Communication on Top

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Programme 2011

16th February 2011

19:00 - 23:00

Shatzalp Hotel: Mulled wine welcome party (informal)

17th February 2011

9:00 - 9:30

Registration, coffee

9:30 - 10:00

Forum Day 1
Moderator: Dr. Daniel Höltgen, Director of Communications at the Council of Europe
Opening the second edition of World Forum "Communication on Top".
Welcome greetings:
· Natalia Belenko, Founder of Top Communications GmbH
· Alexey Glazyrin, Vice President of the Russian PR Association (RPRA)
· Majdi Al Ayed, Regional Director of Trans-Arabian Creative Communications Services (TRACCS) in Lower Gulf

10:00 - 11:30

Key Debate:
· "New PR versus New marketing"
Synopsis: Today’s rapid development of modern communications somehow blurs the distinction between PR and marketing. Internet absorbs the public attention via webs, blogs, tweets, Social Media, videos, pod casts, RSS feed.
The debate New PR vs New Marketing views the future of corporate communication policy and the changes within its overall organization.
Which of the great industries of Advertising, PR, Branding and Marketing, is to survive or shall we see the transformation of all into one?
Two great experts share their knowledge, experience, and visions:
Paul Holmes, the PR industry guru worldwide, Founder and CEO of
Marshall Sponder, SM Metrics, Web Analytics, and SEO expert, owner of, USA
Moderator: Maxim Behar, Chair of the Bulgarian PR Association (BAPRA)
· Question & Answer session with the audience.

11:30 - 12:00

Coffee break

12:00 - 13:30

Panel: Reputation & publicity on/off-line: the next step?
Moderator: Rui Martins, Director Corporate Comms and Public Affairs at Dianova Portugal

Dr. James Gillies, Head of Communication Group at CERN, Switzerland:
· "Communicating Innovations - how to communicate something which does not even exist?"
Synopsis: In 2010, the physics programme of the LHC got underway at CERN in the full glare of the media spotlight. In this talk, James Gillies explains how the laboratory's communication team worked to make such an esoteric subject as particle physics such a hot topic, and describe how the lab made an opportunity of everything that came its way, from Angels and Demons to black holes.

Dr. Daniel Höltgen, Director of Communications at the Council of Europe, Belgium:
· "Adapting large, long-standing organizations to today's online & social media world."
Synopsis: Older institutions with an international remit face a particular dilemma about how to adapt to a 24/7 online news agenda. Geographical scope, different languages and varied cultural styles are only a small part of the puzzle.
Communicators of large need to know how to bridge the gap between the old and the new, to create means of delivering clear messages without undermining the basic principles of their organisation.
Daniel Höltgen views the responsiveness to breaking news stories, the ability to adapt to the rolling news schedule in different countries, and the emphasis on strong messages as the key to effective communication.

Valery Levchenko, Deputy Editor in Chief at RIA Novosti, Russain Federation:
· "Benefits and pitfalls of integrating social media into editorial and publishing workflows."
Synopsis: Is Social Media viewed as such by the media? Well, one thing is for sure - with the advent of the interactive tools the audience is no longer the same - everyone can become a publisher or a media. As the prominent blogger Tom Foremski puts it, "today every company is a media company", and quite often proactive users wish they could influence the editorial decision. Would that make them competitors to professional communicators? Most likely... A main trend in 2010 was the general dive into the social networks world. It is not the Reader who is watching the media, but the media that are now striving to let the reader into a circle îf network friends. The PR + marketers challenge is to mediate between the media and the reader, while preserving the due agenda.
The presentation focuses on Twitter as a social network and RIA Novosti as a media company, in order to present the respective case study: a good example of how social media has brought nearly as much visitors as did the main news aggregating service.

· Question & Answer session with the audience.

13:30 - 14:30


14:30 - 16:00

Panel: Social media
Moderator: Stephen Davies, Founder & Managing Director of 3WPR, blogger at, UK

Integrating SM internally
Philippe Borremans, Chief Social Media Officer at Van Marcke Group, Belgium:
· "ROI of SM for internal comms: How organizations should apply collaborative and interactive
social media tools to enhance productivity and communication?"
Synopsis: Social media within the corporation.
The internal use of social media – why should you even think about it?
What comes first – corporate cultural readiness or the social media project?
How to implement and measure a social media strategy?
What about “control” or “governance” – is it compatible with the social aspect?
Tools, tips & tricks from a practitioner.

