Focus on Thought Leadership Meeting

Focus on Thought Leadership – Leading Technological Transformation

October 10-11, 2019

SAID Business School
University of Oxford


To provide more opportunities for members of the ECLF community to connect in a meaningful way,  we are launching a new meeting format called “Focus on Thought Leadership”. 

Complementing our annual summit and our traditional Focus on Practice meetings, we are planning for 1-2 additional events per year which will last two half days, from noon to noon. They will provide the opportunity to meet and discuss issues relevant to your profession with leading scholars from renowned universities, think tanks, and research centers. There will be no additional costs for ECLF members.

The first of such meetings will take place from October 10-11 at Oxford University. In a series of  interactive sessions with top faculty members from SAID Business School, we will discuss technological trends, the resulting scenarios for business and society, and the implications for leadership and organization.

As space is limited, seats will be allocated on a first com first serve basis, giving priority to senior primary members.  


Together with Oxford Saïd’s faculty we will explore contemporary areas related to technological transformation and the challenges they present for strategic leadership and organisation:


Chris Kutarna on Global Mega Trends
Now is humanity’s best moment - and its most fragile. Global health, wealth and education are booming. Scientific discovery is flourishing. But the same forces that make big gains possible for some of us deliver big losses to others—and tangle us together in ways that make everyone vulnerable.  We are living in a second Renaissance and we can flourish—if we heed the urgent lessons of history. During this first scene setting session we will explore how.


Trudi Lang on Scenarios Thinking
Often organisations have a single strategy approach to technology based on the analysis of forecasts, trends and the assumption that tomorrow will not be that radically different from today.   Scenarios thinking is a practical approach that enables executive teams to think in new ways and create credible stories of the future that challenge conventional wisdom and in that way identifies potential disruptors that could emerge.  This allows strategy to be stress tested and, if necessary, modified to withstand or harness disruption.


Marc Ventresca on Leadership and the Humanities
As we grapple with all the challenges that disruption brings, where can we look for ideas to inspire our leadership practice?  The humanities study human society and culture including ethics, creativity, communication, philosophy, politics and history,  all of which can provide inspiration and creative solutions for today’s challenges.  Our discussion will focus on how the humanities can inform leadership and what practical interventions can be applied.


Eleanor Murray on Making Change Happen (Executive Panel Discussion)
We will wrap up the FoTL meeting with a panel conversation between selected ECLF members and Eleanor, who specializes in how change is constructed in organizations and systems. What approaches work,  what else could be done in the light of fresh perspectives? How should leaders resilience-proof their business, to anticipate and respond to the spectrum of current and future disruption?


You can download the detailed schedule of the meeting here.


This link will help you to travel to the City of Oxford.


Event Venue

Our Focus on Thought Leadership Meeting will take place at Saïd Business School at Oxford University. 

SAID Business School  website  |  map
Oxford University
Park End Street
Oxford OX1 1HP
United Kingdom

Click here to learn how to best get to Oxford University



Marriott Courtyard has just opened a brand new hotel in 8 minute walking distance to Oxford University. 

Courtyard Oxford City Center   |   website  |  map
15 Paradise Street
Oxford OX1 1LD
United Kingdom
+44 (1865) 306900

Please make your reservation directly with the hotel.

We were able to reserve a dicounted block rooms for our group at a rate of GBP 158 including breakfast, which will be only available until September 1, 2019.

Please mention the code ECLF when booking your room. After this deadline, rooms are not guaranteed, and regular rates apply.


Dress Code

Business casual


For all questions regarding logistics please contact


For all questions related to the event please contact


Please register by September 15, 2019 by obtaining a "ticket" via eventbrite.




Special Terms for this Meeting

  • Space for this meeting is limited
  • Registrations will be treated on a first come first serve basis
  • Priority will be given to primary members
  • All others will be waitlisted until the registration deadline expires (September 15)



The meeting is free of charge for ECLF members.

