Updates

  • IMD business school and Pictet present first Sustainability in Family Business Award to Firmenich

    The inaugural IMD-Pictet Sustainability in Family Business Award was presented to Firmenich, the world’s largest privately held perfume and taste company in Lausanne. Firmenich gained this distinction due to its outstanding efforts to embed responsible practices and purpose throughout its operations.

    Speaking ahead of the award announcement, Barbara Kux, Vice-Chairman of Firmenich said that companies should look to synchronise the ‘three Ps’: profit, people and the planet. Profit and people have always been important, but the planet is a more recent addition, she said.

    Whenever leaders make a strategic decision, hire someone or make an acquisition, they should have these three things in mind. It is important that sustainability is embedded in a company’s values, Kux added, and this is typical of family businesses. But you need to find a “green sweet spot” where your company can focus its efforts.

    Lausanne, 5 December 2019

    External link

  • Presentation of first Female Founder Award to Anna Iarotska of Robo Wunderkind

    At the award ceremony of the annual “Spark – The German Digital Award” Barbara Kux presented the “Female Founder Special Award” to Anna Iarotska and gave the laudation. Iarotska is the CEO and a co-founder of Robo Wunderkind. Her start-up helps inspire more children for science and technology and to take up professions in this field. Handelsblatt and McKinsey have awarded this special prize for the first time to encourage female talent to become founders of start-ups and to make successful female role models more prominent.

    Berlin, 21 November 2019


    Sven Afhüppe, editor in chief Handelsblatt, Anna Iarotska, CEO and co-founder of Robo Wunderkind, Barbara Kux and Cornelius Baur, Managing Director Germany of McKinsey & Company

    External link to award website

  • St. Gallen master programme retains top spot

    The Financial Times has ranked St. Gallen University’s master in strategy and international management, co-taught by Barbara Kux, once again as the best of now 100 masters programmes worldwide in its 2019 survey. The newspaper has ranked the St Gallen programme in the top position for nine years in a row. The FT of 13 September 2015 said it’s a “hallmark” of the St. Gallen degree that students have to complete a sustainability project. Barbara Kux and Florian Überbacher developed the sustainability syllabus in 2014 and have been supervising the graduate students in their projects with companies from various industries, e.g. Roche, UBS, Henkel und Zurich.


    External link 2019
    External link 2018
    External link 2017
    External link 2016
    External link 2015

  • Jury Member of EY Public Value Award, Leipzig

    Barbara Kux has been appointed to the jury of the EY Public Value Award for Start-Ups. The EYPVA distinguishes young and innovative companies, who in their activities add value to the common good. The jury of experts from business, academia and politics evaluates applications along the five dimensions of the Public Value Scorecard. The 2019 awards were presented in Leipzig on 7 November to: iuvando, a search tool for studies in cancer therapy (first), Besser zuhause GmbH, support for people needing care who wish to stay independent at home (second), and Enlightaid, a platform for more transparency in the flow of social donationas (third as well as audience award).

    External link

  • University of Zurich: appointment to the advisory board of the department of economics

    Barbara Kux has been a member of the advisory board of the Department of Economics at the University of Zurich (UZH) since the summer term of 2019.
    28 Mai 2019

    Renowned experts from academia, the private and the public sectors from Switzerland and abroad constitute the advisory board. Members have a general advisory function and meet twice a year to get an update of recent developments of the department and to assist the department with their expertise. The board supports the department in enabling an active dialogue between academia and society.

    External link

  • University of St. Gallen, Main Lecturer Sustainability

    Barbara Kux and Florian Überbacher, “Exploring sustainability as strategic opportunity”, University of St. Gallen, Institute of Management
    Lectureship, spring 2019

    Kux and Überacher have held this class annually since 2014. During this spring semester, SIM studends developed original solutions in projects for five companies: Henkel, Roche, UBS and Zurich. The solutions are available for download on the St. Gallen website.

