by Divya Badri
Davos is well known , during the meeting in January every year, to be the place where people meet old friends and contacts. It saves quite a few a lot of flights! I too met an old friend after 15 years! And it was a pleasure. This person is very accomplished and has been head of communications for World Economic Forum, UNCHR and the Global Fund for fight against AIDS and TB, the Chief of Advocacy for UNICEF, and a frequent public speaker for the cause of equality. As always, someone with such great communication skills is a pleasure to meet. Have a listen.
In wider world outside of Davos, there is so much inequality, it is easy to think that inequality exists only in poorer countries and in under-privileged societies. But at the session on violence against women, it was clear that even privileged women suffer violence and discrimination.
I am happy that women like Claudia and Amy Cuddy speak up, but even today Davos has only around 20% attendance by women and this hasn’t changed too much in the last 20 years. We need to do more not just across the world but even here.
There is good news. The Female Quotient lounge where Claudia spoke was buzzing with activity and this filled me with hope. I got a feeling that things are finally changing. It is not something we just talk about anymore. We are each one of us doing something about it.
From all-women co-chairs last year to not having manels*, we need to move from tokenism to real action.
If you think about it, there is a lot in it for the men too. Increasing levels of inclusion worldwide could increase GDP growth in countries like India. Diversity & inclusion can help Switzerland too. People with different cultural backgrounds, from different generations and gender, with individual abilities and working styles at workplace promote ideas and different perspectives.
So let us roll up our sleeves and try and improve equality worldwide at all levels everywhere. Gender equity is representative of the kind of inclusion we need in society today. When we include everyone, diversity is power.
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Claudia Romo Edelman is an advocate for the Hispanic community in the US and the founder of the We Are All Human Foundation. The Female Quotient, works with companies and business leaders to advance equality in the workplace. They hosted the FQ lounge at Davos. It is a Girls’ Lounge, a pop-up space at conferences and corporate events for women to connect, collaborate, and activate change together. They bring these lounges to traditionally male-dominated conferences. For the past forty years, the World Economic Forum is best known for its Annual Meeting in Davos-Klosters. Since 2003, its Open Forum convenes in January at the local Swiss Alpine School in the heart of Davos. They want to encourage dialogue and spread awareness on critical issues to the global economy. It is an open-debate format that is publicly accessible to local audiences in Switzerland and to global audiences via their website. They had a very interesting session on violence against women.#TheFemaleQuotient #WAAH #SLXlearning #DavosMoments
*MANEL: An all male panel at meetings and conferences.
by Divya Badri
I live in Europe and when a detention centre opened in my neighborhood, it caused a strong debate on the potential impact of the presence of refugees on the local community. When I was at Davos, there was a simulation called A Day in the Life of a Refugee. Remembering this debate, I was curious and enquired more and was invited by David J. Begbie of Crossroads to participate along with my crew.
There is a saying that goes “One doesn’t have to operate with great malice to do great harm. The absence of empathy and understanding are sufficient.”
So, keeping that spirit in mind, Daniel and I went in, me as a participant and Daniel with the camera. We were told that there is no one narrative for refugees as each person’s story is different and that this simulation was developed by refugees, internally displaced people (IDP) and aid workers. That they are doing this for people not for politics.
I got ready to participate. Each of us participants were given a costume to put on, an id for the simulation and some play money. Daniel got ready with his camera.
For the following forty minutes, I was ‘in the shoes’ of a woman, who has been forced to leave from home by war, and looking for her father. For those like the real-life me, whom life has treated kindly, this was an intensive experience. I did not know who the others next to me were. I felt helpless, disempowered, sad to feel that home is no longer safe. We were briefed that if it was “too much” we could leave anytime but were also gently reminded that real refugees cannot walk away from such situations.
At the end of the simulation, was a debriefing. We discussed our feelings. For some, there was an immediate sense of camaraderie and for others, it was each man for himself. Then real refugees addressed us. I felt they spoke lot more openly to us than I have ever personally experienced. The fact that we just experienced the virtual environment they have been through in real life, made their words more relatable. It was only then, that David Begbie informed us that the Chairman of the board of directors of Nestle was amongst us all the while as a “fellow refugee”. I had not even attempted to figure out who was who during the simulation. Networking was the last thing on my mind at that time. For those forty minutes, we were all just humans in a similar deplorable situation. Forcefully moved around, vulnerable, helpless and seeking refuge.
My mission at Swiss Learning Exchange is to help people cope with the fast-changing world around us.
