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World Economic Forum A preview of Davos 2022

The themes and topics expected to dominate this year’s meeting.

For the first time since the start of the pandemic, global leaders will gather in person for the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum from May 22-26. During a McKinsey Live webinar, senior partners Tracy Francis and Sven Smit explored the five primary topics McKinsey partners will focus on during their week at Davos.

  1. Sustainable and inclusive growth. The three business goals—growth, sustainability, and inclusion—buttress one another yet don’t always pull in the same direction. Organizations need to build a future that delivers all three. How do you increase productivity? How do you foster inclusion through social contracts? How do you reduce the total cost of the energy transition? For more on this topic, see “Our future lives and livelihoods: Sustainable and inclusive and growing.
  2. Lighthouse manufacturing. The Global Lighthouse Network is a community of manufacturers in multiple industries leading the way in digital transformation. Lighthouses have shown that responsible growth requires a transformation with environmental, social, and governance (ESG) priorities front and center. For more on this topic, see “Lighthouses reveal a playbook for responsible industry transition.
  3. European competitive gap. As Europe grapples with the effects of the war in Ukraine, it is undergoing a corporate and technology crisis. Gaps in corporate performance and innovation are putting Europe’s long-term resilience and future growth at risk. For more on this topic, see “Securing Europe’s future beyond energy: Addressing its corporate and technology gap.
  4. Inflation expectations. Inflation is already affecting global growth; consumers are changing their behavior and companies are reacting by establishing short-, medium-, and long-term plans. Businesses are not only retooling their pricing but also looking to transform their organization, manufacturing strategy, and other internal processes. For more on this topic, see “Navigating inflation: a new playbook for CEOs.
  5. Strategic resilience. Being resilient goes beyond absorbing the shock of disruption. It requires focusing on six dimensions: financials, operations, technology, organization, reputation, and business model. Most companies report that they have included resilience in their strategic processes and workforce safety, but they are much less optimistic about having the capabilities to manage financial resilience and instill a risk culture. For more on this topic, see “The resilience imperative: Managing in uncertain times.

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For more on these and many other topics, see “What’s on the Davos agenda for 2022?

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