Davos Q&A: Kanika Dewan - artist in stone wants to hear more from masses

Kanika Dewan is on the Young Global Leaders program of the World Economic Forum (WEF) and a debut at Davos. She’s a former investment banker who has become a leading builder in stonework including Terminal 3 at Delhi International Airport. She’s also a campaigner against corruption.

Born in India, she was educated in England and the United States. She’s the sort of communicator drawn into the web of the WEF which tries to bring artists into its network of businesspeople, politicians and academics who attend its annual forum in Davos. She’s the president (Wharton Magazine) of a natural resources group called Bramco in the Gulf state of Bahrain.

WikiTribune: Are you more, less, or equivalently optimistic as you were this time last year?

Dewan: “More optimistic. I got to hear people like [French President Emmanuel] Macron…and [Canadian Prime Minister Justin] Trudeau give authentic statements. I’m actually not as optimistic about India…I am more optimistic about the West than the East, than the emerging economies….
Referring to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s speech she described it as “not authentic”. “India’s not well, India’s not healthy, India’s not green…there too many soundbites.”
She added: We’ve got leaders at the moment who polarize and polarization gives impetus to mobilization, so that’s why I’m more optimistic.”

WikiTribune: What or who might be the biggest threat to the kinds of global ideas that underlie Davos?

Dewan: “The fact that power is rewarded and yet they are talking about the masses and all we hear about is power. We don’t hear from the masses on the stage.”

WikiTribune: What’s your favorite news media. Where do you go first?

Dewan: “I look at CNN.”

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        This Q&A has been edited for clarity but is very close to the full one minute, 30 second discussion we recorded.

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