Over 300 leaders, professionals from 16 nations assembled in Singapore for Shape the World Summit 2019; a two-days creative summit to address global inequality.
SINGAPORE, 20 JUNE 2019 – CPG Corporation Pte. Ltd. (CPG), one of Asia-Pacific’s leading multi-disciplinary infrastructure and building management consultancy, and Global innovation consultancy, Consulus Pte. Ltd., assembled over 300 diverse leaders and stakeholders from across 16 nations in a 2-days creative summit at Singapore’s National Design Centre on 20th and 21st June 2019.
Seeking to imagine new ideas through the lens of human-centered design-thinking, industry luminaries at the Shape the World Summit 2019 weighed in on how they are addressing the World Economic Forum’s clarion call of reshaping socio and economic rules to enable wider participation and sustainability. Chief among recurring themes at the Summit was the notion that global inequality is a constantly looming but not insurmountable phenomenon.
Group Chief Innovation Officer of CPG Corporation , Ar. Tan Shao Yen said: “A recent Credit Suisse Research Institute’s 2018 Global Wealth Report revealed that the richest top 10 per cent owns 85 per cent of global wealth in 2018, with the top one per cent accounting for 47 per cent of all global household wealth. The bottom half percentile conversely owns less than one per cent of total global wealth.”
“This does not bode well for global sustainability. The world will not be sustainable if only small, privileged groups of people achieve wealth, social well-being, and environmental sustainability. To achieve global sustainability, we should design solutions that extend to not only more people but also people in more diverse communities. By seeking greater participation and engagement across levels, the ultimate goal is to benefit people from more if not all communities across the world; not only the wealthy and particular groups,” GCIO Tan Shao Yen noted.
Global CEO of Consulus (Singapore), Mr. Lawrence Chong concurs: “From micro-enterprises in rural Philippines to free of cost high-tech healthcare in Pakistan, experts from around the world have proved in the Shape the World Summit 2019 that designing for equitability and inclusivity in our societies is not a hopeless cause. In fact, we have seen that global stakeholders stand the best chance of achieving greater equitability and inclusivity through six key pillars – Economy, Business, Leadership, Urban Planning, Healthcare, and Education.”
During the Summit, several speakers highlighted the importance of fostering equitability and inclusivity in economies, businesses and leadership. Mr. Mark Wee, Executive Director of DesignSingapore Council, first noted that good design could shape policies and places; helping stakeholders tackle complex societal problems, such as inequality. Professor Grevin Anouk from the University of Nantes (France) followed by proposing a new economic model that focuses on gift relationships; an underutilised but extraordinarily potent asset. Professor Annette Pelkmans-Balaoing, Senior Economist at the Partnership Resource Center, Rotterdam School of Management, further noted that how such new models can succeed is through building of trust relationships in every space and social encounters.
On the topic of inclusive cities, various speakers pointed out the necessity for cities and their communities to work hand in hand, especially in the face of global climate change and growing public environmental consciousness. One case in point is the Kota Baru Parahyangan township development in Indonesia. Mr. Ryan Brasali, Director of the Kota Baru Parahyangan Township Development in Indonesia said: “City development is now more than just building the physical building and environment. It is also about developing the human beings who live within the city. Green community lifestyles and community development based on entrepreneurship has become the soul of green city sustainable development projects.”
Speakers at the Summit noted that inclusivity in cities pertain to residents’ healthcare as well.
Highlighting the fact that quality healthcare can actually be freely provided to all who needs it, Dr. Abdul Bari Khan, Chief Executive Officer of Indus Health Network in Pakistan said: “Considering healthcare as a basic human right, Indus is delivering free of cost indiscriminate and quality healthcare to all who deserve it.”
For such efforts to bear fruit, the Indus Health Network requires strong partnerships. Dr. Abdul Bari Khan expressed: “We have made it possible and sustainable through the physical, intellectual and financial support of individuals and institutions, particularly through CPG Consultants’ innovative designs for our new medical campus, and are committed to continuing our partnership with CPG in future planning.”
Professor Zhou Yanmin from Tsinghua University School of Architecture further articulated that an inclusive healthcare system have to cater to people of different ages too. She expressed that by 2050, the proportion of elderly in China will account for 33.6 per cent of the total population, meaning that one in three China residents will be elderly. With this future trend in mind, China is currently experiencing a period of high-speed development and construction of elderly care projects, including home-based elderly care.
During both afternoons of the Summit, speakers and participants gathered at separate Design Thinking Labs to discuss, brainstorm and debate ideas using a design thinking approach for a more equitable and inclusive world. Stakeholders’ ideas and thoughts were then collated into a distributed toolkit titled ‘Imagine a world’, which contains proposals on how every person can contribute in shaping a more equitable world.