Page Overview: One Young World
One Young World

The idea.

Meeting global challenges through collaboration and building lasting global networks. Those were the guiding principles that emerged from the establishment of the non-profit One Young World (OYW). Founded in the UK in 2009 by David Jones and Kate Robertson, OYW has gone from strength to strength. Over the years the organisation has burgeoned, and today thousands of young talents from business, NGOs and research from around the world come together for the annual OYW Summit. There they reflect on and discuss topics such as education, climate and environmental protection, and social projects, and also grow their networks. Founded on collective, social and societal engagement, the aim of the Summit is to reimagine and actively shape the future.

Shared engagement.

Reimagining and actively shaping the future is not just the guiding principle of One Young World but also firmly established in the mindset of the BMW Group. We take our responsibility to society and the environment extremely seriously, and our commitment is very much a part of what we stand for. It’s also the reason we attach special importance to helping our own employees shape their futures. Young talents enjoy our particular support: we mentor them in their personal development, encourage them to develop a broad view of the company and help them grow their personal networks. Because we want them to become visionary, committed managers who provide the foundation for successful collaborations within a future-focused BMW Group and actively contribute to the corporate citizenship of our company.

BMW Group @ One Young World summit.

The One Young World Summit brings together young leaders aged between 18 and 30 from across the globe who are engaged in social and societal causes. It offers them a platform for discussions around innovative solutions to global challenges and questions facing the world, and potential ways of tackling them. The BMW Group has been sending its own delegation of committed young leaders to the event since 2016.

The One Young World (OYW) Summit is an inspiring annual get-together of young talent determined to change the world for the better. A historic example of positive change was the Good Friday Agreement in 1998. Now, on the 25th anniversary of the agreement that put an end to the decades-long conflict in Northern Ireland and modelled conflict resolution globally, including as far away as Colombia, the One Young World Summit 2023 was hosted in Belfast and included a celebration of this historic event. 

A gathering with an impact: The One Young World (OYW) Summit is an inspiring annual convention of young talents who want to change the world for the better. In 2022 it was hosted by Manchester. A centre of the spirit of innovation, the OYW Summit was attended by 2,000 young leaders from across the globe. Also taking part was the BMW Group, with its own delegation of 52 young people.

The four-day meeting focused on a range of topics affecting the whole world and requiring solutions, such as conflict prevention, global gender equality, clean oceans, responsible leadership and health. The young contributors from 190 countries debated, networked, contributed new perspectives, and put forward bold solutions.

This year the atmosphere in the BMW Group delegation was particularly enthusiastic. Travelling with them was Ilka Horstmeier, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG for HR, Real Estate and Labour Director. In her keynote speech for the congress, she was clearly impressed by participants’ enthusiasm and engagement. This was exactly the “spirit”, she said, that talented young achievers bring back to the BMW Group on their return and that sparks new ideas for the sustainable transformation of the company.

In 2021 the One Young World Summit took place in Munich.

Focusing on the theme of Innovation, the congress explored issues such as the climate crisis, freedom, civil liberties and education. Making up the BMW Group’s delegation were 60 young talents from sites across the globe, who had come together for the weekend.

Ever since the BMW Group sent its first delegation to the OYW, in 2016, our employees have also been part of the OYW ambassadors’ group. The fact that the OYW Summit came to Munich in 2021 was particularly good news for the BMW Group, which co-hosted the event: as a showcase for innovation, we work closely with the City of Munich and have long fostered the innovative spirit here.

To celebrate its tenth anniversary, the One Young World Summit came home – to London. From 22-25 October 2019 over 1,500 young people from across the world gathered in Westminster.

For its ninth edition, the One Young World Summit went to The Hague. Young managers from multinationals came together to offer a fresh perspective on economic, social and political questions.

The BMW Group participated with 36 delegates from ten countries. Also taking part in the four-day congress from 17-20 October 2018 was Peter Schwarzenbauer, Member of the Board of Management, BMW AG – again in his role as counsellor.

From 4-5 October 2017 the BMW Group delegation and Board Member Peter Schwarzenbauer, as counsellor, joined the One Young World Summit in the Colombian capital Bogotá. Once again, the event attracted young leaders and personalities from across the globe to discuss politics, education, economic developments, social entrepreneurship and much more besides. This year’s speakers included the Nobel Peace Prize winners Professor Muhammad Yunus and Tawakkol Karman, and the former Secretary General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan.

In 2016 the One Young World Summit was hosted by the Canadian capital, Ottawa. For the first time, a delegation of 21 young and committed employees from various divisions of the BMW Group took part. Delegations from 196 countries discussed global issues such as environmental protection, sustainability, peace and security, and human rights. Among the counsellors enriching the event with their thoughts and ideas were the former Secretary General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan, actress Emma Watson, campaigner Bob Geldof and the Canadian premier Justin Trudeau.