Davos and changes in the job market, gender equality and data management

Manpower presents “Digital Evolution Pathway” to help businesses go digital

The Davos summit has just come to a close. We can already say that this meeting was different from all the others and not just because the leaders of the US, France and Great Britain were all missing, busy dealing with pressing domestic problems. This was mainly because the concept of globalisation as we have always known it no longer exists. Although they may be negotiating, the trade wars between China and the US have stymied international trade. There is no longer a general consensus between nations that the market economy is the best possible form of economic system. But this period of uncertainty may lead to change.

First of all, in the job market. With its study “Humans Wanted: Robots Need You”, the Manpower Group has disproved the notion that automation will lead to fewer jobs. On the contrary, it will create new jobs which require us to update our skills. We are also seeing developments in the area of gender equality, which was the focus topic of the panel overseen by CEO of Manpower Group Jonas Prising, who commented: “We have to create a culture in which inclusion is an integral part: it is unacceptable that diversity is not present at all levels of society”. Stefano Scabbio, President of Northern Europe, Mediterranean & Eastern Europe Operations at Manpower Group, also remarked on this issue: “Diversity also helps us to take better decisions from a purely business perspective”. So it is not just an ethical question then. It is also about making businesses stronger thanks to the best possible use of talent, and therefore improving also local communities and nations in general as a result. CEO Prising’s comments on the emergence of female leadership in the working world were particularly memorable: “Hire more women. Promote more women. Lose fewer and fewer women”.

Italy was also to the fore at the summit. Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte gave a speech in which he summarised the criticisms of the European monetary system which, in his opinion, has sacrificed the growth of Italian GDP for the stability of public accounts. A negative factor that has not helped Italy reduce its debt. Nevertheless, following the government proposal to set a budget deficit target of 2.04%, there will be a slowdown in the Italian economy, in parallel with the global slowdown announced by Chair of the International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde. Finance Minister Giovanni Tria, present at the summit, reassured investors both on this issue, promising that there will be no need for budget corrections, and with regard to the recent tension with France, stating his desire to see calm restored. He also added that the government supports the idea of a more efficient single broadband network created from the merger of the Tim and Open Fiber networks, stressing however that this decision rests with the two companies, fully independent and listed on the Italian stock exchange.

Data Protection

Appearing for the first time at the summit, Apple CEO Tim Cook had a private meeting with Prime Minister Conte. For Cook, whose company has been affected by the trade war between China and the US, the priority is seeking opportunities in the Gulf countries and emerging markets like Brazil. For this reason, he also had a working lunch with the new president of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro. Even if the Cupertino-based company was giving nothing away about the content of these meetings, data processing is certainly a worry. Various nations, including China, Japan, Germany and South Africa, requested the advent of a new phase in the management of personal data which, until now, has been handled exclusively by tech companies mainly from the US. Manpower therefore proposed businesses a test, the “Digital Evolution Pathway”, which can be found on the group website dedicated to Davos. By carrying out the test, companies can verify whether they have the tools they need to keep up with the continuous developments in the digitalisation of business. Given the potential changes on the way, to survive on the global market businesses need to be ready and prepared for new regulations and conditions.


Matteo Muzio

Matteo Muzio Nato a Genova nel 1985, in tasca una laurea in storia contemporanea e una tessera di giornalista professionista. Ama scrivere di economia, di cultura e di altre varie ed eventuali. Ho scritto per le pagine genovesi di Repubblica, per il Foglio, L’Espresso e il Fatto Quotidiano. Scrive per il Corriere della Sera. Mi piacciono anche i treni, l’Appennino ligure, il cibo campano. Un po’ liberale, un po’ socialista.

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