A week of economic, political, and business-driven discussion concluded with impactful closing statements. More than ever, the assembly at Davos feels incentivised to justify its own existence and, through panels that led to actionable conclusions and new initiatives, the congress did just that.
Here, I’m rounding up the week, including key takeaways and insights, featuring outstanding announcements from attendees with big ambitions and global impact.
As COVID and our preventative measures showed us, the world is interconnected to an unprecedented level. At Davos, many of us solidified what we already knew: to solve global problems, we need community-driven, collaborative issues. The conversation on world health, food poverty, and jobs, including reskilling and upskilling, underlined the importance of inter-sector collaboration, as well as how public-private partnerships can drive some of our most ambitious undertakings.
Announcement: as per the firm’s “accord for a healthier world,” Pfizer announced that it would “supply all its current and future patent-protected medicines and vaccines on a not-for-profit basis to 45 lower-income countries.”
Ukrainian and European Identity
There’s no denying it: the war in Europe takes centre stage in Davos, which is not surprising. The instability will have economic and political fallout for years to come as financial markets struggle to cope and Ukraine looks to survive and rebuild itself stronger in the wake of nation-wide tragedies. As a result, however, European sentiment has also strengthened: through the WEF sessions, the world listened to prominent Ukrainian voices and unanimously agreed to provide support and solidarity from every possible angle.
On the first day of the conference, Ukraine President Zelenksyy delivered an address, followed by the Spirit of Resilience session. Both are worth watching in their entirety, as well as Kyiv after the Onslaught with Vitaliy Klitschko.
Climate change was always going to be a priority topic. The WEF’s aim of reducing global emissions to net zero by 2050 was clear the entire week as government and business leaders stressed the importance of tackling climate change while there is an opportunity for reversal of long-term effects. Renewable energy will be key; as John Kerry underlined, “For at least the next 8 years, we must radically change our economic system and our reliance on fossil fuels if we’re to stay aligned to Paris Agreement targets. This is the real battle of our time.”
Announcement: the WEF launches “’Alliance of CEO Climate Action Leaders India’ that will work towards fast-tracking decarbonisation pathways along India’s net-zero journey.”
The Road Ahead
German Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz and WEF Chairman Klaus Schwab deliver the closing remarks and final speech of the conference, leaving us with actionable insights and even more questions about our future: how will the war conclude? What does inflation mean for business and governments in the decades to come? How can we leverage technology in our quest for security and innovation in equal measure? Where will we be this time next year, when we meet again in Davos?
It’s been a pleasure following it all as it unfolded, and having insightful conversations with our network along the way. To echo Olaf Scholz—safe travels back home, and let’s do it again next year.