In the light of the 45th St. Gallen Symposium (SGS) in 2015, the Ambassador hosted the 6th St. Gallen Symposium Beijing Reception on December 3rd 2014 at his residence on December 3rd 2014. Mr. Philip Erzinger, Chief Executive Officer, St. Gallen Foundation for International Studies (SGFIS) and the International Students’ Committee (ISC) at the University of St. Gallen coordinated the conference together with the STE team at the Embassy. Prior to the main event, selected graduate students from top Chinese universities were invited to attend a pre-gathering held by Nektarios Palaskas and Rolf Bachmann, Head of Leaders of Tomorrow at SGFIS. The two speakers exposed the role of the Embassy in the bilateral relation with China and the essay competition of the SGS respectively. For the latter, Mr. Bachman invited them to take part in the St. Gallen Wings of Excellence Award, an essay competition intended for graduate students. For next year, the topic of the essay is «Proudly small» and the contestants are to return their unique perspective to convince a renowned jury. The authors of the best 100 contributions will be invited to join the next St. Gallen Symposium, while the three best are bestowed with the St. Gallen Wings of Excellence Award.
Subsequent to the pre-gathering, the students and many more distinguished guests from business and academia attended a panel discussion and reception at the residence. A panel of influential persons in China moderated by the well-known CCTV Anchor James Chau, debated the topic “Urbanization in China – Beyond Human Scale”. We had the honor to welcome Dr. Urs BUCHMANN, Head Corporate & Institutional Clients Asia Pacific at Credit Suisse, Mr. Alex CAMPRUBI, Studio Director at China State Construction Engineer Company, Mrs. Kathy GONG, Founder and Chairwoman at KG Inc., Prof. TAO Ran, Director of the China Center for Public Economics and Governance at Renmin University of China, and Jonathan Woetzel, Director of MicKinsey & Company and Founder of Urban China Initiative, to converse on this challenging and burning topic together with the audience.
The number of cars and public transportation, the sustainable degree of density of population and the role of sky scrapers were among the subjects being debated. More details of the debate could be found on the blog page of the St. Gallen Symposium: http://www.symposium.org/en/Blog