SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Trevor Parsons, Sean Houghton, Glenn Rossman, Ignacio M. Llorente, Xenia von Wedel

News Feed Item

TED Prize Winner Charmian Gooch Announces Global Campaign to Abolish Anonymous Companies

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, March 18, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- This year's TED Prize winner – Charmian Gooch of Global Witness – has announced that she will use the prestigious million-dollar award "to make it impossible for criminals and corrupt dictators to hide behind anonymous companies." The announcement was made live and online from the TED stage in Vancouver, with support from leading members of the business, political, law enforcement and campaigning community.

Delivering a powerful talk, Charmian described the abuse of anonymous companies as a "devastating problem that spans the globe…negatively affecting all of us." Describing the ease with which people can hide their identities behind anonymous companies, Gooch recounted harrowing tales of the impact of this problem, particularly on some of the poorest people in the world. She called on leaders around the globe to make a simple commitment "to enact laws to create public registries which list the true owners of companies, and that can be accessed by all – with no loopholes."

Describing the problem as "entirely fixable," Gooch shared her 2014 TED Prize wish:

"My wish is for us to know who owns and controls companies, so that they can no longer be used anonymously against the public good. Let's ignite world opinion, change the law, and together launch a new era of openness in business."

Since 2005, the TED Prize has been awarded to an exceptional individual with a creative and bold vision to spark global change. The $1 million dollar award, combined with the resources of the TED community, helps conceive and launch a high-impact project – and brings this powerful idea to a global stage.

Charmian Gooch is one of three Co-Founders and Directors of Global Witness – a non-profit organization that, for 20 years, has run pioneering investigations and campaigns uncovering the links between natural resources, corruption and conflict. Global Witness's research and campaigning has made the organization a leading global voice on what can be done to stamp out the abuse of anonymous companies.

"Every year, we award the TED Prize to an inspirational individual tackling a critical issue – from education and environmental degradation to the power of art to give people a voice," said Chris Anderson, TED Curator. "We are thrilled to award Charmian Gooch the 2014 TED Prize and further Global Witness's ongoing work to challenge global corruption. As a pro-business entrepreneur, I am thrilled to see this year's prize being used to make business more transparent."

"I'm honoured and excited to have been given this award," said Charmian Gooch, Global Witness Co-Founder and Director. "I can't imagine a better stage to launch a global conversation and campaign to stop anonymous companies being used to steal, evade tax and loot billions from some of the world's poorest countries. As a lifelong campaigner, I know this devastating problem is fixable if we work together. But we need your support. Whoever you are, whatever you do, you can help - please join the conversation, show your support and help us inspire action."

The TED Prize will also have support from a wish advisory board. Members include: Jamie Drummond, Co-Founder and Executive Director of ONE; Julie McCarthy, Director of the Fiscal Governance Program at Open Society Foundations; Sally Osberg, President and CEO of the Skoll Foundation; Jeff Skoll, Founder and Chairman of the Skoll Foundation, the Skoll Global Threats Fund, Participant Media, and the first President of eBay; and Mo Ibrahim, Founder and Chair of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation. All have added their support to the wish, as well as their expertise, advice and continued practical support.  

"Charmian Gooch's 'wish' is the right move at the right time. Trillions of dollars have been lost over the last decade to illicit money flows from corrupt deals in the developing world," said Jeff Skoll, Founder and Chairman of the Skoll Foundation, and the first President of eBay. "Charmian and Global Witness received the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship earlier this month because their quest to expose corruption, conflict, and environmental degradation is poised to put an end to the 'resource course' that has kept millions of the world's poorest people in poverty."  

"I've seen the harm that poor governance and a lack of accountability has caused across the developing world, which is why as a philanthropist and a businessman I support Charmian's TED wish to fight corruption and to end anonymous companies," said Mo Ibrahim, Founder and Chair of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation.

Law enforcement has also chosen to support the wish. Jon Adler, National President of the US Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA), said: "The Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA) would like to recognize Charmian Gooch and Global Witness for their unrelenting leadership on the corporate transparency campaign. As supported in bi-partisan legislation currently in Congress, we must eliminate the corporate fox-holes that criminals cower in, and ensure business accountability and transparency. Requiring corporate filers to disclose who the beneficiaries are isn't an invasion of privacy; it's a proclamation of integrity."

