MLB student Emilie Seitz Ortiz at the St. Gallen Symposium

MLB student Emilie Seitz Ortiz attended the prestigious St. Gallen Symposium. We asked her about her motivation and how she prepared for the event.

1. What motivated you to take part in the St. Gallen Symposium?

The St. Gallen Symposium took place from 4–6 May 2022 and is one of the world’s leading initiatives for cross-generational dialogue on economic, political and social themes and developments. For more than 50 years, the Symposium has brought together leaders and visionaries to address the opportunities and challenges of our time and work on finding solutions. Current dilemmas are examined by presidents, former presidents, CEOs, journalists, ministers, journalists, activists, and members of parliaments, among other remarkable people from all over the globe.

My motivation to participate in the essay competition was the opportunity to be part of this unique platform of leaders of today and tomorrow and to work together with people with diverse interests and values, from business, politics, academia, and civil society, who will explore current dilemmas and new, more effective models of collective action.


2. What were the requirements to be chosen as a participant?

To be qualified as a Leader of Tomorrow, I participated in the Global Essay Competition. The topic of the essay was: Collaborative Advantage: What should be written into a new intergenerational contract?

The essay was no longer than 2100 words and was written in English.

The Academic Jury of the Global Essay Competition receives approx. 400 annual contributions submitted by graduate and post-graduate students from all around the globe (over 90 countries). They ranked my essay among the top 100 contributions, and I was given the unique opportunity to attend the 51st St. Gallen Symposium (4–6 May 2022) and become part of their global community with all expenses covered and all arrangements organized by the International Student’s Committee.


3. What did you do to prepare for the Symposium?

To prepare for the essay competition, I read past winners’ contributions and researched my essay topic: What we need for an intergenerational contract on climate change. The essay focused on an intergenerational contract to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal No. 13: how people from the different present and future generations can emphasize common grounds and mutual interests to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.

To be ready for the event, I kept myself updated with the newsfeed, insights, and briefs that the St. Gallen Symposium publishes.


4. What are you looking forward to most during the Symposium?

I am looking forward to being part of this network and creating impact through the dialogues about current dilemmas and new, more impactful models of collective action to address our shared challenges. The symposium allows for intimate exchanges between present decision-makers and the Leaders of Tomorrow.


5. What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of the upcoming St. Gallen Symposium?

The first thing that comes to my mind is cross-generational dialogue. The Symposium promotes it to foster mutual understanding and joint action, connecting all generations around relevant cross-generational issues to find optimal ideas and solutions. It is the right place to pursue constructive debates on pressing global issues between current and future leaders. I believe that the challenges of climate action, global security amid war in the European continent and the need for intergenerational fairness make cross-generational dialogue more needed than ever.

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