DUBAI — The annual ICCO Global Summit takes place this week, with a two-day event in Dubai on the theme of ‘Being the Change’, featuring senior in-house and agency leaders from around the world.

Confirmed speakers on day one of the conference programme, focusing on people and purpose, include Weber Shandwick CEO Gail Heimann, Jo-ann Robertson, Ketchum’s president of global markets, Microsoft Middle East and Africa communications director Rachel Dunne, Omnicom Italy general manager Massimo Moriconi, M3 Communications CEO Maxim Behar, Ruder Finn India MD Atul Sharma, The Purpose Room founder Sudha Singh and BCW’s chief innovation officer Chad Latz. Also on day one, Global Women in PR will unveil the results of its annual GWPR Index.

On day two, with a focus on technology and creativity, speakers include AI specialist Katie King, Carma’s Europe and Americas CEO Richard Bagnall, WE Communications Africa MD Sarah Gooding, Wadds Inc managing partner Stephen Waddington, and Standard Chartered head of communications for Africa and the Middle East, Benkhadra, Wasim. Day two will also include the results of this year’s Arab Youth Survey, presented by Sunil John, Middle East president of Asda’a BCW.

ICCO president Nitin Mantri, CEO of Avian WE (pictured, speaking at last year’s conference in London) said the event would “Capture a shift in the role of PR firms advising clients not just to ‘say the right thing’, but to ‘do the right thing’ too. The summit will confront head first communications and PR challenges of this decade, including: attracting and supporting the talent and skills required for modern communications; battling misinformation; public media education; and technological challenges that are all constantly evolving.

"Alongside these issues, we will explore PR’s role in communicating complex and challenging topics to the public, through traditional and digital media.”

The summit is sponsored by 3Gem, Muck Rack, Standard Chartered, APCO Worldwide, BCW, Carma, Dubai Tourism, Emirates, Hill+Knowlton Strategies, Weber Shandwick and Talkwalker. PRovoke Media is the media partner for the event.

ICCO’s board will hold its annual meeting in advance of the summit, with Mantri handing over after three years to new president Grzegorz Szczepanski, vice president and CEO of Hill+Knowlton Strategies in Poland.

The full agenda for the summit, to be held on October 12 and 13, can be found here.