Speakers in the news 11th May

1) Kathryn Parsons

  • Kathryn Parsons is co-founder and CEO of Decoded, a technology education company founded in East London in 2011, which launched with the promise to teach anyone Code in a Day. The firm’s accelerated learning experiences have since expanded to include the worlds of code, data, innovation, cyber security and artificial intelligence. In addition to growing and scaling the business, Kathryn is a regular keynote speaker and campaigns globally for code on curriculums and gender diversity in technology.Described by the Evening Standard as “a woman on a mission to teach us all to code”, Kathryn was part of the successful campaign to have code introduced as a mandatory subject to the UK national curriculum in September 2014. In 2016 she was appointed Chairwoman of the UK Government Institute of Coding and received an MBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list.
  • At The Telegraph’s ”Women Mean Business” awards this year, Kathryn spoke at length about what really matters to her. At the top of the list is getting more women into technology.“Technology is driving the future economy and it is not good enough to accept that a lot of women opt out at a really early age,” she says assertively. So why is this? Frustrated, not by the question, but by the situation, Parsons says: “Number one, its not to do with proficiency or ability. Number two, it is absolutely to do with branding and how it’s taught and presented to women. And it’s just unacceptable. There is nothing factual, no hard reason why women should not be a part of it.”

2)  Joseph Stiglitz

  • Joseph E. Stiglitz is an American economist and a professor at Columbia University. He is also the co-chair of the High-Level Expert Group on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress at the OECD, and the Chief Economist of the Roosevelt Institute.  A recipient of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences (2001) and the John Bates Clark Medal (1979), he is a former senior vice president and chief economist of the World Bank and a former member and chairman of the (US president’s) Council of Economic Advisers. In 2000, Stiglitz founded the Initiative for Policy Dialogue, a think tank on international development based at Columbia University. He has been a member of the Columbia faculty since 2001 and received that university’s highest academic rank (university professor) in 2003. In 2011 Stiglitz was named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people.

  • Writing for The Guardian, this week, Joseph argued that Costa Rica is a beacon of Enlightenment – a world leader in democratic, sustainable, and inclusive economic growth. ”Over the years, Costa Rica, a country of fewer than 5 million people, has gained attention worldwide for its progressive leadership. In 1948, after a short civil war, President José Figueres Ferrer abolished the military. Since then, Costa Rica has made itself a centre for the study of conflict resolution and prevention, hosting the UN-mandated University for Peace. With its rich biodiversity, Costa Rica has also demonstrated far-sighted environmental leadership by pursuing reforestation, designating a third of the country protected natural reserves, and deriving almost all of its electricity from clean hydropower.”

3) Cynthia Carroll

  • Cynthia Carroll is a powerhouse in the world of commodities. She was the chief executive officer of Anglo American PLC, the world’s fourth largest mining company, where she oversaw growth of the company, with interests in platinum, coal, gold, industrial minerals and diamonds. She is currently a non-executive director of BP, a position which she took up in 2007. Cynthia is also Executive Director of Autism Nova Scotia, a non-profit, registered charity located in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Autism Nova Scotia was the original vision of Joan and Jack Craig, parents of an adult son with autism.
  • The upcoming school year will see the hiring of more than 190 specialized education professionals as Nova Scotia boosts resources for its increasingly complex classrooms. Tuesday’s announcement by Education Minister Zach Churchill is part of an initial $15 million effort for targeted areas including behavioural issues and autism. The organisation said it hoped the announcement marks a “moment of real change.”“The status quo is not acceptable; this isn’t optional or up for debate,” said, Cynthia. 

 

4)  Ian Bremmer

  • Professor Ian Bremmer is an American political scientist and expert speaker specialising in US foreign policy, states in transition, and global political risk.Ian is President of Eurasia Group, a political risk consultancy he founded with just $25,000 in 1998. The company now has offices in New York, Washington and London and is one of the most successful political risk consultancies in the world, advising financial services companies, multinationals and governments on how political developments can move markets.Ian created Wall Street’s first-ever global political risk index, and has written several best-sellers, including “The End of the Free Market: Who Wins the War Between States and Corporations?” (Viking, 2010), which focuses on the geopolitical implications of state capitalism. He also wrote “The J Curve: A New Way to Understand Why Nations Rise and Fall” (Simon & Schuster, 2007), selected by The Economist as one of the best books of the year. His latest book is “Every Nation for Itself: Winners and Losers in a G-Zero World” (Portfolio Penguin, 2012). Here he argues that, while our need for global cooperation has never been greater, the world is facing a leadership vacuum that has increased the potential for open conflict. In this context, Ian shows shows where positive sources of power can still be found, and how they can be exercised for the common good.
  • For those who warned Donald Trump not to jettison the Iran nuclear deal struck by his predecessor, the spasm of violence that erupted Wednesday night likely confirmed some of their worst fears. “I assume the gloves are off for the Iranians,” Ian Bremmer, told Vanity Fair on Tuesday, shortly after the president had announced that he would be withdrawing the United States from the international agreement and reinstating severe economic sanctions on Tehran. “It makes mutual military escalation between the Israelis and the Iranians much more likely.” Less than 48 hours later, Israeli warplanes were pummeling dozens of Iranian military targets in Syria, in retaliation for what the Israeli military described as a failed rocket attack on the Golan Heights. “If there is rain on our side, there will be a flood on their side,” he said.
Speakers We Admire