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THRIVE Impact Summer School

August 18th - 25th, 2023

 - application process for 2023 is closed, but you can apply for 2024 -  


2023 focus: Climate Justice


Sphere on Spiral Stairs

Listen to Science. Act to stabilize our planet. NOW.

About THRIVE Impact Summer School

THRIVE Impact empowers you with the mindset and tools to co-create a safe and just space for humanity within planetary boundaries.


We have overshot 6 of 9 planetary boundaries. We are not making significant progress towards scaling back our negative impact, yet business and management education have yet to comprehensively address this. Tomorrow's leaders need to be prepared for the adversity they will face in a changing world.


Developing and implementing transformative solutions will require new skills and ways of working, including collaboration across disciplines and sectors and deepened awareness of the complex challenges we face.


As a global society, we are not all equally vulnerable to the worst effects of climate change, nor have we been equally responsible for causing them. The need for equitable solutions is growing ever more urgent. 

In its pilot delivery, THRIVE Impact asks us to work towards a holistic understanding of the relationship between emissions, nature, and people. 

"Climate justice builds on a platform of equitable development, human rights and political voice. It is an agenda that seeks to redress global warming by reducing disparities in development and power that drive climate change and continued injustice. This implies transformative changes and the need to look beyond national boundaries to what is good for the world as a whole."

                                                    Climate Justice for a Changing Planet:

                                                    A Primer for Policy Makers and NGOs


"We have less than 10 years

to transform

the future of humanity

- or destabilize the planet." 


An immersive one-week experience at one of the world´s top universities.

Creating an integrative academic, social and cultural experience.

Reasons to choose THRIVE Impact

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Join an

international group of like-minded changemakers &

co-create to transform the future


Gain key knowledge,

grow your professional network and

find opportunities for future employment 


Qualify for the Global Leadership Challenge (cooperation between Oxford University and St.Gallen Symposium)


Receive a confirmation of participation as a

THRIVE Young Impact Leader

from the University of St.Gallen


Have an unforgettable and meaningful experience in the Swiss Alps and at the University of St.Gallen

Sphere on Spiral Stairs

Be part of a network of
scientists, researchers & innovators.

Programme Overview 18th - 25th August 2023 

An inclusive Programme in English

Image by Daniel Karasiński

Transforming Mindsets (18th - 20th August 2023)

Location: Offsite@Swiss Alp

THRIVE begins with a weekend excursion in nature, where from Friday to Sunday, against the backdrop of the Swiss Alps, you will have the time and space to connect with others, with nature and with yourself. Through this experiential learning journey in the mountains, you will begin to define your own individual and collective agency to redefine success - from economic growth, to a safe and just space for humanity.

Navigating Just Transitions (21st August 2023)

Location: SQUARE@HSG

On Monday, we engage with the framework of Doughnut Economics, and explore your definitions of a safe and just space for humanity. We critically engage traditional economics, and the role existing structures play in climate change and climate justice. We begin to engage the concept of a regenerative economy and explore hurdles and opportunities in building a future within planetary boundaries. Reflecting the weekend spent in nature, we consider the role of self-leadership, well-being, and health in driving change. In the afternoon, we embark on the module Systems Leadership for Regenerative Futures.

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Systems Leadership for Regenerative Futures (22nd August 2023)

Location: SQUARE@HSG

On Tuesday, as part of a transdisciplinary team using foresight thinking, you will start with your shared vision for a safe and just space for humanity, and then define the strategic steps needed to get there. In planning for this scenario, you will critically engage questions of privilege, equity, power, and the potential unintended consequences of your actions. In the evening, join us in a conversation about how nature can help us rethink data and AI.

Accelerating Climate Justice (23rd - 25th August)

Location: SQUARE@HSG

On Wednesday, you engage with facilitators, experts, and your peers around the topic of Accelerating Climate Justice. You have the opportunity to select one of three possible streams in social innovation, namely (social) entrepreneurship, intrapreneurship and extrapreneurship. Within your stream, you work in teams on real-world cases for three days, bringing to these the perspective of climate justice. Wednesday includes keynotes on the intersection between technology and social innovation on the journey towards a regenerative economy.

