Barack Obama

President Barack Obama fields questions at a town meeting during his visit to Concord High School in Elkhart, Indiana February 9, 2009.

John J. Watkins, file, The Times

CHICAGO — Former President Barack Obama has delivered opening remarks at a Chicago leadership summit hosted by his foundation for hundreds of civic leaders and artists from around the world.

Obama calls the two-day event starting Tuesday a "collective conversation" to exchange ideas with young people and help spark change.

He says a goal is to address civic culture, not create a political movement. Obama didn't discuss politics aside from saying, "What's wrong with our politics is a reflection of something wrong in our civic culture."

Other summit guests include Prince Harry. He and former first lady Michelle Obama on Tuesday visited a Chicago high school near the site of Barack Obama's lanned presidential center.

The Obama Foundation is raising funds for the presidential center. Construction is expected to take four years.

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