    External link

    Students, lecturers and representatives of Henkel, Roche, UBS and Zurich at St Gallen Institute of Management 2019

  • Inaugural conference: “Towards Sustainability: a New Curriculum for Boards”, INSEAD, Fontainebleau

    Panelist on “Chairs leading their boards to long-term sustainability” with Dr. Andreas Jacobs (INSEAD and Jacobs Holding) and André Hoffmann (Massellaz, Roche et al.) moderated by Professor Jose Luis Alvarez (INSEAD). The two-day inaugural conference was held by the INSEAD Corporate Governance Centre (ICGC), the Hoffmann Global Institute for Business and Society (HGIBS) and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD).
    9 April 2019


    The panel with Hoffmann, Kux, Jacobs and moderator Alvaraz

  • Annual event “Unternehmenskultur” (Corporate Culture), SwissVR, Horgen, Switzerland

    Speech: “Nachhaltige Governance – warum und wie?” (Sustainable Governance – why and how?)
    21 March 2019

    External link to event description

  • Grosvenor Group appoints Barbara Kux as non-executive director, London

    Grosvenor Group has announced the appointment of Barbara Kux as a non-executive director, effective from 12 June 2019.
    20 February 2019

    External link to Grosvenor press release

  • Presentation of the decarbonisation report for the EU, Katowice

    At the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the 24th Conference of the Parties (COP24) in Katowice, Poland, the high level panel to prepare the European Decarbonisation Pathways Initiative (EDPI) presented its final report. The independent advisors delivered science-based policy-relevant advice to the EU to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Barbara Kux was one of the nine external advisors of this high level panel first convened in 2016.
    4 December 2018

    The high level panel of the European Decarbonisation Pathways Initiative

    The Final Report of the High-Level Panel of the European Decarbonisation Pathways Initiative (November 2018, in English, 3.4 MB – PDF) is available for download at the official European Commission publications site:

    External link to EC publications download site

  • DSW/Better Finance, International Investors’ Conference “European Capital Markets Union”, Wiesbaden

    Panelist: “Board of Tomorrow – Tasks, Challenges, Teams” with Lars Hinrichs (xbAV, Deutsche Telekom, Cinco Capital) Friederike Rotsch (SAP) Thomas Tochtermann (Tom Tailor, Vapiano), hosted by Jörg Thierfelder (Egon Zehnder)
    27 November 2018

  • University of St. Gallen, lecturer IEMBA

    Barbara Kux and Professor Karolin Frankenberger: “Sustainability as strategic opportunity”, International Executive MBA, University of St. Gallen, first course, November 2018

    Participating executives and lecturers of the IEMBA class, November 2018

    External link to the executive MBA program at University of St Gallen

  • Annual event, Verein zur Unterstützung des wissenschaftlichen, wirtschaftlichen und politischen Wirkens, Zurich

    Panelist: “Protektionismus – Herausforderung für Politik und Wirtschaft” (Protectionism – a challenge for politics and the economy) with Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, Swiss federal councillor Doris Leuthard and Roche CEO Severin Schwan, hosted by the political philosopher Katja Gentinetta
    19 November 2018

  • World Investment Forum 2018: Investing in Sustainable Development, United Nations, UNCTAD, Geneva

    Panelist: “Global Investment Game Changers Summit: Pioneering solutions for a better world”
    22 October 2018

    Barbara Kux on the Game Changers panel at the UN World Investment Forum 2018

    The Geneva summit marks the 10th anniversary of the leading forum to leverage investment policy for sustainable develop­ment. Barbara Kux, who contributed to the creation of the UN’s 17 Social Develop­ment Goals, spoke as one of the game changers invited for their track record of achieving these goals in industry. The panel was opened by UNCTAD Secretary General Mukhisa Kituyi and joined by entrepreneurs from Asia, Africa and Europe – as well as Sophia, a humanoid robot. Barbara Kux stressed that technology already exists to achieve two thirds of the goal of reducing CO2 emissions to net zero. Green technology offers substantial market opportunities that companies can seize with leadership, vision, strategy and prioritisation. And she said that millennials wish to work for companies devoted to sustainability and that, within the EU alone, four million green jobs have already been created.

