The Davos Agenda

25—29 January 2021

An additional series of compelling debates

The Forum has worked with media organizations worldwide to produce a series of exciting debates during which innovative and bold solutions to stem the pandemic and drive a robust recovery will be discussed. This is a complementary programme to The Davos Agenda.

The ownership, copyright and intellectual property rights of each session remains solely with the news organization. The views expressed in media sessions are those of the speakers alone and not the World Economic Forum.

Monday 25 January

19.00 CET

2020 presented a stunning public health crisis worldwide, but also a secondary crisis in mental health. The isolation coupled with worries about community, physical and economic issues resulted in many people experiencing depression, anxiety and mental health challenges. YouTube launched the “with me” campaign in an effort to foster a feeling of community. This panel will engage experts and digital influencers who are working to address the mental health pandemic at scale.

Tuesday 26 January

08.00 CET

Session in Mandarin

The COVID-19 pandemic has increased pressure worldwide for the uptake of ESG factors in all aspects of business. This session will reveal how China is accelerating moves towards a sustainable economy and explore how ESG factors will shape the country after the pandemic.

12.00 CET

For EU Commissioner for the Internal Market, Thierry Breton, the storming of the Capitol Building in Washington D.C. by President Trump’s supporters was a “9/11 moment for social media”. It is an inflection point for “Big Tech”. In the US, angry politicians and anti-trust watchdogs are pushing the former showcase industry into a corner while in the world’s major economic regions, resistance is forming against the overwhelming power of the big Internet platforms. Join this discussion about whether the industry is facing a global “techlash 2.0”.

Jacqueline Gifford, Editor-in-Chief of Travel + Leisure magazine talks with the president of Bahamian resort complex, Baha Mar, the chairman of Anguilla Tourist Board and the chief executive of Explore Charleston about how destinations are adapting to the new era of tourism.

14.00 CET

Astro Awani: COVID-19 Reset: Kickstarting 4IR Value Chain for Developing Economies

The spread of the COVID-19 virus has impacted almost all industries globally. Many organisations not being able to operate at full capacity due to workforce and supply chain disruptions. There are companies which are still struggling to embrace digital manufacturing and globalisation 4.0 in their business model and their entire supply chain amidst COVID-19. How companies adopt, adapt and thrive with new normal of digitalization for future pandemic-proof business model?

How the global economic recovery will take shape after COVID-19. Will the world's economies return to their pre-pandemic states or will there be a fundamental shift in the relationships between governments, financial institutions, businesses, customers, and the workforce as a whole. And how can we ensure a new digital divide won't add to already existing economic disparities.

Wednesday 27 January

13.00 CET

In the wake of COVID-19, we must capitalize on the opportunity to reset the economic system and build one that incentivizes sustainable and inclusive economic growth with strong private sector participation. By leveraging the power of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, renewable energy, innovative financing and resilience mechanisms, ocean economy, smart policy for investment facilitation and economic diversification, Small Island Developing States can become the relevant economies of the new world.

Session in Portuguese

The role of social entrepreneurs in the response to, and the recovery from, COVID-19 is vital in Brazil. The recent Social Entrepreneur of the Year award 2020, co-organized by the Schwab Foundation and Folha de S. Paulo highlighted 30 extraordinary initiatives that are providing for sustainable, scalable and inclusive solutions to address the needs of all Brazilians. What is the role of social entrepreneurship in providing inclusive solutions and how can the public and private sector help?

15.00 CET

Vogue Business: Fashion's circular future: from concept to reality
Rachel Cernansky, Senior Sustainability Editor for Vogue Business, will moderate a high-level panel on the momentum towards, and hurdles faced, by a circular fashion industry. Experts will discuss issues ranging from government policy to innovations, incentives, new value chains and garment workers’ rights.

16.30 CET

Earth will be an uncomfortable place to live if our food production isn’t responsibly scalable in the long-term. It will be even worse if we can’t nourish the population in a healthy way and without threatening the sustainability of our environment and social systems. A panel of key stakeholders and experts hosted by La Stampa will discuss the challenges and potential solutions to a question that is casting a shadow over future generations – will we be able to feed ourselves? An accompanying report, The Community of Change, presents a range of projects designed to ensure a sustainable food supply chain to the kitchens of the future.

17.00 CET

Session in German

In the duel between China and the United States, Europe is in danger of being left behind. What hidden strengths does the Old Continent have and how can it assert itself economically, technologically and politically?

