Commissioner, Mayor’s Office for International Affairs

New York City

Penny Abeywardena is New York City's commissioner for International Affairs. She leads the city's global platform for promoting its goals for a more just and accessible society. Prior to joining the mayor’s office, Abeywardena was the director of Girls and Women Integration at the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI). Before joining CGI, she worked in both development and programmatic areas for Human Rights Watch, the Funding Exchange, and the Drum Major Institute for Public Policy. In 2017, Abeywardena was named a Young Leader by the French American Foundation. She is also a World Economic Forum 2016 Young Global Leader. In 2012, Abeywardena was recognized by the United Nation’s Decide Now Act (DNA) Summit as one of 101 Global Innovators for her work to put women's rights on the global political agenda. She graduated from University of Southern California and completed her MA in international affairs at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs.



Deputy Mayor, Transport; Deputy Chair, Transport for London


Heidi Alexander is deputy mayor for Transport and deputy chair of Transport for London. In her role, Alexander focuses on delivering the mayor’s transport strategy: ensuring that London has a reliable, comfortable, and affordable public transport system accessible to all; creating safe, healthy streets where people want to walk and cycle; and ensuring that new homes and new jobs are part of a sustainable, integrated transport system which delivers good economic growth across London. Before joining the mayor’s team, Alexander was the member of Parliament for Lewisham East. Elected in 2010, she served in the Whips’ Office before being appointed as shadow secretary of State for Health. Between 2006 and 2010 she worked as deputy mayor of the London Borough of Lewisham and cabinet member for Regeneration. She is a graduate of Durham University from where she received a B.A. in geography and an M.A. in European urban and regional change.

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President of the Emirates Policy Center

Abu Dhabi

Dr. Ebtesam Al-Ketbi is the President of the Emirates Policy Center (EPC), which she founded in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates in September 2013. EPC undertakes the task of studying and foreseeing future regional and international geopolitical projects and their impact on the Gulf region based on the region’s self-perception of its concerns and interests. Before she founded EPC, Dr. Al-Ketbi was a professor of political science at the United Arab Emirates University. She also held several posts such as the general coordinator of the Gulf Development Forum, and served as a member of the Executive Committee of the Arab Association for Political Science and as a member in the board of trustees in the Center for Arab Unity Studies, the Arab Thought Foundation, and the Arab Anti-Corruption Organization. Dr. Al-Ketbi was appointed in 2015 as member of the Consultative Commission of the Cooperation Council of the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC). She was also chosen by Arabian Business magazine on July 2018 in its list of 50 Most Influential Women in the Arab World as she was the first woman to lead a think tank in the region. Dr. Al-Ketbi published a number of research papers on Gulf Security, US-GCC Relations, and the war on terrorism. She holds a PhD in political science from Cairo University.

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Asia Editor, Financial Times 

Hong Kong

Jamil Anderlini was appointed Asia editor of the Financial Times in January 2016 to oversee editorial operations in the region from Hong Kong. He previously served as Beijing bureau chief for the Financial Times, Beijing business correspondent at the South China Morning Post and chief editor of the China Economic Review. Anderlini has won numerous awards, including a UK Foreign Press Association Award, several individual SOPA awards, and the inaugural Jones-Mauthner Award in 2012. In 2013, Anderlini was named a young global leader by the World Economic Forum and short-listed for Foreign Reporter of the Year at The Press Awards in the UK. Anderlini received a B.A. in English from Victoria University of Wellington.



Director, Michigan Economic Center

Ann Arbor 

John Austin is the director of the Michigan Economic Center (MEC), a center for ideas and network-building to advance Michigan’s economic transformation. He serves as a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, leading efforts to support economic renewal in the American midwest. Mr. Austin also lectures on the economy at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Austin was elected and served for sixteen years on the Michigan State Board of Education, the final six as President. In addition to numerous initiatives and publications, Austin authored “The Vital Center: A Federal-State Compact to Renew the Great Lakes Region” (2006), a report which led to federal support for Great Lakes clean-up and restoration. Austin received his M.P.A. from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, and a B.A. from Swarthmore College.



Mayor, Newark


Ras J. Baraka is the 40th mayor of the City of Newark. His agenda reduced crime to its lowest levels in five decades, addressed affordability while maintaining steady growth and lowered unemployment. Baraka has partnered with institutions, such as NJIT (New Jersey Institute of Technology), to advance the technological sphere in Newark. Additionally, the city will launch LinkNWK, a new network of sidewalk kiosks that will provide residents of and visitors to Newark with a variety of services. Baraka’s futurist agenda includes the implementation of a groundbreaking partnership called “Hire. Buy. Live. Newark”, a program combining employment, procurement, and residential strategies. Baraka’s progressive approach to governing has won him accolades from grassroots organizations to the White House. He received a B.A. in political science and history from Howard and an M.A. in education supervision from St. Peter’s University.



President, 100 Resilient Cities

New York 

Michael Berkowitz joined the Rockefeller Foundation in 2013 to shape and oversee 100 Resilient Cities, a project pioneered by the foundation. Previously, he was the global head of Operational Risk Management at Deutsche Bank, where he oversaw the firm’s operational risk capital planning efforts. Earlier at Deutsche Bank, he held operational risk management positions in New York, Mumbai, Singapore and London. Before joining Deutsche Bank, he was deputy commissioner at the Office of Emergency Management in New York City, where he worked on major planning initiatives, including coastal-storm, biological-terrorism, and transit-strike contingency plans. In this role, he was involved with the City’s responses to the 1999 outbreak of West Nile fever, Tropical Storm Floyd, major flooding in Southern Queens, the crashes of SwissAir 111 and American Airlines 587, the 2003 Northeast blackout, and the 2001 anthrax incidents and World Trade Center disaster.



Pritzker Director, Mansueto Institute for Urban Innovation, University of Chicago


Luis M. A. Bettencourt is the Pritzker director of the Mansueto Institute for Urban Innovation at the University of Chicago and professor of ecology and evolution at the college. He is also associate faculty and special friend of the department of sociology and external professor at the Santa Fe Institute. He conducts interdisciplinary research on complex adaptive systems and leads efforts in the areas of the science of cities. This research focuses on the identification of cities’ systemic processes and properties, as well as their local histories and contexts in identifying paths for a better quality of life, economic growth, and sustainable development. He works with international networks of researchers, local governments, and NGOs to understand and systematize urban knowledge, and to create solutions to urban issues. His work is well-known academically and has been influential in developing new theory and empirical perspectives on cities and urbanization worldwide.



Smith and Lucille Gibson Professor of Medicine, The University of Louisville


Aruni Bhatnagar is a Smith and Lucille Gibson Professor of Medicine at the University of Louisville. He currently serves as director of the Christina Lee Brown Envirome Institute, the Diabetes and Obesity Center at the University of Louisville, and director of the American Heart Association Tobacco Regulation and Addiction Center. Bhatnagar has spent more than 25 years studying the impact of toxic substances, tobacco smoke constituents, and environmental pollutants on heart disease and is widely regarded for spearheading the new field of Environmental Cardiology. Bhatnagar has served as a member of the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Secondhand Smoke Exposure and Acute Coronary Events, and the Committee on Long-Term Health Consequences of Exposure to Burn Pits in Iraq and Afghanistan.  For the last seven years, Bhatnagar has served as deputy editor of the American Heart Association journal Circulation Research. He is a graduate of Kanpur University, India and received his post-doctoral training at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston.



Mayor, Honolulu


Kirk Caldwell was elected mayor of Honolulu in 2012 and was reelected to a second term in November 2016. He has prioritized investing in Honolulu’s core infrastructure, bus and rail transportation, parks, homelessness, and climate sustainability and resiliency. Nearly 57% of all city roads were repaved under the Caldwell Administration while the city works to restore and integrate its award-winning bus service with a forthcoming rail project. In contribution to an emerging urban grid, Mayor Caldwell has opened Hawai‘i’s first protected bike lanes and refurbished comfort stations and parks island-wide. Caldwell previously served as majority leader for the Hawai‘i State House of Representatives. He studied urban planning and economics at Tufts University, earned an M.A. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and received his law degree from the William S. Richardson School of Law.



Nonresident Fellow, Global Cities, Chicago Council on Global Affairs

Buenos Aires

Flavia Carbonari is a senior social development and citizen security specialist. She has been a consultant with the World Bank since 2007,  working in the design and implementation of operational and research projects on social inclusion, citizen security, gender and gender based violence and social accountability. She has worked mostly in Latin America, Africa and East Asia. From 2016 until 2019 she also worked as a special advisor to the National Secretary of Planning, Coordination and Capacity Building at the Ministry of Security of Argentina. She has been affiliated to the Brazil Forum for Public Safety since 2012; has consulted for NGOs in Brazil; and has worked with different think tanks in Washington DC and as a journalist covering international politics and economics. Flavia holds a MA in Latin American studies from Georgetown University, and graduated from Pontifícea Universidade Católica of São Paulo with a BA in international relations and a BA in journalism.



