|The recent ASIS International Security Conference took place in Montreux, Switzeralnd, in April 2009|
The ASIS International 8th European Security Conference took place on 26-29 April at Montreux Music & Convention Centre in Montreux, Switzerland.
312 security professionals, corporate executives, consultants, and officials from 44 different countries attended 30 high-level educational sessions on topics ranging from supply chain security to convergence of physical security and IT. Although due to the economic crisis the number of delegates was somewhat lower than in previous years, this did not affect the quality networking and business opportunities for delegates and exhibitors alike.
The opening keynote speaker was Dr. Sally Leivesley, managing director of NewRisk Limited, an organisation which advises governments and companies on catastrophic risk. Dr. Leivesley outlined top-five of risks facing security practitioners today: the global recession, global terror and proxy wars, energy availability, public confidence, and pandemics. Naturally, with the swine flu outbreak grabbing headlines, much of her time was dedicated to that last topic.
On the second day, Mr. Jakob Scharf, Head of the Danish Security and Intelligence Service (PET), discussed the increased terrorist threat in his country following the publication in 2005 of cartoons depicting the prophet Mohammed. The closing keynote speaker was Roland Billeter, President of ADT Continental Europe. According to Mr. Billiter; 18 of the 27 EU members appear in the world's top 30 per capita crime rankings.
The conference included sessions specifically designed to cover standards development and implementation as well as an event dedicated to the upper echelon of the security profession - the CSO. Delegates also attended networking events such as the SRVP Welcome Reception at the Fairmont Palace Le Montreux, as well as the President's Reception, which took place at the historic Chateau de Chillon.
ASIS also announced the winner of the ASIS International 2009 European Award for Distinguished Contributions to Societal Security which went to Ambassador Kai Eide for his efforts to bring peace and stability to the Western Balkans.