On Thursday November 17th Baroness Hale addressed the students of St Andrews and spoke to them about everything from Brexit to what led her to want to enter law to how more and more women need to continue to push their way into a man’s world.
A British human rights activist and journalist, Ben Rogers is a contributor to The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and The Huffington Post. He has also appeared on BBC News, CNN, Sky News and Al Jazeera in this capacity.
Mr Rogers currently works for the international human rights organisation CSW. He is also Co-founder and Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party's Human Rights Commission. In 2017, Mr Rogers founded Hong Kong Watch, an independent investigative group concerned with freedom, rule of law and human rights in Hong Kong.
With over 15 years of experience as the Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF and further time spent coordinating the UNDP’s Human Development Report, Sir Jolly was perfectly positioned to give first-hand insights to the principles which guided the UN during his work with them.
On Tuesday, 30 April, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein joined The Lafayette Club for its final event of the Spring 2018 semester. Engaging with guests during a breakfast round table and a packed afternoon Q&A session, the High Commissioner offered first-hand insights into the current state of human rights in international relations and why they led him not to pursue a second term as High Commissioner for Human Rights.
This past Monday Miles Young, the Warden for New College, Oxford, and the Honorary President of the Lafayette Club came to speak to us about why a liberal education still matters in the business world. Having spent much of his life working in advertising, most recently as Global Chairman and CEO of Ogilvy and Mather, a leading global communications network, Miles was particularly well placed to speak on the topic.
Peter Brabeck, Chairman Emeritus and former CEO of Nestlé, joined us on Monday for a fascinating talk on the future of nutrition in the 21st century.
During his time at Nestlé, Chairman Brabeck transformed the Fortune 100 giant from a simple food and beverage producer to a nutrition provider. During his presentation, titled after his book Nutrition for a Better Life, Chairman Brabeck explained that this transition was vital because of the changing conditions of human existence going into the next millennium.
Last night we had the pleasure of welcoming Ian Black, the Guardian's Middle East editor, European editor, diplomatic editor and foreign leader writer in 36 years on the paper. Last year, Black launched 'Enemies and Neighbours: Arabs and Jews in Palestine and Israel, 1917-2017’ and this was what he came to talk to us about.
Having chosen to write the book as part of the centennial anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, what, arguably, started the conflict in it’s present for, Black’s argument was that the region lacked an understanding of both sides of the narrative.
Co-founder of Moleskine Maria Sebrigondi joined us Monday evening to discuss one of the biggest notebook companies in the world as well as how creativity can change the world.
Founded in 1997 the Moleskine notebook was conceived with the idea that it would be “a book yet to be written”, have a historical look for the up and coming professionals of the 90s. It was not designed to be a traditional piece of stationary. It is because of this that the concept was to sell it in bookstores and not ordinary stationary stores. It was designed from an aesthetic point of view to mimic the emerging tech industry focusing on simplicity and a sleek design that would go well with a laptop and phone. She explained the conception as thinking differently, looking at what is hidden in experiences and attempting to make these aspects visible. The classic notebook does just this
Last Thursday, two of the founders from Renew Britain, James Torrance and James Clarke, joined The Lafayette Club for our first ever town hall meeting. Renew is a new centrist political party founded in the wake of Brexit to combat the divisive, ideology-driven politics dominating the national conversation.
Thanks to the Q&A period, the PM touched on his Brexit and EU sentiments, namely that he feels that any deal with the EU can cut will still be inferior to that of Britain staying in the EU. He felt strongly that the entire concept of the the EU and the Eurozone was misunderstood. While Britain may have pulled out of the EU and Greece and Italy are big drains on the Eurozone, the entire concept of the Eurozone and the EU is to create political links between the states. Something he feels there will always be a need for.
Jason Karaian, global finance and economics editor at Quartz, joined us on Monday for a discussion on the future of media in a world where information is increasingly condensed into bite-sized bits meant for consumption on smartphones and social media.
Quartz is a media company owned by the American news magazine, The Atlantic. Since its founding in 2012, Quartz has innovated the creation and presentation of journalism through its use of technology and social media.
On Monday Bill Browder joined us to speak about his experience as the founder and CEO of Hermitage Capital Management, as the largest foreign investor in Russia, as a hunted enemy of Vladimir Putin and as the largest advocate of the Magnitsky Act.
Browder was calm, funny, and his story without parallel. He started off explaining why he had chosen the life path that he had, his grandfather having run on the American communist ticket he had chosen to rebel by being a capitalist. He touched on his Stanford MBA education and on his humble investing beginnings in Eastern Europe before he eventually moved to Russia.
