x = independently organized TED event

Theme: SPACE

This event occurred on
March 18, 2018
Dubai, Dubayy
United Arab Emirates

TEDxJESS is proud to present it's fourth TEDx event which took place on Sunday 18th March 2018 exploring all things SPACE - from the space in our lives, the space in our homes, the space in our head, environmental space and outer space.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group.

Jumeirah English Speaking School, Arabian Ranches
Arabian Ranches
Dubai, Dubayy, 24942
United Arab Emirates
Event type:
Youth (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Ian Thurston

Deputy Headteacher
Ian, a father of two, passionately believes in positivity; leading a fun-filled life, enjoying developing those around him. An experienced Deputy Head Teacher, highly skilled in the IB Diploma, global university placements, pastoral care and safeguarding, he has spent over 10 years working at JESS Dubai in a variety of roles. In the last 5 years, he has worked with his team developing the Sixth Form to ensure students are given the best opportunities and are prepared for life and the workplace.

Inge-Marie Hilligan

Business Transformation
Inge-Marié believes transformation of any scale, personal or business, is only possible with and through people. Based in South Africa, with a background in Industrial Engineering and extensive experience in leading various complex large scale Business programmes, Inge-Marié now leads a team responsible for transforming the Way of Work within one of the largest financial institutions in Africa. She continues to lead by example, stimulating enthusiasm and energy in herself and others. The premise that we shape our future is Inge-Marie’s passion, at work and at home, wherein coaching and accountability are tools she favours. She draws insight from her personal transformation journeys, which includes living and working in Dubai for four years, travelling 430 days experiencing 35 countries and cultures, and recovery post a dread disease diagnosis five years ago.

James Duthie

Conservation Activist
James’ career in advertising and communications spans Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific. He started Touchpoints Consulting & Communications in 2008 - a pioneer in helping clients engage with their customers in the environmental space. James is an avid campaigner for improving the sustainability of our fragile planet. His recent history includes working with WWF, United Nations Environment Programme, Environment & Protected Areas Authority (Sharjah), The Jane Goodall Institute and the Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi. He has been a strategic consultant to the Secretary General of The Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi for several years and been intrinsically involved in groundbreaking projects such as the world’s most ambitious species reintroduction programme. When not working for The Environment, James is most at home exploring nature with his young family.

Omran Sharaf

Engineer, Policy Advisor
Omran Sharaf is the Emirates Mars Mission Project Manager (Hope Probe) at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre. Omran studied Science & Technology Policy (Masters) and Electrical Engineer (Bachelor) and worked as a Command & Data Handling Subsystem Engineer in DubaiSat-1 and as a System Engineer on DubaiSat-2. He has represented the UAE government and Dubai government in different international meetings and events, as well as assisted in setting up different science and technology related initiatives and projects for UAE government and Dubai government.

Raghav Raahul

Year 12 IB Student
Raghav Raahul, a Year 12 IB student from India, has a keen interest in the field of mathematics. He has a strong passion for numbers and believes that people can train the space inside their minds with a growth mindset and commitment to achieve feats which they conceive to be close to impossible. In his spare time, he relishes activities such as art which helps relieve stress by serving as a diversion. He is also heavily into cricket and trains once or twice a week in addition to matches. He values fitness greatly and firmly believes that fitness improves mental and physical wellbeing. With a true interest in biology and chemistry, he intends to apply his knowledge in the future to solve problems that exist in today's society.

Sumaya Ali Ahmed

Year 12 IB Student
Sumaya, from England and Somaliland, is a Year 12 IB JESS student. Being an expat almost her entire life, has meant exposure to a wide range of cultures and ethnicities and played a vital part in developing her open mind-set. It has also provided the opportunity to have first-hand experiences with people who are less privileged. She can’t quite envision where she sees herself exactly in the future however, it will definitely be something that contributes to tackling issues that less developed societies face daily. She aspires to use her knowledge and beliefs to make a lasting impact.

The Shadows

Contemporary Dancers
The Shadows previously performed together in JESS' school production of Wendy and Peter Pan as Peter Pan's shadows, trapped in their youth in Neverland. Esin Guven (Teacher of Drama), Lara Rudar, Anna Billinge and Leah Watson were the choreographic minds behind this TEDxJESS performance.

Vahid Fotuhi

Sustainability Pioneer, Chief Camper
Vahid is the driving force behind FAKC.ME - a non-profit group focused on introducing children to the joys of the great outdoors. Vahid loves spending time discovering the natural wonders of the UAE and Oman, a passion he has shared with countless families since was founded. When not organizing camping trips, Vahid is pioneering renewable energy projects in far off corners of the world, from Mozambique to Mongolia and is presently delivering solar and wind power projects in over 20 countries in Africa and Asia.

Organizing team


London, United Kingdom


Dubai, United Arab Emirates
  • Amita van Veen
  • Carina Najia
  • cheryl lynch
    Team member
  • Finley Bettsworth
  • Harry Hopkins
  • Holly Neille
    Team member
  • Kate Williams-Parry
  • Kosta Lekanides
  • Maria Rizzotto
  • Megan Kofteros
  • Megha Sivagnanam
    Team member
  • Rana Iravani
    Team member
  • Reese Murugan
  • Sidra Iqbal
  • Yusuf Khan