Personal review of Corporate Research Forum Conference in Prague Oct 12th to 14th

Foto von Boris GattineauActually, I always was an opponent of major meetings and conferences, because the presentations are usually just a buzzword summary and everybody wants to sell and nobody wants to buy. So a waste of time for everyone. CRF Prague converted my opinion! It was an excellent mixture of lectures, practical exercises and discussions in small panels.
According to conferences title “– An Uncertain World: Planning for 2025 and beyond” references to day to day problems in HR (new engagement models, future or pensions systems…) were not actively addressed. Rather the challenges for leadership for the next 8 to 10 years were touched.  Here are some highlights of the very colorful and inspiring presentations and speeches:

Computer Technology: Processor performance and communication capacities will continue to grow as before. We are just at the beginning of digitization and networking. We will see the rise of the connected things and sensors will change our lives. Virtual and augmented reality will not only change Pokémon’s lives.
Economy / Politics: Asia will become more dominant. The EU will get weaker and Brexit will have a strong impact. America is an economic and military powerhouse; its politics lie in shambles. Russia is weak and basically a nasty, global rioter.
Society: The social schism between digital winners, investors and the rest of the society will grow. Automation and robotics will make many jobs redundant and further increase social tensions. The phenomenon of “Angry people” will become a significant force virtually everywhere.
However, advances in technology, science and global cooperation will increase life expectancy and further reduce the number of people in extreme poverty. So there are also a lot of things to look up to.
The speakers blessed with experience, data and self-confidence all refrained from given tangible prognosis: So big is the change to be expected!

In addition to the content, didactics and methodological aspects were also exciting:
– The participants sat around 40 tables, so that one could always return from the big stage to a small group and discuss fruitfully.
– Presentations were used by many speakers. However, these either showed facts in the form of graphics or key visuals to underline the message -> the focus was not on the chart, but rather on the message.
– Although the event included a small fair with stands from the conference sponsors, the spirit was coined by level headedness and friendly networking between participants, speakers and the CRF-team.

Please find attached a video by one of the speaker. Prof Ian Goldin (former economic advisor to Nelson Mandela) talks about the global economy and shows how we can learn from the Renaissance:

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