Making the Future Work: Turning 2020 Challenges into Opportunities

Panel discussion with Dr. Anna Wiesinger, Barbara Humpton and Björn Böhning

Moderated by Dr. Inez von Weitershausen

Tuesday November 10th 9:30 EST / 3:30 CET

Watch the event recording here

Join this exciting panel discussion bringing together three Future of Work thought leaders from a broad set of backgrounds and with diverse perspectives in what is guaranteed to be an intellectually stimulating debate.

“Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future,” is a popular saying among economists. This applies more than ever to the future of the American and German labor markets. Even before our lives were turned upside down by the pandemic, labor markets on both sides of the Atlantic were shifting as a result of digitization, demographic change, and socioeconomic transformation. On top of these challenges, the global pandemic now requires business people, policymakers and individuals alike to think beyond what is immediately ahead.

This event uniquely joins three distinctly different perspectives on the 2020-induced necessity for change in context of the future of work: a corporate, a political, and a hybrid/consulting view. Barbara Humpton heads Siemens USA, where she guides the company’s strategy in its largest market in the world with more than 50,000 employees. Björn Böhning is the State Secretary at the German Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, and thus approaches the future of work from a policymaker perspective. And Anna Wiesinger, Partner at McKinsey & Company, supports organizations and the public sector in their digitization and future of work-related efforts. The three of them will jointly discuss the challenges and opportunities that automation, digitization, technological change and other forces bring to the workplace, and where the future of work is headed.


Dr. Anna Wiesinger

Partner at McKinsey & Company

Dr. Anna Wiesinger has been working as a consultant at McKinsey for more than 12 years. Since January 2019, she has been the Partner responsible for the firm’s Public Sector work in the Düsseldorf office and has been able to gain extensive experience, especially in personnel-related topics. Her expertise includes the digitization of processes from a customer perspective as well as transformation management, with a focus on the continual development of employees and teams. With a PhD in business informatics and her experience gained across a number of different industries, Dr. Anna Wiesinger makes impactful contributions to digital strategies.

Barbara Humpton

President and CEO Siemens USA

Barbara Humpton is President and CEO of Siemens USA, where she guides the company’s strategy and engagement in serving its  largest market in the world, with more than 50,000 employees and over $23 billion in revenues and $5 billion in annual exports.

Most recently, Humpton served as president and CEO of Siemens Government Technologies, Inc. (SGT), a leading integrator of Siemens’ products and services for federal government agencies and departments. Prior to joining Siemens in 2011, Humpton served as a vice president at Booz Allen Hamilton.  Earlier, Humpton was a vice president at Lockheed Martin Corporation.

Humpton is a graduate of Wake Forest University with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics.  She is Chairman of the Siemens Corporation Board, the Siemens Foundation and of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA). She serves on the board of directors of the American Heart Association Greater Washington Region, Triumph Group, National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), Chief Executives for Corporate Purpose (CECP), Economic Club of Washington, D.C. and the Seabee Memorial Scholarship Association.

Björn Böhning

State Secretary at the German Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs

Since March 2018 Bjoern Boehning has been State Secretary at the German Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, where he is responsible for employment and social policy. He is also in charge of the policy field future of work related to digitization and automation.

From 2011 to 2018 he was Head of the German Federal State Government of Berlin, reporting directly to the Governing Mayor of Berlin. Additionally, he was responsible for the media, film and digitization policy of the Federal State of Berlin. From 2004 to 2011 he was a member of the Executive Board of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) and from 2004 to 2007 Federal Chairman of the SPD’s Young Socialists.

Bjoern Boehning, born in 1978, holds a Master of Political Science from the Freie Universität Berlin.

Dr. Inez von Weitershausen

Head of Learning and Outreach, University of Zurich

Dr. Inez von Weitershausen is Head of Learning & Outreach of the Center for Leadership in the Future of Work at the University of Zurich.

She leads the group’s engagement with a wide range of stakeholders, and connects people and topics that advance knowledge, best practices and innovation in leadership and skill formation. 

Inez joined UZH after three years at MIT, where she contributed to the research, teaching and outreach activities of the Taskforce “Work of the future” and of the Good Companies Good Jobs initiative at the Sloan School of Management. She holds a PhD from the London School of Economics,  a masters in law and business from Bucerius Law School and WHU Otto Beisheim school of management and an MA from the University of Bonn.