Moderation / Presentation
Ms Czymoch is an experienced international moderator, presenter, facilitator and media coach, who is passionate about spreading solutions for the future of humanity and life on this planet. Conny´s core topics comprise sustainability, the global goals, resource efficiency, mobility, climate action, agriculture and food, development cooperation, the labour market, international supply chains, corporate responsibility, human rights and human trafficking.
With her long journalistic career in print, radio and TV, today, Conny moderates international conferences, live on stage and / or digitally, equally in English and German. Regular customers include almost all German Federal Ministries, the ILO, OECD, UN, World Bank, EU, foundations and think tanks, NGOs, as well as business organisations.
Speaker*innen / Speakers
Graduated in Economics and Banking Sciences, she specialized as an expert in the business system and was accredited as skilled professional certified for design, management and reporting of European projects, working for public and private bodies.
From 2007 to 2017, she worked as an expert in the management of economic resources, for monitoring, reporting and information systems of training projects managed by the Centre for Employment, Guidance and Training.
In 2018, she was elected as a Senator of the Italian Parliament, becoming a member of the Budget Committee and of the Commission of Inquiry on Banking and Financial System.
In 2021 she has been elected State Secretary of Ministry of Labour with responsibility for Vocational Education and Training, Welfare and Immigration Policy.
For a decade (since 2012), Peter has led WBCSD based in Geneva, Switzerland. WBCSD is the premier global, CEO-led community of over 200 of the world’s leading sustainable businesses working collectively to accelerate the system transformations needed for a net zero, nature positive, and more equitable future.
Peter is a distinguished business leader who, until June 2011, served as CFO and then CEO of TNT NV, the global transport and logistics company. He has been recipient of the Clinton Global Citizen Award (2009) and the Sustainability Leadership Award (2010). Peter serves as a member of several corporate sustainability advisory boards.
He received the royal order Officer of the Order of Orange-Nassau in 2018 in recognition of his long-lasting commitment to engaging business in tackling global sustainability issues.
Nanda Bergstein is the Director for Corporate Responsibility at the German Coffee and Consumer Goods retailer Tchibo, one of the pioneering companies on sustainability in the mainstream. Since 2018 she has been leading the company’s transition towards becoming a fully sustainable business. She has held several sustainability and human rights related roles at Tchibo over the past 14 years.
In her work, Nanda focuses on building impactful and scalable solutions at the nexus of business, sustainability and human rights, from the farm to the product. Amongst others, she has been deeply involved in building collaborative sector-wide initiatives for change (e.g. the Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety or ACT on Living Wages), and seeking out innovations from the digital realm to support more impact.
Nanda holds a B.A. in International Relations (Technical University of Dresden) and a Master’s Degree in Gender, Development and Globalisation from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).
Nicola Bonucci is a Partner in the Global Trade and Investigations & White Collar Defense practices at Paul Hastings, based in the Paris office. Previously, Mr. Bonucci served as the Director for Legal Affairs for the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). He has been one of the most prominent international voices in anti-corruption and anti-bribery, having led the OECD’s efforts in this area for more than two decades. In advising clients, Mr. Bonucci draws on his international experience with compliance programs, investigations, and anti-corruption issues across various legal systems, as well as his deep knowledge of intergovernmental and multilateral processes.
As the Senior Director for Social Compliance at the Fair Labor Association, Renee Bowers oversees factory-level monitoring and company accreditation and leads FLA’s program on fair compensation and living wage.
Prior to joining FLA, she worked with stakeholders to develop and uphold criteria for fair wages, sustainable purchasing practices, and ethical production as the executive director of the Fair Trade Federation, an association of businesses dedicated to supporting artisan and farmer communities through fair trade practices.
Renee spent seven years working with producers in India and Sri Lanka to build business capacity and ensure sustainable practices on the ground as a fair trade buyer.
She was a senior research fellow with the American Institute of Indian Studies. She holds a graduate certificate in Socially Responsible and Sustainable Apparel Business from the University of Delaware.
Sharan Burrow is the General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation, representing 200 million workers in 163 countries and territories with 332 national affiliates. The ITUC’s primary mission is the promotion and defense of workers’ rights and interests, through international cooperation between trade unions, global campaigning, and advocacy within the major global institutions.
Griet Cattaert is the Head of Labour Rights at the UN Global Compact, the United Nations’ corporate sustainability initiative. In this capacity, she leads the UN Global Compact’s engagement with businesses, business associations, civil society and the UN system to promote the Global Compact’s labour Principles with a view to advance decent work for all and enhance the corporate responsibility to respect and support labour rights at the global and local level.
