Inspiring people and stimulating discussion were in no short th supply in Rome over the weekend at the 14 World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates. The three-day event, which attracted almost 4,100 participants, saw Nobel Peace Prize recipients like Jody Williams and Shirin Ebadi join with peace and progress-oriented individuals and organisations from across the globe to examine solutions for a better world. A leading partner of the summit again this year, Mazda kicked off the second-annual Mazda Make Things Better Award and provided a fleet of Mazda6s as official transportation.

“The Nobel Peace laureates are surely among the most important and admirable challengers in the world,” said Yasuhiro Aoyama, executive officer and general manager of Mazda Motor Corporation’s Global Sales and Marketing Division. “We feel this is the best possible embodiment of our own thinking at Mazda of challenging convention for a good cause.”

Initiated at last year’s summit, the Mazda Make Things Better Award supports bright young minds aiming to make a difference in the world with a €10,000 prize to further the winning project. This edition of the competition, which promotes the innovative use of modern tools of advocacy, was launched at the Mazda-hosted Youth Summit workshop that attracted more than 200 participants.

Here, Mazda executives from around the world discussed ways of overcoming challenges with prominent journalists like the BBC’s Yalda Hakim. Antti Junkkari, the winner of the first Mazda Make Things Better Award, talked about his project to raise awareness about the dangers of gun violence in Africa using interactive radio programmes. Also attending this year as a special guest, Mairead Maguire spoke to the young audience about promoting peace. Next year’s summit is slated to take place in Atlanta, USA.

“The experience has shown me once more how tremendously valuable and indeed necessary the summit is,” said James O’Sullivan, managing executive o fficer for Mazda Motor Corporation and president and CEO of Mazda North American Operations, at the closing ceremony. “While celebrating achievements, the event clearly highlighted the need for individuals, institutions and companies to challenge convention to make the world a better place. Together, we are on our way.”

Mazda a Leading Partner of the 14th World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates in Rome (for looged-in users only)