Aspen Seminar for Leaders

For more than 75 years since it was first organized by the Aspen Institute in the USA, the Aspen Seminar on leadership, values, and the good society has challenged leaders in every field to think more critically and deeply about the good society. Since the foundation of Aspen Institute Romania in 2006, the Aspen Seminar has also been the backbone of our Leadership Programs.

Our proven method of text-based dialogue offers participants a neutral forum in which to reflect on timeless human values, pursue common ground, and cultivate a richer understanding of the human condition. Participants emerge from the Aspen Seminar personally renewed, professionally re-focused, and better prepared to lead as they confront the difficult choices of our ever-changing world.

The Aspen Seminar starts where traditional leadership programs leave off! Through the readings provided, around 20 senior leaders – top corporate executives and leading entrepreneurs, high ranked public leaders and civil society representatives from Romania and the region – will be inspired by the greatest thinkers of all time, by discussing and exploring a high variety of topics, becoming more aware of the relevance of these ideas for modern, sustainable, valued-based leadership of organizations.

Socratically debating a series of readings, from the greatest thinkers of past and present—authors from Plato and Aristotle to Martin Luther King and Vaclav Havel— and guided by skilled moderators, participants are challenged to reflect on how timeless values are shaping their decisions and our society at large.

Close to 300 participants to the Aspen Seminar for Leaders organized by the Aspen Institute Romania became part of the Aspen Seminar Alumni community over the years. They are part of a growing community of AIR Leadership Programs graduates, counting close to 1400 people from across the globe.

Two special editions of the Seminar were organized in Dubrovnik, Rep. of Croatia (November 2016) and in Chișinău, Republic of Moldova (May 2016).

The seminar is fee based, which includes the costs of moderation, seminar management, seminar materials, accommodation, meals and transportation between Bucharest and the location of the seminar.

Discounts are available for the representatives of the AIR Members (25% Corporate Members, 20% Business Members, 15% Personal Private Sector Members) and for the representatives of the non-profit sector. In addition, depending on the budget of the program, 1-2 scholarships are available for representatives of the public sector.

The 2024 edition of the Aspen Seminar for Leaders will be organized in person in May 9-12, entirely in English, in a special location in a mountainous region of Romania.

For more information, please contact Ms. Oana Dumitru, Leadership Programs Coordinator, at


Dan Fințescu – Content Director, Kiss FM: The ASPEN SEMINAR FOR LEADERS – DEFINING “THE GOOD SOCIETY” has been a life changing experience for me. I discovered that leaders in very diverse areas are confronted with the very same problems and thoughts that I have to face on a daily basis. And I found out that leadership can be quite a lonely business for them as well. But I also discovered the beauty of letting your daily tasks aside and nourishing your spirit with good, honest conversations among peers, moderated by the most amazing and cultivated facilitator I’ve ever seen. As I’ve said in our closing words at Wolkendorf, my most valuable finding is that humans can peacefully and harmoniously disagree with each other. It’s been amazing, but above all it’s been FUN!

Alexandra Gătej – Vice-president & Founding Member of Aspen Institute Romania, CEO, Maldon&Wat: “The Aspen Seminar opened my eyes to Aristotle and I started thinking about what a <<good society>> should and can really mean. It is the kind of personal development that lifts and enriches the life of a person.

Cristian Lupșa – Editor, DoR “The Aspen Seminar was a rare opportunity to wrestle with the way in which I see the world, the way it works, and the way it could be made better. It was a safe space to question my beliefs, to understand the beliefs of others, to practice listening, to engage in empathy, and, ultimately, to share a profoundly human experience.

Florin Pogonaru –Vice-president & Founding Member of Aspen Institute Romania; CEO/ Chairman, Central European Financial Services “My ideas about the good society were challenged, refined and strengthened all through passionate debate. I finished the seminar more confident about the philosophical framework that underpins my decisions.

Ionuț Simion – Country Managing Partner, PWC Romania; Member of Aspen Institute Romania “The Seminar opened a door to a different perspective in life. It really gave me time to think about me, my beliefs vis-à-vis the <<good society>>, values and principles and what I need to work on in order to become a better individual.


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