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Our Mission | Munk Debates

Our Mission

Peter and Melanie Munk

The late Peter Munk (1927-2018) and wife Melanie founded the Munk Debates as a signature initiative...

Peter and Melanie Munk

The late Peter Munk (1927-2018) and wife Melanie founded the Munk Debates as a signature initiative of their private foundation. The Munks are among Canada's leading philanthropists, having generously donated more than $300 million to improve healthcare, support higher education, and advance public policy discussion and debate. Peter Munk was a Companion of the Order of Canada, Canada’s highest public honour, and the recipient of numerous other awards and distinctions. Melanie Munk is a passionate advocate for patient care, public health, and recognizing the service and dedication of nursing and support staff in Canada’s healthcare system.

Rudyard Griffiths

Rudyard Griffiths is the co-founder and moderator of the Munk Debates. He is the author of...

Rudyard Griffiths

Rudyard Griffiths is the co-founder and moderator of the Munk Debates. He is the author of Who We Are: A Citizen's Manifesto and has edited various essay collections on Canadian and international politics and history. He has been a television anchor on BNN, CTV and Bloomberg TV. He is the chair of the Ontario 360 public policy initiative at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy, where he is also a senior fellow. For debate related content and commentary follow Rudyard at @rudyardg.

Our mission is to help the world rediscover the art of public debate by convening the brightest thinkers of our time to weigh in on the big issues of the day. We have done this year in and year out since 2008 by staging biannual debates in Toronto, Canada, with the support of the Aurea Foundation and our founders Peter (1927-2018) and Melanie Munk. Past debaters include Henry Kissinger, Stephen Fry, Paul Krugman, Fareed Zakaria, Tony Blair, Christopher Hitchens, and Jordan Peterson, among dozens of other compelling thinkers and doers. 

In our divided times, we believe that convening civil and substantive debates is a vital public service. Everyone should have the opportunity to hear both sides of an issue argued free of spin, focused on the facts, and then make up their own mind about where they stand. This is why the Munk Debates is committed to providing an alternative to the media echo chambers that pass for public debate in our society. Through our podcast, social media, election debates, and commentary, we invite you to join us in helping promote more and better public debate. 

Two Sides. One Stage. You Decide. 

The Munk Debates.

Yours sincerely,
Rudyard Griffiths
Chair, The Munk Debates
@rudyardg

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