Search form


redirection Speakers

Mats Karlsson

Special Advisor, Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs

He is currently reviewing how the Swedish government ensures quality analysis in foreign and security policy, development and trade. Visiting Professor at the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs in Spring 2019, he taught on “Development as Freedom”.


From 2014 to 2018 he was Director of the Swedish Institute of International Affairs, focusing on current foreign and security policy issues. From 1999 to 2014 he was in the senior leadership of the World Bank, first as Vice President of External and UN Affairs, then for twelve years in country and regional operations in West Africa, Maghreb and the Mediterranean region.

Alan Kasujja

Lead Presenter, Newsday, BBC News

Presenter of the award-winning BBC World Service flagship global news program, Newsday, he has also presented other programs including Outlook, Focus on Africa, Outside Source and World Have Your Say.


Alan is also a radio documentary maker who’s reported for the BBC from close to 20 countries. Alan has worked in print media, radio and has also been a TV host since he began his career the late 90s. As a conference speaker/moderator, he has chaired high level discussions in Africa, Europe, North America, Asia and the Middle East. He is interested in global geopolitics, political economy and is currently researching the impact of China’s growing presence in Africa. He’s a keen student of African languages and speaks or has a good understanding of many Bantu and Nilotic languages of East Africa.
In his free time, Alan is a keen photographer and is involved in socially impactful conversations and the mentorship of young people.

kidane kiros

Senior Fellow, Policy Center for the New South

Dr. Kidane Kiros Bitsue is currently Professor-Researcher at Mohammed VI Polytechnic University’s Faculty of Humanities, Economics and Social Sciences and Senior Fellow at Policy Centre for the New South. He holds a PhD degree in Development Studies.


Prior to joining Mohammed VI Polytechnic University, Dr Kidane served as the Director of the Institute for Peace and Security Studies (IPSS) of Addis Ababa University (AAU) from March 2014 – June 2019. In his capacity as the Director of IPSS, he had directed the successful conduct of six (6) annual conferences of Tana High-Level Forum on Security in Africa that took place from 2014 – 2019. As a result of efforts done under his directorship in the areas of academic, research and outreach activities; IPSS had been rated among the top 50 think -tanks in sub-Sharan Africa in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.

Before joining IPSS in March 2014, Dr Kidane’s career path was also mostly related to teaching, research, and educational administration. From 2003 to 2014, he taught in various Addis Ababa University (AAU) faculties and served as acting Director of the Institute of Federal Studies as well as Senior Administrator and Finance Head for Continuing and Distance Education at the AAU.

He also has experience working with humanitarian organizations, including the Ethiopian Red Cross Society (as the Head of the Wollo Zone Branch Office); International Federation of Red Cross/Crescent (as member of the Eastern Africa Regional Working Group on Food Security (WGFS); and the Ethiopian Red Cross Society (as a member of the National Working Group on Food Security (WGFS).

Harinder Kohli

Founding Director and Chief Executive, Emerging Markets Forum; Founding Director, President and CEO, Centennial Group International

Current Editor of Global Journal of Emerging Markets Economies. He served some 28 years in various senior managerial positions at the World Bank and in the private sector in India and France.


He has written extensively on the emergence of Asia, Latin America, Africa and other emerging market economies; financial development; and infrastructure. He is a co-author and co-editor of many books, such as India 2039 - An affluent society in one generation (2010), Africa 2050 - Realizing the continent’s full potential(2014), and Central Asia 2050: Unleashing the region’s potential(2016) and China’s Belt and Road Initiative: Potential Transformation of Central Asia and the South Caucasus, 2019.

R. Andreas Kraemer

Founder and Director Emeritus, Ecologic Institute

Founder and Director Emeritus of the Ecologic Institute in Berlin, he is also a pro bono Chairman of the Ecologic Institute US in Washington DC, and is currently Senior Fellow of the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) in Waterloo (Ontario), non-executive Director of the Fundação Oceano Azul in Lisboa (Portugal), and Visiting Assistant Professor of Political Science and Adjunct Professor of German Studies at Duke University, where he has lectured since 1993 an annual full-term course on European integration and environmental policy.


He is also Initiator and Convenor of the Arctic Summer College. His research focuses on the role and functions of science-based policy institutes or "think tanks" in theory and the practice in different political systems, the interactions among policy domains and international relations, and global governance on environment, resources, climate and energy. Manager (pro bono) of the Konrad von Moltke Fund and active as Co-Chairman of the Advisory Boards of OekoWorld, which sets global investment criteria for ethical and 'green' investment funds or mutual trusts and Oekom Research. Further, he is an Advisory Board Member of The Arctic Institute and Member of the Practice Board for the Master Course on "Strategic Sustainability Management" at the University of Applied Sciences in Eberswalde (HNE Eberswalde). From 1995 to 2015, R. Andreas Kraemer served as Scientific Director and CEO of the Ecologic Institute, Berlin, and concurrently from 2008 to 2013 in the same function at the Ecologic Institute, Vienna.

