The World Economic Forum is the latest testing ground for the metaverse, with a virtual version of the alpine town of Davos being tested during the ongoing summit.
The platform is being developed in collaboration with Microsoft and Accenture and is being built using Microsoft Mesh.
WEF Goes To The Metaverse
The World Economic Forum (WEF) is creating a metaverse version of its Swiss alpine home of Davos, Switzerland. The Global Collaboration Event is the latest attempt to recreate a metaverse version of a real place. The project is being created using a more immersive version of Microsoft’s Teams software called Microsoft Mesh and will see participation from around 80 different organizations, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Meta.
The World Economic Forum, to drive participation in the project, has urged companies to set up virtual shop fronts and participate in dialogues and discussions on major ongoing issues. The virtual village has been created in partnership with Microsoft and Accenture as part of the future of public-private cooperation.
Organizers at the World Economic Forum, the world’s most prestigious economic forum, hope the metaverse version will create a year-round, online version of Davos to facilitate greater public-private cooperation. According to the official announcement, the project aims to facilitate impact, global cooperation, inclusivity, and interactivity.
WEF Chairman Klaus Schwab, speaking about the project while discussing his metaverse experience, stated,
“I got so fast accustomed to it; for me, it’s the next big phase of the development into the virtual world. “
He further added,
“With the Global Collaboration Village, we are creating the first public purpose-oriented application of the metaverse technology, building a true global village in the virtual space. “The metaverse will influence the way people, governments, companies, and society at large think, work, interact, and communicate for the purpose of collectively addressing issues on the global agenda. The Global Collaboration Village will be an extension of the World Economic Forum’s public-private platforms and in-person meetings and will provide a more open, more sustained, and more comprehensive process for coming together.”
Benefits for Projects
Schwab stated that he hopes the Global Collaboration Village would be beneficial for several projects, citing the example of how ocean environmentalists could create simulations of the ocean and demonstrate how to restore coral reefs or how mangroves could help fight against rising sea levels.
The WEF plans to hold many meetings in the virtual village, with Schwab hopeful that working virtually could help build rapport, trust, and ideation among people around the world. He also stated that while there may be a learning curve for some participants, and some may be resistant to working in virtual spaces, he hoped that metaverse meetings became more common as the technology improved, helping it have a much larger impact.
Real Places In The Metaverse
The World Economic Forum’s Global collaboration Village is the latest attempt to recreate real places in the metaverse. We have already seen previous attempts when The capital of South Korea, Seoul, announced the “Metaverse Seoul” which could feature tax services, youth counseling, and tourism hotspots. The island nation of Tuvalu also became the first country to create a digital version of itself.
According to authorities in the Polynesian country, the recreation of a digital version of the country would help it to preserve its history and culture as the nation faces an uncertain future with rising sea levels threatening its very existence.