Events - 13.04.2015 - 00:00 

Discussion about «Proudly Small»

On Thursday, 7 May 2015, Federal Councillor Johann Schneider-Ammann will open the 45th St. Gallen Symposium on the campus of the HSG. Discussions will focus on the topic of “Proudly Small”.


13 April 2015. Striving to be bigger has permeated the history of mankind. Being small has always been a challenge for enterprises or countries. A manageable size can also be a strong point, however. In St.Gallen, the topic of “Proudly Small” will be examined for different aspects.

Is there an optimal size for enterprises? Why are small countries so successful in many respects? What is the impact on our society? Organised by the International Students’ Committee (ISC), the English-language Symposium will bring together approx. 600 decision-makers from business, politics, society and academia with 200 students and young achievers, the “Leaders of Tomorrow”, from 50 nations.

Decision-makers and students in a dialogue

Guests include personalities like Prof. Daron Acemoğlu (US/Turkey), Professor of Economics at the MIT, Douglas Flint (UK), Group Chairman of HSBC, Christoph Franz (Germany), Chairman of Roche Holding, Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson, Prime Minister of Iceland, Nick Hayek (Switzerland), President of the Executive Group Management Board of the Swatch Group, Stephen Lee, Chairman of Singapore Airlines, Michel Liès (Luxembourg), Group Chief Executive Officer of Swiss Re, Jack Markell (US), Governor of Delaware, Joseph Muscat, Prime Minister of Malta, Paul Polman (Netherlands), Chief Executive Officer of Unilever, Anders Fogh Rasmussen (Denmark), former Secretary General of NATO, Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Minister for Finance of Singapore, and Ulrich Spiesshofer (Germany), Chief Executive Officer of ABB. 200 students from all over the world will enter into a constructive dialogue with the invited guests at the 45th St. Gallen Symposium. More information about the programme and the speakers can be found at

Conference topic “Proudly Small”
The aspiration for bigness runs through the history of mankind like a red thread. The topic “Proudly Small” is intended to create an awareness of the fact that size is not the decisive factor when it comes to bringing about great things. It has always been a challenge being small, whether as an enterprise or as a country. But being small is also a fertile soil for unbeatable strengths. In St.Gallen, the issue of smallness will be elucidated from various angles. Thus one of the questions asked will be: When can smallness constitute an alternative to growth for companies? The unease that is harboured by many people against globally operating groups, rescue packages for banks and countries, and the surveillance programmes of secret services, will also be debated.

The influence of small countries

The programme includes discussions, workshops and lectures. Thus Prof. Thomas Jordan, Chairman of the Governing Board of the Swiss National Bank, will speak about the influence of the currencies of small countries on the world economy. More about the programme can be found at

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