2024 Speakers

2024 Speakers

ReThink HK 2024 brings you insight and inspiration from 500+ expert speakers.

Chris Brown

Founder & Director

Chris has 20 years of experience working on large-scale business events. Originally from the UK, Chris has lived and worked in Hong Kong since 2015. Chris moved to Hong Kong to establish a North Asia office for a London-based trade expo organiser and launch a series of digital transformation events. The challenges of living sustainably and a developing concern around the exponential threats of the global climate emergency compelled Chris to “rethink” his own personal contribution to Hong Kong and how he could best make a positive impact on a city he now proudly calls home.

Chris conceived, designed and launched the ReThink HK event during the first part of 2019 – undeterred by the challenges faced by live events at that time, due to civil unrest, the new event concept for uniting the full business and sustainability ecosystem, championing positive action and shared responsibility received excellent support. The inaugural 2020 event was, unsurprisingly, delayed due to COVID but finally ran, in-person, at the K11 Quarry Bay with 450 attendees and all delegate fees were donated to local charities.

Chris’ experience in hosting content-led expo-style healthcare events in the UK, where partnerships and collaboration were crucial to scale and success, provided the foundation for Chris to widen the supporting-network of organisations and sponsors for ReThink HK. The event was moved to the HKCEC for the 2021 edition and resulted in Hong Kong’s best attended event dedicated to the business of sustainability, with over 2,200 attendees. Chris is proud to have maintained the event’s impact pledge; with all delegate fees contributing to impact projects with local Hong Kong charities.

Working alongside the Business Environment Council, Consulates and trade promotion offices, Chambers of Commerce, specialist industry associations, NGOs and action groups the collective ambition for ReThink HK is to accelerate change in Hong Kong – the event returns for its fourth edition this September at the HKCEC, will host over 6,000 attendees and aims to be at least carbon neutral.

All proceeds from delegate fees will be redirected to the newly incorporated Rethink Foundation, a not-for-profit focussed on helping registered NGOs build capacity and operate more sustainably.

Chris received a Bachelor’s degree in International Business and Italian from the University of Plymouth (UK). Chris is a member of the British Chamber of Commerce’s Social Sustainability Committee, sits on the Executive Committee and the Sustainability sub-committee of the Hong Kong Exhibition & Convention Industry Association.

My Sustainability Goals for 2023:

  • Greater action from businesses to contribute towards a more sustainable HK
  • Encourage other event organisers to commit to sustainable solutions
  • Demonstrate that businesses can be operated profitably and with purpose

Dr Margaret Burnett

University of Hong Kong

Programme Director

Currently the Programme Director for the Master of Social Science in Sustainability Leadership and Governance, in the Centre for Civil Society and Governance at the University of Hong Kong. Margaret has developed this Master programme to enhance learning, grow deeper understanding, and enable professionals to implement sustainability initiatives across all roles. Empowering both students and clients to integrate sustainability into personal and core organizational decision-making processes as this is time critical and, the focus the programme. She is often a guest speaker, and partners with organizations to provide support to their in-house sustainability strategies, currently through the lens of climate change related factors, and mechanisms for greater stakeholder engagement.

My Sustainability Goals for 2024:

For leaders, at all levels, to put into action significant changes to their operating environment given the tools at their disposal, and a greater level of authentic collaboration that truly seeks human-centric solutions. Let’s be on the right side of the climate change battle!

Mr Tse Chin-wan

Secretary for Environment and Ecology

Mr Tse joined the former Environmental Protection Agency in 1985 which was subsequently reorganised in 1986 to become the current Environmental Protection Department (EPD). Throughout the service with EPD, Mr Tse had taken up a wide range of duties at professional and senior managerial levels. He was appointed as a Deputy Director of Environmental Protection in 2013 and subsequently as the Under Secretary for the Environment in August 2017.

Mr Tse possesses a broad spectrum of experience in various areas of environmental protection, including law enforcement, computer modelling, environmental impact assessment and cross-boundary cooperation with the Mainland.  During his tenure as the Under Secretary for the Environment, he helped spearhead the formulation of policies on air quality, waste management, climate actions and conservation.

Debra Tan

Director & Head

Tan heads CWR, a non-profit that aims to “mainstream” water and climate risks into financial decision-making and corporate strategies. Today, CWR’s work on the assessing and valuing risk exposure to rising freshwater scarcity to coastal threats, is highlighted as tools and useful resources under the IFRS’s CDSB Application Guidance for Water-Related Disclosures and feature in Palgrave MacMillan textbooks. Tan is also a contributing author to the latest IPCC 6th Assessment Report: Climate Change 2022: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability.

My Sustainability Goals for 2024:

Adapting to rising water risks in a new climate future