GCCA Conference 2020: Speakers

Please check back soon for more information on this year’s speakers.

Gavin Esler, Conference MC

Gavin Esler is an award winning television and radio broadcaster, writer and journalist. He is also an event host, a moderator for business conferences and a lecturer on subjects as diverse as British and American politics, communications and the future of the media. He delivered the prestigious 2017 Magnusson Lecture on how institutions and individuals can build trust — and how to recover if they lose it. He has spoken on similar themes with groups as diverse as senior British military officers, financial consultants, lawyers, senior public officials, politicians and leaders of international corporations. He has hosted conferences with business and political leaders in venues in the United States, Indonesia, Singapore, China, Turkey, the UAE, and all across the UK and Europe.

Gavin recently hosted The Big Steal podcast – exploring the story of two men with very different ideas. One a rising star in business and the head of Yukos – a huge oil company: Mikhail Khodorkovsky. The other a former KGB officer who rose through the ranks to  become President of Russia: Vladimir Putin.

Gavin is the author of five novels (Loyalties, Deep Blue, The Blood Brother, A Scandalous Man and Power Play) His first non-fiction book, The United States of Anger predicted the political upheavals and discontent in the United States which produced the Trump presidency. His most recent non-fiction publication, Lessons from the Top, was originally inspired by conversations and interviews he conducted with world leaders including Bill Clinton, Angela Merkel, King Abdullah II of Jordan, Tony Blair, Margaret Thatcher and other successful communicators from business, the military and popular culture, including Dolly Parton and Angelina Jolie. The book examines how successful leaders use stories to educate, persuade and bring about change, and how to build trust with potential followers or customers in an increasingly uncertain world. In 2019 Gavin turned his journalistic eye to Brexit – publishing Brexit Without The Bullshit: The Facts on Food, Jobs, Travel and the NHS. Described by the philosopher AC Grayling as explaining with ‘stark clarity the effects a Brexit will have on every significant aspect of our lives. It is the clearest, most uncompromising & most valuable statement of the facts available…’

Gavin is known for his presenting work at the BBC. He  has been the main presenter on Dateline London and The Film Review on the BBC News Channel and BBC World and a regular presenter on numerous other programmes, including Hardtalk . He was the BBC’s Chief North America Correspondent for eight years, based in Washington, and has reported all over the world, including China, Peru, Argentina, Cuba, Brazil, Russia, Jordan, Iran, Saudi Arabia and from the Aleutian Islands, as well as all across Europe. On returning to the UK from eight years as the BBC’s North America editor, he joined the presenting team on the BBC’s flagship news and current affairs programme Newsnight. Currently he is also a columnist for The National, an English language newspaper based in the UAE with a worldwide circulation.

As well as being a BAFTA member, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and the holder of a Royal Television Society Award, Gavin was also presented with a Sony Gold Award for his BBC Radio 4 programme, Letters from Guantanamo.

Dr Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency

Dr Fatih Birol has served as Executive Director of the International Energy Agency since September 2015. He was re-elected in January 2018 for a second four-year term, which began in September 2019. Under his leadership, the IEA has undertaken its first comprehensive modernisation programme since its creation in 1974. This effort focuses on three pillars: opening the doors of the IEA to include major emerging countries, such as Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico and South Africa who have joined the IEA Family, thus increasing its share of global energy demand from 38% to almost 75%; broadening the IEA’s security mandate to natural gas and electricity as well as oil; and making the IEA the global hub for clean energy technologies and energy efficiency.

Dr Pratima Rangarajan, Chief Executive, OGCI Climate Investments

Dr Pratima Rangarajan is Chief Executive of OGCI Climate Investments. Before joining OGCI Climate Investments, Pratima was the General Manager for GE’s Onshore Wind Product Line and the General Manager for GE’s Energy Storage startup. She had previously held the role of Deputy Chief Technology Officer and Senior Vice President, Emerging Technology and Research at Vestas Wind Systems.

Pratima’s early career included technology and research development roles in both GE and ExxonMobil. Pratima has a PhD in chemical engineering from Princeton University and a BS in chemical engineering from MIT.