Global Conference 2015

Russia is a question mark for the future of the world order, or as Churchill put it, a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma. It remains a land of tremendous potential and, for many in the West, a source of fear. Since the Kremlin's intervention in Ukraine last year, economic sanctions have been imposed, sabers have rattled, the ruble has crashed and Russia's isolation has deepened. Yet during the heyday of Wall Street optimism about the BRIC nations -- not so long ago -- Russia posted healthy growth rates and its people enjoyed a swiftly rising standard of living. Some still consider Russia an attractive destination for capital in the longer term, even despite current frictions. True, its factories' finished goods stir meager demand, but Russia sits on what may be the world's richest store of minerals. Can Putin's petrostate ultimately diversify its economy and find a place in the world system that benefits everyone? It recently struck an energy mega-deal with China. How will the two giants' vacillating efforts to strengthen ties unfold? Our panel will assess the economic opportunity as well as the military risk and unwrap the riddle that is Russia.


Matthew Winkler

Editor-in-Chief Emeritus, Bloomberg News


David Bonderman

Founding Partner, TPG

Susan Eisenhower

Chairman and CEO, Eisenhower Group, Inc.

Ruben Vardanyan

Founder and Chairman, RVVZ Foundation; Former CEO and Chairman, Troika Dialog

Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg

Chairman and Founder, Spitzberg Partners LLC; Former Minister of Defense and Former Minister of Economics and Technology, Germany

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