The Reputation in Oil, Gas and Mining conference delves into the most challenging, interesting and insightful topics within the extractive industry. Past speakers represent some of the most influential communicators and the most groundbreaking companies in the industry. Our list of confirmed speakers is below. We are working to bring you the best programme possible, so more speakers will be added as their sessions are confirmed.

Confirmed speakers

Wael Allahou, corporate communications executive, EQUATE Petrochemical Co.

Brand communication veteran Wael brings more than 12 years’ experience to his position at EQUATE Petrochemical Co. – one of the world's largest and most reputable names in the petrochemical industry. Wael is responsible for employee engagement around the brand and for meeting the company's expectations and business objectives.Prior to EQUATE Petrochemical Co. Wael was the head of corporate communications for The International Investor, one of the leading Islamic finance companies in the MENA region.  Before then he was the regional business director for Bates PanGulf, a WPP company.


Rishi Bhattacharya, managing director energy & industrials, Edelman

Rishi heads Edelman’s energy & industrials group in Europe and CIS. Based in London, Rishi joined Edelman in 2006 and has worked on many high profile international clients and also leads media and crisis media training courses in the region and beyond. As ITV Granada’s political correspondent, he was based at Westminster for seven years. As well as reporting on ITV Granada’s flagship nightly news programme and weekly current affairs show, he has also appeared as a political pundit on ITN.



Robert Blood, founder and managing director, SIGWATCH

Robert founded and leads SIGWATCH, the world's leading research and strategy consultancy on NGOs and campaigning groups. SIGWATCH works closely with multinationals and industry associations, including many major IOCs, analysing and predicting activist strategies and tactics, and advising on the increasingly demanded area of NGO engagement and partnership. He is a visiting lecturer to undergraduate and postgraduate courses at several UK universities and a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Communications Management. He has a degree in physics from Durham University, England.



Stuart Bruce, PR and corporate communications consultant, Stuart Bruce Associates

Stuart is an independent communications adviser and trainer who has worked all around the world advising companies, governments and not-for-profit organisations. . He works with both in-house public relations and corporate communications teams and provides training, support and mentoring to PR and public affairs consultancies and agencies. He has advised and trained PR professionals from hundreds of companies around the world including Kuwait National Petroleum Company, ExxonMobil, Total, Du Pont, Bayer and Diesel.



Brittany Golob, editor, Communicate magazine

Brittany is the editor of Communicate magazine, the leading title for stakeholder relations. She writes about internal communications, branding, digital, CSR and investor relations. Brittany manages #CommsChat, the weekly conversation about communications held on Twitter. She has reported on various international and nation-wide events within the British and European creative and communications industries. Brittany holds a BA in history from Yale University and an MA in war studies from King's College London



Andrew Griffin, chief executive, Regester Larkin

Andrew is the chief executive of the international specialist reputation strategy and crisis management consultancy, Regester Larkin. For nearly 20 years, he has advised some of the world’s largest and most respected companies, helping them factor reputation into their decision making, resolve controversial issues and respond to crises. His energy and extractives experience covers upstream and downstream including LNG, renewables, trading, shipping, chemicals and retail, as well as mining. Andrew is an author, commentator and speaker.



Laura Haynes, chairman, Appetite

Laura is the founder and Chair of Appetite, the leading strategic brand and communications consultancy. She has been the driving force that has brought the company international recognition as creators of powerful brand solutions and communications across a diverse portfolio of clients in Europe and North America. Laura’s experience includes over 25 years helping organisations to embrace change, build and enhance culture and expand potential through a unique approach that fuses strategic planning, innovation and intelligent design. She is a Trustee Board Director of UN Women UK and Senator and past Chair of Alberta Ballet (Canada).



Ian Louden, head of brand, ArcelorMittal

Ian is head of brand, Worldwide, and a general manager of ArcelorMittal. His principal responsibility is to build and maintain the ArcelorMittal brand, recognising that ‘brand’ is in fact the concept of what ArcelorMittal stands for in stakeholder’s minds, and thus is key to influencing preference.  Involved in ArcelorMittal’s sponsorship of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, he is currently launching a community engagement programme in East London centred around the ArcelorMittal Orbit. Prior to joining the company he was a brand consultant, working most recently with the international brand consultancy FutureBrand.



Dr Carole Nakhle, energy economist, Surrey Energy Economics Centre

In addition to being the director of Crystol Energy (UK based), Dr Carole acts as Economic Advisor for the Commonwealth Secretariat, External Expert for the Fiscal Affairs department at the IMF, and Consultant for the World Bank. She is also Associate Lecturer in Energy Economics at the University of Surrey (UK), Research Fellow at the Lebanese Centre for Policy Studies (Beirut) and Scholar at the Carnegie Middle East Centre. She is the author of two books: ‘Petroleum taxation: sharing the oil wealth’ (2008) and ‘Out of the energy labyrinth’ (2007). The latter is co-authored with Lord Howell.



Ashley Shackleton, external affairs Officer, Oil & Gas UK
Ashley joined Oil & Gas UK in 2012 to help foster a better relationship between the UK offshore oil and gas industry and Government and regulators in Westminster, Holyrood and Brussels. Notable recent successes have been the UK Government’s support for the Wood review recommendations, and the commitment to review the oil and gas fiscal regime. Prior to joining Oil & Gas UK, he has held political and corporate roles in Parliament, Conservative Central Office and Goldman Sachs.


Chris Scott, partner, Schillings

Drawing on both media and legal experience, Chris helps businesses identify and use the law to deal with threats to corporate reputation and the privacy of senior executives and investors. His clients include mining, commodities and energy clients, private investment businesses and several FTSE 100 companies. Chris is an experienced libel and privacy litigator, acting in a number of high profile media disputes and reputation sensitive disputes.


Jem Thomas, head of operation, Albany Associate

Jem is  Albany’s head of operation and also communications consultant to the UK government’s Stabilisation Unit. His experience and knowledge have resulted in his focus on public diplomacy, media relations, strategic communications, issue and crisis management, with a specific interest in communication aspects of foreign policy and post-conflict reconstruction. Jem had a successful career in the Royal Navy, specialising in intelligence and then media and public relations.


Michelle Witton, compliance lawyer, ENRC

Michelle is a UK and Australian qualified compliance lawyer, working for Eurasian Natural Resources Corp (ENRC). Michelle has extensive experience in corporate ethics and compliance in the mining industry, previously being responsible for creating and rolling out international corporate ethics & values programmes at Anglo American and The Advanced Metallurgical Group N.V. She is an anti-corruption panel consultant for Transparency International.