David Rowan

Founding Editor of Wired Magazine

The leading authority on technology’s impact on business

•   Founding UK Editor-in-Chief, WIRED
  • Author of Amazon #1 business bestseller Non-Bullshit Innovation: Radical Ideas from the World’s Smartest Minds (Penguin)
•   600+ keynotes around the world
  • Technology columnist: The Times, GQ, Condé Nast Traveller
•   Event moderator for governments, WIRED, TED, World Economic Forum
  • Adviser to & investor in 60+ tech startups

David Rowan explains compellingly how emerging technologies will impact business — and how leaders should prepare now. As founding Editor-in-Chief of WIRED magazine’s UK edition, David came to know the founders of WhatsApp, LinkedIn, Google, Didi, Spotify, Xiaomi, Nest, Twitter and countless other ambitious startups from Tel Aviv to Shenzhen. He has since invested in more than 60 early-stage tech companies, including two that became billion-dollar “unicorns”, and is an adviser to Lakestar, one of Europe’s largest venture-capital funds.

David Rowan is in international demand as a keynote speaker, event host and moderator, after-dinner speaker and webinar presenter. He travels frequently, and has a home studio at his London base for online presentations and moderating. His current keynote topics include:

  • FINDING OPPORTUNITY AMID THE CRISIS: Technology offers hope for optimism as we emerge from the coronavirus crisis. Here are the growth opportunities — from re-inventing supply chains to rethinking education to building new brand
  • WHY BUSINESS INNOVATION HAS NEVER MATTERED MORE: COVID-19 has forced business leaders to move insanely fast to adapt. But how do you build a culture of effective innovation? Here are the lessons from David’s 20-nation quest for non-bullshit
  • TEN LESSONS FROM THE NON-BULLSHIT INNOVATORS: David Rowan travelled across the world to understand what it takes for businesses and governments to leverage digital transformation in exciting ways. He shares ten lessons from his new book Non-Bullshit Innovation that can be applied to all sorts of
  • WHAT TECHNOLOGY MEANS FOR THE FUTURE OF YOUR INDUSTRY: David researches and prepares bespoke presentations for client meetings. Recent subjects have included the future of food and drink (clients including Unilever, Coca-Cola, Barilla); the future of aviation (IATA); the future of real estate (CBRE, Leading Real Estate, Cushman & Wakefield); the future of media (Sky, Schibsted, BBC); the future of healthcare (BUPA, Vitality, Kaiser Permanente); the future of financial services (Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan).
  • THE FUTURE OF THE WORKPLACE: How to attract talent, and motivate your team to perform its best work, in a fast-changing world when the “workplace” is more fluid than ever







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“I wanted to thank you for your time to moderate the G8 Innovation Conference. You set the tone for the day perfectly, engaging the audience and steering the presenters through a very full agenda. The feedback from the day has been overwhelmingly positive, which is largely due to your dynamism, good humour and professionalism.”

–David Cameron, Prime Minister, G8 Innovation Conference


“David gave a unique and fascinating presentation on the future tech trends which are shaping our industry. He was a very engaging speaker – I would highly recommend him to anyone looking to expand the minds of their audience.”

–Broadband World Forum

“We received nothing less than fantastic feedback on your session and the insightful contribution you made to the panel.”

BrainScape, Dubai

“David was fantastic. The content was perfect.  David stuck to the brief we gave him and had clearly prepared materials that were bespoke to Sky. The talk was fast paced, interesting, relevant and accessible.  It set up the innovation session of our agenda really well and I was delighted with the result.”


“You nailed the brief perfectly – the perfect blend of inspiration, explanation with a dash of fear ;-).”


“Your presentation went down a storm (I knew it would) and I was able to refer back to it repeatedly over the two days as a stimulus to help drive the need for change.”

–Unilever CMO

“You were a superstar! So many people told me how much they enjoyed your lively & interesting presentation, humour and deep & personalised Q&A with the panelists.”

Beco Capital, Dubai

“David Rowan was awesome, lots of amazing feedback.”


“David is great to work with, has a fantastic presentation and was an asset to the panel session so am sure we will be contacting you about him again.”


“You have exceeded our expectations at our event in Barcelona, and we would like to bring you back once again. I heard so many positive things about your keynote. You delivered an outstanding session.”

–Accucore Group


“A big hit with the team, some really great feedback…content, delivery and messaging was spot on.”


“Very good facilitator, understood the brief, researched thoroughly and it showed.”

Lloyds of London

“Absolutely excellent. Excellent moderation, excellent presentation.”


“David was very well received. His presentation aligned very well with the themes running through the conference.”

–KPMG, Shanghai

“Thank you for a very thought provoking and entertaining presentation.”


