GBSB Global Study Trip to Geneva: What Activities Students Can Expect at the United Nations, WTO and WIPO

GBSB Global Business School is excited to offer its annual Global Study Trip to Geneva, Switzerland exploring such themes as ethics, international trade relations and intellectual property as it relates to sharing information and cooperation. During this two-day event, students will have the unique opportunity to attend dynamic lectures covering the history, functions and current work being performed by the United Nations, World Trade Organization and World Intellectual Property Organization.

Students from GBSB Global Business School Barcelona’s master degree and master of business administration programs are invited to convene on this international stage in one of the most utopian cities in all of Europe. Located in the southwest canton, or state of Switzerland, Geneva is widely known for its strategic part as the headquarters of the International Red Cross (1864), the International Labour Office (1925), the League of Nations (1920-1946), the World Health Organization and of course, the aforementioned European office of the United Nations.

The business school’s professional relationships with key figures in these influential institutions, such as the UN, WTO and WIPO afford this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to GBSB Global Business School students.

What Activities Can Students Expect at the United Nations, WTO and WIPO?

The students’ two-day agenda is jammed packed full of high-profile meetings and engagements that will be both captivating and inspiring.

Leaving very little room for down time, students led by Yelena Smirnova, Head of Academic and Student Affairs at GBSB Global Business School in Barcelona, will begin their Global Study Trip experience at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), where they will meet a representative from the organization that will guide them through the second largest arm of the four main global locations.

Stationed in the Palais des Nations, a testament to the domineering style and exceptional architecture of the 20th century. Students will have the fantastic opportunity to take part in a general overview of the facilities, with one specific stop to the conference room with an ornately designed 4,600-foot squared dome ceiling painted in varying colors. The imagery is too big to be entirely grasped by the human eye, ever changing as the observing changes his position. This work created by the Spanish artist, Miquel Barceló reinforces the altruistic metaphor of the complex world in which we live in. "The world cannot be properly understood from one perspective".

During past Global Study Trips, students were engaged in discussions about the global financial market and the ethical problems that exist with rating agencies. In this discussion students looked at how rating agencies across the world manipulated the evaluations which impacted markets; all of this was artificially orchestrated by the agencies themselves.

Other years focused on fair trade and the relationships first world countries had with the developing world. Every year the objectives change and the discussion on humanity including peace and security, climate change, sustainable development, human rights, disbarment, terrorism, humanitarian and health emergencies, gender equality, governance and food production can all take center stage.

Before leaving the United Nations, students will have the rare opportunity to have lunch at the Diplomatic Cafeteria.

Leaving the United Nations, the students will take time to explore the Vielle-Ville, Geneva’s old town center. A historic maze of small streets, tiny alleyways and picturesque squares dotted with bustling cafes, restaurants, art galleries, museums, and interesting sites not to be missed. The Bourg-de-Four Square, the oldest place in Geneva, was once the site of an ancient Roman marketplace where locals would convene to trade their wares, a center of commerce and social engagement.

On the evening of the first day in Geneva, students will have the choice to join together for a communal dinner or venture off on the own further afield for more exploration and cultural indulgence.

Not wanting to make it a late night, students will reconvene early on Thursday morning at the headquarters of the World Trade Organization (WTO). Here, students will once again meet with a representative that will usher them around, describing the highlights of the organization’s function primarily dealing with the rules of trade between nations.

During last year’s visit, Olesia Abdullaeva, a GBSB Global Business School Barcelona staff member recalls the WTO representative, Josep Bosch discussed dispute settlements and took the group on a very exclusive visit to a room where ambassadors represent their countries to discuss policies and a place where negotiations occur. This visit is truly memorable, where past groups have had the occasion to take pictures in the seat of their country’s ambassador, inspiring these young minds and offering insight into the world of opportunities in international business that await after graduation.

After lunch, students will round out their visit to Geneva with a guided tour of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). The main objective of this organization is to lead the development of balanced and effective international intellectual property that helps encourage innovation and ingenuity. This will be the first-time GBSB Global Business School will have the chance to enter this institution. Before, on previous trips, this was not on the agenda and we are looking forward to hearing about student’s experience and take-aways from the visit.

The Global Business Study Trip Has Become a Tradition

GBSB Global Business School coordinates these annual Global Study Trips to offer students a unique glimpse into one of the many realms of international business available to them. This is an opportunity of a lifetime for all students to participate in. The organizations that students visit are normally closed to the general public, but the relationships GBSB Global Business School has established with these institutions allows for these visits to be arranged.

Some of the organizations GBSB students visit:

  • UNESCO (Paris, France)
  • OECD - Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (Paris, France)
  • United Nations (Geneva, Switzerland)
  • World Trade Organization (Geneva, Switzerland)
  • European Commission (Brussels, Belgium)
  • Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
  • United Nations Conference on Trade and Development

Take advantage of this rare opportunity to enhance your network connections, gain professional insight and walk away with amazing memories. If you are interested in international business, this program is for you. Don’t wait, start your research today and let Global Business School Barcelona help make your professional ambitions your reality.

Written by Emily Dawn Szajda GBSB Content Manager

Two GBSB students standing in front of the seat of the country’s ambassador to the World Trade Organization.

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