Last January 2023, Citibeats, a World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer, was in Davos, Switzerland, to attend the WEF Annual Meeting for the second year in a row! Fond memories of our first World Economic Forum Experience last year came flooding back and we couldn’t wait to see what was in store.
The WEF Annual Meeting gathers leaders from government, business, and civil society to address the state of the world and discuss priorities for the year. Last year’s theme was “History at a Turning Point: Government Policies and Business Strategies” where leaders discussed pressing issues like global warming, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the Russia-Ukraine War.
The theme for the 2023 event was “Cooperation in a Fragmented World” which for us at Citibeats resonated as a most relevant topic. The event’s program reflected a lineup of sessions with recurring themes that have dominated global media coverage — like the pandemic and the Ukrainian war — plus others including the state of the global economy, the threat of global food insecurity, how to respond to the climate crisis, and the social impact that innovation and technology can have as a force for good.
In short, as a company dedicated to understanding and addressing people’s needs in real time and harnessing the power of ethical Artificial Intelligence to improve the current state of the world, this was right up our alley.
Our Chief Officer of Sales and Marketing, Carolina Portela, and Lead Sales Representative, Carlos García, had the honor of attending on behalf of Citibeats from January 15th to the 20th, surrounded by the snow-capped mountains of the Swiss Alps. Carolina and Carlos joined the ranks of prominent world leaders in the public and private sectors who are making positive impacts through groundbreaking policies and initiatives.
So, what was our experience like at this year’s event? We’re glad you asked.
Welcome to Switzerland
Before we launch into all of the insightful sessions we attended and our valuable learnings, we’d be remiss not to mention Carolina’s and Carlos’ first impressions upon their arrival in Switzerland.
Perhaps it’s our “thin blood” that’s been conditioned by typically-warm Barcelona weather, but — wow — did it feel cold!
But it wasn’t hard to make the most of it and embrace the experience. Our teammates bundled up as they enjoyed the pristine, snowy landscape of Davos. To really get into the spirit, they even indulged in some delicious local ice cream!
All in all, spirits were high and Carolina and Carlos were excited to get to the first day of the event and network with all the brilliant minds that would no doubt awe and inspire them.
Advocating for climate-positive lifestyles
Carolina and Carlos started this amazing experience by attending the "Open Forum: In Harmony with Nature" with opening remarks by the Managing Director of WEF Geneva, Alois Zwinggi, moderator Gail Whiteman, and panelists Emily Rhinow, Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, Jenny Davis-Peccoud, Marina Silva, and Bastien Girod.
The forum addressed the fact that climate change is an undeniable reality. Attendees were reminded that current lifestyles and organizational practices need to change if we hope to restore the health of the planet and protect the well-being of current and future generations.
The core of the session was analyzing the question: How do we mobilize action toward climate-positive lifestyles?
To hear the informative viewpoints and discussion on this topic by the featured panelists, you can view the video recording of the session here.
Analyzing the issues of sustainability, the climate crisis & global food security
Tuesday, January 17th was a special day for our Citibeats duo, Carolina and Carlos.
They started the day by attending the event, "Open Forum: Sustainability Served." According to the World Economic Forum, nearly 830 million people face food insecurity and more than 3 billion are unable to afford a healthy diet. This crisis is of great interest to us, as Citibeats actively participates in addressing the food security issue, most recently through our Global Perspective on Food Security report.
The lineup of speakers included University of Cambridge’s Tolu Oni, Unilever’s Hanneke Faber, Food for Education’s Wawira Njiru, World Farmer’s Organization’s Arnold Puech Pays d'Alissac, and Kigali Hub’s Anysie Ishimwe who addressed the question: How can we strengthen the connections between food-nature-health for more affordable, healthy and sustainable diets?
You can watch the recording of the Open Forum here.
Carolina and Carlos also joined the Equality Lounge for the session, "Formulating the Future: How Women Are Shaping Sustainability Across Sectors" featuring moderator Ronda Carnegie, Chief Innovation Officer of The Female Quotient, and speakers Karen Fang, Managing Director and Global Head of Sustainable Finance at Bank of America; Lauren Smart, Chief Commercial Officer at S&P Global Sustainable1; and Noor Ali Alkhulaif, Bahrain’s Minister of Sustainable Development.
They heard fascinating insights from these influential women who are leading the charge in designing a new sustainable blueprint for the future.
Tune in to what they discussed in a recording of the event here.
Later, the highlight of that evening was attending the "Cooking up something new: Innovation to shape the future of food" event hosted by Clim-Eat and Bayer. The participants included roughly 80 representatives from different stakeholder groups including researchers, farmers, businesses, and international organizations, from a cross-section of regions including Asia, Africa, the Americas, and the EU.
Carolina and Carlos enjoyed being a part of the discussion that centered around the technological, institutional, and social innovations that are needed to deliver the SDGs and transform the food systems around the world
Watch a recording of the event here.
Discussing the evolution & future of urban life
Given Citibeats’ involvement in projects about the hardships that stem from the issue of housing and urban development, hearing experts’ viewpoints on the topic of urban life was of great interest to our team. We were therefore quick to save our seats at the "Open Forum: Evolution of Urban Life" scheduled on day 4.
We know now that more than half of the world’s population lives in urban areas and this is expected to increase to almost 70% by 2050. As leaders at the forefront of addressing social problems, it was important for Citibeats to be part of the discussion and gain insights into how we may further support this cause through our AI-powered social understanding tools.
As expected, the session didn’t disappoint. Moderator Rima Maktabi led panelists Diane Binder, Alice Casiraghi, Desmond Lee, Jocelyn Formsma, and Adel bin Ahmed Al Jubeir through an insightful analysis of the following question: How can we ensure the cities of the future are environmentally sustainable and socially resilient?
You can watch the full video of the forum here.
As you can see, Carolina and Carlos had quite the adventure at WEF 2023 and they couldn’t wait to share their knowledge with the rest of the team here in Barcelona!
We at Citibeats are so grateful for the opportunity to engage with so many relevant leaders and trailblazers that are making a positive impact in the world. The variety of sessions and workshops offered gave us access to the invaluable experience of learning from others and discussing important issues like food security, sustainability and climate change.
We are so proud of the work that we are doing and appreciate the time we had to network with colleagues and share our mission of using AI technology to understand people’s needs in real time and use tech for good.
If you’d like to learn more about how Citibeats can help you extract actionable insights by turning into citizens’ voices about emerging issues and making your decision-making processes smarter and more efficient, feel free to schedule a meeting with us.
At Citibeats, we believe that together, we can make a better world. We had a blast at the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos and we can’t wait for the next one.
Citibeats leverages ethical AI for social understanding. Gathering and analyzing unstructured data from social media comments, blog posts, forums, and more, our Sustainability and Social Risk Monitors provide insight into millions of unfolding conversations regarding inflation, protests, food shortages, and more—empowering world leaders to develop data-driven strategies and inclusive policies.
Schedule a demo today to learn more.