“He enthralled the audience… He is great to work with, has a fantastic presentation and was an asset to the panel session. The feedback from clients and Mercer folk has been excellent.”


“We had nothing but praise for his forward thinking piece, it was both informative and entertaining. I didn’t see a single attendee checking their smartphone during David’s talk, which is a testament to his skill as a speaker. I will definitely recommend him to our other offices around the world.”

–Terrapinn Limited

“Content was very good; thought provoking as hoped. Many positive comments received from our customers. Overall it was very good entertainment and we’d definitely recommend him to others. Extremely happy as you can tell.”


“Thank you for your excellent presentation at The Market Insight Forum. The feedback we have had has been superb and I personally found it very interesting.”

–Richmond Events

“Thanks David for sharing this moment with us. Very inspiring presentation as always, the team really appreciated!”

–Unibail Rodamco

“David was incredible and we’ve had some great feedback already from our analysts and leadership team that were there. We were engaged, inspired and enjoyed every minute of his keynote.”


“I just wanted to thank you for participating at our very recent conference in Bodrum. I thought that your presentation was excellent and the feedback has been consistently very positive.”

The Advantage Travel Partnership

“David was excellent we all found his presentation very interesting. He was very enthusiastic and great speaker. I hope to work with him in the near future. An excellent speech which people refer to all day long.”

–Vodafone Istanbul

“Your presentation was inspiring, brilliantly delivered and I think struck exactly the right tone for our meeting. Many people have already commented how much they enjoyed your presentation and the Q&A with Kevin, which really set the meeting up to be a great success. I hope we can work together again in the future.”


“David – thanks so much for what was an incredibly popular speech – just perfect for what we wanted!”

–Temasek, Singapore

“I am happy to tell you that you were the favorite speaker at our event… The event was a great success.”

–Forum Executive AG

“I just wanted to thank you once again for attending and presenting at PI Dusseldorf. I have only just got back to the office but can already see from a brief glance at the feedback forms that you scored a lot of 10/10s which, having been at your talk, comes as no surprise.”

PI Dusseldorf

“David was very well received by Samsung – in fact he was scored 5 out of 5 by all the guests! His presentation was relevant, interesting and bang on the timings.”

–Brand Rapport

“Your insights and perspective into the companies and entrepreneurs who are changing the world created a buzz around those assembled.”


“The feedback of the audience was awesome, we really appreciate it that you took time for that.”

Management Forum, Germany

“Thank you for such an excellent opening/presentation, and looking forward to further collaborations.”

–Code Global, Kuwait

“Big thanks for joining us at Telefonica University. Everybody, including myself, really enjoyed your presentation, which set absolutely the right tone. Your presentation was a real highlight.”


“David was a hit – we are getting great feedback about him.  We would highly recommend as a speaker.”


“On behalf of the Visa team I wanted to thank you for your presentation at the Leadership conference last Thursday. There was lots of buzz and energy and so your external perspective was very well received – so a great set up for the day.”

–Visa Europe

“You were phenomenal. It makes a huge difference having you on the stage – firstly you keep the event going but most importantly you moderate the event so brilliantly. The Duke is immensely grateful for your support.”

–Amanda Thirsk, St James’s Palace

“Thank you so much for your excellent presentation!”


“David delivered a superb presentation and his session went down really well, which was self-evident from the reaction and way it was received from the delegates around me. The early informal client feedback has already been really good!”


“David was probably the best speaker we’ve ever had – would definitely like to engage him at future events.”


“We have now collated the feedback we received from our IGNITE attendees on the session presentations.Your keynote session received a score of 4.6 for content and 4.8 for presentation, a fantastic opening to IGNITE. Please see some comments below:

‘Excellent! Interesting, witty and inspiring stuff’

‘Fantastic! Packed full of interesting info’

‘Fab content, projections useful’

‘Great format and excellent presentation’

‘Excellent – a lot of useful information packed into a short time.’”

 –Nimbus Ninety Ltd

“David did a fantastic job!”


“You were an inspirational speaker and it was an absolute pleasure to work with you on the event. Your presentation was engaging, interesting and insightful.”


“An insightful, thought provoking presentation that reinforced the importance of innovation and made us reconsider our competitive landscape. Highly recommended.”


“Thank you for your presentation yesterday, the feedback has been fantastic.”


“Amazing presentation at our event today – inspiring stuff from the cutting edge of startup tech.”


“David was wonderful yesterday! He went down really well with the guys here and helped us deliver an amazing event. David blew people’s mind.”


