Many have asked what I do as an international strategic advisor for EXPO 2017. I do many things, but this was a project I was focused on from October until January when the summit took place. I was responsible for everything related to EXPO 2017 / Kazakhstan’s booth at the exhibition. This included the concept, structural design, contractors, interactive content, installation and construction, etc. I was the only one dedicated to this project from the National Company. I’ve never done anything like this before. I got to tap into my creative side a little bit on a professional level. It was trial by fire, but all around a great learning experience.
The EXPO 2017 Astana booth provided an exploratory introduction of the key Future Energy concepts of EXPO 2017. We wanted to create a lively and sensory experience through installations and representations that helped visitors understand the Future Energy theme of the EXPO 2017, as well as Astana’s contribution and path towards a green economy. The goal was to get visitors familiar with EXPO 2017 and entice them to want to visit.
This was an event of great importance for EXPO 2017 and Kazakhstan because it was EXPO’s first international event, and the summit goes hand-in-hand with the theme. The highest levels of government were involved and I had to present my ideas to the Ministry.
The pavilion was an overwhelming success! Out of all the pavilions (hundreds), I honestly believe that it was one of the best looking in the entire exhibition complex. (I’m not biased or anything). The atmosphere was fresh, vibrant and light and the organic bar was a hit!
I was also tasked to give tours to dignitaries including the Secretary-General of the International Energy Agency and the Chair of the World Energy Council. There was press recording our every move and I headlined the Kazakh national news! I thought this was so funny. In the news clip, I was giving a tour to the Secretary General of the IEA (former Minster of Science & Education, then the Minister of Economics of the Netherlands).
While in the UAE we also toured Masdar City, a sustainable community that serves as a model of green urban development. Below is a picture of me in driverless electric car! It was as if we traveled to the future for a day.