Klaus Schwab

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Klaus Schwab
Klaus Schwab - World Economic Forum Annual Meeting Davos 2007 cropped.jpg
Klaus Schwab, World Economic Forum Annual Meeting, Davos 2007
Born (1938-03-30) March 30, 1938 (age 76)
Ravensburg, Germany
Alma mater ETH Zürich,
University of Fribourg,
Harvard University
Occupation Founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum
Spouse(s) Hilde Schwab

Klaus Martin Schwab (born March 30, 1938) is a Swiss engineer and economist, best known as the founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum.[1] His wife and former secretary, Hilde, co-founded the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship[2] with him. He was born in 1938, in Ravensburg.


In 1971, Schwab founded the World Economic Forum as a not-for-profit foundation committed to improving the state of the world, later building it into today's global partnership of business, political, and intellectual leaders.

In 1998, Schwab and his wife founded the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, a non-profit organization based in Geneva, Switzerland.

In 2004, Schwab created a new foundation using the US$1 million prize money from the Dan David Prize he received that year from Israel. The Forum of Young Global Leaders[3] aims to bring together over 500 people under 40 from all walks of life who have demonstrated their commitment to improving the state of the world, and encourage them to work together over the span of five years to identify and realize global change.


Dr. Schwab holds a Doctorate in Economics (summa cum laude) from the University of Fribourg, a Doctorate in Engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology and a Master of Public Administration from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Additionally, he has been the recipient of over a dozen honorary doctorates and is an honorary professor of the Ben-Gurion University of Israel[4] and the China Foreign Affairs University.[5]

Professional life[edit]

Schwab was Professor of Business Policy at the University of Geneva from 1972 to 2002. He is the author of several books. Since 1979, he has published the Global Competitiveness Report, an annual report assessing the potential for increasing productivity and economic growth of countries around the world, written by a team of economists.[6] The report is based on a methodology developed by Schwab, measuring competitiveness not only in terms of productivity but also based on sustainability criteria.[7]

Other activities[edit]

From 1993-1995, Schwab was a member of the UN High-Level Advisory Board on Sustainable Development.[8] From 1996-1998, he was Vice-Chairman of the UN Committee for Development Planning.[9] He also exercised a number of functions in the global public interest, such as being a member of The Peres Centre for Peace[10] and a member of the board of the Lucerne Festival.[11] During the earlier years of his career, he was on a number of company boards, such as The Swatch Group, The Daily Mail Group, and Vontobel Holding. He is a former member of the Steering Committee of the Bilderberg Group.[12]

Awards and decorations[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

External links[edit]