Klaus Schwab, founder and chairman of the World Economic Forum.

More than 2,500 attendees from around the globe -- including world leaders, business executives, heads of NGOs, academics and cultural icons -- will gather in the Congress Center in Davos, Switzerland, for the 46th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum, CBS News reports. The four-day event will kick off on Wednesday, January 20, and finish on Saturday, January 23.

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Wood industry joins Fourth Industrial Revolution

Lignum Consulting's George Frey (right) and Sepp Gmeiner, helped bring the concept of Indsutry 4.0 to LIGNA 2015 in Hannover, Germany and to the Woodworking Machinery & Supplies Expo in Toronto in November.

Engineers and economists alike say the world is changing rapidly because of the technology revolution we are going through. Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum, said the scale, scope and complexity of this transformation will be unlike anything humankind has experienced. That’s why this year’s theme in Davos is “Mastering the Fourth Industrial Revolution.”

"The challenges are as daunting as the opportunities are compelling," Schwab said of Industry 4.0. "We must have a comprehensive and globally shared understanding of how technology is changing our lives and that of future generations, transforming the economic, social, ecological and cultural contexts in which we live. This is critical, in order to shape our collective future to reflect our common objectives and values."