SM into existing PR campaigns
Kerry Bridge, Global Digital Media Communications Manager at DELL Public Sector, UK:
· "Integrating Social Media into existing PR campaigns."
Synopsis: Revealing your personality and passion - this is the key to building relationships and being successful in Social Media. In the past 4 years Dell has evolved its use of SM - from a core team focusing on experimentation and innovation, to a formalised strategy and structure for a broad team to engage. Today, customers connect directly with Dell - to discuss technology related topics with the employees, to discover exclusive offers, to connect directly on Dell news, and for customer service.
Kerry shares learnings from Dell’s communications team and best practices of integrating social media into an overall PR campaign.

Multinational SM campaigns
Marshall Sponder, SM Metrics, Web Analytics, and SEO expert, owner of, USA:
· "Multinational SM campaigns - How can multinational organizations create a social media campaign to target a number of markets?"
Synopsis: With the abundance of diverse Social Data shared in channels (blogs, message boards, forums, macromedia, photo sharing sites, online news sites) and social networks like Twitter and Facebook that are freely available for most users (and IT specialists, respectively) to cull, view, data mine and restructure, there inevitably appear opportunities to ascertain and discuss sentiments and viewpoints individuals and groups worldwide express online. In fact, there is so much un-tapped intelligence online that most corporations are having a difficult time coming to terms with how to cope with it (collect, organize, categorize and respond).
Online Conversations are taking place in a way and at a speed that were never registered before – about almost any crisis situation, brand, public figure or item of news. Today, more than ever, making the right response is crucial for marketers and communicators engaged in bigger/smaller marketing campaigns. In addition, social listening run by local/multinational companies presupposes examining properly, setting up the right strategies, and social media monitoring in order to effectively engage influencers and reach the target markets.
The presentation will focus on the processes of Setting up, Measuring, Optimizing, and Evaluating multinational/multilingual communications and listening campaigns via Social Media Monitoring platforms. A key point will be some practical techniques that would facilitate communication experts, equipped with the right tools and methodology, to efficiently marshal and analyze collected social data and summarize world opinion available online.
A specific demonstration will be given on the use of listening platforms like Radian6, Sysomos, BrandWatch and Intergrasco. The author will also share examples of how social media monitoring can be successfully employed to influence positive opinions and effective events.

How to educate staff on using SM in their free time safely, without detriment to the organisation?

16:00 - 16:30

Coffee break

16:30 - 18:00

Panel: Political communications
Moderator: Jolyon Kimble, Associate Director at APCO Worldwide, Brussels, Belgium

Strategic communications
Nicholas Labuschange, Advisor Strategic comms and Complex issues management at the Government of Dubai:
· "Strategic communications as a counter-terrorism tool."
Synopsis:The relationship between the media and terrorism is well documented and well understood. However, what is less well understood is the deliberate use of strategic communications as a tool in counter-terrorism.
The paper presents two broad perspectives: one from the point of view of using strategic communications in order to generate public support for counter-terrorism initiatives, and the other from the aspect of strategic communications as information warfare specifically aimed at disrupting and disorientating the enemy’s capacity to conduct terrorist operations.

