CEMS V4 Conference in Prague

9 May

The University of Economics, Prague welcomed 100 delegates from 21 CEMS Academic Member schools for a vibrant social and academic programme. The conference offered unparalleled access to top talents from the Central European region and beyond for Corporate Partners and offered students an opportunity for interpersonal networking,

During the conference, participants were also able to connect with the CEMS community. “I was the first student to graduate from CEMS at VŠE. This is a special moment for me to be back at the University of Economics and take part in the V4 Conference,” says Tomáš Hruška, Country Managing Director for Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary at L’Oréal.

In addition to gaining unique access to recruitment opportunities, delegates acquired hands-on experience in the area of behavioural economics. The topic was all about psychological biases and how companies tackle it in their daily business. Participants engaged in two workshops and one case competition led by Google, L’Oréal, Unibail-Rodamco, Hilti, PwC and Škoda. 

Delegates were able to apply their learnings in various sectors including, marketing in a retail, online environment, building a brand directly with consumers, e-cars and personality profiles in B2B.

Lecture and panel discussions by Austrian startup, SMARTASSISTANT, showed participants how you can develop a smart advice technology based on the paradox of choices while GoodAI. A Prague-based research organisation, also shed light on how behavioural economics and artificial intelligence interact together. 

Tomáš Hruška was then joined on stage by Petr Smid, Jan Radil, Marcela Hrdličková, Radek Drab, Senior Managers from Google, Hilti, Unibail-Rodamco and PwC respectively, for a panel discussion on upcoming trends in their respective industries and how the theme shapes their businesses. Filip Matějka, Associate Professor with Tenure at CERGE-EI completed the panel with an insightful academic perspective.

The academic programme was punctuated by a variety of exciting social activities held in unique venues across town. Delegates ran around Prague in the pursuit of the cities’ secrets before kicking-off the conference with Corporate Partners at the welcome event. Other activities included an evening in a Bitcoin Cafe, a networking breakfast to discuss how international experience cohabitates with one’s roots and, of course, an unforgettable gala. VŠE’s xPort Business Accelerator finally closed the conference with a goodbye brunch.

Lastly, The CEMS V4 Conference was an opportunity to promote sustainable practices. Pohoda, a social enterprise that provides catering and hires people with disabilities, provided its services throughout the conference. Paper and plastic waste were reduced thanks to online collaboration tools, the use of QR codes to check attendance and the use of eco-friendly catering supplies.

Overall, delegates went home with plenty of new stories to share, memories to keep and knowledge to apply: “The V4 conference was one of the best events organised by students I have ever attended. Everything was prepared down to the finest detail – the organising committee and volunteers were extremely committed and helpful. Moreover, I really enjoyed the workshops with Hilti and Unibail Rodamco – the companies prepared very interactive sessions and showed us how Behavioural Economics applies in real business situations,” concluded CEMS Student, Zuzanna Sadowy-Sadowska (SGH/SSE).

To see pictures from the CEMS V4 conference click here.