The Normandy for Peace World Forum is an annual event which normally takes place around 6 June (D-Day) to bring people together from around the world to reflect on issues such as current tensions and peacekeeping. It is more than just a talking shop; it is also a time to reflect on how to build a better world. This year, the world forum will take place on 1-2 October.


The D-Day Landings and three-month Battle of Normandy that followed had a profound effect on the wartime generation and those that followed them. Europe as we know it was forged on the beaches and in the fields of Normandy. This conflict gave an edge to what we understand by freedom, which has to be why millions of visitors choose to come and remember those who came from far away to fight and die for our freedom. The Normandy Region has responded to this notion of remembrance by going one step further and creating the Normandy for Peace World Forum, a so-called ‘laboratory of reflection and mediation’, which aims to tackles head-on the major issues of war, peace, freedom and human rights.

In addition, teaching projects, seminars, university exchanges, and arts projects of all kinds are organised throughout the year, which also highlight the values of peace and freedom. The World Forum operates at an international level, and is free of charge, taking place in the first week of June, when the D-Day commemorations are beginning and when minds are focused on the big issues of the day, then and now.


The Normandy for Peace World Forum will take place for the third time amid the magnificent setting of the Ladies’ Abbey in Caen. For three days (1-2 October), around 30 debates and three conferences will bring together over 250 attendees from all around the world, focusing on the theme ‘Avoiding war: Responding to new threats.’  Heads of State, Nobel Peace Prize winners, diplomats, geopolitical experts, journalists and other organisations will gather to share their experience and reflect upon how we might build lasting peace for future generations. Associations and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) will host a ‘Village for Peace’ to discuss international initiatives and what is being done. In addition, the European ‘Walk the Global Walk’ programme will bring together over 800 youngsters from across Normandy to share their thoughts on how best to fight global warming and tackle the climate emergency.

Village du Forum Mondial Normandie Pour la Paix
© Région Normandie


Last year, the Freedom Prize was awarded to young Swedish activist Greta Thurnberg in the presence of two World War II veterans. This year, it will be awarded to one of three people: Loujain Al Hatloul, a women’s rights activist, Father Pedro Opeka, who campaigns against poverty in Madagascar or Nasrin Sotoudeh, an advocate for human rights activists in Iran.

Greta Thunberg lors de la remise du Prix Liberté 2019 à Caen
© E. Biernacki / Région Normandie


Normandy for Peace World Forum
Women’s Abbey (Abbaye aux Dames)
Place Reine Mathilde 
14000 Caen
Event free of charge and open to all


1-2 October 2020

Due to the global Covid-19 pandemic, this event has been postponed to 1-2 October 2020. However, the French Government and health authorities have announced the cancellation of many non-essential gatherings to control the spread of the virus. Events may be cancelled or postponed. Please check this event’s official website or social media channels before undertaking any travel.

Caen in all seasons

Caen in all seasons