Communication in politics
Jan Op Gen Oorth, Political Speechwriter/Public Relations and Comms Officer at the German Government:
· "The changing role of political communication."
Synopsis: Political communication is as old as political systems and political leadership. In the beginning, communication was mainly symbolic. Monuments were constructed to communicate the glory and power of kings and pharaohs. Putting an emperor's face on a coin of the Roman Empire or wearing a golden crown are other examples of this form of communication through symbols.
In principle, the main aim of any manner of political communication has always been creating and maintaining credibility and trust.
In the old days, reliable information was hard to come by, people were uneducated, the principles of democratic participation were still not practicised and therefore it was easy for leaders to fool and trick their citizens. Just some 500 years ago, the Italian political philosopher Niccolò Macchiavelli wrote in his well-known book, 'The Prince': "Men are so simple and yield so readily to the desires of the moment that he who will trick will always find another who will suffer to be tricked".
With increasing levels of education among average citizens and the triumph of democracy, political communication became more complex. Early mass media, such as the newspaper, radio and television became both a well-used ally of political communication and an opponent, depending on whether the journalists agreed or disagreed with the political message. Politics have always been present in the media; Government and its protagonists have always received a high level of attention. The mantra of political communication has been to place political messages actively, among other things as a means of influencing political processes, debates, discussions and criticism.
As in many other fields, such as the economic system and stock trading, for example, the internet has also changed the field of political communication. Today, political communication is an important resource for governments and political leaders in their quest for acceptance. Strangely, it has become more and more difficult to explain the necessity of political reforms and compromises to citizens and to convince them of the quality of political outcomes. It seems as though the ease of access to information on the internet evokes more and more disenchantment with politics and the established political structures. Just recently, the media organization wikileaks was able to challenge with its website publications, the reliability and credibility of the US-Government.
Political communication has to find new ways of reaching the public, in order to find greater acceptance for its goals and regain credibility. A promising tool for enhancing the communication between politics and society seems to be the new electronic instruments provided by Web 2.0. – an expression coined by Tim O'Reilly in 2001. These instruments, such as blogs, wikis, instant messaging, RSS-Feeds, audio and video podcasting and social media, can be used to promote direct participation by the members of society. Noticeably, Web 2.0 tools are able to meet changing societies, which are likely to be organized outside of traditional political structures, half way. Buzzwords such as "Cyberdemocracy", "Digital Democracy", "eGovernance", that fuel the expectations of politicians, political scientists and citizens, have been mushrooming since the turn of the millennium and the rise of Web 2.0.
All over the world, political leaders and governments are already using these tools. Some, such as the Anglos Saxon countries, are more progressive and keen on experimenting. The website of the British Prime Minister offers many options for direct interaction and participation. The American President, Barack Obama, is known worldwide to have won the presidential elections also thanks to his progressive use of social media communication platforms such as facebook. And yet, many political leaders and governments are uncomfortable using these options since they strive to control communication. They are afraid to lose control over communication and, as a result, abdicate sovereignty.
True enough, in politics, topics must be dealt with actively. A passive approach to handling topics has shown itself to be contra-productive in the past. It leaves too much room for speculation and political communication must be always prompt. Prompt communication requires the willingness of key persons to readjust their own agendas to meet the necessities dictated by the public and the media.
Undeniably, the new instruments of interaction and participation provided by Web 2.0 can be extremely beneficial for political leaders. They can be the cornerstone of a new means of political communication. They raise hopes and expectations that the internet might be not just a platform for the exchange of information but also a place where politics can be created jointly, in a real democratic experience. Indeed, with its more horizontal structures and its more democratic options for agenda-setting and information, the internet can become an arena for true democracy.

Publicity & politics
Sultan Al Bazie, CEO of Attariq Communications, Saudi Arabia, Chair of IPRA Gulf Chapter:
· "The E-Majlis: Saudi Ministers in Social Media."
Synopsis: The “Majlis” has always been a platform of government and political communication in the Arab history, where the chief of the tribe opens his house and makes himself accessible to any and every one of his subjects who wish to come and talk to him directly with their complaints, disputes and issues, and he acts as a judge, governor or army commander.
In modern Saudi Arabia this tradition continues as a daily practice and obligation for the king, the regional governors and the ministers, and the “Majlis” has become one of the government institutions, regardless that the name was given to other political bodies such as the Council of Ministers and al Shoura Council.
This paper reviews the experience of three ministers of the Saudi government who use new media as an extension to the direct communications method with citizens, realizing that they are dealing with a population of very young (65% under the age of 25 years), educated (low illiteracy rate) people who are open and constantly connected to the world (fast growing internet connections and very high mobile penetration).
The ministers of Justice - Dr. Mohamed Al Eissa, Culture and information - Dr. Abdulaziz Khuja, and Labor - Mr. Adel Fakih, are very active on facebook. Via the social media profiles they succeed in maintaining really effective communications with their audiences.

