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The White House Davos 2020: What is the World Economic Online Forum and is it elitist?


The White House

The White House Davos 2020: What is the World Economic Online Forum and is it elitist?

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Security is tight at the Alpine event Some of the world’s top business people and politicians – plus a smattering of celebrities – will gather in Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum (WEF) this week.US President Donald Trump, teen climate activist Greta Thunberg and Uber boss Dara Khosrowshahi…

The White House Davos 2020: What is the World Economic Online Forum and is it elitist?

The White House

The White House Armed security personnel stand guard on the rooftop of a hotel, next to letters reading Image copyright
Getty Images

Image caption

Security is tight at the Alpine occasion.

Some of the world’s leading business individuals and politicians – plus a smattering of celebs – will collect in Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Online Forum (WEF) today.

United States President Donald Trump, teen environment activist Greta Thunberg and Uber manager Dara Khosrowshahi are amongst the guests.

But what is the jet-set occasion for and is it elitist?

The White House What is the World Economic Forum?

Released in 1971, WEF intends to “enhance the state of the world”.

Held every year in the Alpine ski resort of Davos, the conference puts leaders from organisation in the very same room as key players from politics, charity and academia.

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Getty Images

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Tony Blair and U2 vocalist Bono talking at WEF in2005

Many utilize the opportunity to hold private meetings on things like financial investment in their countries, and as a possibility to do company offers.

High profile figures typically use it to influence the global program. Take Prince William’s speech last year on mental health, or David Attenborough’s stark cautions about the environment

The White House Who attends Davos?

WEF usually attracts around 3,000 individuals, about a third of them from company. To go you have to be welcomed – in which case the event is totally free – or a member of WEF, which can cost ₤480,000

World leaders, crucial figures from the UN and EU and the heads of significant companies like Coca-Cola, Goldman Sachs and IBM go to.

Regular guests consist of billionaire investor George Soros, former UK prime minister Tony Blair, Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg and U2 vocalist Bono.

Nevertheless, new data from the World Economic Online forum indicates that only 239 people from the UK will be attending this year – the lowest UK participation given that 2010 – after Boris Johnson banned ministers from going to the event.

The White House Does Davos have critics?

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FABRICE COFFRINI

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There were protests outside WEF when United States President George W Bush went to in2007

The occasion does not just draw in power gamers.

Last year, Dutch popular historian Rutger Bregman utilized a panel to slam delegates for not paying their fair share of taxes

Often you’ll see protests in Davos and major Swiss cities.

Ukranian activists Femen, protested against male dominance of the world economy And in 2012, the Occupy Wall Street motion – which campaigned versus inequality – constructed igloos to house 50 protesters.

The White House Is Davos elitist?

Until the financial crash of 2007-08, attending Davos was considered a need to for the terrific and excellent.

But critics have suggested it is a symbol of the “international elite”, a few of whom are to blame for that crisis.

In 2015 Time magazine editor-at-large, Anand Giridharadas, explained Davos as “a family reunion for individuals who broke the modern world”.

Even amongst guests, not everyone has the same level of gain access to. Coloured badges determine who gets to rub shoulders with whom.

The most prominent visitors get a white badge with a hologram on it, providing access to all over. At the other end of the scale a “hotel” badge indicates you can’t enter the conference centre at all.

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Getty Images

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For most of the year Davos is a ski resort.

It is also male-dominated, with the term “Davos Guy” becoming a label for the type of wealthy, elite male who usually goes. Last year 22%of all Davos participants were females, up from 17%2015.

The conference’s swanky area, the private helicopters flying in and out and the range of extravagant parties can contribute to claims the occasion is special.

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But WEF argues it is merely interested in bringing leaders together for the greater good.

And Martin Wolf, the Financial Times’ chief economics commentator, says: “Elites are constantly a bit out of touch – that’s their nature – however it is impossible to have a world without them. It is likewise essential that these people satisfy frequently and discover what each other is thinking.”

The White House What has Davos accomplished?

Lots of companies use the occasion to make essential promises on concerns like sustainability, or to enhance variety.

The conference has also notched up some genuine accomplishments.

In 1988, meetings between prime ministers Turgut Özal of Turkey and Andreas Papandreou of Greece brought relations in between the nations back from the verge of war.

And in 2000, the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) used it to launch programs to immunise countless kids against illness.

The White House What secret minutes can we anticipate this year?

Donald Trump might be the piece de resistance, having actually avoided the occasion last year. He is because of give a speech on Tuesday, the day his impeachment trial starts in the SENATE

On The Other Hand, Greta Thunberg is because of deliver another combative message on environment modification – after trekking her method up the Alps to Davos rather than utilizing public transport.

Image copyright
FABRICE COFFRINI

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Greta Thunberg will go to once again this year.

Other big names will be Sanna Marin, prime minister of Finland, who at 34 is the world’s youngest serving premier.

And Bollywood star Deepika Padukone will remain in town speaking about her battle with depression.

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