State Director, Illinois, The Nature Conservancy


Michelle Carr joined The Nature Conservancy in 2013 after 16 years as an advisor at Goldman Sachs. Carr leads strategic efforts to advance critical conservation work in Illinois and throughout the region. Through her leadership, the chapter has successfully piloted innovative approaches to water quality improvements through the implementation of wetland restoration sites along the Illinois River; by working with agricultural partners to develop sustainable farming practices that reduce harmful runoff and protect soil health; and controlling and preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species. Prairie conservation is also central to the Conservancy’s work in Illinois, where only one-tenth of one percent of these iconic landscapes remain. Conservancy scientists are executing a strategic plan that is restoring thousands of acres of Illinois land to this original natural habitat. Additionally, Carr’s team is working closely with local partners and communities to advance urban conservation in the City of Chicago, ensuring that nature-based solutions are taken into consideration as the population grows. Carr is a consultant to the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission and is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago. She graduated from St. Louis University with a B.A. in history and economics and holds an M.B.A. from Vanderbilt University.



Chairman and CEO, Revolution LLC; Chairman, Case Foundation; Co-Founder, AOL

Washington D.C.

Steve Case is one of America’s most accomplished entrepreneurs and philanthropists, and a pioneer in making the Internet part of everyday life. Case co-founded AOL in 1985 and under Case’s leadership and vision, AOL became the largest and most valuable Internet company driving the worldwide adoption of a medium that has transformed business and society. Case is chairman and CEO of Revolution, a Washington, DC-based investment firm he co-founded in 2005. In 2014, Case and Revolution launched the Rise of the Rest, a platform to shine a spotlight on entrepreneurs that are starting and scaling businesses outside of Silicon Valley, New York, and Boston. Case was the founding chair of the Startup America Partnership, an effort launched at the White House to accelerate high-growth entrepreneurship throughout the nation. He is also a Presidential Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship and was a member of President Obama’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness where he chaired the subcommittee on entrepreneurship. Case serves as Chairman of the Case Foundation, which he established with his wife Jean in 1997.Case is also the author of New York Times bestselling book, The Third Wave: An Entrepreneur’s Vision of the Future (2016).



Founder, Practice for Architecture and Urbanism; Associate Professor of Practice, Graduate School of Architecture, Planning & Preservation, Columbia University

New York

Vishaan Chakrabarti is the founder of Practice for Architecture and Urbanism (PAU). Simultaneously, Chakrabarti is an associate professor of Practice at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning & Preservation (GSAPP), where he teaches architectural design studios and seminars on urbanism. His highly acclaimed book, A Country of Cities: A Manifesto for an Urban America (2013), argues that a more urban United States would result in a more prosperous, sustainable, joyous, and socially mobile nation. Chakrabarti has been a guest on The Charlie Rose show, MSNBC’s The Cycle, NY1, NPR, WNYC, and has been profiled in The New York Times and the Financial Times. Chakrabarti holds a M.A. in architecture from the University of California at Berkeley, a M.A. in city planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a B.A. in art history and engineering from Cornell University.



UL Corporate Fellow; Vice President, Research, UL


J. Thomas Chapin is vice president of research at UL. He is a UL William Henry Merrill Society Corporate Fellow and past chairman of the UL Fire Council. He currently focuses on emerging technologies, safety trends, forensic analysis, and fire dynamics. Previously, he managed UL corporate research activities related to UL standards, testing and certification, and surveillance services. Chapin joined UL in 2001 after a 21-year career at AT&T Bell Laboratories and three years at The Upjohn Co. He has 17 patents in telecommunication product and materials science. He has written over 150 technical publications in chemistry, materials, and polymer science. He is an adjunct professor at Case Western Reserve University lecturing on chemistry, polymer science, and fire dynamics. Chapin received a B.S. in chemistry from the University of Connecticut and a Ph.D. in polymer science from the Institute of Materials Science at the University of Connecticut.



Lead, Cities, Urban Development & Services, World Economic Forum


Alice Charles leads all Cities and Urbanization work at the World Economic Forum. She manages the Future of Urban Development and Services Initiative, its Steering and Advisory Committee, the Global Future Council on Cities and Urbanization, the production of all city and urban development related content, and events at World Economic Forum Summits. She is also an external board member of the National Asset Management Agency (NAMA), Ireland; vice-president of the Urban Challenge Steering Committee of the Institut Montaigne, France; and WEF’s representative for the Urban 20. She previously worked for the Department of the Environment, Community, and Local Government, Ireland, Dail Eireann (Irish Parliament), Jacobs Engineering, and Avison Young. She is a chartered member of the Royal Town Planning Institute and a member of the Irish Planning Institute. In 2017 she was awarded the Irish Echo 40 under 40 Award. She has an MA in global leadership through the World Economic Forum, an MBA from University College Dublin Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School, a postgraduate diploma in town and country planning from Queens University Belfast, and a 1st class honours degree in environmental planning from Queen’s University Belfast.



CEO, Housing and Development Authority of Singapore


Cheong Koon Hean is the CEO of the Housing and Development Board (HDB) overseeing the development and management of some one million public housing flats in 26 towns and estates. She was also the CEO of the Urban Redevelopment Authority from 2004 to 2010. Cheong is currently on the boards of the HDB, the National University of Singapore, and is a council member and former deputy president of the International Federation for Housing and Planning. In addition to being a fellow of the Singapore Institute of Architects and the Institute of Planners, Cheong serves on various expert panels and advisory committees including the World Economic Forum’s Real Estate and Urbanisation Global Agenda Council, the National University of Singapore, and is the Chairman of the Nominating Committee of the Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize. She is also the Tan Swan Beng Endowed Professor in Nanyang Technological University. Amongst others, she was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal for outstanding public service, the University of Newcastle’s 2010 Convocation Medal for professional excellence, and the IWF’s 2011 Woman Who Make A Difference Award.  In 2016, she became the first Asian to be conferred the JC Nichols Prize for Urban Visionaries by the Urban Land Institute and the Lynn S Beedle Lifetime Achievement Award by the Council for Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.  She was recently appointed as the 2018 SR Nathan Fellow by the Institute of Policy Studies, NUS. 



Former Secretary, Economic Development

Mexico City

Salomón Chertorivski Woldenberg was Secretary of Economic Development of Mexico City, from 2012 to 2017. In this role, the city’s economy grew twice as much as the national economy. He served as Mexican minister of Health, changing the ministry’s approach to healthcare treatment to a preventative model and implementing a comprehensive pharmaceutical policy. Prior to this, he was national commissioner of Social Protection in Health, where he expanded the Seguro Popular (Popular Insurance) to more than 55 million Mexicans. He served as CEO of DICONSA in 2006. Chertorivski Woldenberg also developed the largest optical company in Latin America. In 2014, he was recognized as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, and the World Sustainable Development Forum named him the World Icon on Sustainability Endeavors in 2018. He has been a professor at the ITAM, the Universidad Iberoamericana and CIDE. He has written seven books. Chertorivski Woldenberg holds a B.A. and M.A. in economics from the Autonomous Technological Institute of Mexico (ITAM), as well as a MPP from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.



Partner, McKinsey Global Institute

San Francisco

Michael Chui is a partner at the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI), McKinsey's business and economics research arm. He leads research on the impact of disruptive technologies and innovation on business, the economy, and society. Chui has led McKinsey research in such areas as data and analytics, social and collaboration technologies, IoT, and artificial intelligence, robotics and automation. As a McKinsey consultant, he served clients in the high-tech, media, and telecom industries on strategy, innovation and product development, IT, sales and marketing, M&A, and organization. He is also on the boards of Churchill Club and the Asia Society of Northern California and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Prior to joining McKinsey, Chui served as the first chief information officer of the city of Bloomington, Indiana. Before that, Chui was founder and executive director of HoosierNet, Inc., a nonprofit cooperative internet service provider. Chui is a frequent speaker at major global conferences, and his research has been cited in leading publications around the world. His PhD dissertation, entitled "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For: Web Searching as Query Refinement," examined web user search behaviors and the usability of web search engines.



Former Administrator, United Nations Development Programme; Former Prime Minister, New Zealand


Helen Clark was Prime Minister of New Zealand for three successive terms from 1999–2008. She was the first woman to become Prime Minister following a General Election in New Zealand and the second woman to serve as Prime Minister. Throughout her tenure as Prime Minister and as a member of Parliament over 27 years, Clark engaged widely in policy development and advocacy across the international affairs, economic, social, environmental, and cultural spheres. She was an active leader of her country’s foreign relations, engaging in a wide range of international issues. In April 2009, Clark became administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). She was the first woman to lead the organization, and served two terms there. At the same time, she was chair of the United Nations Development Group, a committee consisting of all UN funds, programmes, agencies, and departments working on development issues. Clark serves on a number of advisory boards and commissions, including in the capacity of chair of the Advisory Board of UNESCO’s Global Education Monitoring Report. In June 2019, she will assume the chairpersonship of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative. Clark came to the role of Prime Minister after an extensive parliamentary and ministerial career. Prior to entering the New Zealand Parliament, she taught in the Political Studies Department of the University of Auckland, from which she earlier graduated with her BA and MA degrees.