Government 2.0
Alyona Popova, enterprenuer, start-up businesses consultant, blogger on E-gov at
· "E-government as a stimulus for modern economics and development."
Synopsis: The mission of the e-government in Russia and other BRIC countries is to improve the state service in favour of citizens, to increase efficiency and effectiveness of the authorities and mechanisms of governance, and to provide savings to the taxpayer.
E-gov lies in the use of digital technologies to provide up-to-date and smooth public services, transactions, interactions. Therefore, e-gov seems to be a tool for progress by definition, yet, genuine adequacy of electronic public services’ supply actually depends on the effectiveness of these services.
Effectiveness hinges upon user adoption rates, efficiency, and impact on other channels (for example: reduction in paper-based forms). This results in specific line-of-business accountability and capability gaps, particularly in areas like Web Analytics and Usability.
To measure cost savings, agencies must:
1) identify investment impact in the public services which are being (or planned to be) modified, replaced, or retired;
2) develop baseline cost estimates regarding investments in innovations;
3) evaluate costs.

· From West to East: is the balance in communications leadership changing?

19:00 - 22:00

C4F ceremony and Gala Dinner – evening dress code (formal). Location: Belvedere Hotel

18th February 2011

9:00 - 9:01

Forum Day 2
Moderator: Hassan Al Saleh, Managing Partner of TRACCS-Oman

9:01 - 9:15

Overview: WEF 2011
Rui Martins
, Director Corporate Comms and Public Affairs at Dianova Portugal
· "What does WEF 2011 teach us?"
Synopsis: The 2011 WEF overarching topic has been “Shared norms for the new reality”, due to issues such as the increasingly interconnected world; the global economy rebound led by emergence economies of China, India and Russia and political stability; the consequences of social media on democracy 2.0, and the undermining of trust in leadership. Briefly, WEF lessons could be summarized into 3 main topics:
• The trust revealed in economic growth mainly of emerging economies (India GDP growth rate of 8,5%, China 10%) vis-à-vis the increase of the so-called South-South cooperation (Asia, Africa, Latin America and Middle East),  in contrast with the slow down of European growth (2,5% vs 3% US), government debt of the Eurozone and the consequent rise of food prices that are generating social unrest.
• A less economic inequality between countries of larger geographic dimension, through technology and demographics, though in contrast with a raising internal social inequalities between rich and poor.
• Policy priorities on the side of prevention such as childhood vaccination, exclusive breast feeding and chronic diseases (estimated to affect 60% of the global population = 4.2b people); tackling unemployment and rise of technology and its effects on how people and institutions relate and communicate with each other.
How can these issues and trends be capitalized under the financial communications and reputation management fields?
• As stated by the Canadian finance minister Jim Flaherty “we need to communicate better that the financial institutions globally are operating on a very different basis today, with higher capital and better regulated”
• Talent management, especially retention of best professionals, are critical to competitiveness, Internal Communication and Change Management being one of the main growth (7,3%) discipline areas horizon for 2013, as referred by the European Communication Monitor 2010.
• Coping with the digital evolution, linking strategy and communication, and dealing with sustainable development and social responsibility are simultaneously challenges and opportunities to be seized in this complex and interconnected world, particularly in a period when the corporate results are getting stronger.

9:15 - 10:30

Panel: Investor Relations Communications Strategies
Moderator: Andrew Izmailov, Risk management & Credit card portfolio, Scotiabank, Canada

Investment strategies & communication
Sascha Bibert, Head of IR at E.ON AG, Germany:
· "Managing investor expectations in times of significant change."
Synopsis: Based on the general role and function of investor relations, a consistent expectation management is seen as crucial in deriving a fair and sustainable valuation of a company. An adequate level of transparency as well as a constant dialogue with investors is required in order to reduce information asymmetries, which otherwise lead to a mismatch of expectations between the various internal and external stakeholders.
The presentation uses the economic crisis and the experience E.ON AG has made to highlight the challenges investor relations faces when the environment changes significantly and concludes with examples of how those can be addressed to realign the market’s view with the company’s outlook.

