Nor-Shipping has announced that renowned global strategist and intellectual Parag Khanna will be its star conference moderator in 2017, alongside award winning BBC presenter and journalist Nisha Pillai. The leading global maritime event week, taking place in Oslo and Lillestrøm, Norway, from 30 May to 2 June 2017, will charge the duo with taking the helm of its Opening Conference and Agenda Ocean series of events. Khanna, named by Esquire magazine as one of the 75 most influential people of the 21st century, is the author of numerous books on future world order, including the acclaimed Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization, focusing on how connected infrastructure supersedes traditional geographic and political barriers. He has also been an adviser to the U.S. National Intelligence Council’s Global Trends 2030 program, and served in the foreign policy advisory group to the Barack Obama for President campaign. Pillai, meanwhile, has over 20 years of broadcast experience with the BBC, becoming a globally recognised face through her work anchoring rolling news on BBC World News. According to Nor-Shipping Director Birgit Liodden, the pair offer the perfect combination of authority and intellect to marshal a diverse programme of thought provoking, engaging and insight-rich debates and presentations.
“We are tailoring our conferences in 2017 to help the global shipping community tackle current challenges and exploit future potential,” she comments. “Those challenges are great, but so is the opportunity, and we’re expecting all our events to be fast paced, vibrant and visionary as they address crucial issues.“As such we felt we needed world-class moderators, who are used to getting the very best out of high-level participants and delivering the most value for delegates. Parag and Nisha fit the bill perfectly. They are capable of facilitating energetic, memorable discussions, while helping audiences pinpoint, engage with, and really understand ‘big’ ideas, technologies and takeaways. We are delighted to have them on board.” Nor-Shipping 2017 has committed itself to not only showcasing industry actors, services and innovations – across five themed halls and 45,000 m2 of exhibition space – but also providing a pro-active platform for future solutions. As such it has adopted an overall theme of Catalyst for Change, while dedicating exhibition Hall A to Disruptive Sustainability. Initiatives such as Problem to Profit, where shipping’s next generation seek to find solutions to this generation’s challenges, mirror its far-reaching ambition. It’s a context that Parag Khanna will, Liodden explains, greatly complement. “Parag is one of the great thinkers and presenters of our time,” she says. “From writing books that help us map successful and sustainable courses for the future, through to advising politicians and institutions on key areas of geostrategic importance, he is an individual that understands the potential of global connectivity and innovation, while inspiring audiences to reach for their own personal goals. “The world doesn’t stand still and shipping can’t afford to. Our conferences will help navigate future paths that take in new ideas, talent and directions. Both Parag and Nisha will help us achieve that. In the meantime we’ll be working with the industry to fine-tune the content that they want to see – listening to, and provoking, debate to ensure we address key issues and business concerns. “Remember, this is your event week, and that’s something we never lose sight of.” Key themes and speakers for the Opening Conference and Agenda Ocean programmes will be announced in the coming weeks/months. Nor-Shipping, which is held every two years, attracts around 35,000 visitors to Oslo and Lillestrøm, with almost 1,000 of the world’s leading maritime companies showcasing products and services to the industry, future talent and stakeholders through the shipping value chain.