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Jan 30 2017

A connected world liberated by technology: impressions from Davos

This blog is by Rajeev Suri, President and CEO of Nokia Twitter: @nokia

 

To paraphrase the great Mark Twain: the rumors of the death of globalism have been greatly exaggerated.

That was a big lesson to come out of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, where I was struck by the unanimity of opinion among statesmen, business leaders, and movers and shakers of every hue and stripe that free trade, global links, and a connected world remain essential for the welfare of everyone.

The message was repeated and emphasized by a wide range of leaders across a diverse spectrum of ideologies: they included outgoing U.S. Vice President Joe Biden; Chinese President Xi Jinping; and the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde.

And, I can only say that I fully echo that sentiment.

I was honored to represent Nokia at many sessions. A few stand out:

  • Leading a panel discussion on the financing of ICT infrastructure, and championing Nokia’s view that the global economy needs a good regulatory environment that rewards risk-takers. I also explained how we can help break down barriers to get people online in the developing world and connect the unconnected.
  • Announcing at a dinner hosted by the Broadband Commission the launch of Nokia’s managed service for the global deployment of the Internet of Things.
  • Participating in a panel debate on the future of “human-centric health,” and describing how Nokia can work with partners to bring First World medicine to remote corners of the developing world through the spread of 5G, VR, and AI technology. I also described how we are standing on the brink of more exciting breakthroughs in wearable sensors that help people monitor their health and take greater control of their own wellbeing, as well as provide a first line of defense against non-communicable diseases that needlessly kill millions.
  • Attending my first meeting of the Telecom Governors community (CEOs of telco companies). It was a highly positive event and I am keen to step up Nokia’s presence in this hugely influential group.

As much as anything, the experience was valuable for the links I was able to build between Nokia and so many individuals from governments, businesses, and other organizations from around the world.

Those links are vital because we need global networks, global understanding, and global cooperation if we are to reap the full benefits of a connected world liberated by technology.

Great breakthroughs like 5G and the Internet of Things hold out the promise of enormous beneficial change in just about every area of human endeavor: medicine, transport, communication, industry, entertainment – you name it.

The general refrain around Davos was that we are stronger together, and that the future belongs to those people, organizations, and countries that are keen to reach out and connect with their neighbors. To talk, to trade, to communicate.

It is my honor and privilege to lead Nokia as we play our part in making the dream of a peaceful, prosperous, connected future a reality for the whole planet.

Share your thoughts on this topic by replying below – or join the Twitter discussion with @nokia using #connectivity #IoT #WEF17 #ICT4SDG

About Rajeev Suri

As Nokia CEO, Rajeev has been the driving force behind Nokia’s recent transformation, including its acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent; successful expansion into digital health and enterprise vertical markets; building a standalone software business; and the return of the Nokia brand to mobile phones. He is also a United Nations Broadband Commissioner; Vice Chair of the B20 Digitalization Taskforce; and a member of the World Economic Forum’s stewardship board for better health care. Rajeev is an avid fitness enthusiast and music lover and has probably experienced most of the world’s operator networks first hand during his travels.

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