Corporate financial communications
Mikhail Kozhokin, Deputy President at VTB-24
· "Share Price Management."
• Overview of VTB24
• Retail Banking – History of VTB24
• Business Growth Supported and Customer Loyalty by Efficiency Improvement
• Rising Customer Satisfaction Contribute to Stable Growth
• Segment-oriented approach and the Internet
• Internet audience in Russia
• Internet Advertising in Russia
• Website Attendance Dynamics –
• VTB24 Expands Its Communications Via the Internet
• The Effectiveness of Internet Advertising Increases: The Example of Cash Loans
• VTB24 in Social Networks
• VTB24 Internet Banking
• Specifics of Russian financial internet development

Stock market prices
Andrew Izmailov, Risk management & Credit card portfolio, Scotiabank, Canada
· "Impact on stock prices: How to handle negative news."
Synopsis: Andrew Izmailov takes a closer look at a couple of cases in order to explain the way that certain companies handled negative news announcements and how that later affected the prices of shares.

· Question and Answer session with the audience.

10:30 - 11:00

Case study · Investor Relations · PR startegy for financial and crisis communications
Vittorio Amedeo Alessio, Executive Director, Media Relations (Italy) at ENEL, Italy:
"Nuclear renaissance and financial stability in the age of crisis."
- Enel Industrial Profile:
Italy's largest power company and Europe's second listed utility by installed capacity. An integrated player which produces, distributes and sells electricity and gas. The company is now present in 23 countries on 3 continents and has a generating capacity of approximately 95,000 MW, serving about 61 million customers.
- Enel Financial Profile:
Listed on the Milan stock exchange since 1999, the company has over 1.2 million retail and institutional investors. More than half of the free-float is held by institutional investors based in the U.S., UK, France, Italy, Germany. In 2009, Enel posted revenues of over 64 billion euros, EBITDA of more than 16 billion, and net income of 5.4 billion.
- Enel Strategy:
By gaining full control of Spain’s Endesa and a stronger presence on the Russian market in 2009, Enel completed its target growth through large acquisitions. In 2010 the company announced its new strategy aiming at:
1. Strengthening its leading position in the countries where it operates, taking an integrated approach along the entire value chain;
2. Consolidating and integrating assets internationally, spurring growth of strategic businesses despite the challenging global situation;
3. Pursuing financial stability by optimizing cash flows, implementing a non-core asset disposal plan, strengthening cash flow, optimizing working capital and seeking to streamline costs;
- Nuclear renaissance and financial stability:
Enel aims to build and operate four nuclear reactors in Italy, following the government plan to return to nuclear energy after it was banned in the 1987 referendum. Enel has also acquired 12.5% stake in France’s Flamanville EPR nuclear reactor, which is under construction. The company’s Slovak unit Slovenske Elektrarne is building two nuclear reactors in the Mohovce. These projects are consistent with Enel strategy; they are financially solid; they are environmentally friendly and they meet consumers’ energy needs.
- Key messages of Enel nuclear communication strategy:
1. Aiming at a balanced mix of energy sources, equally split between coal, nuclear, and renewable across continental Europe;
2. As a leading European nuclear player, Enel already owns and manages nuclear assets in the Slovak Republic and Spain, and building nuclear plants in France and the Slovak Republic;
3. Nuclear energy is cheap, competitive and it can be produced at stable costs;
4. Enel’s vertical consortium financial model assures investors of project sustainability: large industrial consumers and utilities share financial risk, while Enel maintains operational leadership;
5. Nuclear energy isn’t dependent on oil volatility and it’s key to the security of supply by allowing diversification;
6. Nucear energy is environmentally friendly, well-established, and safe, after as many as 12,000 reactor years of operating experience;

11:00 - 11:30

Keynote: Marketing, branding, and new media
Alexey Kostarev, CEO at i-Jet Media, San Francisco Bay Area, USA
"Let Them Play, Make Them Buy: Social Game Opportunities For Marketing Of Everything."
Synopsis: Myths have turned to reality. We are now eyewitnesses of how the whole scheme of whatever distribution in the world is changing. The tremendous growth in sociability over the Internet is offering new amazing opportunities to promote any good or service in social networks and web communities.
Social games have already made themselves known as a platform for selling both virtual and real products. Games make the purchasing process funny and thrilling. Moreover, they show you so much about your clients. That is why they impressively differ from billboards.
Join the forum to discuss opportunities and existing experience of marketing and advertising in the social game space!