19.00 CET


Arctic Basecamp—a team of Arctic experts and scientists— and TIME are hosting a high level panel “A Plan for the Planet: The Arctic and Beyond” as part of the media programme at the Davos Agenda week. Arctic Basecamp founder Prof. Gail Whiteman will be joined by H.R.H. Crown Prince Haakon of Norway, Actor and FootPrint Coalition Founder Robert Downey JR, Eric Rondolat the CEO of Signify, Bryony Worthington of Quadrature Climate Foundation and Actor Rainn Wilson. Using the Artic as an initial lens to zoom out to the overall climate crisis, how can we achieve systemic changes?

21.00 CET

Join this fireside chat with CNBC Tania Bryer, Forum President Borge Brende and Producer, Actor and Investor Robert Downey Jr (founder of FootPrint Coalition) to accelerate investment into planet-saving technology and assemble the right stakeholders to make a difference.

Thursday 28 January

15.30 CET

Will the US move strategically closer to China or India under President Biden's presidency, following the rising trade and political tensions between Beijing and Washington during his predecessor's time in office?

17.00 CET

The COVID-19 pandemic proved existing systems and resources were woefully ill-prepared and insufficient to protect communities and markets from health, socio-economic and political shocks. The pandemic accelerated the fragility of local systems and underlined the importance of long-term resilience building. Any proposed solutions must include the world’s most vulnerable populations living in low-income and/or conflict-affected contexts. How can government, investors, and humanitarian and development actors work together to unlock resources and build partnerships to support long-term resilience?

19.00 CET

Session in French

For the past year, the COVID-19 pandemic, health restrictions and the use of teleworking have highlighted our dependence on digital giants. As a result, network architecture and governance have become the new theatre of international conflicts not only between states, but also with industrial players. Europe has implemented new directives in an attempt to regain political control over digital giants. But is it too late? What are the possible responses for companies in the health, automotive and distribution sectors?

20.00 CET

Can we use a pilot project on public health messaging to fight misinformation and create a healthier public conversation? Join this workshop-styled session to generate ideas on how to broaden the approach.

Friday 29 January

09.30 CET

Standard Chartered has released a report titled The $50 Trillion Question. The company spoke to 300 investment firms that manage more than $50 trillion in assets. Just 13% of these assets are linked to the SDGs and a total of 20% didn't even know about the SDGs. Imagine if just a fraction of those assets could be redirected to markets that are performing well, like emerging markets. As home to many emerging markets, ASEAN could become a champion for the SDGs, with digitalization and fintech offering the solutions needed to catalyse development.

12.00 CET

What does a Biden administration mean for Asia? Will trade and technology tensions between China and the United States ease? And what will be the legacy of COVID-19 in the region?

15.00 CET

Session in Spanish

What will it take to get Latin America to create a post-COVID-19 Marshall Plan-styled initiative in the same way that Europe has approved its Next Generation EU plan? The pandemic has badly affected Latin America leaving the region’s economy damaged, and creating the risk of sending it into another lost decade. The region needs to find new sources of financing, launch projects to generate employment and productivity, and find ways to promote a recovery policy agenda

Session in French

As the novel coronavirus continues to spread, some countries are again pursuing various forms of lockdown. At the same time, vaccination programmes have started to counter the pandemic. What can we hope for and expect economically worldwide in 2021?

16.00 CET

Session in Portuguese

COVID-19 has posed a significant challenge for Brazil, one of the countries most affected by the pandemic. A second wave of cases has exacerbated economic and health issues, and increased social and political divisions. How are the most important health companies responding to this multi-dimensional crisis?

Project Syndicate: Grassroots Globalization

After decades of unilateral, paternalistic, top-down approaches to globalization, broad-based cooperation is key. How can we rethink bilateral and multilateral arrangements to maximize opportunities and economic access at all levels of development? What will it take to ensure that technologies developed in ageing, advanced economies are deployed appropriately in younger, labour-abundant developing countries? What new structures are needed to manage sovereign debt in a dollar-dominated global monetary system? How can trade arrangements be updated to address legitimate social, political and environmental concerns? What international arrangements are needed to maximize the benefits and limit the disruptions of immigration?

17.00 CET

Session in Spanish

The region with the worst economic performance in the world faces another risk: a further deterioration of its political institutions that might threaten a much needed recovery. What are the odds of this happening?

17.30 CET

IMF Finance and Development Magazine: The Great Green Reboot

On the back of the latest issue of IMF’s Finance & Development Magazine on the future of jobs and opportunity, produced in partnership with the Forum, this live panel will focus on the intersection of climate change and employment, and how investing in a greener, fairer and more inclusive recovery can also be a strategy for tackling the unemployment crisis that the pandemic has created. The discussion will conclude with 15 minutes of Q&A from the audience.

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