Community

The Forum of Young Global Leaders is a community of innovators from diverse backgrounds and experiences. Search current members and alumni by year awarded, sector or region.

Caroline Watson

Chief Executive Officer, The Centre for Arts and Leadership, France

Entrepreneur, speaker and leadership consultant. Thought leadership at the intersection of the arts and education, China, migration and globalization, women’s empowerment, leadership, entrepreneurship and spirituality.

Entrepreneurship

As the founder and director of Hua Dan and Scheherazade Initiatives, two global enterprises that use participatory theatre to empower migrant and refugee populations to overcome the challenges of enforced displacement and both contribute to and benefit from their host communities. We use a combination of theatre games, exercises, role play and creative arts approaches that develop valuable life skills that enable individuals to take action to solve some of the challenges they are facing in their life.

I am also the founding member of the Global Arts Impact Agenda, an initiative to radically innovate in how the arts can be used to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

Speaker

I am regularly invited to speak about my work in founding Hua Dan and Scheherazade and my experience running a global business. Some of the topics I address include:

• Leadership and entrepreneurship
• Living and working in China and the emerging world
• Globalization, migration and supply chain issues
• Diversity and inclusion
• Women’s empowerment
• The role of the arts for personal and social development
• Spirituality and transformative leadership

See more at my personal site at www.carolinewatson.org

Leadership consultant

I run inspirational corporate leadership programmes that use interactive and behavioural-change techniques to cascade transformation throughout an entire company, from senior management right down to front-line workers across all areas of the supply chain. I do this both as an independent consultant and also as part of my global social enterprise Scheherazade Consulting. All programmes can be delivered online and in-person, for large-scale team-building, group or 1:1 coaching for executives. Learn more at www.act-for-impact.com.

IMPACT

Driving through all of my work as an entrepreneur, speaker and thought-leader, and leadership consultant, is the importance of behaviour change and the IMPACT that innovative, participatory processes can bring to both individual and global change. We work with partners in the area of data analysis to leverage key performance indicators you would like to see in your company, and bring in knowledge-experts in key areas to complement our behaviour change work.

I am based in Europe and have team members all over the world. Email: caroline@carolinewatson.org

Scott Weber

President and Chief Executive Officer, Peaceinvest, Switzerland

Scott M. Weber is President and CEO of Peaceinvest, a Swiss-based, investment firm that harnesses finance to build a more peaceful world. The company identifies and arranges partnerships and financial vehicles, including Peace Bonds, that mobilize capital to create value for all stakeholders concerned and that adhere to the Peace Finance Impact Framework Standards. Rooted in local communities, Peaceinvest is global in scope, the Management team of Peaceinvest has experience working across 100 countries. It seeks to address inequalities wherever they persist and is committed to building Peace at Scale.

Beatrice Weder di Mauro

President, Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR), United Kingdom

President, CEPR, the leading European network of economists; Distinguished Fellow, Emerging Markets Institute, INSEAD; Professor of International Economics, Graduate Institute in Geneva (from Jan. 2019). Has held the Chair for International Macroeconomics at the University of Mainz in Germany and visiting positions at Harvard University, the International Monetary Fund, the United Nations University in Tokyo and INSEAD in Singapore. Was a member of the German Council of Economic Experts for eight years and has provided high-level policy advice to European governments, the European Commission, international organizations and central banks. Has served as non-executive director on the boards of leading companies in banking, development finance, pharmaceuticals, technology and insurance globally. Member of the Board: Bombardier, Bosch and UBS.

Christian Wenk

Senior Physician, Emergency Ward, Clinic St Anna, Switzerland

Despite a life-threatening bicycle accident in 2000 that left him as a paraplegic, Christian Wenk went on to complete his medical studies and became a Senior Physician in the Emergency Ward of Clinic St Anna in Switzerland, specializing in internal and emergency medicine. He is also an accomplished triathlete and is the winner of Paralympic gold medals as the Swiss handcycling head coach. In addition, Wenk is a musician who plays the piano thanks to a sophisticated pedals system. He has recorded a number of CDs and performs regularly for charity. He also gives inspiration talks throughout Switzerland, acting as an ambassador for inclusion and dignity.