    External link to UN news release
    External link to program
    Externakl link to video of the panel (1 hour 42 mins)

  • Summit „Digital Transformation: Adapt or Die!“, Nellen & Partner, Gupf/St. Gallen

    Lecture: „Disruptive Welt – Chancen für Schweizer Unternehmen“ (Disruptive world – opportunities for Swiss companies)
    5 September 2018

    Barbara Kux sees opportunities for Swiss companies

  • McKinsey CFO Forum 2018: “The transformational CFO”, London

    Panelist “Bringing your board along for the transformation journey” with Rick Haythornthwaite, moderated by Vivian Hunt
    15 June 2018

  • University of St. Gallen, Lecturer in Management Studies

    Barbara Kux and Florian Überbacher, “Exploring sustainability as strategic opportunity”, University of St. Gallen, Institute of Management
    Lectureship, spring 2018

    In 2018, Kux and Überacher have held this class for the fifth time. During this spring semester, SIM studends developed original solutions in projects for these companies: BMW, Firmenich, Henkel, Roche and UBS. Some of these solutions are available to download on the St. Gallen website.

    External link

    Students, lecturers and company representatives of St Gallen Institute of Management 2018

  • The Korn Ferry Board Breakfast, Zurich

    Panelist: “How can modern governance boost competitiveness?”
    14 June 2018 (invitation only)

    Discussion Grid. Download PDF (228KB)

  • European Industry Day 2018, Brussels

    EU Industry Day 2018 Statement Barbara KuxAs a member of the high-level panel of the European Decarbonisation Pathways Initiative, Barbara Kux was a panellist on “Sustainable industry” at this two-day conference hosted by the European Commission.
    22 and 23 February 2018

    External link to agenda
    Statement Barbara Kux. Download PDF (380KB)

  • Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) Switzerland Launch Conference: “Where Society, Science and Politics create solutions”, Bern

    Panelist: “Switzerland’s opportunities and responsibilities for a sustainable world.”
    5 February 2018

    Barbara Kux was a member of the Leadership Council of the SDSN Global Initiative which developed the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.

    External link to conference website with photo & video gallery and a report by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)

    Kux as a panellist at the Swiss SDSN launch ©Peter-Lüthi_Biovision

  • Rheintaler Wirtschaftsforum 2018, Widnau, Switzerland

    Lecture: “Nachhaltigkeit – Erfolgsfaktor in der disruptiven Welt” (Sustainability – success factor in a disruptive world)
    19 January 2018

    External link

    Barbara Kux on “Sustainability as a success factor in a disruptive world” at the Rhine Valley Economic Forum 2018

  • Women’s Leadership Forum Switzerland, McKinsey & Company, Inc.

    Contribution to lecture series, „Remarkable leadership stories“
    22 November 2017

  • INSEAD International Directors Programme – developing effective directors in a global context

    Lecture: “Sustainable corporate governance – the insider’s view“
    16 November 2017

  • INSEAD, Fontainebleau, International Directors Programme – developing effective directors in a global context

    Lecture: “Sustainable corporate governance – The insider’s view”
    26 September 2017

  • University of St. Gallen, Lecturer in Management Studies

    Barbara Kux and Florian Überbacher, “Exploring sustainability as strategic opportunity”, University of St. Gallen, Institute of Management
    Lectureship, spring 2017.

    In several project teams, SIM studends developed original solutions on behalf of five companies: BMW, Firmenich, Henkel, Roche and UBS. Some of these solutions are available to download on the St. Gallen website.

    External link

    Students, lecturers and company representatives, St. Gallen Institute of Management 2017

  • INSEAD, Fontainebleau, International Directors Programme – developing effective directors in a global context

    Lecture: “Corporate governance – ticking the box vs being sustainable”
    30 March 2017

  • Director in Residence for Corporate Governance am INSEAD

    Fontainebleau, appointment in February 2017

  • Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce

    Speech at the kick-off of the NextGen CH Network and Learn: “How to thrive in a world of ambiguity?”
    Zurich, 14 November 2016

    Invitation Flyer, Download PDF (19KB)

    Barbara Kux, presentation at NextGen CH Network Kick-off, Zurich, 14 November, 2016
    Barbara Kux presenting at NextGen CH Network kick-off

    Barbara Kux and other panelists at NextGen CH Network Kick-off, Zurich, 14 November 2016
    With other panelists

  • Member of EU expert panel on decarbonisation

    The European Commission appointed Barbara Kux to the expert panel which will support EU climate action and help implement the Paris Agreement. The high level Panel on Decarbonisation Pathways had its first meeting hosted by the commissioner for research, science and innovation Carlos Moedas in October 2016. The nine independent advisors led by physicist Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, will deliver science-based policy-relevant advice to the European Decarbonisation Pathways Initiative (EDPI) to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. They will also present a final report in three years’ time.