Provided space is available after the registration deadline, the folllowing terms apply:

  • Guests from member companies pay a 50% discounted fee of USD 600.
  • Guests from non-member companies pay a nominal fee of USD 1,200

If you are not a member and would like to receive an invitation, please contact

Annual ECLF Conference 2012

8th Annual ECLF Conference

Leadership in a Networked World

June 27 - 29, 2012

Santander Corporate University "El Solaruco" Boadilla del Monte
Madrid, Spain


It took only a few years for social media technology to emerge as a global transformational force with a fundamental impact on the cultural, political and economical system. This impact is particularly felt by large, globally distributed organizations, where the introduction of social media creates significant opportunities as well as challenges for leaders at all levels.

Many are excited about this technology that offers leaders and employees new ways of expression and communication via a plethora of platforms that drive participation and exchange. The horizontal character of social media naturally fosters cross-boundary communication and collaboration, tearing down the much lamented walls between functional and divisional silos. The proliferation of self-organized networks uproots the paradigm of vertical accountability and dramatically reshapes the relationship dynamics of an organization's internal and external stakeholder universe.

But this brave new world of ubiquitous connectivity does not come easy. Harnessing the power of social media requires a new and complex set of individual and organizational capabilities. It calls for a different type of leadership as well as new organizational models.

Conference Topic Overview

Based on these premises, our 8th annual ECLF meeting will explore questions such as:

  • How does Social Media change the context of Management and Organization, and what does this mean for leadership and the culture of leadership?
  • In light of this - how do we need to redefine leadership and the related skills? How do we develop leaders in this connected world?
  • How does this impact the identity of the L&D profession? How does this impact the stakeholder relationships?
  • What does the learning function have to learn for its own practice? What new skills and capabilities are required?
  • What is the role of technologies in this new scenario? How can we develop the necessary literacies to capitalize on it?


As always, the three days are designed as a highly interactive and collaborative mix of top level expert input , case studies from our members, and peer-to-peer exchange. Some highlights:

  • Ron Ricci, EVP Corporate Positioning at Cisco Systems and co-author of the recently published book "The Collaboration Imperative" will talk with us about Cisco's journey of emphatically leveraging social media technology, and the challenges that come with it. Following his input, Cisco's EMEA Head of Learning Gianpaolo Barozzi will help us gaining a deeper understanding of the Cisco experience.
  • Joseph Pistrui, Professor of Entrepreneurship at IE Business School, will discuss with us how leaders can leverage our increasing interconnectedness to capitalize on possible productive strategic opportunities in disruptive and ambiguous contexts.
  • Sylvain Newton, General Electric's Global Head of Leadership Learning will review the evolution of GE's learning ecosystem and leadership philosophy, and Crotonville's expanding role in creating competitive advantages and opportunities for the global GE workforce.
  • Our host and Santander's CLO Amudena Rodriguez Tarodo will guide us through the stunning complex of Santander's Financial City and talk about "El Solaruco 3.0", the ambitious project to create a totally networked Corporate University.
  • Sebastian Kolberg, Bayer's Global Head of Learning will discuss with us a brand new Leadership Development initiative that involves the company's Board and 89 countries.
  • uilding on the above inputs and discussions, 5 Topical Round Tables will investigate the impact of these new realities on the Learning Function and provide a guide for addressing the challenge beyond our conference
  • Also, as always, we will have our popular peer-to-peer Focus on Members Issues session
  • ...and ample time for informal conversation, for instance with a Gala Dinner in a Historical Convent turned top Spanish restaurant.




June 24-26, 2020

For details please click on the individual event.


Hosted by member companies, ECLF annual summits are the highlight of the year, bringing together ECLF members from more than a dozen of countries to engage in an intellectually and socially inspiring dialogue which is the hallmark of ECLF's culture.

Each conference is dedicated to exploring a strategic challenge of the practice.