The 3-day conference is a high-level forum designed for senior practitioners to address the critical issues facing the profession

25 October, 2021 (ET)


08:50 - 09:00
Welcome & Introduction
09:00 - 10:00
Back To The Office? Not So Fast..

People costs account for more than half of almost any agency’s revenue. During the pandemic, evet agency learned how to deliver services with its people working remotely. Now, agency leaders face possibly the biggest choice they will make for many years: work from home? Return to the office? Or adopt a hybrid system?

Julian Boulding, Founder of thenetworkone, will share new research from 170 agencies worldwide, on what is actually happening in offices around the world; and provide a digest of academic and other learnings on best practices, past and present.

Then, a panel of independent PR agency owners and CEO’s from Canada, USA, UK and Germany will share their individual experiences of the different ways of working they have now adopted, with practical applications which every PR agency professional can learn from. 

11:00 - 11:15
11:15 - 12:15
The DEI Journey: Innovative and Authentic Actions Take Center Stage

What steps should PR firms be taking to cultivate diverse workplaces where individuals from all different backgrounds and experiences have equitable opportunities to strive, achieve, and feel valued each day?

Davis+Gilbert will announce its latest annual research and moderate a distinguished panel of agency leaders as they share their successes in incorporating DEI strategies. The panelists will provide practical insights into their innovative and authentic efforts impacting recruitment, retention, corporate social responsibility, pro bono and general approaches to client business. The panel will not only discuss the positive impact their efforts have had on organization culture and performance, but also how utilizing these strategies helps to minimize legal risk of workplace discrimination claims.

12:15 - 12:20

26 October, 2021 (ET)


08:50 - 09:00
Welcome & Introduction
09:00 - 09:45
Moving the needle on health equity: What role can brands play in closing the gap Keynote

As the world emerges from the global pandemic, the exposed inequities in the way we experience health information, treatment, and related products, services and support remain. As health has become a critical central business challenge for just about every industry and sector, consumers and other stakeholders are increasingly calling for brand action. Now more than ever, through education, awareness and in launching products or services with equity in mind – organizations and brands who are willing to rise to the challenge to authentically engage in finding solutions and take action – have the opportunity to progress issues of health equity and build value in powerful ways.

Join Aaron Radelet, Senior Vice President, Global Chief Communications Officer at Walgreens Boots Alliance and Dana J. Bolden, Senior Vice President, Global Corporate Affairs for GSK Consumer Health Division, for a conversation moderated by Hill+Knowlton Strategies that will look at the role brand communications can play in driving progress to close health equity gaps.

Hill+Knowlton Strategies
09:45 - 10:15
EcoHealth: How Communications Must Convey that a Healthy Planet Equates to Healthy People
Public health, public markets and the environment are inextricably intertwined.  Our planet provides essential resources for the economy, but is also our collective dump for emissions and waste.  The 2021 UN Report on Climate Change is a clarion call for companies to develop operating and communications strategies that address climate change. Importantly, communications professionals can elevate the “ecohealth” connection in service to a healthier planet filled with healthier people despite misinformation, skepticism and politicization of science. 
Finn Partners
10:15 - 10:45
Communicating Nuance During Difficult Times (Like a Pandemic)
When faced with a once in a lifetime global pandemic, there is no playbook, especially when you work in health care. Whether you are an infectious disease doctor or the group president of a firm that works with many of the top healthcare companies in the world, you have to rely on experience and your gut. That means communicating with empathy and nuance while providing context about some very difficult topics. During their session, executive editor of PRovoke Media, Aarti Shah will sit down with Monica Gandhi, MD, MPH of UCSF and Emily Poe, Group President of global health innovation company, Real Chemistry, to talk about what worked and what didn’t when it came to communicating to patients and clients during the pandemic.
Real Chemistry
10:45 - 11:00
11:00 - 11:20
Understanding the New Employee Mindset: Moving From the Great Resignation to the Great Stay

The employer and employee dynamic has gone through a massive upheaval with both sides navigating a new workplace era. According to a new Zeno Group global study of employees, there is a new mindset about the expectations of what a job should deliver, and what being a good employer means. And despite a tight labor market, businesses are still underestimating the willingness for even the happiest employees to leave. Join us as we unpack the future of employee engagement, the forces behind the new employee mindset and how communications will be central in retaining and attracting employees.

Zeno Group
11:20 - 11:40
Data as Superpower: How to Transform and Elevate the Communications Function

The amount of data generated last year was estimated to be the equivalent of each human on earth generating 1.7 MB of data -- per second. As data about target audiences continues to grow at an explosive rate in 2022 and beyond, it poses a real opportunity to transform and elevate the communications function within the organization and the larger space shared with advertising and marketing. Explore the shifting role of data analytics in communications, the possibilities emerging from tying earned media to business outcomes, and the type of structural and mindset shifts communicators need to make to adopt more data-driven approaches to demonstrating business value and alignment with their organization’s overarching business goals.

