September Slew

Lots of conferences taking place, and starting planning this month. Proactive executive communicators, take heed.

Back to work, back to school, and back to thinking about all the amazing conference options open up to us this coming month!

Foremost forums upcoming

World Economic Forum Meeting of the New Champions (September 11 – 13; Dalian, China). Meeting brings together the "New Champion communities – including Global Growth Companies, Young Global Leaders, Young Scientists, Technology Pioneers, Social Entrepreneurs and the World Economic Forum’s youngest community, the Global Shapers" with Forum members and partners to "share strategies and solutions and discuss global issues and risks." The theme for the 2013 event is "Meeting the Innovation Imperative."

Google Zeitgeist (September 15 – 17; Paradise Valley, AZ). Google publishes each year a "Zeitgeist report" that purports to show, based on the company's accumulated mass of user search queries, "what captured the world's attention the past year," with zeitgeist defined as "the spirit of the times; the general intellectual, moral, and cultural climate of an era." The annual invitation-only eponymous forum is a live-discussion extension of the Zeitgeist report, centered on "the belief that convening thoughtful leaders, in a uniquely open discussion, will lead to both innovation and inspiration." The program focuses on "topics that influence the global economy, creativity, digital technology, leadership and human rights."

Economist Ideas Economy Series: Human Potential (September 18; New York). Event examines the diverse challenges related to the advancement of humanity and how human potential can be optimized "for individuals, companies, and society at large in the decades to come." Topic areas of interest are demography and worldwide population; global education best practices; redesigning corporate cultures; healthcare for an aging workforce; and human-centered design.

Do Lectures (September 19 – 22; Hopland, CA). Forum content is based on the premise "that people who Do things can inspire the rest of us to go and Do things, too." The lectures include talks by guest speakers, live music performances, and workshops. Topics fall into the general categories of business, design, environment, and food.

Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting (September 23 – 26; New York). Event brings together current and former heads of state, top CEOs, and leaders of non-profit organizations, major philanthropists, and Nobel Prize Laureates. Plenary sessions, the central meeting component, introduce and detail contemporary challenges related to the annual theme in practical terms, setting the stage for breakout sessions and small group discussions where small groups "debate and determine the best way to take action…[producing] innovative ideas, new partnerships, and impressive commitments." 2013 theme: "Mobilizing for Impact."

Blouin Creative Leadership Summit (September 23 – 25; New York). Summit is self-described as bringing together "leading figures in the areas of science, technology, culture, business, and politics" to focus on "the critical threats and opportunities presented by globalization at the local and global levels." Program addresses such topics as globalizing the mind; political leadership in the twenty first century; and partnerships, power and potential.

New Metrics of Sustainable Business Conference (September 24 – 25; Philadelphia). Event is part of the Sustainable Brands forum stable and is self-described as an event where "some of sustainability's top strategists will examine leading-edge work that is expanding the way business creates, quantifies, and manages the value it delivers through the metrics it adopts." Mission of the forum is to aid businesses in demonstrating their "ability to create value of various forms for all stakeholders – rather than simply profit for shareholders" and to "address the question of how this value is identified, measured, and communicated." Representative topics include: Updating the meaning and measure of value for the 21st century; creating shared value and measuring impact in the supply chain; and identifying materiality in corporate sustainability.

Arthur W. Page Society Annual Conference (September 29 – October 1; Boston). Page Society members are senior corporate communications professionals from F1000 companies, as well as agency heads. The annual conference aims to provide this audience "with critical knowledge, strategies and insights on how to adapt, lead and succeed" in an increasingly global world. Program addresses such topics as real challenges facing CCOs today; moving an agenda in DC; and delivering on the promise of sustainability.

World Business Forum (October 1 – 2; New York). Forum focuses on topics regarding the US position in the world, global financial markets, strategy, management, and the role of creativity in leadership. Topic areas covered include innovation in management practices; impact of demographic trends on global economics; energy dependence/independence; and talent management.

Saint Petersburg International Innovation Forum (October 2 – 4; St. Petersburg, Russia). Event aims to aid in the development of "key decisions, references and measures for the implementation of the plan of innovation economic development." Program addresses such topics as innovations in public social support; modern methods of expertise of innovative projects; and programs of energy efficiency and resource saving.

Noteworthy conferences beginning agenda planning this month

The Aspen Institute will begin developing the agenda for its Ideas Festival to be held June 27 – July 3, 2014 in Aspen. Festival is designed to address trends in politics, culture, science, theology, and academia, with a mission to focus on "restorative reflection on the meaning of the good life, leadership, and sound public policy based on nonpartisan principles and timeless ideas." Program addresses such topics as global dynamics; health and bioscience; and culture and the media.

Ethical Corporation will begin agenda development for its Summit scheduled for March 5 – 6, 2014 in Chicago. Summit aspires to provide "one-stop shopping for CSR professionals," where attendees can learn about the sustainability and CSR challenges facing US businesses in the coming months. Representative topics, developed from EC research, include: New models for advancing social innovation and implementing shared value; can corporations influence and drive customer behavior on sustainability; how to use social media to engage with stakeholders on sustainability; the business case for social investment and community outreach; and using materiality to target CSR effort where it matters most.

• University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business will begin developing the agenda for its Leadership Conference taking place June 18, 2014 in Philadelphia. Event focuses "on leading in a period of greater risks and higher stakes" and addresses such questions as "how can executives in the private sector, public service, and non-profit world prepare themselves and their teams to lead in this uncertain environment." Presentations are primarily one-hour sessions featuring a solo speaker or an interview-style format, with audience Q&A.

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