The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum 2019 will be held from 22 – 25 January in Davos, Switzerland. The summit is known for hosting the most powerful political leaders, influential business leaders, journalists, economists, scientists, academicians, and celebrities to discuss the pressing issues that the world faces today and to promote the causes that they support. This year, over 3,000 eminent people from various spheres will participate in the event to shape a new global architecture.
The theme for this year is ‘Globalization 4.0: Shaping a Global Architecture in the Age of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.’ Participants are expected to discuss the challenges of a fast-changing and diversifying world, right from climate change to artificial intelligence.
The President of the United States of America, Donald Trump was supposed to be the star attraction of the event. However, he and his delegation have cancelled their visit on account of the government shutdown plaguing the United States. Further, French President Emmanuel Macron has cancelled his trip due to the domestic crisis in his country. British Prime Minister Theresa May has also pulled out of the summit due to the internal Brexit political crisis in the United Kingdom.
However, political leaders such as the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel; Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe; Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern; and newly elected President of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro will attend the meeting. Further, leaders such as Christine Lagarde, the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund; Antonio Guterres, the Secretary-General of the United Nations; Michelle Bachelet, the United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights; and Patricia Espinosa Cantellano, Executive Secretary, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change will be present.
Duke of Cambridge, Prince William will also discuss his work on mental health and luminaries such as Sir David Attenborough will be present.
What is the World Economic Forum?
The World Economic Forum is a non-profit organization and has, today, become the foremost organization in the world for public and private cooperation. One of its primary objectives is to improve the state of the world. It has served as a catalyst for numerous collaborations between organizations and international initiatives, industry breakthroughs, global initiatives, and economic ideas. Needless to say, a great number of initiatives of global importance have been launched in Davos. For instance, it was the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in 1992 that helped end the evil practice of Apartheid, when F.W de Klerk met with Nelson Mandela.
Its mission on its official website is “The World Economic Forum is the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation.” Its motto is “Committed to improving the state of the world.”
The World Economic Forum was founded by Professor Klaus Schwab, who also serves as the Executive Chairman of the Forum, in 1971. It was originally called the European Management Forum and brought together leaders from Europe for its annual meeting. However, with time, it grew steadily and attracted leaders from across the world. In 2015, it was recognized as an international organization.
Read more about the agenda of this year’s annual meeting here.