SXSW Sydney 2024 Announces First Keynote Speakers

Chance the Rapper at SXSW Sydney

SXSW Sydney has announced the first keynote speakers for its second edition.

Celebrating the best in music, games, film, ideas, technology, and innovating, SXSW Sydney 2024 will take place in the city between October 14th-20th.

Announced today, the first keynote speaker at this year’s annual conference will be Johann Hari, best-selling author of “Magic Pill” and “Stolen Focus: Why You Can’t Pay Attention.” The latter book earned Hari multiple awards, and it was also named as a Book of the Year by The New York Post, The Spectator, and The Financial Times.

Renowned human rights lawyer Jennifer Robinson has been confirmed as the second keynote speaker.

Robinson is a barrister at Doughty Street Chambers in London specialising in international law, media law, and human rights. She has acted in key human rights and climate cases in domestic, regional, and international courts, and has been a long-standing member of the legal team defending Julian Assange and WikiLeaks.

SXSW Sydney Managing Director, Colin Daniels shares: “Our first two keynote speakers reflect our commitment to fostering challenging conversations. Discussing human rights and our wellbeing, intersecting with the rapidly evolving landscape of technology is more critical than ever. Our keynote speakers will ignite discussions that are not only timely but necessary, as we navigate the complexities of our modern world.”

Other headlining speakers announced today include Min-Liang Tan, co-founder & CEO of Razer; Amy Gallo, best-selling author of “Getting Along: How to Work with Anyone (Even Difficult People)”; ABC radio presenter and host of “This Working Life” podcast Lisa Leong; Senior Editor at Rolling Stone India Peony Hirwani, and many more.

Australian actor Luke Hemsworth, meanwhile, will moderate a panel titled “Better than a Hollywood Movie: The Highs, Lows, Epic Moments, and Colossal Steps Forward in Bringing Back the Tasmanian Tiger,”  featuring co-founder and CEO of Colossal and serial technology entrepreneur Ben Lamm, and Professor of Biosciences at University of Melbourne TIGRR Lab Andrew Pask. The Colossal team returns to SXSW Sydney to share the latest in their efforts to de-extinct the Thylacine and return the storied animal to Tasmania.

In May, astronaut Katherine Bennell-Pegg, entertainer Courtney Act, and Australia’s eSafety commissioner Julie Inman Grant lead the first round of featured speakers for SXSW Sydney 2024.

Also announced back then for the 2024 daytime conference were futurist Ryan Patel; global head of business marketing at TikTok, Sofia Hernandez; filmmaker Simon McQuoid; and vice president of product – AI Platform at IBM, Armand Ruiz.

The SXSW Sydney Music Festival, meanwhile, has been taking shape with the announcements of Ayesha Madon, Nick Ward; BALTHVS; Total Tommy; SAHXL; J-MILLA & Yung Milla; Joel Sunny; Ena Mori; Smol fish; HighSchool; Maina Doe, and more.

According to organisers, 287,014 guests attended the first annual SXSW Sydney, with 97,462 “unique attendees” turning out.

Reporters from The Brag Media were among the 758 media and press, as almost 35,000 tickets (including badges, wristbands and day passes) were distributed.

Sydney is the APAC leg of SXSW and serves as the first expansion city outside of its original home, Austin, Texas, where the event was presented for the first time in 1987.

“SXSW Sydney is about discovery and an opportunity to be surrounded by the best and brightest minds from Tech & Innovation, Games, Music, Screen and Culture,” says TEG’s Jones. “This year’s SXSW promises to be as inspiring as ever.”

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