Last week, global leaders in politics, business, academia and civil society descended upon Davis, Switzerland for the World Economic Forumâ€™s (WEF) 50th Annual Meeting. The official title of this yearâ€™s meeting was â€śStakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World,â€ť with a recurring message throughout the week for urgent change. Here are three key areas from WEF 2020 impacting fashion and tech.
Sustainability. As more fashion leaders discuss the industryâ€™s top buzzword of 2020, two organizations released recommendations for addressing sustainability in fashion. Fashion for Good and the Boston Consulting Group released a report on â€śFinancing the Transformation in the Fashion Industry,â€ť discussing the importance of scaling tech solutions, mobilizing new sources of capital and developing a stronger policy framework. The Global Fashion Agenda hosted the launch of the CEO Agenda 2020, where executives addressed eight sustainability priorities for the fashion industry. These include improving supply chain traceability, reversing climate change, and making efficient use of water, energy and chemicals.
#TOGETHERBAND, known for its bracelets made from recycled ocean plastic, also participated in this yearâ€™s annual meeting. #TOGETHERBAND helped to raise awareness around the UNâ€™s Sustainable Development Goals and discussed the power of culture to drive positive change.
Inclusion and Diversity. Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon announced that starting on July 1 in the U.S. and Europe, the investment bank will not â€śtake a company public unless thereâ€™s at least one diverse board candidate, with a focus on women.â€ť Goldmanâ€™s announcement comes at a critical time when tech and other sectors are being called out for a lack of diversity on boards and in C-suite positions.
CEO Activism. During a session on stakeholder capitalism, CEOs discussed techâ€™s impact on communities worldwide, along with challenges and solutions. IBM CEO Ginni Rometty noted the importance of taking responsibility for introducing new technologies. â€śI make this technology, I should usher it safely into the world,â€ť stated Rometty.
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff noted the need for businesses to service all stakeholders, including a companyâ€™s employees, customers, the local community and the planet.
â€śThis obsession that we have with maximizing profits for shareholders alone has led to incredible inequality and a planetary emergency, stated Benioff.
Additional information and session videos from Davos 2020 are available here.