Sir Geoffrey Adams KCMG is a career diplomat. He was the British Ambassador to the Netherlands from 2013 – 2017. During his career, he has been posted in Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Egypt, and Paris. He was Consul General in Jerusalem (responsible for the UK's relations with the Palestinian Authority) and Principal Private Secretary to the Foreign Secretary (at the time the Rt Hon Jack Straw MP). From 2006-March 2009 Geoffrey was British Ambassador to Iran and following that served as Director, Middle East, and North Africa at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London. He was subsequently Director General (Political) in the FCO (2009-2012): in that role, he led the UK in the nuclear negotiations with Iran.
He will be giving us the context to the recent outbreak of protests across Iran and explaining what this means for the future of Iran and the wider region.
HSBC Group CFO, Iain Mackay joined us for a conversation on the role and life as CFO of one of the world’s largest banks.
Iain talked about the geo-political events that influence and impact what he does to ensure that HSBC plays an appropriate role in society. We also discussed Brexit and it’s impacts on the banking industry and wider UK economy.
Former Prime Minister of Australia, Kevin Rudd joined us for a discussion on the relations between China and the United States.
Kevin Rudd has spent most of his professional life, in one capacity or another, engaged on the core question of Asia and its engagement with Australia and the world. As Australia's Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Asia's growth was one of his central policy preoccupations.
Australian diplomacy was at the forefront in the establishment of the ASEAN Regional Forum. This was the same with APEC. Australia was also a foundation member of the East Asia Summit and Kevin Rudd's diplomacy drove the expansion of the EAS to include both the United States and Russia.
Adrian Wooldridge is The Economist‘s political editor and writes the Bagehot column; an analysis of British life and politics, in the tradition of Walter Bagehot, editor of The Economist from 1861-77. Adrian also used to write the Schumpeter column on business, finance and management. He was previously based in Washington, DC, as the Washington bureau chief where he also wrote the Lexington column. Prior to his role in Washington, he has been The Economist‘s West Coast correspondent, management correspondent and Britain correspondent. He isthe co-author of “The Company: A Short History of a Revolutionary Idea”, “A Future Perfect: The Challenge and Hidden Promise of Globalisation”, “Witch Doctors”, a critical examination of management theory, and “The Right Nation”, a study of conservatism in America. His most recent books are “The Great Disruption: How Business Is Coping With Turbulent Times (2015) and “Masters of Management: How the Business Gurus and their Ideas have Changed the World—for Better and for Worse” (2011).
Anna Neistat is the senior director of research at Amnesty International. She is responsible for leading and developing Amnesty International’s global research agenda, as well as overseeing the organisation’s crisis response. She has conducted more than 60 investigations in conflict areas around the world, including Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, China, Zimbabwe, Nepal, Kenya, Yemen, Chechnya, Sri Lanka and Haiti. Twitter: @AnnaNeistat
NOBEL PEACE LAUREATE TAWAKKOL KARMAN
Nobel Peace Prize winner Tawakkol Karman was known as “The Mother of the Revolution” and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 in recognition of her work in nonviolent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace building work in Yemen. Upon being awarded the prize, Tawakkol became the first Yemeni, the first Arab woman, and the second Muslim woman to win a Nobel Peace Prize, as well as the youngest Nobel Peace Laureate at the time, at the age of 32.
Christopher de Bellaigue joined us to discuss his book; The Islamic Enlightenment: The Modern Struggle Between Faith and Reason.
Christopher de Bellaigue is a journalist and author who has covered the Middle East and South Asia since 1994, writing for the Economist, the Guardian, and the New York Review of Books. He is the award-winning author of four books, has made several BBC television and radio documentaries, and has been a visiting fellow at the universities of Harvard and Oxford.
"Human Rights in the age of Trump and Brexit"
David Mepham is UK Director of Human Rights Watch, responsible for advocacy towards the UK government and parliamentarians and for the organisation’s dealings with the UK media. Since joining the organisation in April 2011, he has worked on a very wide range of country and thematic issues, provided written and oral evidence to parliamentary select committees, spoken at public events, done TV and radio interviews for key outlets and published articles in the UK press. Before joining Human Rights Watch, Mepham spent four years as the head of policy and advocacy for Save the Children UK. Before that, he was associate director of the Institute for Public Policy Research and the head of its international programme. From 1998 to 2002, Mepham was a senior policy adviser in the UK's Department for International Development. He is also co-editor of Progressive Foreign Policy - new directions for the UK (2007). He was educated at the London School of Economics and Oxford University.
Campaign Manager for Hillary 2016.
Robby Mook was at the head of Hillary Clinton’s campaign from start to finish. He made history by being the first openly gay manager of a US presidential campaign.
At 16, he was running phone banks in his native New Hampshire for Clinton’s re-election campaign. By 23, he was running Howard Dean’s presidential campaign in New Hampshire. At 27, he secured key victories in three states for Hillary’s unsuccessful 2008 bid for the Democratic nomination.
He has a degree in Classics from Columbia University.