Mayor, Brussels


Philippe Close became Mayor of Brussels in 2017 and was reelected for a six year term in October 2018. Prior to his appointment as Mayor, Close was chosen to be the leader of the Socialist party group in the Brussels Parliament. In 2009, Close was elected as a member of the Brussels Parliament where he focused on the health sector and institutional issues. He started his career working at the study center of the Socialist Party and became the spokesman for the President of the Socialist party. Soon after, he became chief of staff of the Mayor of Brussels, and in 2006 became Alderman for Tourism and City Staff. He attached great importance to the development of tourism as an economic engine for the city and the region of Brussels. Close studied law at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB).



Vice President for Humanitarian Policy and Practice, CARE USA

Washington D.C.

Sheba Crocker is CARE USA’s vice president for Humanitarian Policy and Practice. She provides overall leadership and strategic guidance for CARE USA’s emergency and humanitarian operations, programs, and policy. Crocker is responsible for overseeing humanitarian technical and operational support to CARE country offices and CI members and leads, which includes emergency food aid programs. Crocker came to CARE after serving at the State Department as Assistant Secretary for International Organization Affairs, director in the Office of Policy Planning, and chief of staff to the Deputy Secretary of State. Her prior government service includes additional roles at the State Department and in the National Security Council.  She has extensive inter-governmental and non-governmental organization experience including at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the United Nations, and the Center for Strategic and International Studies. She has taught at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, George Washington University, and American University. Crocker received a B.A. from Stanford University, an M.A. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.



President, Chicago Council on Global Affairs


Ivo H. Daalder is president of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. He served as the US ambassador to NATO from 2009-2013. Prior to his appointment as ambassador to NATO by President Obama, Daalder was a senior fellow in foreign policy studies at the Brookings Institution, specializing in American foreign policy, European security and transatlantic relations, and national security affairs. Before joining Brookings in 1998, he was an associate professor at the University of Maryland’s School of Public Policy and director of research at its Center for International and Security Studies. He also served as director for European affairs on President Bill Clinton’s National Security Council staff from 1995-97. Daalder is the author and editor of 10 books, including The Empty Throne: How America Abdicated Its Global Leadership (with James M. Lindsay) (2018). Daalder was educated at the universities of Kent, Oxford, and Georgetown, and received his PhD in political science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.



Partner, Brunswick


Caroline Daniel is a partner at Brunswick and former editor of FT Weekend, consulting editor of FT Live/FT Conferences, and FT assistant editor. Previously, Daniel was the FT White House correspondent, a features writer and reporter for the New Statesman, a reporter for the Economist, and a political researcher for Gordon Brown. She was also research editor for Brown’s book, Values, Visions and Voices. She has won the Laurence Stern Fellowship in 1998, is a member of the prestigious Trilateral Commission, Trustee of the Institute for Public Policy Research, and has a FT/Pearson non-executive director diploma.



Founder, Futurecity; Co-Founder, FuturePace


Mark Davy is the founder of Futurecity, a global arts, culture, and placemaking consultancy. He has championed the culture-driven development of towns and cities and is a vocal champion of the use of the arts to help global cities compete for inward investment, retain knowledge workers, and involve communities in cultural planning. He has delivered lectures on the growth and importance of the cultural and knowledge economy, the rise of the creative district, and the need for the private sector to take the arts more seriously. His work has led to substantial private investment in the arts in the UK. Davy has developed culture and placemaking strategies for large-scale brownfield, urban, and industrial development sites in the UK, Australia, and the US. In Boston, he has developed the ‘Avenue to the Arts’ creative district for the Boston Foundation. In Sydney, he developed a cultural strategy for Central to Everleigh for client Urban Growth, and in London he developed ambitious cultural strategies for the Greenwich Peninsula for client Knight Dragon and Wembley Park for Quintain. In 2016, he co-founded FuturePace, a strategic cultural partnership with Pace London. The ‘Gallery Without Walls’ programme aims to offer opportunities to artists working in the medium of light and digital technology and to bring large scale art projects to cities across the world.

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Former Minister of Tourism

Mexico City

Enrique de la Madrid is head of a new Urban Research Centre of Tecnológico de Monterrey since early 2019. Previously, he served as Minister of Tourism between August 2015 and November 2018. Under his management, Mexico ranked as the 6th most visited by foreign visitors, surpassing important destinations such as the United Kingdom and Germany. De la Madrid has extensive experience in the financial sector having served as CEO of Bancomext, Mexico’s Eximbank and CEO of Financiera Rural, Mexico’s agricultural development bank. He has also worked as Executive Director of Institutional Affairs and Corporate Communications for HSBC Latin America, and Technical Coordinator of the Presidency of Mexico’s banking and securities commission. In the private sector, he served as Executive President of ConMéxico, an organization that brings together México’s top consumer-product companies. Between 2000 and 2003, he served as a Federal Congressman. In January 2015, he released the book Mexico in the Path of Development in which he analyzes the achievements and comparative advantages of Mexico and points out that the country has everything to become a developed economy in this generation. De la Madrid writes a weekly column for EI Universal, a leading Mexican newspaper, and does a weekly analysis for the TV program “Asi Amanece” of Proyecto 40. De la Madrid holds a law degree from Mexico’s National Autonomous University (UNAM) and an M.A. from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.



Secretary General, METROPOLIS


Octavi de la Varga joined METROPOLIS in 2016 and has served as Secretary General since 2017. His previous positions include head of the Office of Development Cooperation and head of the Office of Europe and International Strategy, both at the Diputació de Barcelona (Barcelona Provincial Council). He was also executive director of the Coordination and Orientation Office of EuropeAid´s URB-AL III Program, head of the Arco Latino network, and head of the EU Unit at Intermón-Oxfam in Barcelona. He has led and participated in projects on local development, the institutional strengthening of local governments, local public policies, and social cohesion in several countries. He has a BA in law, a MA in European Affairs, a post degree in international relations, and another in humanitarian aid and NGO's management.



President, Heartland Alliance


Evelyn J. Diaz is the president of Heartland Alliance for Human Needs & Human Rights, a global anti-poverty and human rights organization based in Chicago. She is responsible for directing domestic and global strategy and operations for Heartland Alliance’s five nonprofit corporate entities, with a combined budget of $150 million and 1,600 employees in 12 countries. Previously, Diaz was appointed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel to lead the City of Chicago’s Department of Family and Support Services where she was responsible for administering an annual budget of $330 million to deliver social service programs to over 300,000 Chicagoans in the areas of children, youth, homelessness, domestic violence, aging, workforce development, and human services. Before joining Mayor Emanuel’s cabinet, Diaz was CEO of the Chicago Workforce Investment Council, deputy chief of staff to former Mayor Richard M. Daley, and associate director of the Chicago Jobs Council. She received an MA from the University of Chicago’s School of Social Service Administration and a BA in English from the University of Notre Dame. She serves on the ND Advisory Council for the College of Arts & Letters.  



Midwest Market Medical Executive, Cigna Healthcare


Catherine Dimou is the Midwest Market Medical Executive for Cigna Healthcare where she is responsible for supporting physician and hospital collaboration, new business development, client retention, as well as, the Midwest market’s strategy and financial planning. As the leader of the Midwest clinical team, she helps to identify and implement solutions to improve health outcomes for Cigna customers while delivering value for Cigna clients. Dimou joined Cigna after many years at Rush University Medical Center where she held multiple leadership positions including Associate Dean of Medical Services, Associate Chief Medical Officer of Clinical Services, Medical Staff President, and Chief Medical Officer of Rush Health. Dimou completed medical school and her internal medicine residency at Rush. Dr. Dimou is board certified in internal medicine.

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US Business Editor, Financial Times 

New York 

Andrew Edgecliffe-Johnson is the US business editor for the Financial Times, leading its reporting and analysis of US business in an age of populism, policy upheavals, unending technological change and shifting expectations of corporate America. He manages a team of corporate reporters, while writing news, analysis and commentary and helping develop new offerings for the FT’s core corporate audience. Until January 2018, Edgecliffe-Johnson was the FT’s US news editor and an FT assistant editor, directing its coverage of and for the Americas and helping steer its strategic evolution from a print focus to a digital newsroom with growing impact in video, audio, social media, newsletter, and data journalism. From 2005 to 2013, he was the FT’s global media editor, leading its coverage of sectors ranging from the music and movie businesses to digital media and marketing. In 21 years with the FT in New York and London, he has been deputy news editor, edited its management features section, covered mergers and acquisitions and US consumer industries, and written for the influential Lex column. A graduate of Cambridge University, he started his career at the Daily Telegraph in London. He often moderates FT Live events and other conferences and appears on television, radio, FT videos and FT podcasts.



