Mark Turnbull – Keynote Speaker

Geopolitical strategist at the forefront of behavioural science and data in campaigning

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Specialist Subjects

  • Data as a force for good
  • Will democracy survive the digital revolution?
  • Cloak and Data - Lessons learned from the Cambridge Analytica affair
  • Iraq – an Untold Story
  • Big data
  • Strategic communications
  • Election campaigning
  • Counter-propaganda
  • Digital transformation

Language

  • English

Biography

Mark Turnbull is a strategic communications consultant with 35 years’ experience and extensive international achievements in corporate and political communications, reputation management, brand strategy, advertising and public relations.

He was Managing Director of AUSPEX International and ex-MD of the international political campaigning arm of Cambridge Analytica, using data-driven communications to run election campaigns and advise political and government clients.

Mark’s election campaign experience includes South Africa, Sri Lanka, Latvia, Iraq, Somalia, Kenya, Kosovo, Serbia, Cyprus, Lebanon, Romania, Honduras and Morocco.

Previously Mark spent 18 years with Bell Pottinger, as part of a small team of senior consultants advising world leaders in politics and business and managing reputations and brands. He was involved in the 1994 South Africa election and went on to manage the country’s largest communications consultancy in the years immediately following its transition to majority rule.

On his return to the UK Mark built and headed up a specialist unit in conflict transformation to conduct work in stabilisation, counter-radicalisation and democratic reform in zones of conflict and geopolitical sensitivity. He spent a decade in theatres of conflict, under contract to the British and American governments and the UN, planning and directing ‘social change’ communications campaigns.

These included:
• A seven-year nation-building effort in Iraq – the single largest strategic communications and influence capability the US has ever put into a field of conflict;
• A four-year counter-radicalisation campaign across 22 countries in the Middle East, addressing the psycho-social drivers of violent extremism and jihadist recruitment;
• Strategic communications for the UN and African Union in support of the political peace process in Somalia, changing the international narrative, and undermining al-Shabaab.

His experience also includes a three-year counter-propaganda campaign against the Kremlin on behalf of exiled oligarch, Boris Berezovsky, and former KGB officer Alexander Litvinenko – a campaign which resulted in Litvinenko’s assassination by poisoning in 2006.

Mark Turnbull has a BA from Cambridge University, an MSc from University of Toronto and a Diploma in Psychoanalytical Psychology at the University of London.

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