement from civil war-torn Syria during the summer of 2015 and the erratic political actions that followed suit.

The NOW Conferences are a next step towards finding answers to the many topics that need to be tackled, and toward proposals on how to keep the dialogue for finding new solutions together ongoing.

NOW Conferences find ideas that enable sound decision-making on institutional and civil society levels, ideas about obtaining clarity on similarities and differences, about taking on responsibility and about the question of what each one of us can contribute to achieve peaceful coexistence.

Recent International Mayors' Conferences

NOW 4 Kampala - African Youth and Migration

NOW 4 Kampala September 2017

The 4th NOW Conference in Kampala gathered about 40 experts from more than 10 mostly Sub‐Sahara and some European countries. Politicians, refugees, youth and NGO representatives discussed the situation of young refugees and migrants within Africa and beyond.

NOW 3 Vienna January 2017

The 3rd NOW Conference was dedicated to refugee children. The key issues were challenges in education, protection against violence and exploitation and dealing with traumatisation.

NOW 2 Athens July 2016

The participants of the second NOW Conference in Athens - further including EU representatives and experts - reviewed the consequences of the EU-Turkey Agreement and discussed alternatives and demands on future pacts on refugees in the light of current conditions. 

NOW 1 Vienna January 2016

At the NOW Conference in Vienna for the first time mayors from communities along the refugee routes, NGO-representatives, experts and refugees themselves came together to discuss recent challenges and solutions.