Chairman of the Board of Management, Daimler Financial Services AG


Klaus Entenmann has been the CEO of Daimler Financial Services AG since 2009. The company finances every second Daimler vehicle worldwide. He holds a degree in business management and has more than 40 years of experience in the finance industry. As CEO, Entenmann transformed the organization from a classic auto financing bank to an integrated financial and mobility services provider. He added a digital approach with a broad range of innovative mobility services to the core business of financial services. In 2018, the company was recognized by the Great Place to Work Institut as Germany’s Best Employer and ranked among the top 10 worldwide. 



Former Mayor, Medellín 


Sergio Fajardo Valderrama served as mayor of Medellín from 2004 – 2007. In 1999 he entered politics, leading the first independent civic-based movement to become mayor of Colombia’s second largest city. During his four-year tenure, he directed a great social transformation of Medellín, from a city immersed in violence to a center for aesthetic urban development projects. Following his tenure as mayor, Fajardo was a vice presidential candidate for the Green Movement in 2010. In 2012, he was elected governor of Antioquia. As governor, Fajardo put forward a development plan seeking to generate opportunities for individuals and regions, promote reconciliation, and a culture of legality. Fajardo ran as a presidential candidate in 2018. He held various positions in scientific institutions, such as the National Council of Basic Sciences and the National Commission of Masters and Doctorates. He was a professor at the Universidad de Andes, director of research and director of the Department of Mathematics, as well as at the National University. He has also been a visiting professor at several international institutions. Until mid-2017, Fajardo was a distinguished professor of the School of Government and Public Transformation of the Technological Institute of Monterrey, Mexico and a recognized international lecturer. Fajardo holds a BSc from the University of the Andes and received his PhD in mathematics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He holds honorary doctorates from Menéndez Pelayo International University, Spain and the National University in Córdoba, Argentina.



Artist, Vhils Studio


Alexandre Farto aka Vhils has developed a unique visual language based on the removal of the surface layers of walls and other media with non-conventional tools and techniques. He began interacting with the urban environment through the practice of graffiti in the early 2000s. Peeling back the layers of our material culture like a modern-day urban archaeologist, Vhils reflects on the impact of urbanity, development, and global homogenization on landscapes and people's identities. Destroying to create, he delivers powerful and poetic visual statements from materials the city rejects, humanizing depressed areas with his poignant large-scale portraits. Since 2005, he has been presenting his work around the world in exhibitions, events, and other contexts – from working with communities in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, to collaborations with reputed institutions such as the EDP Foundation in Lisbon, Centre Pompidou in Paris, Barbican Centre in London, CAFA Art Museum in Beijing, or the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, among others. An avid experimentalist, besides his groundbreaking bas-relief carving technique, Vhils has been developing his personal aesthetics in a plurality of media: from stencil painting to metal etching, from pyrotechnic explosions and video to sculptural installations. He has also directed several music videos, short films, and one stage productions.



Principal and Co-Founder, nARCHITECTS

New York 

Mimi Hoang, AIA, is a principle of nARCHITECTS and an adjunct assistant professor at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation (GSAPP). Along with partner Eric Bunge, she co-founded nARCHITECTS with the goal of addressing contemporary issues in architecture through conceptually driven, socially engaging, and technologically innovative work. Their work instigates interactions between architecture, public space, and their dynamically changing contexts. The letter ‘n’ represents a variable, indicating the firm’s interest in designing for a dynamic variety of experiences within a systemic approach. nARCHITECTS was honored with an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Architecture and the AINANY’s Andrew J. Thomson Award for Pioneering in Housing. She regularly lectures on the work of nARCHITECTS and the themes of innovative contemporary practices, future work spaces, and new housing models. Hoang received a MA in architecture from the Harvard Graduate School of Design and a BSc in architecture from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 



Executive Director, Graham Foundation


Sarah Herda is the executive director of the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts. Founded in 1956, Graham Foundation is the only private foundation in the United States committed to providing project-based grants to individuals and institutions working to address issues related to architecture and the built environment. In addition to the funding program, Herda oversees a public program of exhibitions, lectures, and publications produced at the foundation’s headquarters in the historic Madlener House in Chicago. She was co-artistic director inaugural Chicago Architecture Biennial in 2015. Herda was the director and curator of the Storefront for Art and Architecture, a non-profit exhibition space in New York City, from 1998-2006. While in that position she mounted over forty diverse exhibitions. Herda is active in the design community and serves on numerous advisory boards and review panels related to architecture, art, design and related fields. She is a graduate of Mills College in Oakland, California.



Senior Director, World Bank Group, Social, Urban, Rural and Resilience Global Practice

Washington, DC 

Ede Ijjasz-Vasquez is the senior director for the World Bank Group’s Social, Urban, Rural, and Resilience Global Practice. Ijjasz-Vasquez leads a team of close to 700 technical experts deployed across the world, leveraging global knowledge and collaborating with partners to help tackle the world’s most complex development challenges. His team manages a portfolio of about $29 billion and the delivery of more than 200 policy and advisory reports per year. Before this, he was director for Sustainable Development of the Latin America and Caribbean Region since November 2011. From 2007 to 2011, he was based in Beijing, where he managed the Sustainable Development Unit for China and Mongolia. Earlier in his career, he managed the global trust-funded programs ESMAP and WSP in energy and water and sanitation, respectively. Ijjasz- Vasquez has a PhD and a MSc from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology  in civil and environmental engineering. He has been a lecturer at the Environmental Science and Policy Program at Johns Hopkins University, and at Tsinghua University. 

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Senior Adviser, Infrastructure Finance & Public Private Partnerships Department, The World Bank

Washington, DC 

Abha Joshi-Ghani is the senior adviser for Public-Private Partnerships at The World Bank, cochair of the Global Future Council on the Future of Cities and Urbanization for the World Economic Forum, and coeditor of The Urban Imperative: Towards Competitive Cities, with Professor Edward Glaeser (2014). She is the former head of Global Urban Development Practice at the World Bank and has worked primarily on infrastructure finance and urban development in South and East Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. She was also Director for Leadership, Learning and Innovation at the World Bank from 2012-2016. Before joining the World Bank, she worked for the Reserve Bank of India. Joshi-Ghani holds a MA in philosophy from Oxford University, a MA from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, and a BA from Lady Sri Rama College, Delhi University.



Founding Director, Nowak Metro Finance Lab, Drexel University


Bruce Katz is the founding director of the Nowak Metro Finance Lab at Drexel University in Philadelphia.  Katz is also the coauthor of The New Localism: How Cities Can Thrive in the Age of Populism (2017). Previously he served as the inaugural Centennial Scholar at Brookings Institution and as vice president and director of Brooking’s Metropolitan Policy Program for 20 years. He is a member of the RSA City Growth Commission in the United Kingdom and a visiting professor at London School of Economics. Katz previously served as chief of staff to the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and staff director of the Senate Subcommittee on Housing and Urban Affairs. Katz co-led the Obama administration’s housing and urban transition team. He is coauthor of The Metropolitan Revolution (2013), editor or coeditor of several books on urban and metropolitan issues, and a frequent media commentator.



Smart Cities Chief, Maven, General Motors Company


Alex Keros is Maven’s Smart City chief. In his role, he regularly works with city planners and officials as well as community stakeholders to co-create urban solutions needed to decrease congestion, cut down on emissions, and build a blueprint for how people will get from place to place. Keros joined GM in 2007 and has worked across various teams to create frameworks around new innovative eco-friendly products – Chevy Bolt and GM’s Hydrogen Fuel Cell Equinox – so that consumers will have the best experience. While at GM, Keros has served as a Commissioner in Massachusetts’ Zero Emission Vehicle Commission, and for the Maryland Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Council, acted as the principal author for the California Fuel Cell Partnership’s Hydrogen Roadmap, and has worked with students at the University of Michigan’s Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise. Keros earned a BA in natural resource management and an MA in business administration from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. 



Nonresident Fellow, Global Cities and Women and Global Development, Chicago Council on Global Affairs

Washington, D.C.

Niamh King is a nonresident fellow on global cities and women and global development at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. King previously served as the Council's vice president for programs and strategic content. Prior to joining the Council, she held positions with Intel, the European Commission, FÁS, and the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. King is a member of the board of directors of The America Ireland Fund Chicago Regional Advisory Board, the Women’s Board of the University of Chicago, and the Chicago Project on Security & Threats. She earned a BA in international relations and history from the University of Colorado at Boulder and her MA in development studies from the Institute of Social Studies at Erasmus University in The Hague, Netherlands.