Omnicom PR Group
11:40 - 12:00
A Conversation On Media Innovation With Quartz’s Daniel Alvarez
12:00 - 12:05

27 October, 2021 (ET)


08:20 - 08:30
Welcome & Introduction
08:30 - 09:00
From Communications to Business Leadership
The leap from communications to business leadership remains a rare one within major multinational corporations, but it is one that Jackson Jeyanayagam undertook when he became VP and GM of Clorox's DTC business in 2019. In conversation with PRovoke Media editor-in-chief Arun Sudhaman, Jeyanayagam breaks down the lessons he has learned along the way, including the qualities that communicators can bring to these roles, and the challenges they need to overcome if they are to make a similar shift. 
09:00 - 09:30
Home Country as Stakeholder: Navigating the Collision of Business and Geopolitics

Amid the rising discussion of stakeholder capitalism, new research reveals a critical yet largely unspoken business stakeholder in today’s new geopolitical era: home country.

This session will explore the new reputational risks and requirements for business leaders as competing national priorities fracture a global economy and pressure multinational companies to navigate diverging values and interests across their global footprint.

Join Weber Shandwick Executive Vice President of Geopolitical Strategy & Risk Michelle Giuda in conversation with Matt Swift, Co-Founder and CEO of Concordia, and Jay Wang, Director of USC’s Center on Public Diplomacy as they discuss new approaches for organizations to navigate and succeed amid the collision of business and geopolitics. 

Weber Shandwick
09:30 - 10:00
Data and Decision-Making: Keys to Effective Crisis Management

Though the concept of using data to guide communications strategy is not new, our ability to mine the right data—and to do so in real time—is. A crisis can unfold in the time it takes to click “re-tweet,” which is why the most valuable data sources to a PR professional are those that can gather and deliver intelligence as quickly as possible. Thanks to a number of new data solutions in the market today, we are now able to see things like the rate at which a negative story is traveling or whether a statistically significant proportion of consumers is aware of the problem impacting your client. But can having this intelligence really help you manage a crisis more effectively? What experience, expertise and resources do you need to turn data insights into effective crisis management decisions? Join leading data and PR experts as they discuss the opportunities for and limits of data as it applies to crisis management.

10:00 - 10:15
10:15 - 10:35
Navigating Tech’s Reputational Chasm Between the Love for Products and the Growing Concern About Business Practices

While technology was pivotal during the COVID lockdown for commerce, education, healthcare, personal connections and more, the reputation of tech companies did not see a boost. Findings from Ketchum’s soon to be released 2021 Social Permission and Technology Study shows that in fact there is a reputational chasm between positive attitudes toward technology and a growing skepticism of technology companies’ business practices. And now, with heightened media attention on the impact technology has on mental health, there are even more serious issues companies must address to protect their reputation while being responsible corporate citizens. In this session, Ketchum’s Managing Director of Technology, Lisa Sullivan will discuss with a panel of experts how communicators should navigate this pivotal moment for the tech sector and all who use technology as part of their business strategies.

10:35 - 11:05
The Future of Corporate Comms and the Shift from Cost Center to Value Creator

Today's executives are navigating a myriad of challenges while creating resilient companies that can thrive in any economic, social, political, or technological environment. Accordingly, there is no established playbook for the myriad of issues that corporate communications teams are now grappling with as they seek to navigate changing stakeholder expectations while advancing the business interests of their companies.

Edelman’s recent research reveals that the role of the corporate communicator has forever changed. Given the new expectations and rules of engagement, the role of communications has become more materially important to CEOs, Boards and the C-Suite. There has never been a more inspiring time to be a part of the profession.

Join Provoke Media’s Executive Editor Aarti Shah as she moderates a conversation with Jim O’Leary, Edelman’s U.S. Chief Operating Officer & Corporate Affairs Practice Chair and Adam Collins, Chief Communications and Corporate Affairs Officer for the Molson Coors Beverage Company. They’ll discuss recommendations to ensure your teams are designed to meet the new demands of communications.


11:05 - 11:25
Neurodiversity: From Kryptonite To Superpower
From autism to ADHD to dyslexia, neurodiversity may be the least-discussed aspect of DE&I in communications, but it’s time to end the stigma around people whose brains are “wired differently”. In this session, PRovoke Media’s EMEA editor, Maja Pawinska Sims, talks to Professor Jessica Nerren, a former PR and marketing director who is now a public relations lecturer at California State University, San Bernadino, about how to shift perceptions of neurodivergent PR practitioners from ‘deficit’ to ‘asset’.
11:25 - 11:30

27 October, 2021 (ET)


16:00 - 17:30
Global SABRE Awards

The Global SABRE Awards recognize the 40 best public relations programs of the past year, from around the globe, selected from among the winners of our regional competitions. Also honored are PRovoke Media's 2021 Global Agencies of the Year. Due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, we will host the Global SABRE Awards virtually for the second time.

The SABRE Awards--which include competitions for the North America, Latin America, Africa, South-East Asia, EMEA and the Asia-Pacific regions--attract more than 5,000 entries from more than 60 countries, so that the winners of the Global awards are the elite of the elite, representing best practice in categories ranging from social media to social responsibility, from public affairs to employee communications.

The 40 campaigns will be counted down during the virtual Global SABRE Awards ceremony, which will reveal the top-ranked PR campaign in the world. Also celebrated will be PRovoke Media’s 2021 Global Agencies of the Year.

Venue: Virtual
Date: 27 October
Time: 4:00pm ET. We will open the broadcast at 3:30pm

Global SABRE Award finalists

Global Agency of the Year finalists