On Thursday, you continue work within your stream. In input sessions and exchanges with experts we explore the topic of impact measurement, including Science-Based Targets (SBTi), and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). We consider what is present, and what is missing when working towards climate justice. We close the day with an Impact Career Fair.

On Friday, the Summer School comes to an end with each group presenting to their peers, and collaborative reflections. We launch the Changemaker Community to support your momentum into the future. 


You can download the detailed programme here.

Sphere on Spiral Stairs

Collaborating towards a safe & just space
for humanity within planetary boundaries.

Application and Selection Process


The application process for 2023 is closed. If you are interested in participating @THRIVE Impact Summer School in 2024, please reach out to Fabiola Cappiello at

Selection Process:

THRIVE is for currently enrolled bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral students from across disciplines, universities and nationalities. Successful applicants have a strong commitment to personal growth, collaboration, and are driven by impact.

Selection is based on group composition; THRIVE is committed to a diversity of backgrounds, nationalities, gender / gender identifications and disciplines of study.

Programme Costs:

We charge a registration fee of CHF 100 that needs to be paid within a week after the approval. This amount includes the overall programme fee, 2 overnight costs (friday-sunday) in the Swiss Alps, including a food package.

Limited financing is available for income-restricted applicants (please reach out to for further information). 

Accommodation Costs

Accommodation costs for the week (sunday-friday) in St. Gallen are not included.

Due to dates during the vacations and summer period, student collocations are largely available. Additionally, all St. Gallen-based students are invited to participate in hosting students from outside St. Gallen. 

Limited financing is available for income-restricted applicants (please reach out to for further information). 

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Who is THRIVE Impact Summer School for?

THRIVE is for students (Bachelor, Master, PhD) of any discipline who ...

  • ... are impact-driven, collaborative, open-minded and committed to personal growth

  • ... are seeking to meet like-minded people from diverse backgrounds

  • ... want to contribute to building a safe and just space for humanity 

  • ... want to engage in unforgettable social and cultural activities, such as a nature immersion in the Swiss Alps

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THRIVE Impact Summer School

We can't wait to welcome you to our programme at the University of St.Gallen.

 Dr. Rachel Brooks, Julia Bahlmann & Dr. Justus von Grone

Fabiola Cappiello Segura, Dino Darmonski & Charlotte Müller


Our Partners

Q & A.

Click here for more Information on: Application, Language, Programme and Fees Application •I am a student, but not currently enrolled at university, can I still participate in the Summer School? Yes, you can. Just make a note on your application in terms you are not currently enrolled and shortly explain your situation. We do not have any age restrictions. •I am a young professional, but interested in participating, am I able to apply? If you have less than 2 years experience, you are still able to apply. However, students will have an advantage in getting a spot for the THRIVE Impact Summer School. Language •Which level in English is required? As the programme language is English, you should have a minimum level of B2. Programme •How much time do I need to invest in the programme? The programme is a one-week full-time programme. •When does the programme actually kick-off? The programme will start on Friday, 18th August in the Swiss Alps around 3pm, with a journey of about 2 hours from St. Gallen. Further details are following. Arrival (on 18th) and departure (on 25th) is to be organized and paid on own expenses, only the train ticket from the nature experience on Sunday back to St. Gallen is covered. •When is the programme finished? The closing ceremony will be finished on Friday, 25th of August around 4pm. •Which "degree" do participants get? After a successful participation you will get a confirmation of participation. ECTS-Credits are not provided. Fees •Is the programme free of charge? Mainly. We only charge a registration fee of 100 CHF. No further costs for the programme particpation or the weekend trip in the Alps is required. However, Accomodation in St.Gallen (Sunday-Friday) needs to be organized and paid by the students, we offer a buddy-hosting programme and provide additional limited financing for income-restricted applicants.

Need more information?
contact us:



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