ACTION STEPS
The TED Prize wish signals the start of a conversation and action to create a global movement for change. To achieve success, Charmian and Global Witness are looking to TED and its extended community to:

Join the movement for global change

Build a global movement to make it impossible for criminals and others to hide behind anonymous companies. Global Witness – along with partners around the world – is leading a campaign to end anonymous companies. 

Mobilize your communities 

The first step to ending anonymous companies is to educate people, encourage them to join the campaign and inspire others to take action.

  • Share Charmian's TED Prize talk (link coming soon)
  • Translate Charmian's TED Prize talk
  • For local groups, civil society, and TEDx organisers, here's a checklist of ways to support
  • Tell us what your community is doing to support the wish on the Facebook page and Twitter

Contribute to the public registry

Help create the first-ever prototype of a public registry for collecting and publishing critical information on who ultimately owns a company. This prototype will serve as a guide for governments that want to end anonymous companies.

Help us make this prototype public registry a reality. Email us at [email protected] to contribute funds and technical expertise.

Convene the business community

Transparency is good for businesses and consumers. We all want to know whom we're buying from and whom we're doing business with. If you own or work in a company — big or small, publicly listed or privately held—join the global campaign, take part in the conversation, and support this wish.

We're going to bring together as many companies as possible to a meeting in NYC to figure out how we can collectively advance a movement away from anonymous companies, and towards transparency. Join us. Email [email protected].

Add your businesses name to those calling for an end to anonymous companies. Email [email protected]

Tell the story

Creatives, animators, broadcasters, photographers, and app designers: this wish needs you. The story of anonymous companies and their effect on real people's lives remains largely untold. Bring your communicative and artistic gifts to bear on this global problem and, in doing so, inspire others to act.   

Email [email protected] if you have an idea and want to collaborate with us, and our partners around the world.

Filmmakers can respond to the Sundance Institute request for proposals to make a film on this issue.

Notes to Editors:

About the TED Prize 
The first TED Prize was awarded in 2005, born out of the TED Conference and a vision by the world's leading entrepreneurs, innovators, and entertainers to change the world – one wish at a time. The original prize: $100,000 and the TED community's range of talent and expertise. What began as an unparalleled experiment to leverage the resources of the TED community has evolved into a $1 million award and an ambitious effort to spur global-scale change.

From Bono's the ONE Campaign ('05 recipient) to Jamie Oliver 's Food Revolution ('10 recipient) to JR's Inside Out Project ('11 recipient) and Sugata Mitra's School in a Cloud ('13 recipient), the TED Prize has helped to combat poverty, take on religious intolerance, improve global health, tackle child obesity, advance education, and inspire art around the world.

For Press Inquiries: Erin Allweiss +1 202 446 8265/[email protected]

About Global Witness 
Founded in 1993, Global Witness is a UK non-profit organization based in London and Washington DC. Global Witness investigates and campaigns to change the system by exposing the economic networks behind conflict, corruption and environmental destruction. The organization focuses on undertaking hard-hitting investigations into matters of public interest that expose the companies, the corrupt, the bankers, the corporate executives, and the middlemen of various kinds who willfully enable corruption to take place on a grand scale. Global Witness reports on these matters, and launches campaigns that change the terms of debate and set the global agenda.

For press inquiries: Andrea Pattison +44 7703 671 308/[email protected] 

