Shape the World Conference themes are centred around six broad Issues, each representing a global challenge or approach in building companies that will shape the world. Each Issue contains opportunities for Shape the World Conference speakers and delegates to come together and share knowledge, spark ideas and develop networks.

Better Organisations

STWC believes that business, political and social leaders have the responsibility to shape a better world by building better organisations. Through sharing experiences, strategies and case studies, STWC calls on organisations to think more deeply about the purpose of their work and their impact on their people and beyond.

The conferences gather like-minded individuals who believe that all companies have the duty to imbue in their members the gift of purpose, one that enhances the dignity of their lives through meaningful work. This belief sparked the launch of the World Company Day initiative, which is to set aside the 15th of August every year to celebrate the good that companies around the world do through daily work.

Design as an Enabler

STWC believes that design must be a servant to purpose and not an agent for vanity. Design can transform lives and help companies to rise up the value chain. In many emerging nations poor design suppresses profit margins, perpetuates lower incomes and can cause inefficiency.

STWC brings in design thinkers to share ideas on how companies from emerging countries can use design to leverage on their unique cultural identity to increase profit margins and in turn enable them to pay their staff better and invest more in innovation. STWC conducts workshops for participants to gain practical knowledge on transformative ways companies can use design.

Values-driven Leadership

STWC sees itself as the home of purpose-driven leaders who believe that their success must benefit society. This is a new world order, one that is not solely dominated by traditional powers. It should be a world of diversity, multi-polar in terms of influence, in a dynamic dance of exchanging ideas and opinions while achieving mutual respect.

STWC seeks to inspire current and future leaders to think about their purpose and their broader responsibilities to their regions, as we use the resources at our disposal to shape a better world. Participants are encouraged to adopt the Shape the World values of unity, humility, leadership and professionalism in order to encourage a more constructive evolution of Asian companies. When we have enlightened leaders, we will have a better world.

Inclusive Entrepreneurship

Many emerging nations are dominated by state-owned enterprises who may not be efficient or inclusive enough to enable employees to get better opportunities. STWC encourages state-owned enterprises to provide opportunities for employees to be entrepreneurs within in order to increase their potential for innovation.

STWC provides opportunities for governments and their local entrepreneurs to collaborate in building economic systems that are not overly dependent on foreign investors. Such systems lead to more sustainable development, as local entrepreneurs rise up and give back to the society by hiring more local talents. STWC launched Shape the World Circles to encourage local entrepreneurs to build a support network and sustain their will to succeed.

Sustainable Innovation

Innovation is at the heart of shaping the future, but many business leaders struggle to create the conditions needed to nurture and sustain it.

STWC's approach to the topic is grounded in the fundamental belief that building collaborative working cultures—not chasing the latest trends—is the key to driving innovation. Case studies and personal experiences presented at STWC events show that companies fail to innovate due to poor organisational models that are not purpose-driven, lack of clarity in group dynamics and lack of discipline in implementation. Leaders are given the opportunity to learn how to re-imagine their business models to profit from innovation.

Smarter World

At every STWC specialists from innovation firm, Consulus, present trends that will disrupt the world and offer ideas on how companies in Asia can stay relevant. These presentations are meant to spur business leaders into action to prepare for a new world dominated by data by improving their human resource management and building smarter teams.

STWC believes in practicing what it preaches, hence the 2014 series will see the launch of a knowledge-sharing platform available to conference participants on their mobile phones. It will enhance participation and hopefully encourage everyone to build smarter companies and devices to be ready for the new wave.