11:00 - 12:30

Coffee break

12:00 - 12:30

Case study · External Comms · Communicating with governmental structures and public executive bodies
Louis de Schorlemer, ex-Director of Communications (Europe) at GALLUP, Belgium:
"Managing the private – public relationship. The role of communications."
Synopsis: Many private organisations are reluctant to deal with public entities or non-governmental bodies, the market running by its own rules and procedures. Working with public clients or non-governmental organisations often means working with open books, explaining the how-s and the why-s. In compensation, suppliers often benefit from a stable and foreseeable working relationship. Yet, to make the enterprise successful, a real long term vision is needed.
EuropArea is a shared platform for hospitality and entertainment, accommodating multiple national Olympic Committee houses in the Olympic City for the duration of the Games. The setup provides a unique continent-wide marketing opportunity around the athletic performance, master coordination of onsite logistics and optimal cost management for each participating entity.
London 2012, Sochi 2014, Rio de Janeiro 2016, EuropArea is paving the way for an entire continent to highlight its multiple identities and yet, unite peacefully to the benefit of all stakeholders. External communications’ role is to generate positive attitude and energy, to convey a message of excellence for product and service, and to establish EuropArea as a partner and trusted advisor to each of its stakeholders.
This case study offers a review of the communications strategy and aims.

12:30 - 14:00

Panel: New challenges to the communications profession
Moderator: Hassan Al Saleh, Managing Partner of TRACCS-Oman

Mohamed Al Ayed, Founder, president and CEO of Trans-Arabian Creative Comms Services:
"Regulating & professionalizing the industry: How to regard PR as equal to Law/Accountancy?"
I. A Thorough Perspective
· Where is the public relations industry today?
· What is the potential of this industry - so vibrant, yet in many occasions misunderstood, misinterpreted, and misrepresented?
· Who is responsible for regulating and professionalizing the industry?
· R & P: Stating the case of further regulation of the PR industry and its need for professionalization.
II. Regulating the Industry
a) Regulating implies Rules – yet, rules with minimum restrictions; several areas of PR industry that need regulation.
b) The four “R”s in developing a process for regulation based on ethical practices, by applying the following procedures:
· Relate – identify areas that need regulation;
· Review – research existing regulations to avoid overlap;
· Reinvent – break new ground and set new benchmarks;
· Receive – lobby to get new regulations received by authorities and accepted by industry;
III. Professionalizing the Industry
a) Professionalizing implies People – and that means training.
b) The four “P”s  in applying the following procedures into the PR industry segments:
· Perceive – analyze and assess training needs;
· Pinpoint – identify strengths and weaknesses;
· Personalize – relate training to specific industry segments such as media relations, client relations, creative communications and press release writing;
· Propagate – implement training programs and propagate within the industry;

Zhonghua Jiao, co-Founder & Regional Director for Business Development at Apperviste Ltd, Hong Kong:
"Return on Investment: how do we prove the worth of PR?"
PR vs Marketing
A. Long-term vs One Shot
1. case: web 2.0 cosmetics trial & review website;
2. case: brands which announce that they never do advertisement;
B. Daily PR vs Crisis PR
1. case: poisoned milk powder in China, SK-II
Traditional PR vs Digital PR
A. General evaluation method of traditional PR
B. The differences between traditional PR and digital PR
1. effect differences;
2. evaluation differences;

Evgeny Boychenko, General Director of UFK company, Russian Federation
"Values. Images. Symbols. The Generation gap."
Synopsis: The presenter discusses the psychological aspect of online communications, the different roles taken by the social media consumers, and how do they affect the real offline communication.

