At a reception in Davos hosted by CMS and the German newspaper DIE ZEIT, Laura Rudas (Vice President Strategy, Palantir Technologies Inc), Werner Baumann (CEO, Bayer AG) and Oliver Bäte (CEO, Allianz SE) spoke about the challenges society and businesses are facing, including digitisation with the resulting data protection issues and climate change. Additionally, climate activist Luisa Neubauer discussed the impact of climate activism.
Working together to find solutions
According to Luisa Neubauer, if we want to find a solution to the climate crisis, we “need people to act, to work together, that’s the only way … we need very smart collaboration, we need very smart solidarity, even.” She added, “I wish we [could find] a more realistic way, a more rational way to deal with the crisis situation. The risk, scientists say, is as high as it [was] when they were about to drop nuclear bombs – this is where we are. This is not being apocalyptic but realistic.”
Luisa Neubauer commented on whether people she meets in Davos are serious about climate change: “Suddenly, many people we meet, not all of them obviously, because we all saw Trump, feel obliged to talk about the climate, and to confirm that they really believe in it – which is kind of sweet, actually. What we can do is to take this as seriously as it gets and then expect actions. Because in times where everything you say and you do gets reported, it allows us to come back to that”.
Technology and businesses play a key role
Pierre-Sébastien Thill, Chairman at CMS, stated, “Technology will be key to fixing our world’s problems.” In line with this, Laura Rudas added that if businesses have a better understanding of their data, they will make better decisions for their business. However, technology also comes with its own set of challenges. On issues around data protection, Laura Rudas urged that we talk differently about data – instead of the risks of data, we should be concerned about the risks of not using data.
Looking at how businesses can turn challenges into opportunities, Oliver Bäte spoke about how his company works on finding a balance between keeping traditions and values, while still being agile enough to compete in today's business environment. Werner Baumann emphasised the importance of engaged employees, adding that when things get tough and the company faces challenges, then people stand together.
On possible solutions, Pierre-Sébastien Thill concluded, "Businesses are key to solving our world’s current and future problems. We at CMS have committed ourselves to not only face the future, but also shape it together with our clients.”