About Symposium

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The Re:Imagine Jamaica Project, the nation brand think tank founded by Jamaican journalist and scholar, Dr. Hume Johnson, collaborates with the University of the West Indies’ Centre for Leadership and Governance (CLG) to stage the inaugural Brand Jamaica symposium on July 16 & 17, 2015 at the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus, Kingston, Jamaica (Multi-Purpose Room, Main Library).

The conference, entitled ‘Re-Imagine Jamaica: Unlimited Possibilities’, brings together key professionals in business, tourism, creative industries, sports, governance and academia to discuss key issues, trends, challenges and practices that are shaping Jamaica’s public international image, as well as share experiences, perspectives, and the latest developments in the national drive to promote and protect Brand Jamaica.  Please see Chairpersons of symposium, Dr. Hume Johnson and Dr. Kamille Gentles-Peart discussing the main themes of the conference.

‘This symposium is crucial and timely in that it will address several key issues of importance to Jamaica’s national identity and global competitiveness such as tourism, business and industry, the creative industries and sports’, says conference co-Chair, and Professor of Public Relations at Roger Williams University, Rhode Island, USA Dr. Hume Johnson.

The conference will also discuss how to protect Brand Jamaica from dilution, contamination and exploitation, and tackle some of the reputational challenges that undermine and threaten Brand Jamaica such as crime, corruption and human rights. This includes how to handle communication challenges during times of crisis such as natural disasters, upsurges of crime, public health issues etc.’

‘It is important to begin a process of taking stock of our global brand image, both the areas which are positive and can be leveraged for our economic benefit and political and social advantage as well as the aspects that threaten our good name’, says Dr. Johnson.

‘In this regard, we are also keen to re-imagine and reposition the Jamaican brand, create a more complex narrative, project a more positive image of the country and engage various stakeholders and domestic sectors in understanding Brand Jamaica and the role they play in it’.

The Brand Jamaica symposium comes on the heels of the staging of the Jamaica Diaspora Conference set for June 2015.

‘It therefore provides an occasion to engage members of the Jamaican diaspora, and reflect on how the Diaspora may broaden the scope of its involvement in the development process for the benefit of itself and for Jamaica’, says fellow organizer, and co-chair Dr. Kamille-Gentles, who is also a Professor of Global Communication at Roger Williams University, Rhode Island, USA, and scholar on the West Indian Diaspora.

She adds that Jamaicans in the diaspora can help to solidify the positive image of Jamaica, mobilise support for the development initiatives at home, and participate in promoting brand Jamaica.

The keynote speaker of the Brand Jamaica Symposium 2015 is Samantha North, an Istanbul-based place brand specialist and freelance journalist with the UK Telegraph and Al Jazeera.

The symposium is being sponsored by the Spanish Court Hotel, Power 106/Music 99 FM,  Peart Consulting (Rhode Island), Department of Government and Institute of Cultural Studies (UWI).

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The Re:Imagine Jamaica Project is a think thank that aims to contribute to global knowledge and understanding of Jamaica through scholarly research. It also aims to promote Jamaican credentials in business, the arts, science and technology, culture, academia and sport. The overall goal is to ‘imagine’ Jamaica through new lens, produce new narratives to tell a more complete and complex story about this remarkable country.

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For more information on Brand Jamaica Symposium, please direct any questions directly to Dr. Hume Johnson (Conference Co-Chair & Chairperson, The Re:Imagine Jamaica Project) humejohnson@gmail.com

Dr. Kamille Gentles-Peart (Conference Co-chair) – kgpeart@gmail.com

Dr. Lloyd Waller (Director, Centre for Leadership and Governance, UWI)– Lloyd.waller@gmail.com

***Re-Imagine Jamaica Symposium: Unlimited Possibilities
University of the West Indies Mona Campus
Multi-Purpose Room, Main Library
July 16 – 17, 2015
Re-imagine Jamaica: Unlimited Possibilities! Come join the conversation!

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