Guest Speakers


Götz W. Werner

Founder and member of the Board of Directors of dm-drogerie markt, Germany’s biggest drugstore chain with 2700 stores in twelve European countries. With his book "Einkommen für alle", Werner triggered the discussion about a basic income for every citizen guaranteed by the state.

Alain Caparros

CEO of fashion retailer C&A. Until 2017 Caparros was the CEO of Rewe Group. Prior to leading Rewe, Caparros worked for Yves Rocher, was a general director of Aldi France, and a member of the board of the Swiss Bon Appétit Group.

Robert Brozin

Founder and CEO of Nando’s Restaurants, a chain famous for its provocative TV commercials. The South African corporation has become a global brand and is currently operating 980 restaurants in 28 countries around the world.

Oscar Farinetti

CEO and founder of Eataly, the groundbreaking market/mall chain for Italian food and wine. Farinettis store concept and his 27 subsidiaries in five different countries are regarded as unprecedented for retail. The next Eataly store is about to be opened in Munich, Germany.

Philippe Houzé

CEO and Chairman of the Executive Management Board at Galeries Lafayette Group, the French leader in the department store sector. Houzé developed a strategy for transforming Galeries Lafayette into a “creator of desire” with innovative concepts.

Stuart Rose

Executive Chairman of Marks & Spencer since 2008. Sir Stuart Rose began his career in retail at Marks & Spencer in 1972 before going on to the Burton Group in 1989. He rejoined Marks & Spencer as Chief Executive in 2004. Stuart Rose was knighted in the New Year Honours List this year, for his services to the retail industry and corporate social responsibility.

Götz Rehn

Founder and General Manager of Alnatura, the successful German provider of organic food and textiles. Since its foundation in 1984 the enterprise has enjoyed constant sales growth. In addition to his work as an entrepreneur, Götz Rehn has been an honorary professor at the Alanus University in Alfter near Bonn since 2007, where he heads the Institute for Social Organics.

Richard Marcus

Former CEO and Chairman of Neiman Marcus, the foremost national high fashion speciality store in the United States. Richard Marcus worked from his teenage years until 1988 in the company founded by his grandfather. He is a graduate of Harvard College.

Daniel Grieder

CEO, Tommy Hilfiger Global and PVH Europe. Daniel Grieder has over 30 years of international experience as managing director, founder, president and CEO. As part of the pan European launch of Tommy Hilfiger in 1997, Grieder introduced the brand in his native home of Switzerland and Austria. On July 1, 2014, Grieder became CEO, Tommy Hilfiger Global, in addition to his continued role as CEO, PVH Europe.

Claus Meyer

Entrepreneur, gastronomy innovator and co-founder of the Noma, repeatedly labelled "Best restaurant in the world". For more than 20 years, Meyer has been rethinking agriculture, food production and cooking. His cookboks and TV shows triggered a renaissance of Nordic cuisine.

Gerhard Drexel

Chairman of the Board of SPAR Austria. Gerhard Drexel studied business management at the Universities of St. Gallen and Innsbruck. Before joining the Board of SPAR in 1990, he worked for Coop Switzerland and then the Management Zentrum St. Gallen.


Robert J. Gordon

Internationally renowned macroeconomist. A professor at Northwestern University, his controversial analyses predict minimal growth for the USA in the years to come. Gordon is a member of the NBER’s Business Cycle Dating Committee that monitors economic development in the U.S.

Tyler Cowen

US-American economist. Tyler Cowen is an economics professor at George Mason University and serves as director of the Mercatus Center think tank. Cowen was ranked #72 among the "Top 100 Global Thinkers" in 2011 by Foreign Policy Magazine. At the beginning of 2017 he released his latest book "The Complacent Class: The Self-Defeating Quest for the American Dream".

Jeremy Rifkin

Branko Milanović

Economist and visiting presidential professor at the City University of New York who has published numerous papers for the World Bank on the causes of inequality. One of Milanović's most significant books is "Global Inequality", published in 2016.

Hans-Werner Sinn

Economist, Professor at the University of Munich and President of the Ifo Institute for economic research. Sinn’s fields of interest include risk and insurance, natural resources, monetary trade theory and public finance. His books include bestsellers like “Can Germany Be Saved?”, “Casino Capitalism” and “The Euro Trap”.

Tomáš Sedlácek

Tomáš Sedlácek changed our understanding of of economy. In the international bestseller «The Economics of Good and Evil» he offers a new outlook by applying a cultural analysis to he economy. Sedlácek was advisor to Václav Havel and is a member of the advisory board tot he Czech Prime Minister.


Peter Sloterdijk

Influential German philosopher, cultural scientist and writer. His book "Critique of Cynical Reason" is one of the best-selling philosophical writings of the 20th century. From 2001 to 2015, Sloterdijk was rector of the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design, where he taught philosophy and aesthetics.

Sarah Harrison

Journalist at Wikileaks, the organisation that releases suppressed information about corporate, government and military corruption and misconduct. Harrison gained international recognition as whistleblower Edward Snowden's advisor from the time of his escape from Hongkong to his first months in exile in Moscow.

David Goodhart

Journalist, author and head of the demography unit at the Policy Exchange think tank. Founder and former editor of "Prospect magazine" and former director of the centre-left think tank “Demos“. His book “The British Dream” was runner up for the Orwell book prize. His new book “The Road to Somewhere” explains the Brexit vote and the rise of populism.

David Graeber

Anthropologist and mastermind of the Occupy movement. The professor at the London School of Economics and Political Science landed a bestseller with his book „Debt. The first 5000 Years". Graeber, an advocate of anarchy, also coined the slogan „We are the 99 percent".

Moisés Naím

Distinguished fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and author of the bestseller "The End of Power". Naím is former minister of trade and industry for Venezuela and executive director of the World Bank.

Robert Kaplan

Senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security in Washington and editor at "The Atlantic" magazine. Kaplan is the author of numerous bestsellers ("The Revenge of Geography", "The Coming Anarchy") and former member of the Pentagon Defense Policy Board.