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Fast Company goes to Davos

Fast Company goes to Davos
[Photo: Liu Zhen/China News Service/VCG via Getty Images]

Fast Company will seek out the innovators and creative leaders amid the throng of CEOs, government officials, and nonprofit managers descending on Davos, Switzerland, next week for the World Economic Forum Annual meeting.

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Our editors are convening a series of panels, titled Davos Dialogues, that aims to highlight the complementary roles technology and creativity will play in transforming businesses and other large organizations over the next decade.

One panel–featuring Lego Group CEO Niels Christiansen; Ideo CEO Tim Brown Francine Katsoudas, chief people officer at Cisco; and HCL Technologies CEO C Vijayakumar–will dive into the ways companies think about unlocking creativity within their workforces now and especially in the future. As artificial intelligence and automation enable machines to take on the routine tasks of the workplace, employees and leaders of the future will need to hone creative and inventive skills computers can’t easily replicate.

Another session will look at the fast-changing world of financial services and banking, in which new technologies and consumer demands, especially among those in emerging markets, are fundamentally changing the way money is transferred, saved, and invested. The panel includes Laura Barrowman, chief technology officer, Credit Suisse; Ann Cairns, vice chairman, Mastercard; Hikmet Ersek, president and CEO, Western Union; and Lauren Le Moal, CEO, PayU.

Yet another panel will highlight examples of digital transformation that place a priority on the people–employees, customers, other stakeholders–impacted by change. Speakers include Peggy Johnson, executive vice president, business development, at Microsoft, and Scott Belsky, Adobe’s chief product officer and executive vice president for its Creative Cloud platform.

The sessions will take place at the HCL Pavilion.

Organizers of the annual meeting have acknowledged that the rise of nationalism and protectionism in many countries around the world (including the U.S.) has called into question the World Economic Forum’s unwavering believe in its so-called “global-governance architecture.” Many of the sessions on the formal WEF agenda are aimed at restoring trust between leaders and citizens, and creating economic security for the disenfranchised.

Davos Dialogues, a series of editorial panels, videos, and news coverage, is produced in partnership with HCL Technologies. 
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