Senior Fellow, Global Cities, Chicago Council on Global Affairs

San Francisco

Ian Klaus is a visiting fellow at University of Pennsylvania’s World Perry House. He was senior adviser for global cities at the US Department of State. In that role, he led urban diplomacy for the United States, engaging dozens of foreign ministries and development agencies from Africa, South America, North America, Asia, and Europe on urbanization and foreign policy issues. He also internally managed the State Department’s efforts to develop urbanization-related policies. Klaus was deputy united states negotiator for the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Development, the first major implementing conference following the Paris Agreement on climate change. In that role, he lead extended and multiround global negotiations for the United States, and represented the US in more than a dozen bilateral negotiations and meetings. Prior to that, he served as member of the policy planning staff in the office of the Secretary of State, advising the Secretary of State and director of policy planning on strategic issues surround the Arab Spring and multilateral diplomacy. From 2010-2011, he was the Ernest May Fellow for History and Security Studies at the Kennedy School of Government. He holds a PhD in international history from Harvard University. He is a frequent commentator in Citiscope and the The Atlantic: CityLab. He is the author of Forging Capitalism (2014) and Elvis is Titanic (2007).



Global Urban Mobility, Senior Partner, McKinsey & Company


Stefan Knupfer serves as the senior partner at McKinsey-Stamford. He leads McKinsey's sustainability practice in the Americas and has global responsibility for helping its consultants develop sustainability expertise. As a former leader of the Automotive & Assembly Practice — and lead partner in the firm's Detroit office — Knupfer’s client work centers on the automotive, aerospace and advanced electronics sectors. Among recent research initiatives, Knupfer led a McKinsey-wide project to assess the future technical and economic viability of electrical vehicles (EVs), covering the full EV value chain from batteries to recharging infrastructure. He also helped lead a major collaboration between McKinsey and the city governments of New York, Paris, and Shanghai to understand the market demand, growth potential, and infrastructure requirements for EVs in megacities.



CEO, Applied AI

New York 

JT Kostman, PhD is the CEO of Applied AI. Previously, he served as managing director of Applied Artificial Intelligence and Frontier-Technology practice for Grant Thornton. He is a data scientist, mathematician, and psychologist. As managing director of GT Labs, Kostman lead a team developing business solutions utilizing artificial intelligence, machine learning, IoT, blockchain, and advanced analytic solutions and services. Before joining Grant Thornton, he evaluated acquisition targets and provided strategic and operational guidance for portfolio companies as a member of the board of advisors of Reimagine Holdings Group. Previously, he served as chief data officer and a member of the executive committee for Time Inc., chief data scientist for Samsung, and chief data scientist and big data psychologist for Aptus Insights. In addition to his corporate experience, Kostman has served U.S. intelligence security and defense agencies including the CIA, FBI, and DHS. He has also held teaching positions focused on leadership, strategy, and organizational change at City University of New York, Baruch College, Manhattanville College, Rutgers University, and University of Connecticut, Storrs. Kostman holds a PhD in psychology and an MS in industrial and organizational psychology from City University of New York, and a BA in behavioral psychology from the University of Nevada, Reno. 

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Member, Kosovo Parliament; Former Mayor, Gjakova 


Mimoza Kusari-Lila is a member of the Kosovo Parliament and chairwoman of the newest political party in Kosovo named Alternativa. Previously, she was the first and only woman mayor (of Gjakova) ever to be elected in Kosovo, a position in which she served from December 2013 – July 2017. Prior to being a mayor, she served as a Deputy PM and Minister of Trade and Industry. Before entering political life, Kusari-Lila worked on development projects with the World Bank in Kosovo. She was also a business consultant for a USAID funded project and was later appointed an executive director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Kosovo. Kusari-Lila holds an MBA from Duquesne University and was a recipient of State Department’s Ron Brown Scholarship Fund. 



Chief, Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, City of Los Angeles

Los Angeles

Linda Lopez is the chief of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs for the city of Los Angeles, California. She built the department and team from the ground up under Mayor Eric Garcetti’s administration. She regularly interfaces and partners with federal government agencies, state legislatures, and government officials. She is also the primary spokesperson for Mayor Garcetti on issues impacting immigrants, asylum seekers, and other vulnerable communities. Lopez has led a variety of initiatives to create innovative public private partnerships to improve legal representation, financial inclusion, and health disparities for refugees, asylum seekers, and low-income, underserved communities. Lopez serves on the LA Chapter of the Red Cross and serves on the board and finance committee of Villa Esperanza, a non-profit committed to advancing the education for children and adults with disabilities. Lopez received an MA and PhD from the University of Southern California in political science with an emphasis in law and public policy. She earned an undergraduate degree in political science from Cal Poly Pomona.



US National Editor, Financial Times

Washington, DC

Edward Luce is the US national editor and columnist at the Financial Times. He writes a weekly column, FT's leaders/editorials on American politics and the economy, and other articles. Before that he was the FT's chief US commentator and Washington Bureau chief. Other roles have included South Asia bureau chief in New Delhi, Capital Markets editor in London, and Philippines Correspondent. Luce was previously the speechwriter for the US Treasury Secretary, Lawrence H. Summers, in the Clinton administration. He is the author of the best-selling books, The Retreat of Western Liberalism (2017), Time to Start Thinking: America in the Age of Descent (2012), and In Spite of the Gods: The Strange Rise of Modern India (2007). Luce received a degree in politics, philosophy and economics from Oxford University and a post-graduate degree in journalism from City University, London.



Vice President, State and Local Government Affairs, United Airlines


Dan Lynch is vice president of state and local government affairs at United Airlines. In this role, Lynch's goal is creating constructive and effective relationships with all levels of elected and appointed government and opinion leaders. Prior to this position, he was managing director of corporate and government affairs for United, where he oversaw government relations in Chicago, Denver and Dulles, Virginia. Lynch joined United in 2006, and has since held a variety of positions in the airline’s government affairs department. Before joining United, he worked at The Commercial Club of Chicago, a prominent civic and economic development organization representing corporate interests in the city. He also spent several years in Washington, D.C., working for the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), and as a legislative aide to U.S. Senator Herb Kohl. He has BA in history and political science from Marquette University and a MA from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas–Austin.



Acting Head of Division, Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs, Regions and Cities, OECD


Karen Maguire is acting head of the Local Employment, Skills and Social Innovation Division in the OECD’s Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs, Regions and Cities. The Division provides data, policy analysis and capacity building to national and subnational governments in the areas of local economic development, local actions for employment and skills, entrepreneurship, the social economy and culture. Prior to that, she was a senior counsellor in the Centre supporting the strategic direction and management of the 130-person team. She has also served for over a decade the Regional Development Policy Division, covering a wide range of regional, urban and rural development issues as acting head, counsellor and head of the Regional Innovation Unit. She has authored numerous OECD publications on regional economic development, innovation and clusters. Prior to joining the OECD, Maguire worked as an investment banker for UBS in New York, an international consultant in economic development and a research analyst for the Urban Institute in Washington, DC. She holds a BA in economics and sociology from the University of Chicago and an MPP from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.



Mayor, Lisboa


Fernando Medina has been mayor of Lisboa since 2015 and president of the Lisboa Metropolitan area since 2017. As mayor, he has focused on the improvement of the quality of life in the capital, with the goal of turning Lisboa as one of the best places to live and work, economically, socially, culturally, and leaving no one behind. Previously, he was member of the Portuguese Parliament (2011-2013), secretary of state for Industry and Development (2009-2011) and secretary of state for Employment and Vocational Training (2005-2009). He was also adviser to the chairman of the Portuguese Investment Agency, adviser to the Prime Minister on Education, Science and Technology, and a member of the Ministry of Education Working Group of the Portuguese Presidency of the European Union. He has a degree in economics from the Faculty of Economics at the University of Porto, and an MA in economic sociology from the School of Economics and Management from the University of Lisbon.



Former Minister of Constitutional Affairs, South Africa


Roelf Meyer is co-founder and chair of the In Transformation Initiative and advises on international peace processes. He has worked with parties in Northern Ireland, Sri Lanka, Rwanda, Burundi, Iraq, Kosovo, the Basque Region, Guyana, Bolivia, Kenya, Madagascar, and South Sudan. Meyer’s experience in international peace processes stems from his involvement in the settlement of the South African conflict in which he was the government’s chief negotiator in constitutional negotiations with the ANC’s chief negotiator and South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa. Negotiating the end of apartheid and paving the way for South Africa’s first democratic elections in 1994, Meyer continued his post as Minister of Constitutional Affairs in the Cabinet of the new President, Nelson Mandela. Meyer retired as a Member of Parliament and as the Gauteng leader of the National Party in 1996 and co-founded the United Democratic Movement (UDM) political party the following year. Retiring from politics in 2000, Meyer also held a number of international positions, including a membership of the Strategy Committee of the Project on Justice in Times of Transition at Harvard University in the United States, as well as the 2001 Tip O’Neill Chair in Peace Studies at the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland. He also became the chairman of the Civil Society Initiative (CSI) of South Africa. Meyer completed a BComm and LLB in law at the University of the Free State.



