«We want to bring Davos into the metaverse and set up a Global Collaboration Village. As open source,” said Schwab of the “Neue Zürcher Zeitung” (Monday edition). It is a “very big new project”. According to his own statements, the 84-year-old spent about sixty percent of his time on this in the past six months.
The WEF is planning the digital project together with the technology group Microsoft, the consulting firm Accenture and various international organizations. The Global Village aims to be the first Metaversum application with a real purpose, Schwab said.
In the virtual world there is the Congress House for meetings and five pavilions corresponding to the five centers at the World Economic Forum. “They can work on different projects in the pavilions,” said Schwab. The Global Village is to become a large platform that brings together international initiatives and creates an overview and synergies among them.
The WEF Foundation, based in Cologny GE, secured more than a dozen brands with the name “Meta” in December and January, as the “Bilanz” reported in February. These include names from Metadavos, Metaforum and Metaplaza to Metatownhall, Metacouncil to Metasymposium and Metamarketplace.
However, the virtual meeting point is not intended to completely replace face-to-face encounters on site. «Virtual meetings work very well to exchange information. But you can only build trust between strangers via a video conference, »said Schwab. This requires a personal encounter.
The World Economic Forum is a suitable platform, especially after the pandemic, to find a way back to personal discussions, said Schwab. Without this, no rapprochement would be possible in a cooling political climate.