Silvia Wiesner

Consultant, Leadership Advisory, Egon Zehnder, Germany

Silvia Wiesner is active in Egon Zehnder’s Consumer Practice, leveraging her many years of marketing, sales, and general management experience in the consumer goods industry across various European markets to develop bold ideas and identify ideal solutions for clients. She excels at shaping visions and inspiring others, aided by her multicultural background and command of several languages. Silvia is also passionate about driving diversity, equity and inclusion on executive and board teams. Before joining Egon Zehnder, Silvia spent 17 years in marketing, sales, and general management roles at Unilever, most recently in Brussels as the Managing Director for Belgium and Luxembourg. Prior to that she was based in Hamburg where she held the position of General Manager and Vice President for Marketing in the food category in German-speaking countries.
Silvia earned a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Graz in Austria while spending an exchange year in the USA. She furthered her education with courses at Harvard, Oxford, Cambridge, INSEAD, and the Corporate Governance Institute. Outside work, Silvia drives gender equity in decision-making roles in Europe as a member of the executive committee of European Women on Boards and has been identified by BeyondGenderAgenda as “one of the top 100 women for diversity” in Germany and selected as a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum. She also belongs to the LEAD Europe network, the Club of European Female Entrepreneurs, and the Corporate Governance Institute in addition to mentoring for the EMEA Fellowship Program of the Marketing Academy and nushu Female Business and providing strategic advice to IMAGINE (cofounded by Paul Polman).

Lisa Witter

Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder, Apolitical, Germany

Lisa Witter is a serial political and policy entrepreneur. She’s the co-founder of Apolitical, a global peer-to-peer learning platform, used by 180k+ public servants in 170 countries and was named one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies in the World. She's the CEO of the Apolitical Foundation whose mission is to support the next generation of trusted and transformation politicians. They have recently released Better Leaders, Better Democracies: Mapping the Organizations Shaping 21st Century Politicians. She’s a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader, co-chairs the Forum’s Council on Agile Governance. She is a former public servant with deep experience in gender and behavioral science and has founded numerous political leadership incubators over the last 25 years. She was awarded the 2020 Creative Bureaucracy Award and named a BMW Foundation Futurity Fellow in 2022. Lisa co-authored, with Lisa Chen, The She Spot: Why Women are the Market for Changing the World and How to Reach Them. She loves wearing dresses, her childhood nickname was ‘Animal’ from the sports fields, and dreams of being a stand-up comedian (but might not be funny enough).

Peter Würtenberger

Chief Executive Officer, upday, Axel Springer, Germany

Peter Würtenberger is Executive Vice President at Axel Springer (Europe’s leading digital publisher).
Previously Peter held positions as CEO of UPDAY for SAMSUNG, CMO of Axel Springer SE, responsible for growing print and digital advertising revenues, as CEO of the WELT Newspaper Group and as CEO of BILD.T-Online. Before Axel Springer he served in various management positions at Yahoo! and Bertelsmann.

Peter holds a degree in Business Management from Cologne University and completed the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School. From 2008 to 2012 he was an active member of the Group of Young Global Leaders at the World Economic Forum, Davos, Switzerland. In 2013 he spent 10 months on a digital research project in Palo Alto, Silicon Valley, in order to support Axel Springer’s digital transformation. In his free time he enjoys music, contemporary arts and sports.

Werner Wutscher

Managing Director, St. Paul GmbH – New Venture Scouting, Austria

Werner Wutscher is a Member of the Board of resPACT, the Austrian Business Council for Sustainable Development. He also works as consultant and business angel in the start-up area. Wutscher scouts interesting start-ups around the world and serves as a facilitator for start-up ventures. As an angel investor he focuses on e-commerce and retail. He also serves as director on different boards in Austria, Mumbai and Amman. Werner was COO and CFO of Rewe International. Prior, he worked as Secretary-General of the Ministry for Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management of Austria, and he served as a special adviser to the Minister for Agriculture and in a public company. Wutscher is Vice-President of the Ökosoziales Forum Europe and President of the National Park Hohe Tauern. He was awarded “Business Angel of 2012” and is Member of the Board of the Austrian Business Angel Association. Wutscher obtained a law degree from Karl-Franzens University in Graz and holds a Master's degree from the Harvard Kennedy School.

