Take a hike. Literally.
That’s what I tell myself when I visit Méribel during the summer. Méribel, located in the heart of the French Alps, is home to the annual Anthemis Hacking Finance Retreat (AHFR). For an extended weekend, it plays host to more than 100 financially savvy weirdos, curious cats, selfie queens and everyone in between. The retreat offers a safe space to take a hike from regular day-to-day life, unplug and let the crisp alpine air hit your face as you embrace the great outdoors.
(Talking Big Picture about what’s going on in the world and eating a lot of cheese is part of it, too, but we’ll get to that).
AHFR17 gathered people from Venezuela to Italy, Estonia to Korea and Turkey to South Africa. It kicked off with a powerful lecture from Anthemis Institute’s Academic in Residence, Professor Carlota Perez, breaking down the move from the Industrial Age to the Information Age and how individuals and governments can play a central role in that transformation.
The following two days were jam-packed with workshops and deep dives on topics ranging from geopolitics, diversity, ecosystems, and this thing that blew up on my Instagram feed later in the year called ‘crypto’. Apparently finance folks have been talking about this for years, but social media didn’t catch on ‘till 2017…#yeshrug.
Lunchtime and dinnertime were the perfect opportunity to mix and mingle with individuals from across the Anthemis and Hacking Finance ecosystem, over cheese and wine, all within the stunning backdrop of the French Alps.
The soundtrack for this year was courtesy of Kentucky-based musician, Vandeveer. Evening entertainment ranged from sitting and chatting by the campfire, kids playing chase, folks exchanging ideas over beers, toe-to-toe on bowling competitions and a sing along to classics on Bastille day.
As a non-outdoorsy gal, it’s the one time of the year where I literally do take a hike. At AHFR17, I recharged through conversations with people who are not in my daily sphere, thought about how my work and personal life coalesced into the bigger picture and always made sure to #doitforthegram.