While other sessions discussed the issue of rising nationalism, this simulation had a direct impact that evoked empathy in us for the refugee crisis. I got a chance to speak to a fellow participant, Kayla, on camera soon after the simulation.
I hope this simulation comes to more and more places and reaches more people, everywhere. We need more awareness and empathy.
The Refugee Run is hosted by the Crossroads Foundation and is a simulation designed with refugees, internally displaced persons and NGOs. After the simulation, refugees, field workers and others will discuss the options for engagement with participants. It is an example of experiential learning. For the past forty years, the World Economic Forum is best known for its Annual Meeting in Davos-Klosters. Since 2003, its Open Forum convenes in January at the local Swiss Alpine School in the heart of Davos. They want to encourage dialogue and spread awareness on critical issues to the global economy . It is an open-debate format that is publicly accessible to local audiences in Switzerland and to global audiences via their website. Mr. Paul Bulcke is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Nestlé S.A since 2017 and instrumental in bringing The Refugee Run to Davos. Ms. Kayla M. Sanders is founder-CEO of Remy. #WithRefugees #compassion #empathy #slxlearning #DavosMoments
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SLX Fäctlis : Short tidbits allow you to check your critical thinking with these short fact based
SLX Talks : Insights from industry leaders to understand internationalisation via videos produced and directed by Swiss Learning Exchange .
Is frugal innovation economically interesting for companies from industrially developed countries? SLX not only got to discuss the topic with students of Université de Neuchâtel , we also got to understand the microtech and precision industry – which is synonymous with world famous Swiss watches, with the Canton of Neuchâtel in western Switzerland. In short, our takeaway was that we can call it either sober or smart; while keeping the bigger picture in mind, frugality is definitely a concept worth exploring. An SLX Fäctli.
Harvard offers cases from around the globe, with a real-life perspective to their business courses. It follows the case study model in its pedagogical methods. The “Case Method,” which Harvard Business School follows, is the pedagogical system of choice at one of the world’s most elite business schools that asks students to put themselves in the role of the C-suite.
H.B.S. asserts that this method produces people who can make decisions. Before graduating, Harvard Business School (HBS) students complete 500 of these case study exercises, used for training future leaders. This method differs from discussing skills and theory in the abstract. Case studies from Harvard have come to be synonymous with business education itself.
This organisation, whom we focus our SLX story on, has been a Harvard case study because of it’s resource optimisation and ability to scale up. It has also been a featured in the Stanford Innovation Review for its funding scheme and technical ingenuity.
One would imagine that the social and the business sectors would seldom come to a meeting point but this story is something else, altogether.
How is ONE single organisation able to address all of these
Sustainable Development Goals set out by the United Nations as well as become a case study for Harvard Business School?
If this has caught your attention, and you want to know more, then follow us on Swiss Learning Exchange, click on the video below to bookmark our website. Trust us, this is not click-bait, as we are going to bring you a story, in English, en français, in Deutsch, that will truly warm your heart.
We all agree that the problems of the world are far from over. So what to do? The good news is that there there is a plan. It is called SDG and it stands for sustainable development goals.
The bad news is that the word sustainable is important to understand and isn’t quite as much as it should be. Sustainable means, what can we do now, which we can continue doing for a long time to come, without the risk of resources getting over or without the risk of creating another big problem. For example, use of fossil fuels has removed the problem of energy and mobility, it has resulted in increased CO2 emmissions and increased global warming. So, what can we do now, so that we solve current problems without creating new ones?
The Sustainable Development Goals are the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all (see cover photo) . Most organisations pick one or two of these goals and decide to focus on them. But here, we have a story for you where a single organisation’s work is solving 10 of the 17 problems that this blueprint has identified.
Our team at Swiss Learning Exchange has identified that this organisation addresses all of the following:
– No Poverty (SGD 1)
– Zero Hunger (SDG 2)
– Good Health and Well-being ( SDG 3)
– Quality Education (SDG 4)
– Gender Equality (SDG 5)
– Clean Water & Sanitation (SDG 6)
– Reduced Inequalities (SDG 10)
– Sustainable Cities and Communities (SDG 11)
– Responsible Consumption and Production (SDG 12)
– Partnerships for the Goals (SDG 17)
How is ONE single organisation able to address all of these Sustainable Development Goals?
If this has caught your attention, and you want to know more, then follow us on Swiss Learning Exchange, click on the video. Trust us, because we are going to bring you a story that will truly warm your heart.If you are as keen to know how the sustainable development goals can be achieved, then ENGAGE with us on Swiss Learning Exchange. Contact us to keep learning !