Ms. Cattaert started in this position in May 2019 as a secondment from the International Labour Organization. She started working with the ILO in 2006, being based in Geneva, New York and Brussels. Her expertise is on social protection, migration and the promotion of labour standards and principles in the corporate world. Between 2016 and 2018 she worked as labour specialist for the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for International Migration to support the negotiation process that had led to the adoption of a Global Compact for Migration.
Ms. Cattaert holds a master’s degree in Economics - Business Administration from the University of Leuven, Belgium.
Katherine joined the Living Wage Foundation as Director in March 2016. The Living Wage Foundation oversees the Living Wage movement in the UK and accredits employers who pay all direct staff and regular contractors the real Living Wage. Since Katherine joined, the number of Living Wage employers in the UK has grown to 10,000 including 50% of the FTSE 100 and thousands of small firms. The Foundation has also launched a new benchmark Living Hours and is developing a Living Pension.
Before joining the Foundation, Katherine was Assistant Director at the UK Commission for Employment and Skills, and previously was head Head of Education and Skills at Policy Connect.
Katherine is a trustee of the Good Business Charter in the UK and a Commissioner for the Business Commission to Tackle Inequality for the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD).
Ronan O’Connor has held a variety of leadership positions in operational and policy roles in the Department for Work and Pensions since 1988. He has led the International Engagement Division since 2018, representing the UK in the G7 and G20 Employment and Labour tracks, as well as in the OECD, ILO and the Council of the Europe.
Professor Malgosia Fitzmaurice holds a chair of public international law at the Department of Law, Queen Mary University of London. Since 2019 she has been elected an Associate Member of the Institut de Droit International and in 2021 she was awarded the Doctorate Honoris Causa of the University of Neuchâtel.
She specialises in international environmental law; the law of treaties; and indigenous peoples. She publishes widely on these subjects. Professor Fitzmaurice was invited as a Visiting Professor to and lectured at various universities, such Berkeley Law School; University of Kobe; Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris I). During 2013-2015, she was involved in a multi stakeholder project funded by the EU Commission on environmental crime. She is also a Nippon Foundation Professor of Marine Environmental Law at the IMO International Maritime Institute at Malta.
Jochen Flasbarth took office as State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development in December 2021. From 2013 to 2021, he was State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety. Prior to that, he held the position of President of the Federal Environment Agency for four years. He holds a degree in economics from the Universities of Münster and Bonn.
Sandra Hassan holds a Bachelors of Civil Law from Université Laval and a Master’s degree in taxation from Université de Sherbrooke. She also holds a Licence in common law (magna cum laude) from the University of Ottawa.
Prior to joining the Public Service of Canada, Ms. Hassan worked in the private sector from 1991-2000. She began her public service career in the Department of Justice in 2000, and held positions such as Executive Director and General Counsel, Department of Finance; Assistant Deputy Minister, Department of Finance and Assistant Deputy Minister, Treasury Board Secretariat of Canada.
She was appointed Deputy Minister of Labour and Associate Deputy Minister of Employment and Social Development Canada in March 2021.
Hubertus Heil has been Federal Minister of Labour and Social Affairs since March 2018. Having studied political science, he is particularly committed to using his office to give everyone the chance to lead a self-determined life, while providing protection and security in times of change. Since December 2019, Hubertus Heil has been Deputy Chairman of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), of which he has been a member since 1988. Since 1998, he has also represented the Gifhorn-Peine constituency in Lower Saxony with a direct mandate in the German Bundestag.
He is married and has two children.
After my university studies in engineering and economics I started working for the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions. My responsibilities were the Norwegian accesstion to the European Union and questions on sustainable development. After Two years I became the internatioinal secretary of Fellesforbundet, the biggest industrial trade union in Norway. In 2016 I was elected Assistant General secretary of IndustriALL Global Union and in 2021 General Secretary. IndustriALL has 565 affiliats in 135 countries in all continents, representing more than 50 million workers in industry, mining and energy.
Born in 1961, she is the French Government representative to the International Labour Organisation Governing Body and to the G7-G20 for Labour, Employment and Social Protection policies. She chairs, since 06/2019, the Global Partnership against Child Labour, Forced Labour, Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery (Alliance 8.7).
She was appointed by the President of the French Republic Knight of the Légion d’Honneur in July 2021. She was Deputy Director of the Minister of Labour’s cabinet (2016-2017), and Counsellor to the President of the French Parliament, in charge of social policies (2017-2018). In 2012, she joined the General Inspectorate for Social Affairs, the national audit, evaluation and inspection office. PhD in History and Sociology of Science, University of Paris – Denis Diderot & Ecole polytechnique.
