Bold Ideas from the World Economic Forum Davos

Climate change, human rights, health and inequality, were the major topics of discussion at the 2015 World Economic Forum in Davos. A strong emphasis was placed on the need for more solutions and ideas to counter these larger issues. As the WEF came to a close, participants were asked to share ideas based on the various sessions and forums held at Davos, specifically what are the real things they can do to help solve the world’s top challenges.

A few of the ideas suggested by Davos participants include:

“Start talking” – Paul Hilder, executive director of Here Now, and Jeremy Heimans, CEO of Purpose, discussed the importance of bridging the gap between companies who have made commitments for sustainability and talking to their consumers about those commitments. There is a need for the world’s leading companies to show their customers their transition to a sustainable future.

“Stop using words like ‘product lifecycle’” – Given the limited growth of constrained resources in a shrinking world, terms such as “product lifecycle” illustrates old thinking of products created from resource-intense raw materials. William McDonough suggests replacing these outdated terms with “endless use” and “endless resourcefulness”.

“Set goals based on scientific targets” – Three major issues that emerged from Davos that are critical for success, according to Georg Kell, executive director of the UN Global Compact are: making the case for carbon pricing, corporate goal setting aligned with science targets, and transparency on corporate reporting on emissions.  Kell believes in order to successfully support emerging markets, businesses must demonstrate strong leadership.

Supporters who were able to make a personal or professional pledge, participated in the discussion by tweeting #GSBDavos.  See more of the ideas from Davos participants and supporters here: The Guardian | Bold ideas for a better world from Davos and beyond.


See William McDonough’s Tweets from Davos.

Watch William McDonough speak at past WEF meetings on YouTube.