SOURCE TED

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
ScriptRock makes GuardRail, a DevOps-ready platform for configuration monitoring. Realizing we were spending way too much time digging up, cataloguing, and tracking machine configurations, we began writing our own scripts and tools to handle what is normally an enormous chore. Then we took the concept a step further, giving it a beautiful interface and making it simple enough for our bosses to understand. We named it GuardRail after its function - to allow businesses to move fast and stay sa...
In high-production environments where release cycles are measured in hours or minutes — not days or weeks — there's little room for mistakes and no room for confusion. Everyone has to understand what's happening, in real time, and have the means to do whatever is necessary to keep applications up and running optimally. DevOps is a high-stakes world, but done well, it delivers the agility and performance to significantly impact business competitiveness.
The Internet of Things is not new. Historically, smart businesses have used its basic concept of leveraging data to drive better decision making and have capitalized on those insights to realize additional revenue opportunities. So, what has changed to make the Internet of Things one of the hottest topics in tech? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Gray, Director, Embedded and Internet of Things, discussed the underlying factors that are driving the economics of intelligent systems. Discover ...
"BSQUARE is in the business of selling software solutions for smart connected devices. It's obvious that IoT has moved from being a technology to being a fundamental part of business, and in the last 18 months people have said let's figure out how to do it and let's put some focus on it, " explained Dave Wagstaff, VP & Chief Architect, at BSQUARE Corporation, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Media announced today that Sematext launched a popular blog feed on DevOps Journal with over 6,000 story reads over the weekend. DevOps Journal is focused on this critical enterprise IT topic in the world of cloud computing. DevOps Journal brings valuable information to DevOps professionals who are transforming the way enterprise IT is done. Sematext is a globally distributed organization that builds innovative Cloud and On Premises solutions for performance monitoring, alerting an...
The major cloud platforms defy a simple, side-by-side analysis. Each of the major IaaS public-cloud platforms offers their own unique strengths and functionality. Options for on-site private cloud are diverse as well, and must be designed and deployed while taking existing legacy architecture and infrastructure into account. Then the reality is that most enterprises are embarking on a hybrid cloud strategy and programs. In this Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo (http://www.CloudComputingExpo.com...
Verizon Enterprise Solutions is simplifying the cloud-purchasing experience for its clients, with the launch of Verizon Cloud Marketplace, a key foundational component of the company's robust ecosystem of enterprise-class technologies. The online storefront will initially feature pre-built cloud-based services from AppDynamics, Hitachi Data Systems, Juniper Networks, PfSense and Tervela. Available globally to enterprises using Verizon Cloud, Verizon Cloud Marketplace provides a one-stop shop fo...
Leysin American School is an exclusive, private boarding school located in Leysin, Switzerland. Leysin selected an OpenStack-powered, private cloud as a service to manage multiple applications and provide development environments for students across the institution. Seeking to meet rigid data sovereignty and data integrity requirements while offering flexible, on-demand cloud resources to users, Leysin identified OpenStack as the clear choice to round out the school's cloud strategy. Additional...
SYS-CON Events announced today that IDenticard will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. IDenticard™ is the security division of Brady Corp (NYSE: BRC), a $1.5 billion manufacturer of identification products. We have small-company values with the strength and stability of a major corporation. IDenticard offers local sales, support and service to our customers across the United States and Canada...
SYS-CON Media announced today that Aruna Ravichandran, VP of Marketing, Application Performance Management and DevOps at CA Technologies, has joined DevOps Journal’s authors. DevOps Journal is focused on this critical enterprise IT topic in the world of cloud computing. DevOps Journal brings valuable information to DevOps professionals who are transforming the way enterprise IT is done. Aruna's inaugural article "Four Essential Cultural Hacks for DevOps Newbies" discusses how to demonstrate the...
The move in recent years to cloud computing services and architectures has added significant pace to the application development and deployment environment. When enterprise IT can spin up large computing instances in just minutes, developers can also design and deploy in small time frames that were unimaginable a few years ago. The consequent move toward lean, agile, and fast development leads to the need for the development and operations sides to work very closely together. Thus, DevOps become...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Windstream, a leading provider of advanced network and cloud communications, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9–11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Windstream (Nasdaq: WIN), a FORTUNE 500 and S&P 500 company, is a leading provider of advanced network communications, including cloud computing and managed services, to businesses nationwide. The company also offers broadband, p...
SYS-CON Events announced today that AIC, a leading provider of OEM/ODM server and storage solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. AIC is a leading provider of both standard OTS, off-the-shelf, and OEM/ODM server and storage solutions. With expert in-house design capabilities, validation, manufacturing and production, AIC's broad selection of products are highly flexible and are conf...

ARMONK, N.Y., Nov. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --  IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced that it is bringing a greater level of control, security and flexibility to cloud-based application development and delivery with a single-tenant version of Bluemix, IBM's

The BPM world is going through some evolution or changes where traditional business process management solutions really have nowhere to go in terms of development of the road map. In this demo at 15th Cloud Expo, Kyle Hansen, Director of Professional Services at AgilePoint, shows AgilePoint’s unique approach to dealing with this market circumstance by developing a rapid application composition or development framework.