Stéphane Garelli

Professor Emeritus of World Competitiveness

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Stéphane Garelli is Professor Emeritus of World Competitiveness at IMD and Professor at the University of Lausanne.

As founder of the IMD World Competitiveness Center, he is closely connected to the world of business and has pioneered research in this field for 30 years.

Garelli is Chairman of the Board of Directors at leading French language Swiss newspaper Le Temps. He was formerly a member of the board at Banque Edouard Constant, and at Sandoz Financial and Banking Holding, where he was Chairman.

For many years, he was Managing Director of the World Economic Forum and the Davos Symposium. He also spent 12 years as a permanent senior adviser to the European management of Hewlett-Packard.

He is the author of numerous publications on competitiveness and global business, including the best-selling Top Class Competitors: How Nations, Firms, and Individuals Succeed in the New World of Competitiveness and Étés Vous un Tigre un Chat Ou un Dinosaure?

Garelli is a member of a number of institutes, including the China Enterprise Management Association, Board of the Fondation Jean Monet pour l’Europe, the Swiss Academy of Engineering Sciences, the Mexican Council for Competitiveness, and an advisory committee member of the Thai Management Association. He is also a member of the International Olympic Committee Sustainability and Legacy Commission and was a member of the Constitutional Assembly of Vaud, Switzerland from 1999 to 2002.