“Thank you so much for the speech you gave. I talked to a lot of our PhDs afterwards and they were very enthusiastic and loved your presentation. So did we. I think you really captured the audience and the stories you told were very interesting, inducing a lot of spirited follow up discussions.”


“The content was just right and left us inspired but also questioning about the way forward and how to approach the future with our clients. I’m sure there will be further requests for your participation by some of the markets judging by the feedback I am getting.”

–Lowe + Partners

“Your talk was exactly the right pitch – and both entertaining and educational. Thank you for the enthusiasm and energy.”

Cazenove Capital Management

“Thank you so much for taking the time out to speak at last week’s Retail Week Technology Summit. We received some great feedback for your session.”

–Retail Week Technology Summit

“Thank you for a brilliant performance. Feedback from the Unilever client was exceptionally positive. After three full days at the event when asked the question about the highlight of the event a large number of them cited your presentation. That’s pretty impressive.”


“I just wanted to thank you for your fascinating and thought-provoking presentation. It was really well received.”

–Jones Lang LaSalle

“Thank you for joining us and sharing your insights at the Urban Land Institute dinner. We received a lot of positive feedback. Indeed, your name was dropped many times during the conference the next day. Your visions into the future provoked much discussion and provided an excellent start to the event.”

–Urban Land Institute

“David was an excellent moderator, engaging with all the speakers.

David did well to energise the room, and provided some excellent anecdotes about the industry.”


“I wanted to thank you again for your presentation yesterday. It was thought-provoking and challenged our ways of thinking. Most people in the room commented positively on it, referred to it throughout the day.”

–Design Museum


“Thank you so much for an excellent session. You left the team in no doubt about the risks of disruptive factors and how they can impact any industry. Ours more than any is wide open here. Totally the right way to end the conference.”

–MD, JP Morgan

“You played the key role in our Women in European Business Conference and we very much appreciated your input: The event was a great success and the feedback has been outstanding. Your scene-setting opener around the ten mega-trends was fascinating and encouraged us all to stretch our thinking. Your navigation of the numerous themes for the panel session was excellent and the relaxed tone of the conversation was just what we were aiming for. You achieved our goal of inspiring our audience, both professionally and personally and for that, we are truly grateful.”

Deutsche Bank

“It was a privilege to have you with us [at the World Editors Conference in Bangkok]. I have had lots of praise about your presentation and was very pleased at the considered tone you set for our meeting. There seems consensus that this was our best event in years, so thank you for your contribution to our success.”

–World Association of Newspapers

“Thank you…thank you… thank you for your great presentation at FranCamp. It was very well received!”

–FranCamp, Atlanta, Georgia

“I must say that the feedback we have received so far has been exceptional, and the delegates I spoke to said that they found the Tech Trends session particularly thought provoking, candid and inspiring.

It’s rare for a speaker/curator to invest so much of their time up front to prepare for a session and it really shone through. I hope that we will have the opportunity to collaborate again in the future.”

Visa Europe      

“Many thanks for your support this week – we have received great feedback and everyone agreed that your presentation was very thought provoking!”


“On behalf of Keith Weed and the entire Unilever global leadership team, I’d like to extend a big thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts and insights with us in Barcelona. Everyone came away from the event more excited than ever about the mobile opportunity and the leading role that Unilever can play within that. We have also had requests from the team to look at your fantastic presentation.”


“We have already had a lot of positive feedback regarding your talk and hopefully some of the goodwill will rub off on Rathbones. I suspect you may get a number of new subscribers to Wired magazine and possibly a couple more speaker engagements (I hope so).”

–Rathbone Investment Management

“Thank you for such a mind-altering session at the International Hotel Investment Forum. We must all try and change how we view the world – the hotel industry included.”

–Bench Events

“I wanted to say thank you for your fascinating talk at the conference on Friday.  We have had plenty of positive feedback from the event so thanks again for your contribution. This was very well received and provided plenty of thought provoking material for us to discuss later in the day. As I mentioned, I think people were surprised at some of the latest innovations, in particular as they are happening now and not just a dream for the future.”

–BAE Systems Detica 

“Thank you again for presenting at yesterday’s Senior Management Forum. There has been a real buzz from attendees about your presentation and insights you shared, and we have already had requests for copies of a film to share with teams.”


“Thank you so much for your excellent presentation at our Annual Conference. Feedback has been extremely positive and there is no doubt that you added real value to our event.”

Best Western Hotels    

“David Rowan did an excellent job as opening keynote at Øredev, the premier conference for software developers in northern Europe, by addressing our theme and audience very distinctly. I highly recommend Mr Rowan as a public speaker and hope to work with him again.”


“Thank you for being such an amazing moderator during the recent Bizspark European Summit. It was an amazing event – best ever summit in my view – and your contribution was a tremendous factor in this.”

