Plenary Speakers

Announcing our IFC Online Plenary Line-up

We are thrilled to announce the #IFCOnline headline speakers who will inspire and challenge us during our daily opening plenaries. Taking place each day of #IFCOnline at 11AM EST/3PM BST/4PM CET/7.30PM IST, we are excited to introduce: 


Tuesday 13 October

Peter Pomerantsev
Visiting Senior Fellow, Institute of Global Affairs, London School of Economics (UK) 

Peter Pomerantsev is a Visiting Senior Fellow at the Institute of Global Affairs at the London School of Economics, an author and TV producer. He specialises on propaganda and media development, and has testified on the challenges of information war to the US House Foreign Affairs Committee, US Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the UK Parliament Defense Select Committee. He writes for publications including the Financial Times, London Review of Books, Politico, Atlantic and many others. His book on Russian propaganda, Nothing is True and Everything is Possible, won the 2016 Royal Society of Literature Ondaatje Prize, was nominated for the Samuel Johnson, Guardian First Book, Pushkin House and Gordon Burns Prizes. It has been translated into over a dozen languages. His latest book This is Not Propaganda: Adventures in the War Against Reality, published in Summer 2019, explores global attempts to destabilise democracies through the extremisms of social media. It was named Book of the Week by the Times, Observer and Evening Standard. 


Wednesday 14 October

Jayne George

Director of Fundraising, Marketing and Media, RNLI (UK) 

Jayne is an experienced and successful charity leader in the UK and has held senior positions at Save the Children and The Children’s Society. She was also Director of Fundraising and Communications at Guide Dogs and is now Director of Fundraising, Marketing and Media for RNLI. She is an active and passionate volunteer and campaigner. Jayne is the Chair of Trustees for The Murray Parish Trust, a successful, small charity that has just closed a £2m appeal to build a new paediatric intensive care unit at Southampton Hospital as well as a Trustee for Make-A-Wish, a charity which was formed to grant life-changing wishes to children with critical illnesses in the UK. She supports causes close to her heart and has completed several challenges to raise money and inspire others to do the same. 


Thursday 15 October

Janaya ‘Future’ Khan

Storyteller, Futurist, Activist (USA) 

Janaya is a black, queer, gender non-conforming activist, Afrofuturist, storyteller, boxer and social-justice educator. They are the International Ambassador for Black Lives Matter, co-founder of Black Lives Matter Toronto and the former Campaign Director at Color of Change. Khan has become a leading voice in the global crusade demanding social transformation, justice and equality, with a mission to produce work that is a clarifying force. Khan’s work encourages thought leadership, narrative intervention and bridge building. Through this passion, they hope to encourage people to use their words as tools and a lens through which they can orient themselves. Khan’s “Sunday Sermon” on Instagram Live is a weekly discourse in which they discuss various topics, from Black Lives Matter to finding one’s voice and more. An accomplished lecturer and author, Khan has spoken to a vast array of College audiences, including Cornell, Duke, Smith and University of Toronto. Khan’s dedication and bold approach to storytelling has created opportunities to contribute to academic and frontline community dialogue, engaging audiences on the global impacts of the Black Lives Matter movement. Khan’s writing has been featured across a variety of outlets including Vogue, CNN, The Cut, The Root, Huffington Post and Al Jazeera. Originally from Toronto, Canada, Khan received their Bachelor of Arts, with honors, in English Language and Literature from York University. Khan currently resides in Los Angeles.


Friday 16 October

Muhammad Yunus

Founder, The Grameen Bank, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate (Bangladesh)

Recipient of the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize, Professor Muhammad Yunus is internationally recognised for his work in poverty alleviation and the empowerment of women. Professor Yunus has successfully melded capitalism with social responsibility to create the Grameen Bank, a microcredit institution committed to providing small amounts of working capital to the poor for self-employment. From its origins as an action-research project in 1976, Grameen Bank has grown to provide collateral-free loans to 7.5 million clients, 97% of whom are women, in more than 82,072 villages in Bangladesh. Over the past two decades, Grameen Bank has loaned out over 6.5 billion dollars to the poorest of the poor, while maintaining a repayment rate consistently above 98%. The innovative approach to poverty alleviation pioneered by Professor Yunus in a small village in Bangladesh has inspired a global microcredit movement reaching out to millions of poor women from rural South Africa to inner city Chicago. 

From 1993 to 1995, Professor Yunus was a member of the International Advisory Group for the Fourth World Conference on Women, a post to which he was appointed by the UN secretary general. He has served on the Global Commission of Women’s Health, the Advisory Council for Sustainable Economic Development and the UN Expert Group on Women and Finance. He is a member of the board of the United Nations Foundation.  In addition to the Nobel Peace Prize, Professor Yunus is the recipient of numerous other international awards for his ideas and endeavours, including the Mohamed Shabdeen Award for Science (1993); Humanitarian Award (1993); World Food Prize (1994); King Hussein Humanitarian Leadership Award (2000); Franklin D. Roosevelt Freedom Award (2006) and the Seoul Peace Prize (2006).