SAN FRANCISCO — When Kate Roberts of Population Services International wrote a survival guide for the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, she covered everything from what shoes to wear to where to have a nightcap.
Every year, world leaders, business titans, and billionaire philanthropists head to the Swiss mountain town of Davos for the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting. Under the theme "Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World," will world leaders move beyond divisive politics and narratives to focus on global collaboration and progress? Devex will be on the ground at Davos on Jan. 23-26. Sign up for our daily newsletter briefings and follow Devex reporters Catherine Cheney and Adva Saldinger for everything you need to know about the 48th WEF Annual Meeting.
The senior vice president for corporate partnerships and philanthropy at the global health nonprofit also offered words of warning to individuals that come to Davos with a stack of business cards and a pile of annual reports in hand. “Don’t blatantly sell your company or cause on a panel — listen, learn and make your point clearly and concisely,” she advised. Over the years, Roberts, who was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2007, has learned what strategies do and do not work at what she describes as one huge networking fest.
Leaders from civil society organizations will join those from government and business next week, at this year’s WEF annual meetings. NGO leaders working on topics from health care to sustainable agriculture to water and sanitation will be a critical part of the conversation on how to create “a shared future in a fractured world.”
Devex spoke with veterans of the annual meeting of global elites and asked for their advice for how leaders in global health, international development, and humanitarian response can maximize their time at Davos.