John H. Knox
John H. Knox is the Henry C. Lauerman Professor of International Law at Wake Forest University. He graduated from Stanford Law School with honors in 1987, and worked at the U.S. Department of State and at a private law firm before joining academia in 1998. From 2012 to 2018, he served as the first UN Independent Expert, then the first Special Rapporteur, on the human rights obligations relating to the enjoyment of a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment. In 2018, in his final report to the Council, he presented Framework Principles on Human Rights and the Environment. He is on the board of the Universal Rights Group and on the board of editors of the American Journal of International Law.
Thomas König is the China Director at the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK). He is the co-author of “So Schafft Man China” (How to make it in China) now in its second edition at Springer publishing house. He has served at the European Council on Foreign Relations in London and Paris, the United Nations Institute for Training and Research in Geneva, the European Chamber of Commerce in China Beijing and the Delegation of German Industry in Shanghai.
Albert Kruft is the chair of the European Works Council and the coordinator of the Solvay Global Forum. Following his studies as a technician in chemistry, he started his professional life in 1973 with Solvay. During his long career at Solvay, his roles have included production manager, business economist and head of the logistics department.
He began his union activities as a member of the local works council and became a member of the central works council of Germany. In 1996 he joined the European Works Council as a representative from Germany. In 2014, Mr Kruft was elected as chair of the central works council from Germany and took on the full-time position of employee representative. Mr Kruft was the one of the architects of Solvay’s Global Forum started in 2016. He has been a member of many works groups at European level.
Thea Lee was appointed Deputy Undersecretary for International Labor Affairs on May 10, 2021. She heads the International Labor Affairs Bureau, which safeguards dignity at work, at home and abroad – by strengthening global labor standards, enforcing labor commitments among trading partners, promoting racial and gender equity, and combating international child labor, forced labor, and human trafficking.
Lee has been advocating for workers’ rights, both domestically and internationally, for over thirty years. She was president of the Economic Policy Institute, a progressive pro-worker Washington think tank, from 2018 to 2021 and an international trade economist at EPI in the 1990s. From 1997 to 2017, Lee worked at the AFL-CIO, as deputy chief of staff, policy director, and chief international economist.
Katja Müller-Fahlbusch is an expert on the Middle East and North Africa and works as MENA desk officer at Amnesty International Germany. Previously, she worked at the GiZ and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in Tunis, Bamako, Berlin and Bonn. She graduated from Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg with a dual degree in Political Science and Economics.
Martha E. Newton joins the International Labour Organization as the Deputy Director-General for Policy on September 1, 2020.
Previously, Ms. Newton was the Deputy Undersecretary for International Affairs at the United States Department of Labor, helming the Department’s Bureau of International Labor Affairs and leading the formulation of international economic, trade and labor policies and programs focused on international child labor, forced labor and modern slavery.
Ms. Newton was also previously a Director of the Administration of Children and Families Division at the United States Department of Health and Human Services, where she coordinated the health and human service response for human trafficking victims and refugees.
In addition, Ms. Newton has served the Executive Director of an NGO focused on the rescue and rehabilitation of forced laborers in the fishing sector in Ghana, and as Director of Strategic Partnerships for the Halifax International Security Forum.
A lawyer by training, Alexandra specialized in human rights. She began her career at a law firm and then worked for Amnesty International in Germany and at organizations specializing in diversity, change management and sustainability.
In 2012, she joined L’Oréal as Chief Sustainability Officer and launched L’Oréal’s first sustainability program, with a set of objectives to be achieved by the end of 2020.
In 2017, Alexandra was appointed Chief Corporate Responsibility Officer and CEO of the Fondation L’Oréal. She became a member of L’Oréal’s Executive Committee two years later. In June 2020, L’Oréal launched its second sustainability program, L’Oréal for the Future, which sets out the Group’s ambitious targets towards 2030.
Udo Philipp has been State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK) since 15 December 2021.
Udo Philipp studied economics and political science in Paris and at Harvard. He started his professional career in 1989 at Dresdner Bank in Munich, after which he worked for LEK Consulting and Treuhandanstalt Dresden and Berlin. In 1993, he became Personal Assistant to the Minister at the Federal Ministry of Economics in Bonn. From 1995, he worked in managerial roles for various companies. From March 2019, he was State Secretary at the Ministry of Finance of the State of Schleswig-Holstein.
Caroline Rees is the President and Co-Founder of Shift, the leading center of expertise on the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. She leads organizational strategy and development and drives thought leadership work on key challenges and opportunities in advancing corporate respect for human rights.
