President Shirley Ann Jackson joined other global leaders in government, business, academe, media, and the arts at the World Economic Forum (WEF) 2014 Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland. This year’s meeting, titled “The Reshaping of the World: Consequences for Society, Politics and Business,” was held January 22-25.
“There is no place in the world where so many stakeholders of our global future assemble, all united by the mission of improving the state of the world,” said Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman of the WEF.
“Working across disciplines and sectors and regions, we must build a stronger innovation ecosystem—to address the great challenges and opportunities of our time in energy security, health, food, water, and national security and the linked challenges of climate change and allocation of scarce resources,” President Jackson said.
The World Economic Forum offers an unparalleled opportunity to set the goals and enhance the interconnections that can help strengthen our various and collective institutions as we work to meet the challenges and tap the opportunities before us.
—President Shirley Ann Jackson
“We live in a data-driven, Web-enabled, supercomputer-powered, globally interconnected world. The world is awash in data. It is the most potent new natural resource of our time. The challenge for businesses, governments, and educational institutions is how best to prepare and align ourselves to harness the full capacity of these new tools and technologies for the good, and to prepare the next generation to succeed and lead in this new data-driven world,” she said.
“The World Economic Forum’s annual meeting offers an unparalleled opportunity to set the goals and enhance the interconnections that can help strengthen our various and collective institutions as we work to meet the challenges and tap the opportunities before us,” President Jackson said.
President Jackson, a member of the WEF Science Advisory Committee and the WEF-USA Board, moderated a discussion on the societal, economic, and technological forces reshaping manufacturing globally; moderated a discussion on future energy solutions required to power transportation; and facilitated a conversation on the art and science of matter with Nobel Laureate Dan Shechtman.
She also participated in discussions with the Global University Leaders Forum on finding new approaches to critical global challenges.
The World Economic Forum describes itself as “an independent international organization committed to improving the state of the world by engaging business, political, academic, and other leaders of society to shape global, regional, and industry agendas.”
Discussions during this year’s WEF meeting focused on Disruptive Innovation: how scientific breakthroughs and technological forces are radically transforming the way we live, learn, communicate, and collaborate; Inclusive Growth: how to generate more resilient and equitable growth in the midst of widening inequality; Society’s New Expectations: what can be done to reverse the widespread erosion of confidence in business and government leaders in the wake of the financial crisis?; and A World of 9 Billion: how can both mature and emerging economies embark on a more sustainable path to development?