In the heart of the Alps, the peaceful and picturesque Swiss town of Davos is gearing up to host a congregation of the world's most influential leaders in politics and business for the 54th Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF), scheduled from the 15 to the 19 of January 2024.
The theme: “Rebuilding trust”
This year's theme, "Rebuilding Trust," acknowledges the need to restore faith amidst multifaceted global challenges, including geopolitical conflicts, climate change, and advancements in technologies like artificial intelligence (AI). The emphasis is on moving beyond recognising problems to finding solutions, with a focus on transparency, consistency, and accountability.
Who is attending WEF 2024?
Over 100 governments, major international organisations, and the Forum’s 1000 partner companies are expected, alongside civil society leaders, experts, youth activists, social entrepreneurs, and the media.
The roster for Davos features prominent figures, including Ajay S. Banga, President of the World Bank Group; Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA); Cindy H. McCain, Executive Director of the World Food Programme (WFP); Mohammad Abdulla AlGergawi, UAE Minister of Cabinet Affairs; and Mirjana Spoljaric Egger, President of the International Committee of the Red Cross.
WEF 2024: The programme’s four pillars
The WEF 2024's programme revolves around four critical themes:
1. Achieving security and cooperation in a fractured world: Addressing immediate crises, such as the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East, while tackling structural forces of fragmentation.
2. Creating jobs and growth for a new era: Reimagining economic frameworks to foster growth and job creation, emphasising people-centric approaches in a potentially low-growth decade.
3. Artificial intelligence as a driving force for the economy and society: Leveraging AI for societal benefit while managing regulatory challenges and technological advancements in other areas like 5/6G and quantum computing.
4. A long-term strategy for climate, nature and energy: Developing systemic approaches for a carbon-neutral and nature-positive world by 2050, balancing trade-offs for social consensus.
The AI Governance Alliance
A noteworthy initiative of the Forum is the AI Governance Alliance. This alliance, including major tech players like Google, Microsoft, IBM, Meta Platforms aims to shape AI development and usage responsibly. Their commitment to transparent, inclusive AI systems underscores the technology's potential and the need for a balanced approach to innovation and societal impact.
As a society, we must be clear-eyed about both the promise and the perils of generative Al and work together to ensure Al is always in service to humanity. The Al Governance Alliance is an important forum to bring together perspectives from around the world, connecting industry, governments and civil society to better answer how we can govern Al responsibly and do so at the pace of technological change,’ Brad Smith, Vice-Chair and President at Microsoft, said.
The First Movers Coalition
The First Movers Coalition, as part of the initiatives integrated into the World Economic Forum's agenda, represents a collective effort by leading companies to decarbonise heavy-emitting sectors and advance emerging climate technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions significantly.
Since its establishment with 35 founding members, the coalition has expanded significantly, now encompassing more than 95 members. Together, these members have made a total of 120 commitments, reflecting the coalition's growing influence and dedication.
'‘I believe the Alliance has shifted its objectives over the last some five years. It used to be about commitment, understanding and committing to Paris. Now it's really about actions. It's about rolling up the sleeves, and it's about sharing dilemmas, but also solutions with each other," Jesper Brodin, CEO at Ingka Group (IKEA), remarked.
Save the date!
From the 15 to the 19 of January, all eyes will turn to the snowy Swiss town of Davos for the 2024 World Economic Forum, united by the critical mission of "Rebuilding Trust."
The world's most influential minds will come together to confront urgent global challenges, such as securing peace, combating climate change, and steering the tech revolution towards a positive future. This isn't just about discussions; it's about making a tangible impact, transforming ideas into definitive actions, and actualising real-world solutions.
Stay tuned to Euronews for comprehensive coverage of this key event, including detailed insights of pivotal discussions, meetings and exclusive interviews.