Prior to founding Shift, Caroline was a lead advisor to Prof. John Ruggie during his work to develop the UN Guiding Principles as Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General. From 2009 to 2011 she was Director of the Governance and Accountability Program at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Corporate Responsibility Initiative. Caroline previously spent 14 years as a British diplomat where her career covered Iran, Slovakia, the UN Security Council, European Union and UN Human Rights Council.
Didier Reynders is European Commissioner for justice responsible for rule of law, data protection and other fundamental rights, as well as consumer protection, a position he has held since December 2019. Previously, he held several high-level political positions in Belgium including minister of defence, minister of foreign affairs, foreign trade and European affairs, minister of finance and deputy prime minister.
From 2004 to 2011, he served as chairman of the Mouvement Réformateur (liberal party alliance). He was elected member of the Belgian Parliament in 1992. Prior to this, he was president of the National Railway Company of Belgium and the National Society of Airways. Reynders has been a guest lecturer at the universities of Liège, Brussels and Louvain until he became European Commissioner. He holds a degree in law from the University of Liège.
Dr Lothar Rieth holds the position of Head of Sustainability (direct report to the CEO) of EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg AG, the third biggest utility company in Germany. He is currently responsible for sustainability management, reporting, sustainability reporting at EnBW and chairs EnBW’s CSR Committee. He is at present member the Econsense Steering Committee (Forum for Sustainable Development of German Business), has assisted EnBW’s CFO in his work in the TCFD and the EU-Technical Expert Group on Sustainable Finance and has been appointed to the Sustainable Finance Committee of the Federal Government in June 2019.
He studied administrative science and political science in Germany (University of Konstanz, University of Tuebingen) and Rutgers University, NJ (US).
Olivier De Schutter
Olivier De Schutter, a professor at UCLouvain and SciencesPo (Paris), is the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights. He was a member of the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights between 2015 and 2020 and the Special Rapporteur on the right to food between 2008 and 2014. Prior to those assignments, he was Secretary-General of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH).
Dr Carsten Stender is head of Directorate-General VI “European and International Employment and Social Policy” at Germany’s Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (BMAS). He had previously been in charge of a unit at Germany’s Federal Foreign Office responsible for political coordination for the Vice-Chancellor. Dr. Stender has many years of experience in his field as Head of the SPD Chairman’s Office and Head of Office of the SPD General Secretary. He has also worked as policy advisor, head of a minister's office, party mobilization manager, and as a legal adviser to the Executive Committee of his party.
He studied law, passing his state examinations with honours and writing his dissertation on legislative techniques. Dr. Stender also holds master’s degrees in political science and public management. He is married to an Austrian book designer and is the father of a six-year-old son.
Ana María Suarez Franco
Dr Suárez Franco is the coordinator of FIAN International's accountability work and the organization's permanent representative to the UN in Geneva. She participated in the processes of elaboration of the Maastricht Principles on Extraterritorial Obligations, the negotiation processes of the Declaration on the Rights of Peasants, as well as in the current negotiation process towards a Binding Instrument on Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with regard to Human Rights.
Dr Suarez Franco has worked closely with communities affected by violations of their right to food in various regions worldwide, supporting them to monitor the implementation of the right to food, develop case strategies and use accountability mechanisms in the UN Human Rights System and the Inter-American Human Rights System.
Roberto Suárez Santos
Roberto Suárez Santos was appointed Secretary-General of the International Organisation of Employers (IOE) on 26 October 2018, having held the post of Deputy Secretary-General since December 2012.
Prior to joining the IOE, Roberto was ILO Programme Director for the promotion of youth employment in the Maghreb region. He previously worked at the Spanish Confederation of Employers’ Organisations. He was BUSINESSEUROPE’s Vice President for Labour Affairs for several years, Vice-President of Business at OECD’s Employment and Labour Affairs Committee, and a member of various follow-up committees for the European Social Fund and the EU Economic and Social Committee.
Roberto’s experience extends to academia, having served as associate professor of European Social Law at both the Universidad Complutense de Madrid and the Universidad Pontificia de Comillas in Spain.
Roberto is a lawyer with experience in European and international labour law, as well as in international relations.
Nobunao Tagaya has been the Senior Assistant Minister for International Affairs of the Ministy of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW) since 2021.
He has served for 35 years at MHLW, where he was appointed as Director, Regional Bureau Administration Division - Minister's Secretariat between 2013-16; Deputy Director-General of the Minister's Secretariat - Ministry of Finance between 2016-17; Executive Director, Organization for Technical Intern Training (OTIT) between 2017-19; and Deputy Director-General for Employment of the Elderly and Persons with Disabilities, Employment Security Bureau - MHLW in 2019.
He holds the Bachelor of Law from the University of Tokyo.
