Be curious.

October 18, 2022

Julia at the One Young World summit

Hi everyone, my name is Julia and I am a Senior Consultant in our Munich office. I joined Roland Berger in 2018 and – after first working on projects in the digital field – I am now focusing on sustainability and climate action, a topic that is very close to my heart.

I had the great opportunity to be part of the City of Munich delegation, representing Roland Berger, at this year's "One young world" summit in Manchester last month – an event bringing together 2,000+ young leaders under 35 from all around the world, including corporate people, human & climate activists and politicians.

After arriving Monday morning in Manchester, I have already had the chance to meet the other delegates from Munich in a guided city tour, where we explored the most beautiful places in Manchester.

In the evening, the summit started with a bombastic opening ceremony in the Bridgewater Hall, with speakers like Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland, Sir Bob Geldof, former singer and activist, and Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex, who talked about the next century of multiple crises, which will challenge humanity as never before. Afterwards was the flagbearer ceremony where 190+ representatives of each country showed their appearance – very impressive.

The 3 days afterwards, there were sessions, presentations and discussions on the following topics:

  • Conflict Prevention - How can we prevent conflicts?
  • Gender Equality - How can we accelerate gender equality?
  • Oceans - How can we safeguard and restore the world’s oceans?
  • Ethical Leadership - How can we be and develop ethical leaders - more responsible and effective than previous generations?
  • Health - How can we ensure health equity for all?
I extremely appreciated the presentations and panel speeches; however I mostly enjoyed the direct exchange with other delegates, getting inspired by their passion and projects they have been doing.

Although I spoke with many people, three of them truly stood out for me:

  • Nasreen Sheik (~25/26, Nepal) – Founder of Empowerment Collective. You can watch her story here . Nasreen is a survivor of modern-day slavery and the founder of Empowerment Collective (EC). EC is a non-profit organization dedicated to raising global awareness of exploited labor, forced marriage and extreme poverty.
  • Hellen Caroline Nzinga (27, Brazil) – Co-Founder of EcoCiclo . Some women in Brazil need to stay at home for up to 50 days a year, since they cannot afford period products. EcoCiclo wants to solve this problem by producing the first Brazilian biodegradable sanitary pad, with the goal of employing women who are socially and economically vulnerable to manufacture the product.
  • Franziska Trautmann (24, USA) – Co-Founder and CEO of Glass Half Full | NOLA Glass Recycling . The company collects New Orleans glass and recycles it into sand and glass cullet for coastal restoration, disaster relief, eco-construction and new glass products. They recycle over 2 million pounds (nearly a million kilos) of glass every year.

The following three things are my key takeaways:

#action over planning
All too often, we wait for the perfect opportunity to do something – and end up doing nothing because the opportunity never arises. Simply starting to do something, even if it's small, can already have an impact.
#diversity is more important than ever
We need to get everyone around the table, of all countries, ages, genders, backgrounds, so no one is left behind – only then can we tackle the upcoming decade where humanity will face multiple crises.
#privilege and #opportunity
I am definitely very privileged to have been born and raised in a safe and stable country like Germany. And sometimes I have a guilty conscience and ask myself: Shouldn't I have done more because I grew up so happy? But the question should rather be: How can I use this privilege to make something of it – today?

I am glad that I had the opportunity to attend the summit for Roland Berger. I hope to take some of the ideas with me in my daily working life.

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