20|06|24, Hofburg Vienna


“There may be more beautiful times, but this one is ours,” Jean-Paul Sartre once said.

We are facing a multitude of new and difficult challenges. The world is facing increasingly complex conflicts and crises. Alongside the current geopolitical situation, the ecological challenges seem to be fading into the background for some. This is fatal because they often accelerate political crises. The good news for our environmental and climate protection movement is that we already have a variety of tools and solutions at hand. We can all contribute something positive – be ‘useful’, as the title of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s new book and our motto for this year’s AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT emphasizes.

The motto “Be useful: Tools for A Healthy Planet” should be our guiding principle to create a world together in which we can all have a decent future. Because if everyone makes themselves useful and does their bit, then we can save our planet and ourselves.


(subject to change)

Matt Iseman and Nadja Bernhard, Presenters
Monika Langthaler, Host AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT

Alexander Van der Bellen, Federal President of the Republic of Austria

Arnold Schwarzenegger, Founder AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT

António Guterres, Secretary-General United Nations

Maroš Šefčovič, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission

John Podesta, Senior Advisor to the President for International Climate Policy, USA

In the last forty years environmentalists fought hard for environmental legislation and legal frameworks. However, prime examples such as the European Green Deal and the US Inflation Reduction Act are being attacked. Climate and environmental policies are valuable and much needed to address the challenges ahead. This panel will discuss the necessary political tools to reach our climate targets.

Host: Hannelore Veit

Arnold Schwarzenegger on stage with  

John Podesta, Senior Advisor to the President for International Climate Policy, USA

Maroš Šefčovič, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission

Last year we opened our AWS Solutions Hub and have now taken our next step of implementing climate solutions. We built a new energy system at the Hub and now we are delighted to get started.

Arnold Schwarzenegger, Founder AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT  

Michael Höllerer, CEO Raiffeisen Niederösterreich – Wien

Unlocking Green Investments: Overcoming Financial Barriers to Climate Action

Even if we drastically cut down CO2 emissions by today, we are facing immense damages due to climate change. Protecting our climate is much cheaper than not doing so: A recently published study estimates 38 trillion dollars in damages each year which is six times larger than the mitigation costs needed to limit global warming to two degrees. Even so, there is no green transformation without financial drivers. Recently, significant financial stakeholders have been establishing green funds and seeking green investments. For instance, in the EU, the green transition will require investments of €620 billion each year until 2030. What are the tools for financing this green transition worldwide? And what are the obstacles of the transformation if it is not the lack of funding? This session will explore different financial aspects such as Green Budgeting, green investments in the Global South and the barriers preventing a faster global shift towards sustainability.

Host: Hannelore Veit

Magnus Brunner, Minister of Finance, Austria

Gloria Walton, President and CEO The Solutions Project

Justin Mundy, Chairman SLM Partners

Exploring Corporate and Political Roles in Climate Action: Tools and Challenges

Corporate responsibility has been a buzzword for the last decades. And indeed, business and political leaders have been announcing their net-zero pathways. Nevertheless, a recently published study by the Potsdam Institute of Climate Impact Research assessed a 19 % income reduction by 2050 worldwide – even if CO2 emissions would be drastically cut down starting today. According to the study, climate change will cause massive economic damages around the world. How will businesses and policy makers react to that?

The business world has many tools at hand to drive change on the one hand, and also to adapt to changing circumstances in the future. However, companies frequently criticize the absence of adequate legal frameworks that would enable them to operate sustainably. Politics represent one of the most influential instruments for concrete measures. Tune in to the discussion on how both businesses and politics contribute to climate action and join in to reflect what tools could also be improved.

Host: Hannelore Veit

Leonore Gewessler, Federal Minister of Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology, Austria

Klaus von Moltke, Head of Drive Machines BMW Group

Omoyemi Akerele, Founder Lagos Fashion Week and CEO Style House Files

Anders Levermann, Professor of Dynamics of the Climate System at Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK)

Sustainable Living For Everyone

Our current lifestyle requires 1,7 earths because of the way we consume. High-consumption parts of the population use many times the resources that are actually available to them. Also, our energy consumption still very much relies on fossil fuels.

And old habits die hard! Choosing greener and more sustainable options must be easily accessible and affordable. That is why cities and regions work hard to provide and build climate friendly structures and to make a climate friendly life as easy as possible. What tools do they have to facilitate a life for a healthy planet? What and who can help us to become more climate friendly and useful in our daily lives?

Host: Nadja Bernhard

Jürgen Czernohorszky, Executive City Councillor for Climate, City of Vienna

Nollaig Forrest, Chief Sustainability Officer Holcim

Xenia zu Hohenlohe, Chief Engagement & Strategy Officer at Sustainable Markets Initiative

Louie Psihoyos, Photographer and Documentary Film Director (Oscar winning “The Cove”)

Creative Approaches to Inspire Change

As all aspects of our lives are affected by the climate crisis, we need unique and creative channels and approaches to react and act: Convincing people to act for the climate is an art.

Host: Nadja Bernhard

Klemens Hallmann, CEO Hallmann Holding

Sebastian Ströbel, Actor

With their unique signature sound mix of rock, rockabilly, country, neoblues enriched with a bit of pop appeal, The BossHoss quickly sends the audience into a real country-rock frenzy.
The BossHoss are celebrating their 20th anniversary this year and we are delighted to welcome them to the AWS stage.

Inspiring stories and innovative personalities – the best mix for an intriguing session. We present climate action heroes from all around the world proving that change is already in motion.

Hosts: Barbara Meier and Matt Iseman

Andy Schleck, Winner Tour de France 2010 and Investor NZero

Cosima Richardson, Founder and CEO Kynd Hair

Basima Abdulrahman, Founder and CEO KESK

Charlot Magayi, Founder and CEO Mukuru Clean Stoves

Nidhi Pant, Co-Founder S4S Technologies

Nalleli Cobo, Environmental Justice Advocate

Anna-Liisa Palatu, CEO Woola

Anna Greil, Founder and CEO uptraded

Pete Ceglinski, CEO and Co-Founder Seabin

Arnold Schwarzenegger, Founder AUSTRIAN WORLD SUMMIT

Monika Langthaler, Director Schwarzenegger Climate Initiative