    Brussels, 21 October 2016
    External link

  • INSEAD, Fontainebleau, International Directors Programme

    Lecture: “Corporate governance – ticking the box vs being sustainable”
    27 September 2016

  • Procurement Leaders Global Intelligence Network, Ovation Executive Retreat

    Speech: “Supply Chain: Strategic Opportunities in a volatile Environment”
    Lake Lucerne, 7 July 2016

    External link

  • University of St. Gallen, Lecturer in Management Studies

    Barbara Kux and Florian Überbacher, “Exploring sustainability as strategic opportunity”, University of St. Gallen, Institute of Management
    Lectureship, spring 2016.

    In six project teams, SIM studends developed original solutions on behalf of four companies: BMW, Firmenich, Henkel and UBS. Some of these solutions are available to download on the St. Gallen website.

    External link

    Students, lecturers and company representatives of St Gallen Institute of Management spring 2016
    Students, lecturers and company representatives, St Gallen Institute of Management, spring 2016

  • The Danish Professional Directors Association, Copenhagen

    Speech: “Corporate governance 4.0 – ticking the box vs sustainable value driver”
    2 March 2016

    External link

  • ETH, Zurich, VIP Talks

    Speech: “Supply chain: strategic opportunities in a volatile environment”
    25 February 2016

  • INSEAD, Singapore, Leading the Business of Sustainability

    Speech: “Sustainability – how to establish a true and lasting competitive advantage”
    2 November 2015

  • Financial Times, London, FT 125 Strategy Live

    Panel presentation: “Global versus local – who knows best?”
    8 October 2015

    In the Financial Times of 12 October 2015 management editor Andrew Hill quotes Barbara Kux at the FT 125 forum on how she managed to make “global savings while cultivating local sourcing networks” at Siemens.

  • IMD, Lausanne, High Performance Boards Program

    Speech: “Corporate governance: ticking the box versus being sustainable”
    6 October 2015

  • INSEAD, Fontainebleau, International Directors Programme

    Speech: “Corporate governance – ticking the box or sustainable value driver”
    21 September 2015

  • University of St. Gallen, Lecturer in Management Studies

    Barbara Kux and Florian Überbacher, “Exploring sustainability as strategic opportunity”, University of St. Gallen, Institute of Management
    Lectureship, spring 2015.

    In five project teams, SIM studends developed original solutions on behalf of three companies: Allianz, BMW and Henkel. These solutions are available to download on the St. Gallen website.

    External link

    Students, lecturers and company representatives of St Gallen Institute of Management 2015
    Students, lecturers and company representatives, St Gallen Institute of Management, spring 2015

  • External director GDF Suez SA, now operating under the commercial name Engie

    Appointed by General Shareholders’ Meeting
    Paris, 28 April 2015

    External link

  • European Institute, London, 2nd Meeting, Women Corporate Directors (WCD)

    Special session: “A conversation with Barbara Kux”
    4-5 March 2015

  • INSEAD Alumni Experience

    Video interview: “Greening Siemens’ supply chain”, INSEAD Youtube channel
    29 January 2015

    External link

  • Total S.A., Paris, Responsible Leadership Seminar

    Speech: “Sustainability – how to establish a true and lasting competitive advantage”
    17 December 2014

  • INSEAD, Fontainebleau, Sustainability Executive Roundtable

    Speech: “Sustainability – how to establish a true and lasting competitive advantage”
    26 September 2014

    External link

  • Danish Council for Corporate Responsibility

    Speech: “Opportunities of CSR for boards – managing risks and creating business opportunities”
    13 October 2014

  • University of St. Gallen, Lecturer in Management Studies

    Barbara Kux and Florian Überbacher, “Sustainability as strategic opportunity”, University of St. Gallen, Institute of Management
    Lectureship, spring 2014.

    In five project teams, SIM studends developed original solutions on behalf of two companies. These solutions are available to download on the St. Gallen website.

    External link

  • Member of the Leadership Council of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network

    Global initiative for the United Nations under the leadership of Professor Jeffrey Sachs.

    External link
    Sachs to Kux 2015 letter. Download PDF (193KB)