Swiss Re at WEF 2013: Live reports

Follow Swiss Re's activities at the WEF 2013 on this site, including "live snow reports" capturing our own and other delegates' impressions of the week in the shape of blogs and short video interviews.

"Highlights from the WEF 2013"

Swiss Re and other delegates share their highlights of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2013
14:00, January 30


"We have to reach the children to solve the obesity crisis"

Alison Martin, Head Life & Health Reinsurance at Swiss Re,
13:00, January 26


"Ocean resilience is key for reinsurance"

Jayne Plunkett, Head Casualty Reinsurance at Swiss Re,
10:00, January 26


"By 2050 we'll only have two working people for every one retired"

Alison Martin, Head Life & Health Reinsurance at Swiss Re,
17:00, January 25


"Insurance will play a key role in the growth of the clean energy sector"

Agostino Galvagni, CEO Corporate Solutions, Swiss Re
15:30, January 25


"Inclusive WEF"

George Harbut, Director, Assistant to the Group CEO, Swiss Re,
14:00, January 25

On Thursday I arrived in snowy Davos in time to attend Swiss Re's breakfast on financial insurance. Financial inclusion is key in our aim to promote (indeed, achieve) Resilient Dynamism, this year's theme at WEF.

Inclusive insurance will help bring the risk management benefits of insurance to a wider audience, especially those 4 billion who (according to a World Bank survey) still live on less than 4 USD per day. Microinsurance could be one solution to help prevent a reduction in living quality following a shock event - indeed to help them continue on their path to become the middle class of tomorrow. Success stories are many but much more needs to be done. Simple, affordable products are needed, which will require efficient distribution, local knowledge and regulation that facilitates innovation.

Inclusive WEF also extends to the Open Forum Davos, where members of the public can attend sessions and engage. On Thursday, participants of the lunchtime session discussed who really benefits from mega sporting events. A lively discussion ensued, highlighting the impact of technology on the way we consume media when it comes to mega events - especially live sports - as it's one of the few instances when content is consumed globally and mostly live. Interestingly, sporting events and mass media are driving innovation, the benefits of which are spilling over across society. For more, visit where Alison Martin is doing a session on Saturday at 11:00 on Obesity: A Fat Invoice.

"The outlook for microinsurance is very positive"

Martyn Parker, Chairman Global Partnerships, Swiss Re
15:00, January 24


"My word of the day is 'innovation'"

Alison Martin, Head Life & Health Reinsurance at Swiss Re,
14:30, January 24


"Seeing the forest beyond the trees"

Reto Schnarwiler, Head Americas & EMEA, Global Partnerships, Swiss Re,
23:00, January 23

Swiss Re has been actively participating at the WEF for many years and it's great to see that our messages are heard more and more. For the last few years most people focused largely on the financial crisis but now we see that people take more time to think about other challenges. Natural disasters, food insecurity, global warming, aging population and other risks are now back on the agenda.

Obviously, the tragic events in Asia in 2011 and more recently Hurricane Sandy in the US helped to bring this to their attention. So it is not surprising that the WEF puts more emphasis on resilience (this year's theme). When thinking about it, resilient dynamism seems like an odd combination but if you think about it for a second, it makes perfect sense: Development needs to be combined with proper risk management so economies can prosper. We have seen it too often that countries are on a growth trajectory and then from one minute to the next, an earthquake or hurricane destroys their achievements.

At this year's Davos, I look forward to interesting, thought-provoking discussions with heads of development organisations and governments to explore how we can help them make their countries more resilient. Swiss Re, with its long-standing experience in dealing with risks, brings a lot to the table and has the capacity to absorb large risks. This ensures that countries affected by such risks have the financing in place when they need it the most.

"The benefits of being a Young Global Leader"

Jayne Plunkett, Head Casualty Reinsurance at Swiss Re,
19:30, January 23


"The growth challenge"

Michel M. Liès, Group CEO,
12:00, January 23

I've just arrived in beautiful Davos where we expect around 2600 political and business leaders to gather to discuss resilience. As highlighted in this year's Global Risks Report, we currently face a number of interconnected risks ranging from economic disparity and rising greenhouse gas emissions to aging populations and water supply crises.

The big question on everybody's mind is how can we pursue a path of growth while building resilience. Davos is a unique platform for meeting politicians, and one of Swiss Re's key roles at WEF is to help politicians learn more about how governments, communities and the private sector can work together to assess and plan for risks before they happen. In order to build resilience, countries must take a far more systematic approach to analyzing and monitoring a country's preparedness to cope with major threats. Our 150 years experience in assessing and managing risks gives us invaluable insights to share.

Countries and local governments are the insurers of last resort. Proper risk management can help countries attract investment, which is a key pre-requisite to boosting growth. During this week, I will be meeting many of our partners - including insurance companies, NGOs and government officials - to discuss ways together that could help enhance growth, security and financial inclusion.

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