Science takes center stage at Open Forum Davos 2024

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As part of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2024, this year's Open Forum Davos – convening under the theme "From Life to Lab: Science in Action – will feature sessions on topics of critical importance through a scientific lens.

Taking place on 15-19 January 2024 at the Swiss Alpine School in Davos, the publicly accessible event aims to stimulate dialogue among thought leaders on current geopolitical concerns, environmental problems and the role of the arts in society.

From exploring the potential of openness and trust in science to addressing such global challenges as air pollution, biodiversity loss and climate change, the programme will also delve into disruptive innovations in research in development, the science of ageing, gender research in medicine, the urgent need for cybersecurity preparedness, and other pressing issues.

Notable sessions include a one-on-one with UN Messenger of Peace Jane Goodall on overcoming global crises, and discussions on collaboration between science and biodiversity.

The "Primer on AI" session will address the rapid growth of artificial intelligence (AI), emphasizing the critical need for inclusive, ethical and well-aligned solutions, while a panel, including American singer will.i.am, technology advocate Alexandra Reeve Givens, and Alex Oster, a student from the Cantonal School of Baden, will explore how to ensure AI benefits everyone.

French Turkish artist Yaman Okur, acclaimed for his achievements in choreography, photography and breakdancing, will unveil a new short film on the 1999 Türkiye earthquake. Join this session to witness Okur's personal and artistic response to the natural disaster, exploring the role of art in fostering resilience. The session will provide insights into the transformative power of creativity in overcoming adversity.

In collaboration with the Arctic Basecamp’s Gail Whiteman, a session entitled "On Thin Ice" will address the irreversible collapse of Arctic summer sea ice, with panellists discussing the consequences of accelerated global warming and increased extreme weather events in the northern hemisphere.

“Digital Einstein", an interactive platform created by researchers at ETH Zurich, will take center stage at the entrance to the Open Forum, offering visitors the opportunity to “engage” with the Nobel Prize-winner scientist and immerse themselves in the fascinating world of science.

Open Forum Davos panels embrace a spectrum of ages, genders and backgrounds. Sessions include perspectives from inspiring voices from all walks of life and from different corners of the globe. Notably, the discussions feature traditional academic voices as well as indigenous voices, ensuring a truly inclusive and comprehensive dialogue.

Open Forum programme

Monday 15 January
18.30 - 19.30        Liberating Science
 
Tuesday 16 January
09.30 - 10.30        Take a Deep Breath with Technology
12.30 - 13.30        Medicine and Women
18.30 - 19.30        R&D Disrupted
 
Wednesday 17 January
09.30 - 10.30        Speaking Truth to Power
12.30 - 13.30        Sustaining Life on Earth
18.30 - 19.30        A Primer on AI
 
Thursday 18 January
09.30 - 10.30        Cracking the Code
12.30 - 13.30        On Thin Ice
18.30 - 19.30        Resilience in Motion
 
Friday 19 January
09.30 - 10.30        Turning Back the Clock

About the Open Forum Davos

The Open Forum Davos was founded in 2003, when a series of public sessions was co-organized by the World Economic Forum and civic society groups, including churches, fair trade organizations and the Swiss Red Cross. Today, the Open Forum Davos remains a key platform for all of society to share thoughts and experiences on pressing and controversial issues.

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