International Swiss Talent Forum

For young people between 18- 23 years – Participation on invitation only!

Find novel and thought-provoking ideas around “building a resilient society”. It’s a chance for you to contribute to shaping the future of your generation. Develop new ideas with your group of international participants in our for you free event. Be part of the next International Swiss Talent Forum in Summer 2022 and join five exciting days with students from all over the world.

Four exciting days in a lavish camp – it’s your turn to find globally relevant solutions.

“The ISTF experience has been nothing short of amazing. The programme has well achieved a fine balance between the provision of information and the opportunity for creativity. It has been an intellectually stimulating and personally fulfilling experience.”

Cassandra, Singapore

International Swiss Talent Forum 2022
Building a New Resilient Society


Schedule 2022

No event found!

 Overcoming crises has become a pivotal capability: that is what the events of the last years and decades have clearly shown about what we are to expect in the future. Resilience is the ability of a system to ensure its further existence while going through a crisis. It can apply as much to a whole societal system like a nation-state going through a war or social unrest, a company or a whole economical sector coping with the transformation of the workplace and automation, to the individual human being adapting to the new normal as we are going through and beyond the current Covid-19 pandemic. “Building a New Resilient Society” presents challenges at all levels of society. Much more than trying to maintain the status quo, the topic asks us how adversity can be turned into a force to improve for the better. Integrating evolution in the systems’ DNA instead of fighting the elements. Dealing with uncertainty in complex networks of interactions. Join us and explore the future of this highly challenging and exciting topic – we look forward to welcoming you to ISTF 2022!

Topic Leaders 2022

Prof. Dr. Gabriela Hug
Prof. Dr. Gabriela HugTopic Leader

Prof. Gabriela Hug received the M.Sc. degree in information technology and electrical engineering in 2004 and the Ph.D. degree in electric power systems in 2008 from ETH Zurich. She also received the diploma in Higher Education Teaching in Electrical Engineering in 2007 from the same institution.

After her PhD, she worked in the Special Studies Group of Hydro One in Toronto, Canada and from 2009 – 2015 she was an Assistant Professor at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, USA. Currently, she is Professor in the Power Systems Laboratory at ETH Zurich. Her research is dedicated to control and optimization of electric power systems. She has received a number of awards for her work including the US NSF CAREER Award, the IEEE PES Outstanding Young Engineer Award and the ALEA Award.

Prof. Dr. Giovanni Sansavini
Prof. Dr. Giovanni SansaviniTopic Leader

Giovanni Sansavini is an Associate Professor of Reliability and Risk Engineering at the Institute of Energy and Process Engineering, ETH Zurich.

Currently, he is chairperson of the ETH Risk Center and of the Technical Committee on Critical Infrastructures of the European Safety and Reliability Association (ESRA).

His research focuses on the development of hybrid analytical and computational tools suitable for analyzing and simulating failure behaviors of engineered complex systems, with focus on physically networked critical infrastructures and sustainable energy systems. He aims to quantitatively define reliability, vulnerability, resilience and risk within these systems using a computational approach based on physical system modeling, advanced Monte Carlo simulation, soft computing techniques, and optimization.

Challengers 2022

Challenge 1

Patents: promoter or inhibitor of resilience?

Novel technologies are essential to respond to global challenges, but often protected by patents. The patent system aims to promote public welfare as well as innovation.
In the view of the pandemic, the climate change, and other global challenges, does the current IP system really function as intended? Are there flaws? Can you propose adjustments, which help to improve global resilience?

Dr. Christian Moser
Patent Expert at the Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property

Christian Moser is a patent expert in life sciences and working at the IPI since 2014. Besides his activity as professional patent researcher and examiner, he is involved in IPI’s efforts to promote IP awareness at universities and in the private industry.

Christian Moser is a trained veterinarian with a PhD in molecular virology. After his education at the University of Bern and a postdoc at the University of Pennsylvania, he worked from 2001 to 2013 in the Swiss vaccine industry in various scientific and management roles.


Challenge 2

Future forests: addressing climate change and energy demand

Forests can play a key role in the transition to more resilient societies. For example, houses built with local timber produce much less CO2 emissions than concrete. However, building with timber is not yet current practice and forests might also change due to climate change. Building local markets and sustainably managing forests brings together complex societal, environmental, economic, cultural and political factors and innovative interdisciplinary approaches.

Dr. Silvia Hostettler
Lecturer at EPFL

Silvia is an an environmental scientist and international development scholar with over 20 years of experience in researching sustainable development challenges in the global South. She is interested in leveraging transitions that shift the world on a more sustainable path. She studied at the University of Geneva, the University of Aberdeen (UK) and at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL), conducted research in Chile, Honduras, Burkina Faso, Ghana and Mexico and was based in Bangalore for four years as Executive Director of swissnex India. She currently teaches Development Engineering and Cooperation and Development courses at EPFL and has launched a MOOC in disaster risk reduction on edX. She is a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Development Engineering and a member of the Commission for Research Partnerships with Developing Countries. Silvia is passionate about sustainable development, yoga and hiking in the wilderness.