14:00 - 15:00


15:00 - 16:00

Keynote: Communications in Mergers & Acquisitions
Gary Grates, President, Global Managing Director at Edelman Change & Employee Engagement, USA:
"Reputation Management in M&A."
Synopsis: Merging or integrating two companies is not an easy task. Industry sources consistently estimate that 50 to 90 percent of all mergers fail to realize their potential value. Experts frequently point to challenges with leadership alignment on priorities, clarity of vision, change management and cultural disconnects as sources of lower than expected performance. Furthermore, organizational reputation can suffer before, during and after an M&A resulting in performance paralysis, consumer and employee confusion, and negative public goodwill.
Strategic organizational communication can help mitigate these factors and position companies to thrive during the transition. We recommend taking a 360-degree approach to communications and change management with the goal of preparing the combining workforces from the inside out to engage with each other and with external stakeholders.
M&A-related change is also a prime opportunity to shore up communications infrastructure and systems. This presentation focuses on three specific areas:
1. Organizing communications as part of the M&A integration process;
2. Behavioral realities to factor in all messaging and decision-making;
3. Maintaining an holistic approach - internal and external - to protect reputation;

16:00 - 16:30

Blind discussion: "Egypt - the modern revolution"
ModeratorJolyon Kimble, Associate Director at APCO Worldwide, Brussels, Belgium
Discussion on a topic selected just a week before the actual event. Sharing of ideas on how the situation could be improved. Opinion on the current state of the relationship between government and society in Egypt and the Middle East - viewed through the prism of communications, with reference to the crucial role of the new/social media channels.
Invited Participants: Nicholas Labuschange, Advisor Strategic comms and Complex issues management at the Government of Dubai, Sultan Al Bazie, CEO of Attariq Communications, Saudi Arabia, Chair of IPRA Gulf Chapter

16:30 - 17:00

Coffee break

17:00 - 18:00

Panel: Crisis communications
Moderator: Roland Binz, VP of Swiss Association for Crisis Comms, owner of, CH

Litigation PR
Spencer Baretz, Hellerman Baretz Communications, USA:
"Litigation PR, the next wave of corporate and crisis comms: essential points and considerations."
Synopsis: Given today's global business environment, lightning-quick communications, and the rise of online news outlets and social media usage, news of a corporate public relations crisis can hopscotch from one continent to another in minutes, causing lasting harm across the globe without careful management. Indeed, globalization means that PR crises with international implications are becoming the norm— rather than the exception—calling for a new kind of approach to communications: litigation PR.
Spencer Baretz covers the following topics in his presentation:
• What is Litigation PR?
• Why is Litigation PR Used?
• When do you need Litigation PR?
• Why is Litigation PR so important in Cross-border Cases?
• How Does Litigation PR work, and what are the phases of the process?
• How Does Litigation PR work in the real world? (Recent Case Studies)

Crisis management
Ansgar Thiessen, Swiss Association for Crisis Comms, Media & Comms Studies at Fribourg University, CH:
"Crisis management in media society: Communicative integrity as the key to safeguarding reputation."
Synopsis: Building and loosing reputation in today's media society heavily depends on mediated communication. Hence, crisis communication is a crucial driver of reputation safeguarding in times of crisis. Over the past few years, academic research has been systematizing crisis communication, explicitly refraining from any case study analysis.
The presentation aims at outlining cutting edge insights into crisis communication research, transferring the new approaches to practical strategic crisis communication management:
Part a: Classification of crisis situations - how academia helps to bring order into a chaotic situation;
Part b: New frontiers for crisis communication - the 7 characteristics of post modern crisis communication;
Part c: Loosing credibility and reputation - communicative integrity as the foundation for crisis communication;
Part d: So what? - Exploring the effects of crisis communication response strategies on reputation safeguarding;

18:00 - 18:30

Keynote: Reputation management - a matter of trust
Matthew Bostrom, Senior Vice President & Director of APCO Online, UK:
"The six things that drive your online reputation."
Synopsis: In the current communications environment, where companies' reputations rise and fall quickly based on consumer perceptions and preference, online engagement is increasingly important to defining success. But what drives that online engagement? Research shows that there are six key factors that drive online reputation whether it is for a company, organisation or government. This presentation examines each of those factors, and provide real-life examples of how they work together in defining an organisation's overall reputation.

18:30 - 19:00

Conclusions & observations: organizers, partners, speakers, VIP guests

19:00 - 20:00

Closing Buffet, location: Davos Congress Centre

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