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Every year, the St.Gallen Symposium chooses around 35 students to be part of its International Students' Committee (ISC). After the dust has settled, three of these undergraduates are invited to lead the team the following year. Annika Hochstrasser received this invitation and was head of the organising committee for this year's 48th St.Gallen Symposium.
"48. St.Gallen Symposium focused
on the topic 'Beyond the end of work'."
At first, Hochstrasser, a business administration undergraduate student, wanted to study history because she wanted to learn more about how the world works. One of her mentors challenged this idea and said: "If you want to understand the world, look forward, not back." With this advice in mind Hochstrasser, who hails from the Zurich area, decided that an education in business at the HSG was the right fit. "Business drives everything, our finances, our politics and sometimes even our culture. I believe that this would give me the answers to the questions I was asking."
This year's edition of the Symposium took place in May and focused on the topic "Beyond the end of work". This issue dealt with a fear which we have seen before. When industrialisation took hold in Great Britain two centuries ago, the term "industrial revolution" did not yet exist. Today the debate has resurfaced and many are questioning the implications and role artificial intelligence (AI) will play in our future. Will machines replace the human workforce? How will our working lives be affected? How will governments react? These were the questions that this year’s discussion revolved around.
As ISC Team Leader, Hochstrasser came to the realisation that she not only wanted to continue to improve and make a difference for herself, but she wanted to do so because it would inspire her entire team − a statement that shows that she is indeed looking forward.