• World’s largest brainstorm kicks off the Road to Davos with focus on nine global challenges
  • Summit aims to foster ideas and action that will bring positive change to global, regional and industry agendas
  • Abu Dhabi marks eight years of partnership between the Forum and the United Arab Emirates
  • More information about the Summit on the Global Agenda 2015 is available here: http://wef.ch/gac15

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 25 October 2015 – The eighth Summit on the Global Agenda begins today, with over 900 world-leading experts from academia, government, business, civil society and the media convening with the goal of formulating ideas and actions to address some of the world’s toughest challenges.

Held in partnership with the Government of the United Arab Emirates, the Co-Chairs of the Summit areSultan Saeed Nasser AlMansoori, Minister of Economy of the United Arab Emirates, andAli Majed Al Mansoori,Chairman, Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development, United Arab Emirates

With thought leaders at the Summit belonging to over 80 Global Agenda Councils, each with its own distinct mandate, the aim of the meeting is to generate better understanding of challenges affecting the world at the global, regional and industry level, and to brainstorm ideas and solutions that address them.

As in previous years, there will be a strong contingent of experts from the United Arab Emirates, with 38 council members coming from the country, as well as Emirati public officials, students and other observers.

This year, in line with the Forum’s official status under Swiss law as the International Organization for Public-private Cooperation, the summit will focus on 9 Global Challenges. There will also be sessions co-designed by the Forum with individual councils, focusing on specific topics critical to the global agenda.

These will include the integration of refugees; how to meet the sustainable development goals; building smart, sustainable cities; and learning from the Greek financial crisis.

Underlining the strong collaborative spirit that has been built between the Network of Global Agenda Councils and the United Arab Emirates since the first summit was held there in 2008 are two significant projects that will have significant local impact.

The first is an ongoing process to adopt Global Agenda Council innovations as exhibits in Dubai’s Museum of the Future, which is due to open in 2017.

The second is a high-level workshop, to be held during the summit, between UAE public officials and members of the Global Agenda Council on the Future of Manufacturing to prepare the groundwork for a major international meeting in 2016 by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Economy.

“The work of the Global Agenda Councils is a vital part of the ongoing work flow of the World Economic Forum, pooling expertise, ideas and actions to help leaders address the most critical challenges facing the world today.

The support and collaboration of the United Arab Emirates has been instrumental in providing a platform for the councils to develop the contextual intelligence needed to positively shape global, regional and industry agendas.

To have this foremost global brainstorming meeting held in the United Arab Emirates also mirrors the forward vision of the country’s leadership” said Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum.

“The Summit on the Global Agenda is about bringing people together, to engage in important conversations that may not otherwise happen. The diverse perspectives represented here make the Summit an exceptional space for creative and collaborative problem solving,” said HE Eng Sultan AlMansoori, UAE Minister of Economy. ”For this reason, I keenly look forward to the next few days – to be able to share our growth experiences, forge new synergies and further cement the UAE’s role as an effective and collaborative global citizen.”

“Very few international forums have such a broad and flexible mandate, and this creates opportunities for genuine innovation,” said HE Ali Majed Al Mansoori, Chairman, Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development. “This gathering applies an interdisciplinary approach to developing long term, sustainable solutions to complex global challenges, and it is this dynamism and energy that makes our longstanding partnership with the Summit such a natural fit for the UAE.”

Oliver Cann, Public Engagement, Tel.: +41 79 799 3405; Oliver.Cann@weforum.org

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[photo credits: “Davos Congress Centre” by World Economic Forum – Flickr: Davos Congress Centre – World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2011. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Davos_Congress_Centre.jpg#/media/File:Davos_Congress_Centre.jpg]