–Microsoft Bizspark

“Thank you so much for your brilliant presentation at our Futures Forum event today. I have a quite a few attendees come up to me already to say how brilliant they thought you were and how you have altered their perception of Big Data. You captured the exact tone we were hoping for from this event.”


“We just wanted to say an enormous thank you for providing such an interesting and inspirational session on future technical trends for our Digital Power Week. We’ve had terrific feedback from staff across the business who said they learnt so much, found you fascinating to listen to and came away really excited by the future possibilities with digital.”

–BBC Worldwide

“Thanks for a great and inspirational speech.”

–Mediadagene, Copenhagen

“David Rowan – stunning presentation, the man is brilliant!!!”


“Just a note to say thank you for your hard work yesterday. I think everybody felt that you did a great job steering us through the day and bringing out the best in our speakers, and also setting the tone at the start. You made my day a great deal less stressful too!” –Arts Alliance Advisors

“Your session caused quite a stir so we are including the interview in the material we are circulating to all of our delegates. Thanks for your insights and attendance – I really enjoyed it and hope we cross paths again in the future.” –KPMG

“You set the day up perfectly and we really appreciated you staying longer to answer questions. Your presentation inspired a client at a time when they are looking to transform their business – so perfect timing.” –American Express

“It was a fascinating presentation and we have all enjoyed it.”

–Goldman Sachs

“I know that everyone was really inspired by the examples and your own insights and ideas –  it all fitted beautifully into the theme of the day, so thank you for all of that. A privilege to have you along at our day.”



“We had really positive feedback from all attendees with many saying the event was ‘insightful’, ‘inspirational’, ‘thought-provoking’ and ‘an eye opener into the opportunities and possibilties available through technology’.”

–Institute of Practitioners in Advertising

“Thank you once again for speaking at the Excalibur Technology Showcase last Thursday.  The feedback from all the stakeholders and the attending customers has been excellent. Everyone loved your presentation.”


“We have received extremely positive feedback from our clients and CBRE staff alike and I think your presentation hit the spot in challenging our guests to think about the impact of new media and technology.”

–CB Richard Ellis

“Thank you so much for your time today, it has gone down a storm.  Most people telling me it was one of the most inspirational speeches they have ever heard.”

–Best Buy CEO

“Thank you so much for such an engaging and insightful presentation. We have had such incredible feedback from our guests and your talk really added to our launch.” –Shiseido

“Thank you again for your contribution to our recent seminar. The feedback that we have received has been especially complimentary about your presentation. As a result of the seminar we have had quite a number of requests for meetings and some really interesting briefs so I hope you will allow us to take you out to lunch.” –Ipsos MORI

“Your session was fascinating.” –International Hotel Investment Forum, Berlin

“Thank you for presenting at Engage – the feedback we received about your plenary was amazing. Everybody is raving to me about your plenary. It was fantastic!”


“If you want to get a steer on the future you can do worse than look to Wired UK editor David Rowan. He’s a man who’s taken William Gibson’s quote – “the future is already here, it’s just not evenly distributed yet” – to heart, and thus spends his time hunting for glimpses of tomorrow today. Toluna brought him along to their 10th birthday celebration/conference, held yesterday on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower, to chart a possible future for the research industry. The view from both the speaker and the venue was dizzying.”

–Brian Tarran, Research-live.com

“Thank you very much for your outstanding presentation during the TradeDoubler Summit. The audience was just amazed and we received a huge amount of positive feedbacks. We hope to deal with you again in the near future.”


“Please accept our enormous gratitude and fascination with your brilliant speech delivered at the Conde Nast Digital Day in Russia on April 15th. You were the absolute star of the event, and clients – whose feedback on the event was very positive – request your presentation for their archives. I hope you would not mind.” –Condé Nast Digital Russia

“Thank you very much for your talk. It was very well received and judging by the questions that continued really got people thinking, which is what I wanted. I also liked the presentation style and judging from comments so did many others.”


“Thank you for doing such a fantastic job moderating the opening roundtable session Air War. Your session was lively and quick-paced and set the stage for the sessions which followed. You set the bar high for a great Forum.” –Monaco Media Forum “Thanks for the presentation. It was really well received and kicked off the conference exactly as I hoped it would. It was a pleasure working with you.” –Useful Social Media

“You perhaps couldn’t see the numbers of people frantically scribbling notes during your presentation and the feedback we have had has been terrific. I think quite a few people will be looking at getting a WIRED subscription now.” –The Random House Group
“Thank you so much for talking to us today. You were a big hit and have inspired the creative teams and scared the hell out of the marketing heads!”


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