Insight for Executives
Article
La Chine va encore bouleverser l’économie mondiale
After 1016 days of zero covid policy, China has decided to open up again to the rest of the world. The impact on our economies will be considerable. But is this good news or bad news? Probably both...
Published 20 January 2023
Article
Les illusions perdues
As we begin 2023, we cannot help but feel that a profound break has taken place. The business model that has been ours for forty years, that of an open and growth-oriented globalization, is coming ...
Published 6 January 2023
Article
L’inflation va baisser – les prix attendront!
This was somewhat expected. For the first time in 17 months, inflation in Europe is slowing down. Even if it is too early to deduce that the peak has passed, it is nevertheless good news. However, ...
Published 9 December 2022
Article
Les chefs d’entreprise devraient-ils être des diplomates?
In any case, they have to try. At a recent conference in Hong Kong, UBS Chairman Colm Kelleher said, "We don't read the American press, we actually believe what China says." Obviously, this made pe...
Published 25 November 2022
Article
Combien de temps cela va-t-il durer?
An economic crisis is made up of a mosaic of other crises. Identifying them is only half the problem. The other is how long they will last. Inflation: one and a half to two years. It remains the ma...
Published 11 November 2022
Article
A la recherche d’une «vraie» personne
There is a fundamental principle in economics: no matter how much technological innovation one offers, at the end of the process there is always a product and above all a person. However, the path ...
Published 28 October 2022
Article
"Permacrises": un nouveau nom pour un nouvel âge
The past few years have been characterized by an avalanche of crises. It never seems to end: debt in Europe, Brexit, US-China trade tensions, covid, supply chain shortages, inflation, employment pr...
Published 14 October 2022
Article
Un leader a-t-il le droit de se tromper?
One of the pleasures of power, at the head of a company or a country, is to believe that you are always right. How could it be otherwise when those around you keep saying so? If it is clear that yo...
Published 30 September 2022
Article
L’économie sous l’emprise de la politique
Everything becomes political again. Governments keep interfering in the running of the economy. This is obviously the consequence of the energy crisis and the war in Ukraine. But it is also a funda...
Published 16 September 2022
Article
Les influenceurs sont devenus incontournables
In six months, Kendall Jenner, an American actress, generated $3.7 million worth of advertising for Prada on her Instagram account. In China, Li Jiaqi sold more than $1.7 billion worth of lipsticks...
Published 2 September 2022
Article
Une récession atypique pour entrer dans un nouveau monde
We lost the next recession! This sounds a bit like a Sherlock Holmes or Hercule Poirot investigation. The 2008 recession was pretty standard: real estate, financial and unemployment crises. But for...
Published 19 August 2022
Article
Taux d’intérêt: une bonne décision pour de fausses raisons!
The economy likes to scare itself, and the rise in interest rates is no exception to this ambient dramatization. Officially, it is to fight inflation. But the reality is more complicated. There are...
Published 24 June 2022
Article
Le moteur de la globalisation était la spécialisation: est-ce fini?
In 1817, David Ricardo published what would become one of the most famous laws of economics, that of comparative advantage. A country has an interest in specializing in what it can produce best, se...
Published 10 June 2022
Article
Reconstruire l’Ukraine: ce que le passé nous a appris
Volodymyr Zelensky said it in Davos: it is necessary to start working now on the reconstruction of Ukraine. His Prime Minister, Denys Chmyhal, estimates the cost, for now, at $540 billion. That is ...
Published 27 May 2022
Article
Un peu de patrimoine, mais pas de revenus
The war in Ukraine and its destruction reminds us that everyone can have some wealth without necessarily being rich. In the past, those who had a little capital also had income. They were the renti...
Published 14 May 2022
Article
Globalisation: une stratégie devenue trop risquée?
In the wake of covid and the war in Ukraine, companies have begun their most strategic thinking since the 1980s. Globalization as we have known it is disappearing. Many companies may not survive th...
Published 30 April 2022
Article
Et si on ne peut plus faire de prévisions…
And if you can't forecast... what do you do? The release of the first quarter gross domestic product (GDP) numbers shows how much the world has changed in a short period of time. These numbers are ...
Published 15 April 2022
Article
Pour les entreprises, cela devient ingérable
Since the war in Ukraine, companies have been caught in a vice-like grip. Their home countries expect them to implement sanctions without fail and to comply with a new moral code. On the other hand...
Published 1 April 2022
Article
«On était vaincu par sa conquête…»
Victor Hugo, of course: Les Châtiments, La Retraite de Russie. The first cost of a war, as in Ukraine, is human, and that is intolerable. But there is also a considerable economic cost that leaders...
Published 18 March 2022
30 years of competitiveness research
Article
30 years of competitiveness research
"Dear colleague, nations do not compete, only companies do: forget about your idea of competitiveness of nations!" This advice from a renowned professor a little over 30 years ago was a bit unsettl...
Published 20 July 2018
To indulge in protectionism (you should first know the “true” nationality of products)
Article
To indulge in protectionism (you should first know the “true” nationality of products)
Professor Stéphane Garelli discusses protectionism and how the origin of products is difficult to discern in today's globalized world in light of ongoing tough trade rhetoric between the US and Chi...
Published 6 July 2018
Are we headed for another recession?
Article
Are we headed for another recession?
Whatever the situation, some economists always predict the worst: the stock market is on the eve of a resounding crash, and the economy will plunge into an unprecedented recession. Disaster is thei...
Published 1 May 2018
2018: A massive restructuring of the world economy?
Article
2018: A massive restructuring of the world economy?
Economic forecasts too often focus on the financial aspects of business. Will the dollar go up or down? Are the stock exchanges overvalued? Will central banks raise interest rates? All these questi...
Published 2 February 2018
Europe’s innovation, America’s boon
Article
Europe’s innovation, America’s boon
Why aren’t our young European entrepreneurs creating businesses around their innovations? Undoubtedly, economic and financial structures do not support them well enough. But it's also a question of...
Published 10 November 2017
If you want to lead people, you have to enter their world
Article
If you want to lead people, you have to enter their world
This was the favorite piece of advice of Professor Warren Bennis, the world’s foremost expert on leadership, who encouraged leaders to create followers by entering their world. To lead a nation or ...
Published 18 August 2017
Can we calculate the future?
Article
Can we calculate the future?
Modern economics is increasingly focusing on identifying possible choices rather than on calculating outcomes... So why are we so obsessed with mathematics...? The tragedy is that our approach disc...
Published 9 May 2017
Seven lessons from the digital media revolution
Article
Seven lessons from the digital media revolution
The economic success of the media industry depends on its ability to permeate the social and emotional aspirations of a society. It is the same for any other business today — companies are increasi...
Published 1 May 2017
Are people really a company’s most important resource?
Article
Are people really a company’s most important resource?
It happens regularly all over the world and in every company. The CEO addresses his collaborators: “You are the most important resource at this company”. He believes it, and he is right. His collab...
Published 10 March 2017
A history lesson (from year one) for Trump and the Brexit crowd: Isolationism has never worked!
Article
A history lesson (from year one) for Trump and the Brexit crowd: Isolationism has never worked!
From Trump’s wall and immigrant ban, to Britain pulling away from its longtime partners, the tendency toward isolationist policies is on the rise in the west.¦We’ve seen this before but it has neve...
Published 3 February 2017
Should companies and government meddle with “happiness”?
Article
Should companies and government meddle with “happiness”?
Oud Bint Khalfan Al Roumi is twice happy. She landed a prestigious government position in the United Arab Emirates. Then, she was appointed to the rather unique job of “state minister in charge of ...
Published 23 January 2017
Why you will probably live longer than most big companies
Article
Why you will probably live longer than most big companies
A recent study by McKinsey found that the average life-span of companies listed in Standard & Poor’s 500 was 61 years in 1958. Today, it is less than 18 years… With such a trend, people will increa...
Published 23 December 2016
Cash rich and investment poor?
Article
Cash rich and investment poor?
The economic crisis and budget austerity have trimmed infrastructure investments. The core issue is that such investments over-rely on taxation for funding. They have little capacity to tap the fin...
Published 6 April 2016
Are You a Tiger, a Cat or a Dinosaur?
Book
Are You a Tiger, a Cat or a Dinosaur?
Competitiveness, like social networks, sustainable development or climate change, is a topic that has captured the world. Politicians, businessmen and media constantly refer to it. What does it mea...
Published 1 January 2000
Are You a Tiger, a Cat or a Dinosaur?
Book
Are You a Tiger, a Cat or a Dinosaur?
Competitiveness, like social networks, sustainable development or climate change, is a topic that has captured the world. Politicians, businessmen and media constantly refer to it. What does it mea...
Published 1 January 0001
100 questions: How competitiveness influences your life
Are You a Tiger, a Cat or a Dinosaur?