Sheila Penrose: Opinion, Experience and Global Perspective at Davos 2015

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Sheila-Penrose-JLL-96The World Economic Forum at Davos creates a unique dialogue among corporate leaders and entrepreneurs, politicians and policy makers, leading not-for-profits and academics, and the media. No other event brings together such an array of opinion, experience, and global perspective.

As attendees gather for this year’s meeting, the events of recent weeks add more intensity and urgency to the public and private discussions that take place here.

Recent events in France starkly highlighted – yet again – the issues of security, free speech and multiculturalism; oil price changes are having significant and disproportionate effects on consumers, industries and regions; the outlook for Greece and recent action by the Swiss Central bank has rattled the Euro and financial markets generally; there’s continued uncertainty about China’s growth path; and questions about economic policy effectiveness following recent elections in Japan and India; while ongoing changes in Russia, the Middle East, Cuba are reshaping international relations…

It’s a long list of challenging issues. And yet the U.S. economy is a bright spot, with falling unemployment, declining deficits, growing consumer confidence and solid corporate earnings – albeit with stagnant real incomes at the bottom and growing wealth at the top.

So the conversations in Davos over the next few days will be rich in content and shaped by the current context. I look forward to sharing my observations.

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