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The Connection Imperative for WEF 2013 in Davos

DAVOS, Switzerland:  “At a time of continuing economic uncertainty, nine out of 10 global decision-makers now believe greater collaboration between business, government and other sectors is essential if the world’s economy is to recover.” 

This was the main finding of a recent study by PSB, as part of research Bank of America is conducting to better understand customers and clients. 

The survey of more than 2,000 global decision-makers across business, government and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) reveals an overwhelming demand for increased collaboration, if significant global growth is to return within the next five years. 

Governments and business should assert the value of greater connectivity and collaborative working 

Many decision-makers feel governments should assert the value of greater connectivity, while businesses should also lead with more inspiring examples of best practice, valuable high-profile partnerships and the development of more leaders within organizations who value and encourage collaborative thinking. 

Those polled supported the sectoral connectivity and economic benefit that is already flowing from projects such as local public-private partnerships to improve educational standards in Brazil, and business partnerships in South Asia where a leading global food company is partnering with local suppliers and international NGOs to improve the efficiency and sustainability of their palm oil supply chain. Economic regeneration is also a major theme for partnerships, and in Europe, the London 2012 Games were also cited by respondents as a leading example of collaboration, with businesses, government and NGOs coming together to help regenerate the East End of London. 

The "Connection Imperative" Survey, released today, shows that such global connectivity appears likely to increase, with more than 40 percent of those polled expressing a greater desire for collaboration over the next five years. 

Commenting on the survey findings, Bank of America’s Chief Executive Officer Brian Moynihan said, “Leaders around the world recognize the value and need for greater global collaboration. As we move the economy and markets forward, one of the touchstones to the decisions we make must be to recognize that harnessing the power of connections is a force for great good that fuels scientific breakthroughs, remarkable economic achievements, and social progress.” 

The survey, which was conducted across 12 countries, including Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, South Africa, the U.K. and the U.S. last month, also finds that diversity has a vital role to play in global recovery in terms of the need for fresh ideas, new ways of working, varied staff backgrounds and wider experience of other sectors. 

Greater representation of women in leadership roles will be influential 

Nearly 90 percent of the decision-makers questioned believe the global economy needs a more diverse generation of business leaders to drive greater collaboration, and nearly 70 percent say greater representation of women in leadership roles will be influential in encouraging greater collaboration between organizations in the future. 

Bank of America’s Global Strategy and Marketing Officer Anne M. Finucane said, “The world needs a more diverse generation of business leaders to drive greater global collaboration. If the recent global economic crisis taught us anything, it is that the world can be a better place when we collaborate to address the challenges of our connected globe.” 

Optimism over return of global growth if power of connectivity is effectively harnessed 

Looking ahead, the survey also found that eight of 10 influencers believe there are now seeds of optimism over the return of global growth, if the power of connectivity is effectively harnessed. 

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