Stephane Garelli Speaker

Stephane Garelli

Emeritus Professor of World Competitiveness, former MD of the World Economic Forum, best-selling author, professor and one of the most exciting speakers that you will hear

Stephane Garelli: Biography highlights

Stephane is a world authority on competitiveness and has pioneered research in this field for 25 years. Emeritus Professor at IMD (Institute of Management Development) Lausanne, where he has founded the World Competitiveness Centre, he is also Emeritus Professor at the University of Lausanne.

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Full biography of Stephane Garelli

Stephane Garelli’s background

Professor Garelli is closely connected to the world of business. He is, among others, Chairman of the Board of Directors of “Le Temps”, the leading French-language Swiss newspaper. He was formerly Chairman of the Board of the Sandoz Financial and Banking Holding and member of the board of the Banque Edouard Constant.

He was the Managing Director of the World Economic Forum and of the Davos Symposium for many years. For twelve years he was also permanent senior adviser to the European management of Hewlett-Packard.

He is a member of a number of institutes, such as China Enterprise Management Association, Board of the ‘Fondation Jean Monet pour l’Europe’, The Swiss Academy of Engineering Sciences, the Mexican Council for Competitiveness and an advisory committee member of the Thai Management Association. He is also a member of the International Olympic Committee commission for Sustainability and Legacy.

Stephane is the author of numerous publications on competitiveness and global business and he published his best-selling book “Top Class Competitors – How Nations, Firms and Individuals Succeed in the New World of Competitiveness” with Wiley. His latest book “Are you a Tiger, a Cat or a Dinosaur?” is available on Amazon.

From 1999 to 2002, he was a member of the Constitutional Assembly of his local state – Vaud, Switzerland

Current / Past Roles & Positions

  • Professor at IMD, one of the world’s leading business schools and Director of the IMD World Competitiveness Center
  • Professor at the University of Lausanne, Switzerland
  • Former managing director of the World Economic Forum
  • Author of the best-selling book “Top Class Competitors – How Nations, Firms and Individuals Succeed in the New World of Competitiveness”

World Class Competitiveness – An outlook for 2020, and beyond

  • The Economy: What is good news, or bad news? Uncertainty and nervousness will prevail.
  • Stress points: Climate change, energy, low interest rates, currency volatility, political tensions.
  • Protectionism: From job protection to national security rhetoric. Market access jeopardized?
  • Globalization: The global value chain is still thriving. Regionalization will be prioritized.
  • Technology revolution: Automation, connectivity, location, sharing (C to C), plus convergence and mobility. What impact on energy?
  • The New Business models: Free (Facebook), Subscription (Spotify), Licensing (Microsoft), Streaming (Netflix). Does profit still matter?
  • The Immaterial Economy: How can it be measured? Can business and personal data be protected? How much regulation is needed? Who is liable?
  • Technology companies: How dominant? Branching into other sectors: cloud, food retailing, health, watches, finance. Is the consumer trapped?
  • The Key Issues: Who will be the competitors of tomorrow? Where will they come from? Technology lowers entry barriers.
  • The Black Hole Economy: Start-ups are bought out by dominant technology firms. Can they still grow into large companies?
  • The Next Systemic Risk: From the regulated banking sector or from the unregulated technology sector? Should tech firms be dismantled?
  • Corporate Ownership: New actors (sovereign funds, emerging companies, family business), new global brands, M&A and share buybacks.
  • The Tax Impact: Territorial approach, transparency, equality of treatment. No tax rate harmonization. Are we shifting toward a global system?
  • The Millennials: Me-ism, strong sense of entitlement, idealistic, free is cool. Overwhelming influence on governments and companies.
  • Mindset: Resilience, speed, openness to new ideas and business models, sensitive to new value systems, responsive to society expectations.


Stephane speaks English and French.

Speaking Style

A vibrant, highly sought after speaker with a gift for distilling complex economic issues.



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Available for:

After Dinner Engagement
Panel Participation

Watch Stephane in action

1/2 videos
Stephane Garelli - The world in reset mode
Stephane Garelli - The world in reset mode
Stéphane Garelli – The World in Reset Mode:  A Competitiveness Outlook for 2017 and beyond
Stéphane Garelli – The World in Reset Mode: A Competitiveness Outlook for 2017 and beyond
Nestle S.A.

Today, competitiveness is on the top on our agenda at Nestl. Stephane Garelli is one of the most stimulating thinkers that I have met on the subject and his research, writings and teaching have had a major impact on the way we approach this fundamental challenge at Nestle.'

Peter Brabeck-Letmathe
Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer
University of Southern California

'Top Class Competitors: Every global leader will find this work not just important, but a necessity'

Warren Bennis
Distinguished Professor of Management and author of On Becoming a Leader

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