President and CEO, International Rescue Committee

New York

David Miliband is the president and CEO of the International Rescue Committee. He oversees the agency’s relief and development operations in over 30 countries, its refugee resettlement and assistance programs throughout the US, and the IRC’s advocacy efforts in Washington and other capitals on behalf of the world’s most vulnerable people. Miliband has had a distinguished political career in the UK. From 2007 to 2010, he served as the youngest Foreign Secretary in three decades, driving advancements in human rights and representing the UK throughout the world. Miliband is also the author of the upcoming book, Rescue: Refugees and the Political Crisis of Our Time. Miliband was educated at the University of Oxford and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 



Senior Pastor, Trinity United Church in Christ 


Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III is the Senior Pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, Illinois, where he has spent the last two decades practicing and preaching a Black theology that calls attention to the problems of mass incarceration, environmental justice, and economic inequality. His sermons, articles, and poetry have been widely published and he was recently recognized as one of the 12 Most Effective Preachers in the English-Speaking World, by Baylor University’s George W. Truett Theological Seminary. Moss was also named to the inaugural Root 100, a list that recognizes emerging and established African-American leaders who are making extraordinary contributions. He is an honors graduate of Morehouse College and holds a Master of Divinity from Yale Divinity School, and a Doctor of Ministry degree from Chicago Theological Seminary.



Co-Founder and Research Director, Igarapé Institute

Rio de Janeiro

Robert Muggah is a specialist in cities, security, migration, and new technologies. He is the co-founder and research director of the Igarapé Institute, a "think and do" tank that focuses on data-driven safety, justice, and climate action across Latin America, Africa, and Asia. He co-founded SecDev Foundation in Group, an organization that works on cybersecurity and the digital economy in the Middle East, Eurasia, and South Asia, in 2010. In addition to teaching at Singularity University and universities in Geneva, Oxford, and Rio de Janeiro, he consults regularly with Google, McKinsey, the UN, and the World Bank. His TED talks in 2014 and 2017 have been viewed by millions. He is also known for designing award-winning interactive data visualizations that track and predict fragility in cities, homicide, arms flows, and climate change.



City Leader in Residence, Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative


Jennifer Musisi is the Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative City Leader in Residence. She plays a key role in advising on the design of Bloomberg Harvard programming, with a particular emphasis on programming for cities outside of the United States. She is also a frequent speaker and facilitator to different fora within and outside Harvard. Musisi has three decades of experience in turning around government institutions and systems in challenging settings. Most recently, she was appointed by the president of Uganda to serve as the first executive director of Kampala, the capital city of Uganda. Musisi previously served as commissioner of legal services and board affairs at the Uganda Revenue Authority and as legal advisor to Makerere University. She started her career as a state attorney in the Directorate of Public Prosecutions in the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs in Uganda. She also worked as Uganda’s ambassador for UN Sustainable Development Goal 11, focusing on making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. Musisi holds a BL and MA in public administration and management from Makerere University, and a diploma in legal practice from the Law Development Centre. She also received an honorary doctorate of philosophy in humanities and over 40 awards and accolades in recognition of her work.



Director of Research, World Cities Culture Forum & BOP Consulting


Richard Naylor is director of research at BOP Consulting, a leading international research and strategy consultancy focused on the cultural and creative economy. Together with partners at the Greater London Authority, BOP organises and coordinates the World Cities Culture Forum (WCCF). Cities in the WCCF network have a shared commitment to harnessing the power of culture to enhance urban policy, to shape economic prosperity, and improve the quality of life of their citizens. As director of research at WCCF, Naylor leads the network’s research and publications programme. His career spans more than 20 years of applied research and consultancy in both the private sector and academia. For BOP, Richard leads the company’s largescale research and evaluation contracts, ranging across a number of subjects. Naylor has international experience of working on four continents, in countries as diverse as China, Taiwan, Brazil, South Africa, Perú, Vietnam, Georgia, and Jordan. He holds first and second degrees from Goldsmiths College, University of London, and the University of York respectively.



Director, International Relations, City of Montréal


Henri-Paul Normandin is the director of international relations for the City of Montréal, Québec, Canada. In this role, Normandin spearheads innovative urban diplomacy on local and global issues. Former ambassador of Canada to Haiti and ambassador and deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, Normandin has been involved in diplomacy, peace and security, governance, human rights, and sustainable development in Asia, Africa, and the Americas for over thirty years. He has held several positions in the former Department of Foreign Affairs of Canada, the Canadian International Development Agency, as well as Canadian embassies in China and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. He has managed major programs, such as the Canada Fund for Africa, and introduced innovations in international cooperation, particularly in governance. Normandin holds a BA in civil law from McGill University and has worked as a legal aid lawyer in Québec. He also holds a MA in political science from the University of Ottawa.



CEO, Fibre


Obinna Okwodu is the CEO of Fibre – a secure and convenient online platform through which Nigeria's growing young population can find and pay for rental accommodation. Fibre has generated over N600 million ($1.7 million) in guaranteed rental income for landlords, has served hundreds of customers, and has a waitlist of thousands of young professionals in Nigeria. Prior to starting Fibre, Okwodu worked as an analyst in Morgan Stanley's Real Estate team in New York. He holds a dual degree in civil engineering and management science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.



Ambassador of Sweden to the United States of America


Karin Olofsdotter is the ambassador of the Kingdom of Sweden to the United States of America. Before her assignment to Washington, DC, she served as director-general for Trade at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs in Sweden. Olofsdotter was also deputy director-general for promotion of Sweden, Trade, and CSR in Stockholm. Olofsdotter served as ambassador in Budapest from 2011 to August 2014. Between 2008 and 2011, she served as deputy chief of mission at the Swedish Embassy in Washington, DC. Olofsdotter also served as the Swedish EU representation in Brussels, working with European security policy and defense issues. She chaired the EU’s Political-Military Group in 2001. Prior to this, she worked at the Swedish delegation to NATO. Her first posting was in Moscow, Russia, where she was mainly responsible for covering Belarus. She entered the Foreign Service in 1994 and served as chief of staff to several Swedish Foreign Ministers and as director of the Minister’s Office in Stockholm. Olofsdotter has a BA in psychology, economics, and Russian. She has studied at UCLA Anderson School of Management.



Senator for Ontario, The Senate of Canada


Ratna Omidvar is an internationally recognized voice on migration, diversity, and inclusion. In April 2016, Ms. Omidvar was appointed to the Senate of Canada as an independent senator representing Ontario. As a member of the Senate’s Independent Senators Group she holds a leadership position as the scroll manager. Senator Omidvar is also the deputy chair of the Special Senate Committee on the Charitable Sector and was the founding executive director at the Global Diversity Exchange (GDX) and a former distinguished visiting professor at Ryerson University.  Senator Omidvar serves as a councillor on the World Refugee Council, a director at the Environics Institute and Samara Canada, and is the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council’s Chair Emerita. She was formerly the co-chair of the Global Future Council on Migration hosted by the World Economic Forum and the chair of Lifeline Syria. Senator Omidvar was appointed to the Order of Ontario in 2005 and became a member of the Order of Canada in 2011, with both honours recognizing her advocacy work on behalf of immigrants and devotion to reducing inequality in Canada. She is the co-author of the book Flight and Freedom: Stories of Escape to Canada (2015).



Head of Global Policy for Public Transportation, Uber

San Francisco

Chris Pangilinan is the Head of Global Policy for Public Transportation at Uber. In this role, Chris works to help transit agencies and riders harness Uber's technology platform to make transit more convenient and easier to use. Prior to joining Uber, Chris was a program director at TransitCenter, and served in various planning and engineering roles at New York City Transit, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, the Chicago Transit Authority, and the US Department of Transportation. Chris has a BS in civil engineering from Portland State University, and an MS in transportation from MIT.



Vice Mayor, Migrant and Refugee Affairs, Municipal Council, Athens


Lefteris Papagiannakis is the vice mayor on migrant and refugee affairs for the municipal council of Athens, Greece. Papagiannakis worked in the European Parliament as a parliamentary assistant. Since then, he has worked as a legal counselor for the political party Ecologists Green and the Special Secretariat on Environmental Inspection on the Education of the Muslim Minority in Thrace, Greece. He was elected to the municipal council of Athens in 2014, and named vice mayor on migrant and refugee affairs in 2016. He is the chair of the working group Migration and Integration of the Eurocities Network, vice president for refugee issues for the European Coalition of Cities against Racism (ECCAR), and president of the Council for the Integration of Migrants of the Municipality of Athens. He studied public law at the University of Lille II, followed by a DEA in European community law and international economy.



Head of Research, Stefano Boeri Architetti; Associate Professor, Politecnico di Milano


Maria Chiara Pastore is head of research at Stefano Boeri Architetti and associate professor at the Politecnico di Milano. Her research interests are urban development for water and sanitation, urban planning in Africa, and adaptive planning for rapidly growing cities. Her recent work includes an improved green system in the Greater Milan 2030, Forestami (Milano 2030), and a water vision for the masterplan of Tirana (Albania) 2030. Pastore also authored the “Safer House Construction Guidelines" for the Malawi Ministry of Housing (GFDRR); “Master Plan for the City of Dar es Salaam” for the Tanzania Ministry of Lands, Housing, Human Settlements, and Development; and the master plan for EXPO 2015 in Milan. She has been a consultant to the World Bank, a member of the scientific committee of the First World Forum on Urban Forests, and is currently a visiting professor at Graz University of Technology. In 2018, she published a book titled Reinterpreting the Relationship between Water and Urban Planning: The Case of Dar es Salaam. She obtained a PhD in spatial planning and urban Development at Politecnico di Milano.



