Past Program


Across the world, countries are struggling to cope with the fallout from the pandemic. Global debt, both in the public and private sector, rose at an unprecedented pace. The Institute of International Finance has warned of a “debt tsunami” that could bring “significant adverse implications for economic activity.” Is the current debt build-up planting the seeds of the next crisis and, if so, what should we do to prevent it?

COVID-19 impacts are deepening existing inequalities and exposing new vulnerabilities in economics and finance. In 2021, through a series of online conversations, the Salzburg Global Finance Forum will enable critical thinking on systemic risks and strategic opportunities as well as to support sector leaders and policymakers to deliver bold strategies for the post-pandemic world.

Key Questions
  • How should leaders view the outlook for public finances in developed as well as emerging and developing countries?
  • Under what conditions do high debt burdens appear sustainable?
  • What are the political and social ramifications of rising debt?
  • Are there specific vulnerabilities in developed economies and emerging markets which may lead to troubles?
  • Which concrete actions are needed to prevent a possible crisis?

Time: 90 minutes

Plenary Discussion: Industry experts will open with candid insights, leading discussions around the main topic.

Breakout Discussions: Smaller group discussions on subtopics will be moderated by Salzburg Global staff and Fellows, allowing for deeper dives and wider debate.

Virtual Coffee Breaks: Small, regular meetups beyond the webinars will enable participants to continue the conversations beyond the formal programming.


This program is open for registration from all interested parties. We especially welcome the participation of senior and rising leaders from financial services firms (including commercial and investment banks, asset managers, private equity and pension funds, and fintech companies), supervisory and regulatory authorities, public policy leaders and professional service providers (including law firms and consultancies).


Peer dialogue with speakers will provide participants with broader regional perspectives, industry-relevant insights and specific policy recommendations thus strengthening their ability to lead though the disrupted forces accelerated by the Covid-19 crisis.