Challenge 3

Supply chain disruptions: Solution by enhanced resilience?

Supply chains involve the transformation of resources/elements into a product delivered to customers. They evolved successfully in various sectors with going for low-cost places and “just-in-time” strategy, creating a global network of multiple actors. Disruptions revealed vulnerabilities with a variety of hazardous factors. A paradigm shift towards resilience, suitable to cope with uncertainties, appears necessary. The concept deserves adaptation and a framework of how to pragmatically manage resilience of specific supply chains from varying perspectives, significant for building a resilient society.

Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Kröger
Former Executive Director at ETH Risk Center

Wolfgang Kröger studied mechanical engineering at the RWTH Aachen, completed his doctorate in 1974 and became professor of Safety Technology at the ETH Zurich by 1990. Before being elected Founding Rector of the International Risk Governance Council in 2003 he simultaneously headed nuclear energy and safety research at the Paul Scherrer Institute. After his retirement early 2011 he served as executive director of the newly established ETH Risk Centre until end of 2014. Presently, he is acting as scientific advisor on future lifeline systems. He has been awarded “Distinguished Affiliate Professor” by the TU Munich, he is member of the Swiss Academy of Engineering Sciences and heads its topical platform “Autonomous mobility”.

His seminal work lies in risk/vulnerability analysis of complex critical infrastructures and in shaping the concept of sustainability and resilience. He (co-)authored numerous publications in journals and books, e.g., on Vulnerable Systems, Networks of Networks, Resilient Structures and Infrastructures.


Challenge 4

Assessing and fostering mental resilience

The ability to deal with ambiguity and change are key skills to cope with the challenges that life inevitably will bring us. A sound mental wellbeing is linked to resilience, thus it is essential to nurture our resilience and to realize when it is declining. The challenge is to co-create a measurement that indicates when the mental resilience of an individual is declining and resulting in encouragement to take action.

Cecilia Juhlin
Registered Psychotherapist, Insead Certified Coach

Cecilia specializes in organizational change, with a focus on leadership and team development/ effectiveness. She is a passionate educator and her pedagogical capabilities include workshops, facilitation and individual coaching. Cecilia has designed and launched big scale Organizational Health Programs on the topic of psychological safety, resilience and mental well-being.

She holds a MSc in clinical psychology and is a registered psychotherapist in Switzerland. Cecilia also holds an executive Master’s degree from Insead, Singapore in Organizational Psychology – Coaching and Consulting for Change. She is a certified Insead Coach and a certified Mental Health Instructor.

Prior to her work within HR at Roche, Switzerland, she was working as a psychotherapist at a University Hospital in Switzerland and in private practice both in Switzerland and in Singapore. She is of Swedish origin with her work spanning over Switzerland, the USA, Singapore and the Philippines.

In 2021 she picked up a new career as consultant and co-founder of a consultancy company focusing on cultural transformation, leadership development and Psychological Safety for Organizations.


Challenge 5

Economic growth vs. resilience to climate change

Economic growth as defined by the increase in production is driven by demand. The current economic model measuring production costs exclude the costs of environmental destruction due to carbon emissions. Since both demand and carbon emissions increase in tandem, a resilient society needs to develop ways, processes or behaviours to address the problem of carbon emissions through controlling demand, even while maintaining economic growth.

Raymond See Soon Cheng
Deputy Director Applied Science at ITE, College East, Singapore

In this role, Raymond manages the Applied Science team at the School of Applied and Health Science at ITE, taking charge of the curriculum to ensure that students are equipped with the necessary skills for a future career in the Life Sciences and Chemical industries.

With concerns on water issues, Raymond’s lead and guided the team to work on various water treatment solutions for the industry. Till date, the team has received a total of S$660k government funding for various developmental water treatment projects, among which include the designing and testing of an atmospheric desalination system.

Raymond completed his undergraduate studies with a 2nd Upper Honours in Bachelor of Chemical Engineering under the Public Service Commission Scholarship at the National University of Singapore and a Master of Business Administration (Banking and Finance) at Nanyang Business School. He spent nearly 20 years in the chemical and food manufacturing industries, working through the ranks and file to become General Manager. In his time as General Manager at a Multinational company, he successfully built a US$ 200 million biodiesel facility from scratch to achieve its first drop of oil production within 9 months.



Christina Stent Wendler
Head Coach | Organisational Developer
Dominik Hanisch
Coach | Innovation Expert
Suzie Badenhorst
Coach | Supervisor
Daniel Böniger-Derron
Coach | Seasoned leader
Tara Welschinger
Coach | Entwicklungsberaterin mit Schwerpunkt Cultural Change Management
Florian Wieser
Coach | Possibilist

International Swiss Talent Forum 2021

Summaries 2021

Project Leader

Julián Cancino
Project Leader ISTF

Our partners

Main partners

Fonds Verena Guggisberg-Lüthi

Scientific partners

Innovation process

Creative and innovative thinking is key to tackling the main topic at this event! Supported by experienced moderators, innovation-coaches and media professionals, participants follow a structured, yet open process based on the principle of co-creation.