Executive Chairman, Hyatt Hotels Corporation


Tom Pritzker is executive chairman of Hyatt Hotels Corporation (NYSE: H). He is also chairman and CEO of The Pritzker Organization, the family’s historical merchant bank, and on the board of directors of Royal Caribbean Cruises LTD (NYSE: RCL). Over his career he has been involved in acquiring and building companies in a number of different industries and a founder of significant companies in the fields of container leasing (Triton), biotech (Bay City Capital) and health care (Reliant Pharmaceuticals and First Health). Outside of business, Pritzker is chairman of Center for Strategic & International Studies in Washington, DC, and a member of the Aspen Strategy Group. He is also chairman of the Hyatt Foundation, which sponsors the Pritzker Architecture Prize, and a member of the board of trustees at the University of Chicago and the Art Institute of Chicago. Pritzker is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Pritzker is also an honorary professor of history at Sichuan University in China, and for the past 30 years has been leading archeological expeditions and publishing original research in the field of Western Himalayan history. He was born and raised in Chicago. He holds a BA from Claremont Men’s College, and an MBA and JD from the University of Chicago.



Director, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Senseable City Lab; Founding Partner, Carlo Ratti Associati


Carlo Ratti, an architect and engineer by training, teaches at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he directs the Senseable City Laboratory, and is a founding partner of the international design and innovation practice Carlo Ratti Associati. A leading voice in the debate on new technologies’ impact on urban life, his work has been exhibited in several venues worldwide, including the Venice Biennale, New York’s MoMA, London’s Science Museum, and Barcelona’s Design Museum. Two of his projects – the Digital Water Pavilion and the Copenhagen Wheel – were hailed by Time Magazine as ‘Best Inventions of the Year’. He was been included in Wired Magazine’s ‘Smart List: 50 people who will change the world’. He is currently serving as co-chair of the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on Cities and Urbanization, and as special advisor on Urban Innovation to the European Commission



Mayor, Bristol; Vice Chair, Global Parliament of Mayors


Marvin Rees is the elected mayor of Bristol, UK. He was elected in May 2016, becoming the first European city mayor of Black African-Caribbean descent, and has prioritized housing, transportation, and early health and education intervention.  After beginning his career in the voluntary sector, Rees worked in Washington, DC on the response of faith-based organizations to President Clinton's Welfare Reform Bill. He later worked in both public health and radio broadcasting, becoming a journalist at BBC Radio Bristol. Rees founded the City Leadership Programme in 2012, which invests in young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, and he continues as its director.  He developed the Bristol City Office, bringing together diverse organizations to work on the long term problems facing the city. Rees received a MA in political theory and government from Swansea University and a MA in global economic development from Eastern University. He also participated in the Yale World Fellows program.



Director, Indian Institute for Human Settlements


Aromar Revi is the founding director of the Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS). He is an international practice and thought leader, an educator in public policy, sustainable development, human settlements, and environmental and technological change. Revi is a co-chair of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and helped lead a campaign for Sustainable Development Goal 11. He is a member of the Managing Board of Cities Alliance, a global partnership for sustainable cities and urban poverty reduction. Revi has been a senior advisor to multiple ministries of the Government of India since the late 1980s and consulted with a wide range of international development institutions, as well as firms on economic, environmental, and social change. He is one of the world’s leading experts on climate change and a coordinating lead author of the 2018 IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C that will define potential applications for the Paris Climate agreement. He has published 75 peer reviewed publications & books. He received a BTech from IIT, Delhi; an MBA from the University of Delhi; and an LLB from the University of Delhi.



Former Mayor, Quito


Mauricio Rodas was elected mayor of Quito in 2014. Before he was elected as mayor, he ran for President of Ecuador in 2013 and founded SUMA, a national political party in 2011. Rodas started his professional career with ECLAC and worked as a consultant in public policy for the Mexican Government. He founded Fundación Ethos, a Latin American think tank based in Mexico. As its executive director, Rodas developed the Responsible Government Model. He is currently world co-president of United Cities and Local Governments Organization (UCLG), member of the Board of Global Covenant, C40, and the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI). He is a Young Global Leader and member of the Future Global Council of Cities and Urbanization of the World Economic Forum. Rodas recieved a law degree from Universidad Catolica de Quito and MAs in government administration and political science from the University of Pennsylvania.



Former Commissioner, Chicago Department of Transportation


Rebekah Scheinfeld was appointed commissioner of the Chicago Department of Transportation by Mayor Rahm Emanuel in January 2014. As an attorney with broad experience in urban development issues, Scheinfeld oversees a department responsible for Chicago’s roadways, bridges, traffic signals, and streetlights, while simultaneously managing the Chicago Smart Lighting Program and Divvy bike share system. She has spearheaded many of the Emanuel Administration’s key transportation initiatives, including the Building a New Chicago program, the Vision Zero Chicago traffic safety plan, the Loop Link, Union Station Transit Center, and the Navy Pier Flyover. Prior to her work as the CDOT commissioner, Scheinfeld served as the chief planning officer and senior vice president of the CTA handling strategic planning for major capital projects and a new transit service. She was previously employed as an attorney at Mayer Brown representing public and private sector clients on major infrastructure and transportation projects. Scheinfeld holds a B.A. in urban studies from Brown University and received both her J.D. and M.B.A. from Northwestern University.



Vice Chairman, External Affairs and Chief Legal Officer, AbbVie


Laura Schumacher is vice chairman of External Affairs and chief legal officer, responsible for AbbVie’s Health Economics Outcomes Research, Government Affairs, Corporate Responsibility, Brand, and Communications. She leads all Legal functions, the Office of Ethics and Compliance, and Biotherapeutics Strategy. Prior to AbbVie’s separation from Abbott, Schumacher served as executive vice president, general counsel, and secretary. She has led Licensing & Acquisitions, Ventures, and Early Stage Collaborations. Schumacher joined the company as a litigation attorney. Prior to joining Abbott, Schumacher was an associate attorney with Schiff, Hardin & Waite in Chicago. Schumacher serves on the board of directors of General Dynamics and is a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors, American Bar Association, Society of Corporate Secretaries and Governance Professionals, Commercial Club of Chicago,  Economic Club of Chicago, Chicago Network,  Chicago Club, and the Notre Dame Law School Advisory Council. She earned a BA from the University of Notre Dame and a JD from the University of Wisconsin at Madison.



Founder and CEO, Sam Schwartz Transportation Consultants

New York

Samuel Schwartz is President and CEO of Sam Schwartz Transportation Consultants, a firm that specializes in transportation planning and engineering. In 1980, during the New York City transit strike, he formed the term 'gridlock'. Consequently, he is known as Gridlock Sam and pens an eponymous traffic column in the New York Daily News. Previously, he was New York City’s Traffic Commissioner and was the Chief Engineer of the NYC Department of Transportation. He started his transportation career as an NYC cabbie and joined the Traffic Department as a junior engineer in 1971. Schwartz’s most recent books, Street Smart: The Rise of Cities and The Fall of Cars (2015), No One at the Wheel: Driverless Cars, and the Road of the Future (2018) lay out a recipe for cities faced with rapid changes in transport. Schwartz has been an adjunct professor for 40 years at several colleges and universities. He obtained a BS in physics at Brooklyn College and received an MS in civil engineering at the University of Pennsylvania. 



President, Migration Policy Institute

Washington, D.C.

Andrew Selee is the president of the Migration Policy Institute, a nonpartisan institution that seeks to improve immigration and integration policies through fact-based research, opportunities for learning and dialogue, and the development of new ideas to address complex policy questions. Prior to that, he spent 17 years at the Woodrow Wilson Center, where he founded the Center’s Mexico Institute and later served as vice president for programs and executive vice president. He has also worked as staff in the US Congress and on development and migration programs in Tijuana, Mexico. Selee’s research focuses on migration globally, with a special emphasis on immigration policies in Latin America and in the United States. He is the author of several books, including, most recently, Vanishing Frontiers: The Forces Driving Mexico and the United States Together (PublicAffairs, 2018) and What Should Think Tanks Do? A Strategic Guide to Policy Impact (Stanford University Press, 2013). Selee was a co-director of the Regional Migration Study Group, convened by MPI with the Wilson Center to look at regional migration flows among the Central American countries, Mexico, and the United States, and was part of the steering committee for MPI’s Independent Task Force on Immigration and America’s Future, which helped lay an important conceptual foundation for immigration reform efforts in recent years. He holds a PhD in policy studies from the University of Maryland, an MA in Latin American studies from the University of California, San Diego, and a BA from Washington University in St. Louis.