Yan E. Yanovskiy

Member of the Managing Board, Imagine, Monaco

Yan Yanovskiy is multilingual global executive and visionary leader with strong management skills and extensive international experience in private equity, strategic advisory, business development, investment banking and business consulting. Yan has more than 15 years experience in board memberships with both for profit and non-profit organizations across sectors and geographies from shipbuilding and coal mining to being a chairman of the board for the oldest delicatessen chain in the world Hediard with presence in 33 countries. Yan combines his unique experience as a business leader with his expertise in non-profit sector, being a true leader and a pioneer in making non-profit more professional and efficient, advocating for running a non-profit organization in the same way one would run a for profit one. Yan is often engaged as a strategic advisor to global companies, large family businesses and family offices on developing their philanthropic strategy, finding a fit between their business activities and impactful investments including sustainability of their non-profit initiatives, ESG, corporate governance, human capital.

Yan founded a multifamily office First Nation Société Bancaire to serve as gatekeeper of high net worth families’ wealth, businesses and legacy by coordinating investment management with tax and estate planning, strategic advisory, insurance planning, risk management, philanthropic activity and many other essential family office functions across the globe. Prior to that, Mr Yanovskiy was a Head of Investment Strategy and Member of the Board of one of the largest industrial groups in Eastern Europe OPK acting as a strategic leader of the organization. Yan also has many years of experience as a Head of Corporate Finance and Investment Banking with focus across industries and geographies with deals in metals and mining, mobile networks, FMCG, aviation, retail, construction in Easter Europe, North America, Africa and Asia Pacific.

In 2015 Mr. Yanovskiy co-fouded Friends foundation, a non profit organization that serves as an umbrella organization to other non-profit organizations, promoting philanthropy and helping the world in many different areas that are covered by the members of the participating nonprofit organizations. He currently serves as a member of the board for Friends foundation.

The World Economic Forum named Yan a Young Global Leader in 2011. He remains active in the YGL Board Service Initiative and as a member of the Forum’s Expert Network.

Yousef Yousef

Chief Executive Officer, LG Sonic B.V., Netherlands

Yousef Yousef, with two decades at LG Sonic, has significantly impacted the green technology sector by advancing water quality systems and driving the company's global expansion to over 50 countries. His strategic vision has propelled LG Sonic from a nascent startup to an industry benchmark, earning worldwide recognition for environmental excellence.

As a leader, Yousef also spearheads a green-tech scale-up initiative with 500+ members, dedicated to merging the innovative energies of green startups with the robust resources of established companies. This role highlights his belief in collaborative, sustainable growth as a catalyst for environmental innovation.

Yousef's expertise extends to strategic roles, including his significant position in the board of the the European Innovation Council, a 10 billion euro EU fund. In this capacity, he influences the confluence of technology and eco-sustainability, shaping policy and guiding the tech industry's future. This role allows him to play a pivotal part in deploying substantial resources towards fostering breakthrough technologies and innovative solutions across Europe.

Patrick Youssef

Regional Director, Africa, International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Switzerland

I joined the ICRC in 2005 and completed different field missions in Sudan, Chad, Iraq and Guantanamo Bay. Between 2010 & 2013, I was the deputy head of operations for the Near and Middle East covering Yemen, the Islamic Republic of Iran and the GCC. Prior to my current assignment as Regional Director for Africa, I headed the Red Cross delegation in Iraq and was the Head of Operations for North and West Africa

In addition to my field experience, I worked on specific topics related to the respect of International Humanitarian Law such as the treatment and judicial guarantees of persons deprived of freedom, the recruitment of children in armed forces and Transitional Justice.

Born in 1978, I hold a degree in law and a master’s degree in diplomacy and strategic negotiations from Paris Sud XI and an LLM in International Law in armed conflicts from Geneva University.

Christian Zeinler

Personal, Switzerland

Christian Zeinler is Managing Director, Head of Strategy and Business Development at UBS where he has reorganized the team structure. He is passionate about the people mission in his job and invests significant time in sponsoring and coaching colleagues while creating opportunities. Prior to UBS, he successfully launched and managed a convertible bond fund before working at McKinsey & Company. Zeinler was one of McKinsey’s Core Leaders in its Wealth and Asset Management practice, leading and driving its efforts and knowledge creation globally on Investment Solutions. As a Partner, he was able to shape the industry’s strategic agenda working with the global leading institutions in this space.