Lilian Tschan studied administrative sciences at the University of Potsdam from 1999 to 2005. During this time, she spent a semester at the University of Perugia as part of the Erasmus program. She completed her studies with a diploma. Afterwards she was manager for political communication in the capital office of Serco GmbH from 2005 to 2007. From 2007 to 2009, she was personal assistant to the Secretary General of the SPD, Hubertus Heil. From 2009 to 2011, she worked in Heil's Bundestag office. She then served as Commissioner for Labor and Social Affairs and for Family and Health in the Representation of the State of Baden-Württemberg to the Federal Government from 2011 to 2014. From 2014 to 2018, she was Head of Division for Cabinet and Parliamentary Affairs at the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth. From 2018 to 2022, she was head of the management staff at the Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs.
On February 1, 2022, Lilian Tschan was appointed State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs.
Mr. Max Tuñón is the head of the ILO Office in Doha. The ILO has been working closely with the Government of Qatar on a comprehensive labour reform agenda since 2018.
From 2016 to 2018, Mr Tuñón was the Labour Migration Specialist for South Asia, based in the ILO Office in New Delhi. There he supported policy formulation on the governance of labour migration, including through research, capacity building and consultative platforms with governments and social partners.
From 2009 to 2016, he was based in the ILO Regional Office in Bangkok, managing the TRIANGLE project on strengthening recruitment and labour protection in Southeast Asia.
He has also worked for four years in China, with a focus on rural-urban migration and youth employment.
Mr Tuñón is a national of the United Kingdom and Panama. He has a BA in Business Studies, from the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, and an MA in Social Development from the University of Sussex.
Dr. Kerstin Waltenberg is COO Group Compliance of Volkswagen AG and the Human Rights Coordinator of the Volkswagen Group. Her department of Compliance Strategic Business Units is responsible for supporting Volkswagen’s Group strategy units, advising them on economic and other criminal risks associated with M&A transactions, strategic cooperation and other future oriented projects, the establishment of new production facilities as well as large-scale sponsorships and donations.
Prior to her tenue at Volkswagen, Dr. Waltenberg worked as Regional Compliance Officer Trucks for the regions of Europe, Russia and North America at Daimler AG Stuttgart and as a corporate lawyer at Daimler Financial Services, both subsequent to working at an internationally renowned German corporate law firm in Berlin.
Lene Wendland is Chief of the Business and Human Rights Unit in UN Human Rights and leads UN Human Rights’ thematic work on business and human rights. She was part of the team of former Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Business and Human Rights, Professor John Ruggie, and contributed to the development and drafting of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. Lene directs the UN Human Rights’ Accountability and Remedy Project, which aims to enhance accountability and access to remedy in cases of business involvement in human rights abuses.
She also directs the UN Human Rights B-Tech Project, applying the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights to key human rights challenges related to digital technologies. Lene was a member of the FIFA Independent Human Rights Advisory Board (2017 – 2020), and is currently a member of the World Economic Forum's Global Agenda Council on Human Rights (2020-2022), and of the Advisory Council of the Geneva Centre for Business and Human Rights. She represents UN Human Rights in the Governance Committee of the Centre for Sport and Human Rights, and as a technical advisor to the Board of the International Cocoa Initiative.
Lene holds a Masters degree in law from the University of Copenhagen.
Michael Windfuhr has been Deputy Director of the German Institute for Human Rights since 2011, and a member of the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights since 2016. Since 2017, he has been chair of the Business and Human Rights Working Group of the multi-stakeholder CSR Forum, which advises the German Government on business and human rights.
He is a member of the independent complaints mechanism of the development banks of Germany, France and the Netherlands (DEG, FMO, Proparco).
Previously, he worked as head of the human rights team at the German NGO Brot für die Welt (2006-2010) and held various positions at FIAN International between 1986 and 2006.
Michael Windfuhr studied political science, German studies, geography and philosophy in Heidelberg.
Since March 2017, Thomas Wissing is the Head of Advocacy and Partnerships at the Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work Branch at ILO Geneva. He coordinates the ILO advocacy, campaigns, communication and partnerships on human rights at work. This comprises freedom of association, collective bargaining and the fight against child labour, forced labour and discrimination.
Mr Wissing is also coordinating the Secretariat of the Alliance 8.7.
He holds an M.A. degree in Political Science and International Relations from the University of Bonn, with a published thesis on “Human Rights Criteria in International Development Cooperation”.
In his previous assignments, he has represented the ILO as Country Director for Mexico and Cuba from 2011-2017. He has also worked for the ILO in Mexico as Programme Officer and Deputy Director for 15 years as well as for the German Development Institute, amongst others.