Head of Advisory Solutions, Environment and Sustainability, UL


Catherine Sheehy is head of advisory solutions, Environment and Sustainability, at UL. She and her team manage a range of projects covering zero waste and circularity, greener product frameworks, and carbon optimization strategies. Before joining UL Environment, Sheehy was a manager at Accenture, where she led organization design and change enablement teams. Her other work experience includes the Human Rights Campaign, where she helped update and expand the Corporate Equality Index, a tool that rates organizations on diversity related concerns. Prior to that, she worked at the Investor Responsibility Research Center as director of the Corporate Benchmarking Services, where she managed the research department that provided social and environmental screening data on companies to institutional investors. She was also a key author of the UL 880 Standard for Sustainability for Manufacturing Companies, which addresses key enterprise-level sustainable supply chain issues. Sheehy is a certified Project Management Professional. She received a BA from the University of Notre Dame and an MBA from the R.H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland. 



Chairman, Editorial Board; Editor-at-large, US, Financial Times

New York

Gillian Tett serves as America editor-at-large and chair for the US Editorial Board for the Financial Times. She writes weekly columns for the Financial Times, covering a range of economic, financial, political and social issues. Tett’s past roles at the Financial Times have included US managing editor (2010-2012), assistant editor, capital markets editor, deputy editor of the Lex column, Tokyo bureau chief, and a reporter in Russia and Brussels. Tett has won numerous awards, including Columnist of the Year in the British Press Awards, the Royal Anthropological Institute Marsh Award, and others. Her books include Saving the Sun: How Wall Street Mavericks Shook Up Japan's Financial World and Made Billions (Harper Collins, 2003), Fool’s Gold: How Unrestrained Greed Corrupted a Dream, Shattered Global Markets and Unleashed a Catastrophe (Simon & Schuster, 2009), and The Silo Effect: The Peril of Expertise and the Promise of Breaking Down Barriers (Simon & Schuster, 2015). Fool’s Gold won Financial Book of the Year at the Spear’s Book Awards. Tett received a PhD in social anthropology from Cambridge University.

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Artist, Alessio Trerotoli Photographer


Alessio Trerotoli is a photographer born and raised in Rome. Since his first exhibition in 2010, his photography has been shown in several galleries in Italy and abroad. In 2012 he published his first book, Out of the Cave, with notes and pictures of his travels. He also began his project, “Urban Melodies,” that year. In 2013, he won the Abstracta Festival, and he has received several other awards. His other projects include “Rome Coast to Coast,” “Raindrop Blues,” and “Film People.” In 2017 he was one of six members of the collective Rome Street Photography. His work has been featured in Fubiz, The Phoblographer, SRL Lounge, Camerapixo, and other international magazines. He is currently collaborating with galleries in the United States, France, Israel, China, Argentina, and Mexico.



Chief Resilience Officer, City of Medellín


Santiago Uribe is the chief resilience officer for the City of Medellín, as part of 100 Resilient Cities. Previously, Uribe worked for three years as executive director of Social Innovation at Pigmalion Consulting where he coordinated research programs on disaster risk management, youth violence prevention, and local youth’s reproductive and mental health. Earlier, Uribe served as administrative assistant of Cultural and Economic Affairs at the Embassy of Colombia to the Republic of South Africa, where he coordinated official visits to Bogotá and Medellín for the implementation of the bus rapid transit systems in various cities. Uribe was also involved in the organization of systematic exchanges between Colombia and South Africa. He received his BA in anthropology from the Universidad de Antioquia.



Founder, World of Walas


Gerben van Straaten has over 25 years of experience in urban development and re-development, with a focus on social, environmental and financial sustainability. He has worked on the development of over 150 projects across four continents ranging from small First Nations communities, to brownfield revitalization, theme park projects and large mixed use urban and community development. He is owner and CEO of World of Walas, a group of over 20 companies offering full urban design and development services, project development and access to innovations.



Mayor, Helsinki


Jan Vapaavuori became the Mayor of Helsinki in June 2017. Previously, Vapaavuori served as Minister of Economic Affairs and as Minister of Housing. As Mayor, Vapaavuori champions Helsinki as the most functional city in the world with a special focus on sustainable growth, digitalization, global problem solving, creativity, and the best possible conditions for everyday city life. Prior to his role as mayor, Vapaavuori served as a member of parliament from 2003 to 2015. During his term as MP, he served as chair of the party's parliamentary group. In addition to his career in national politics, Vapaavuori has a long-standing career with the City of Helsinki as member of the Helsinki City Council and as chairman of the City Board. Since 2015, he worked as vice president of the European Investment Bank. Vapaavuori graduated with a degree in law from the University of Helsinki.



Vice President, Slipstream


Karen Weigert provides leadership in the areas of strategy development and execution that grows slipstream’s impacts focused on decarbonization and resilience. Weigert's experience includes serving as Chief Sustainability Officer for Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel. During her tenure, she developed the 2015 Sustainable Chicago Action Agenda, which outlines ambitious sustainability goals for the city, as well as a roadmap to help residents and businesses contribute. A leader in clean energy advocacy and volunteerism, Weigert co-founded Chicago Women and Green and the Greencorps Chicago's youth program. Additionally, she produced "Carbon Nation," a documentary film that focuses on positive solutions to climate change.



Vice President, Housing Innovation, Habitat for Humanity International


Stephen Weir is the vice president for Housing Innovation at Habitat for Humanity International. Prior to his current role, Weir served as vice president of Global Development and Support at Habitat for Humanity International. Previously, he worked in Bangkok where he was vice president for Habitat's Asia programs. He is an architect by profession. In April 2007 he participated in the Symposium sponsored by the Berkley Center on “Faith-Inspired Organizations and Global Development: US and International Perspectives. He received a B. env. design, architecture from the University of Kansas as well as a B. architectural engineering.



Mayor, Dayton


Nan Whaley was elected mayor of Dayton in 2013. As mayor, she has focused on the areas of community development, manufacturing, and women and children. Her career is distinguished by her commitment to public service, civic involvement, and interest in local government. First elected to the Dayton City Commission in 2005, Whaley was the youngest women ever chosen for a commission seat. Whaley serves on the board of trustees for the US Conference of Mayors and is the chair of the International Committee for the Conference. She serves as a vice chair for the National League of Cities, Council on Youth, Education, and Families. Whaley currently serves as the vice chair of the National Conference of Democratic Mayors. Additionally, she is a four-time delegate to the Democratic National Convention. She is a founding board member of the Ohio’s Mayor Alliance, a bipartisan coalition of Ohio’s 30 largest cities. Whaley graduated with a BA from the University of Dayton. 



Chairman, IBR (Shenzhen Institute of Building Research Co., Ltd.)


YE Qing serves as the chairman of Shenzhen Institute of Building Research Co., Ltd. (IBR), a national high-tech pioneer of green building and green city development in China. She is a National Class 1 Registered Architect, a professorate senior engineer, and one of the Forbes 2019 China's 100 Most Outstanding Business Women. In addition, she also serves as the deputy director of the China Green Building Council, the deputy director and secretary-general of the Eco-City Sub-Committee of the Chinese Society for Urban Studies, and a member of the standing committee of the Sixth Shenzhen Municipal People's Congress. She has long been engaging on the front line of building science and technology, and familiar with innovative design methods derived from researches of policy, market and technology. Her actions of advocating shared design and balanced planning, actively promoting, implementing, and practicing research results and summarized cases in relevant fields, has made outstanding contributions in promoting the development of green buildings and eco-cities in China. Her most renowned project, IBR Headquarters has been awarded more than 30 domestic and international prizes, including Asia Pacific Awards by World Green Building Council, the Biannual China Award of “Good Design is Good Business”, and the Best Green Design Award by Business Week and McGraw Hill Construction. The building also acts as a "National Science Education Demonstration Base", which has welcomed more than 60,000 visitors from home and abroad. She also worked on the Shenzhen International Low Carbon City, which has won the 2014 PI (Paulson Institute) and CCIEE (China International Economic Exchange Center) Prize for Cities of the Future, which is awarded to only one project every year.



President and CEO, World Business Chicago


Andrea Zopp is president and CEO of World Business Chicago, where she leads the organization’s mission of inclusive economic growth, supporting businesses, and promoting Chicago as a leading global city. Most recently, she served as deputy mayor, Chief Neighborhood Development Officer for the City of Chicago. Zopp served in the United States Attorney’s Office and was the first woman and African American to serve as the first assistant in the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office. She is also a successful businesswoman and has held executive leadership positions at several Fortune 500 companies, including Sara Lee, Sears Holdings, and Exelon. As the former president and CEO of the Chicago Urban League, she led the nationally recognized organization’s focus on expanding economic opportunity in underserved communities. Zopp was appointed to the Chicago Board of Education and to the Cook County Health and Hospital System Board, and currently serves on the board of the Urban Partnership Bank. Zopp is a graduate of Harvard College and Law School.