While the COVID-19 pandemic is primarily viewed as a global health crisis, it is difficult to ignore the global economic crisis that is brewing in its wake. From soaring unemployment, deflated or negative growth reports, mounting levels public debt, escalating poverty, and ravaged standards of living just to name a few, the pandemic has left almost no facet of the global economy untouched. The pandemic has shed light on the fragility of our economies. The most optimistic among us feel that economic recovery is imminent, while others do not anticipate stability, let alone growth, until late 2021 at the earliest. While we all experienced fallout from the pandemic differently, we share a common hope for better days ahead.
Despite record-setting stimulus packages, the path to economic recovery remains uncertain. Yet in uncertainty lies an opportunity to not only regain what was lost, but to lay a robust foundation that supports a more equitable and resilient future for all. The pandemic has shed light on where economic vulnerabilities exist, and governments, private businesses, non-profit organisations, philanthropists, and individuals all have a role to play in not only rebuilding but also in reimagining local, national, and the global economy to better serve everyone and be more resilient to future shocks. With vast and often competing demands for resources, it is difficult to know what the optimal next steps are.
Moderated by Jörg Schubert, Senior Partner, McKinsey & Company, this session will feature a conversation with industry expert Lawrence H. Summers, Professor of Economics and Director of the Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government, at the Harvard Kennedy School, who will offer his perspectives on the pathway to global economic recovery. Dr. Summers will discuss the public, private, and philanthropic interventions that will better position the global community to once again reach pre-pandemic levels of economic output, and to do so in a way that more broadly and sustainably improves well-being beyond what was previously achieved.