BRICS Academic Forum Report

Dated Published: August 2021

Observer Research Foundation and Research and Information Systems for Developing Countries. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical or photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the prior permission of the publisher.

ORF provides non-partisan, independent analyses on matters of security, strategy, economy, development, energy and global governance to diverse decisionmakers including governments, business communities, academia and civil society. ORF’s mandate is to conduct in-depth research, provide inclusive platforms, and invest in tomorrow’s thought leaders today.


The Observer Research Foundation (ORF) and Research and Information System for Developing Countries (RIS) co-hosted the BRICS in 2021.

This year’s BRICS Academic Forum convened academics, experts, researchers, and analysts on a range of international policy issues aff ecting the fi ve BRICS nations and the world in the run up to the BRICS Summit 2021. The forum was privileged to have the inaugural address by India’s External Aff airs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar, valedictory address by Sanjay Bhattacharyya, India’s Sherpa for BRICS, and a conversation with P. Harish, India’s Sous-Sherpa for BRICS.

The policy discussions between experts were guided by the four primary themes of the BRICS academic process for 2021—multilateralism, digitalisation, international security, and climate change and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Specifi cally, the sessions included topics such as the post-pandemic world order, green energy, sustainable consumption, global health, counterterrorism, trade and resilient supply chains, SDGs, digital public goods, globalisation, skilling and workforce development, and women’s leadership.

Over the course of four days, the BRICS Academic Forum saw participation from nearly 80 experts and academics. Discussions at the forum made it clear that the pandemic has permanently altered the global order. It has highlighted the weaknesses of global institutions in tackling contemporary challenges, and that greater coordination is necessary among nations to respond to global problems.

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