Pushpam Kumar

Chief Environmental Economist and Senior Economic Advisor, United Nations Environment Programme – UNEP

Former Chief of the Ecosystem Services Economics Unit (2010-15) and Coordinator, Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Branch (2015-16) in the Ecosystems Division of UN Environment. Report Director for Economics of Land Degradation (Africa and Asia), he also coordinates the Inclusive Wealth Report and provides analytical approaches for Planetary and Human Health. He is Report Director for the TEEB Agri Food Foundation Report and an Advisory Board member of the Gulbenkia Ocean Initiative (Lisbon).


He was a member of the Expert Panel of the National Ecosystem Assessment (NEA), UK (2008-11) and associated with the 2007 Nobel peace prize winning IPCC where he served as the Lead Author for the Fourth Assessment of the IPCC (Mitigation). He was co-coordinating lead author of the « Responses Working Group » of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (2000-05). Pushpam also co-chaired Policy and the Technical Committee of the Wealth Accounting and Valuation of Ecosystem Services (WAVES) program led by the World Bank (2011-16). He has a Ph.D. in Environmental Economics and has been with the University of Liverpool, UK and University of Delhi during 1991-2010 as Associate Professor and Professor in Environmental Economics. He is Honorary Research Scientist at the Earth Institute of Columbia University (New York) and is Extra Ordinary Professor at University of Pretoria (South Africa). He sits on many boards and has published eight books.

Vera Kwakofi

Editor, Africa TV, BBC

She is responsible in managing more than 40 journalists who make up the program teams in London and across Africa, producing content for Focus on Africa TV, BBC Swahili TV, BBC Somali TV and BBC’s Africa TV. She has more than 15 years of experience in creating and delivering editorial strategies for multi-platforms, as well as designing communications and brand strategies for Africa and other emerging markets.


She also created the BBC Women of Africa Series funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. She actively participates in various discussion panels promoting and providing a better understanding of the African region. She holds a MSc in Consultant Management and Organizational Change from the University of London, and a BA Hons in Politics from the London Metropolitan University. She also has a Diploma in Journalism and Mass Communications from the Ghana Institute of Journalism.

Dominique Lafont

Founder and CEO, Lafont Africa Corporation

He began his career in 1987 with the Arthur Andersen audit firm, in a position that sent him to emerging countries such as Maghreb and India. In 1995, he worked as the Director of Industrial Participations of the Rivaud Group, before joining the Bolloré Group after its takeover in 1997.


By 1999, Dominique Lafont became the Group's Financial Director for Africa and, in 2002, the Managing Director for Anglophone Africa. From 2005 to 2014, he directed the entire range of Bolloré Group activities across Africa, as Managing Director for Africa (2005-11) and then as President and CEO of Bolloré Africa Logistics (2011-14), which has become a leading player in Africa’s development and renowned across emerging countries (55 countries including 45 in Africa, $ 3 billion revenues, 25 000 employees). In 2015 he left the Bolloré Group to set up his own advisory and investment structure, Lafont Africa Corporation.

Mosun Layode

Executive Director, African Philanthropy Forum – AFP

She works extensively across Africa with established and emerging philanthropists who are committed to sustainable and inclusive development. Prior to this, she served as the Executive Director of WIMBIZ and LEAP Africa, leading nonprofits in Nigeria.



Passionate about the interplay of social issues and business, she founded Social Runway, a nonprofit organization that supports social innovators. She has also served as an independent development consultant for nonprofit organizations.
She studied Urban and Regional Planning at the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Nigeria and obtained an MSc in Environmental Resources Management from Lagos State University. She has an MBA from Lagos Business School and benefited from executive programs offered by the IESE Business School, Barcelona and Harvard Business School.

Candide Leguede

Founder and Managing Director, ARCANDIA and INNOV’UP

Real estate agent since 1999 at the head of her company Arcandia, she is also Founder and Regional President of the Business Women of ECOWAS (Fefa Cedeao) since 2009, and of Togo Coach.


Consulting in gender and development, promoting female entrepreneurship in Togo and ECOWAS, she accompanies young enterprises led by women through the start-pu incubator Innov’up, launched in 2015. Board member of Patronat du Togo (Togo’s Association of CEOs), she chairs the technical committee on Employement and Training since 2016. She is the administrator for West Africa of the Réseau francophone de l’entrepreneuriat féminin of the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie (OIF). Past Chair and co-founder of the Association des femmes chefs d’entreprise du Togo (AFCET) and Deputy President of Africa Trade and Investment Organization, she has received many awards, among which the Africa Women’s Awards in 2019 in Yaoundé.