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ISMA-OSAC MENA Regional Conference
22-24 September 2019
Amman, Jordan

The 29th ISMA-OSAC joint conference, its objective is to inform organizations by addressing a broad range of security issues that impact businesses, non-government organizations, faith-based organizations, and academic institutions with interests in the Middle East and North Africa. This program is open to ISMA members and their staff as well as OSAC constituents.

Registration Information

Conference registration fee: 
$500 USD + 16% VAT

The deadline to register has passed. Walk in registrations will not be allowed.

Cancellation Policy: Conference cancellations received prior to 30 days before the meeting commences will be refunded in full. Cancellations received after 22 August 2019 will not be refunded, but you may transfer your registration to a colleague.

For registration questions, please contact [email protected] 

Hotel Information

All conference sessions and events will take place at: 

Dead Sea Marriott Resort
Dead Sea Road

Sweimeh, Jordan


The deadline to book a reservation through the group link has passed. Please reach out to the hotel directly to make your reservation.

Unparalleled Connections and Education

  • Two days of networking and education with actionable takeaways for key security issues faced in the region
  • ISMA member CSOs on hand to discuss their companies’ security strategies and regional experiences
  • Senior government officials will provide relevant briefings
  • Regional RSOs will answer your most pressing questions



Please see below for the current agenda. Note agenda is subject to change. Attendees staying at the Dead Sea Marriott have breakfast included in their room rate and should dine at their leisure. 

Sunday, September 22

Join your fellow attendees and speakers at a Welcome Reception from 6:00 - 9:00 p.m. at the Cascades Restaurant.

Monday, September 23

  All sessions take place in the Vartanii Ballroom.
9:00 – 9:15 a.m.       

Welcoming Remarks
James Weston
, Chief, Research and Information Support Center (RISC), Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC)
Liz Chamberlin, Executive Director, International Security Management Association (ISMA)
Meredith Wilson, Conference Emcee, CEO and Founder, Emergent Risk International, LLC

9:15 – 9:30 a.m. Opening Keynote
Senior Government Official
9:30 – 10:30 a.m. Regional Security Officer Panel
Seth Lindenfeld
, RSO Amman 
Andy Simpson, RSO Doha
Lonny Muller, RSO Dubai
Dave Eberhardt, RSO Riyadh
Teji Thiara, Senior RSO Jerusalem
This interactive panel discussion will examine the most frequently asked questions constituents have on operating in the Middle East. OSAC’s Regional Analyst for the Middle East and North Africa will moderate the session and structure the discussion around prevalent themes raised in OSAC constituent inquiries.
10:30 – 11:00 a.m. Networking Break
11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Session Block: Political Change in the Middle East

  • Shifting Politics and Alliances Require Strong Organizational Resilience (30 minutes)
    The discussion will highlight the high potential for political and economic crises in MENA. Potential political changes will require organizations to have efficient and tested crisis management, business continuity and contingency planning.

  • Rising Tensions Between US and Iran: Possible Scenarios (30 minutes)
    This session will cover a variety of potential scenarios, both escalation/de-escalations, following the cancellation of US waivers to purchase Iranian crude under the policy of maximum pressure, and the subsequent increase in Iranian direct and proxy activity in the region. What does the increase in recent Israeli military activity mean in the current regional context?

  • Facilitated Group Discussion 
12:30 – 1:30 p.m.


1:30 – 3:15 p.m.

Session Block: Security Principles for Business 

  • Regional Risks and Opportunities from the CSO's Perspective (30 minutes)
    This session will tackle business and security considerations for operating in the region from the CSO's perspective. ISMA members will discuss the complexity of the region and challenges to corporate initiatives, contingency planning, market due diligence and more. 
  • Energy's Role in Regional Stability (45 minutes)
    Economic growth and development are cornerstones to the stability of modern society. The availability of reliable, affordable energy is essential to a functioning economy and is therefore foundational to the world’s economies and to their stability. Significant new energy resources being discovered in the deep waters of the Eastern Mediterranean are bringing the promise of economic prosperity for the peoples of the region and are opening new pathways of cooperation between the nations of the region and beyond.
  • Facilitated Group Discussion (30 minutes)
3:15 – 3:30 p.m. Networking Break
3:30 – 5:00 p.m.

Session Block: Information Security  

  • Cutting Through the Noise: Making Sense of the Increasing Flood of Unverified Information (30 minutes)
    A key feature of the contemporary regional security environment is the quantity of security information potentially accessible to CSOs. Without the structures, tools, and people to understand the potential impact of this information, the ‘noise’ can become deafening. This session will explore how organizations can meet their decision-making needs by efficiently gathering, analyzing and disseminating this information.
  • Social Media and Implications for Corporate Security (30 minutes)
    This session will discuss the reasons why social media intelligence (SOCMINT) continues to be important to threat and risk identification for businesses. This session will cover future trends, risks and challenges in this space.
  • Facilitated Group Discussion (30 minutes)
6:30 – 9:00 p.m. Networking Reception and Dinner (408 Below Restaurant)


Tuesday, September 24

  All sessions take place in Vartanii Ballroom
9:00 – 10:30 a.m.       

Session Block: Regional Hot Topics

  • Securing the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar (30 minutes)
    The 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar will be the first World Cup to be held in the Middle East. With nearly three years to go until the first kick-off, Qatar has already made advanced preparations for a safe and secure event. The Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy shares Qatar’s progress for a safe and secure 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar.
  • Threats to North African Borders: the Maghreb and the Sahel (30 minutes)
    The African Maghreb and Sahel regions have emerged as some of the world's most prominent hotspots for illicit cross-border activity. With coastlines that span the Mediterranean Sea, the Suez Canal, the Red Sea, and the Atlantic, coupled with thousands of kilometers of unmanned desert, these vast and poorly monitored regions have borders that are both numerous and vulnerable. This session will explore the threat actors taking advantage of these border weaknesses, ranging from illegal migrants to criminal organizations and militant groups. It will also assess the risks these threat actors pose to commercial operations in the region.

  • Facilitated Group Discussion (30 minutes)
10:30 – 11:00 a.m. Networking Break
11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Session Block: Travel Security 

  • Hotel Selection - Security Considerations in Context (30 minutes)
    How should organizations select the hotels their travelers use, especially in higher risk destinations? Context should play a key role in their assessment and decision making. This session will look at some of the methods that airlines use to select hotels and how this can be applied by other organizations.
  • Current Threat Assessment for Air Travelers (30 minutes)
    While most non-aviation security managers do not factor overflight threats into their security planning, a majority view the security posture of the commercial aviation industry as a reliable tripwire and rely on commercial aviation as the principal means of departure when a security
    situation deteriorates. As such, understanding air carrier decision-making and risk mitigation processes can help security managers with contingency planning and making informed decisions regarding potential risks to personnel. Current and regional-specific case studies will be discussed.
    The presentation will address three key questions:
    • What overflight security issues are considered in an airline’s decision to suspend/cease flight operations to a specific location?
    • What specific factors need to be addressed when assessing overflight security?
    • What is the impact of overflight security concerns, and how can airlines address them?

  • Facilitated Group Discussion (30 minutes)
12:30 – 1:30 p.m.


1:30 – 2:30 p.m. RSO Knowledge Cafe
This session is intended to encourage networking and sharing of information between participants and RSOs.
2:30 – 4:00 p.m.

Session Block: Business Risks and Opportunities in the Middle East

  • Building Organizational Resilience in Emerging Markets – Cross Industry Lessons (60 minutes)
    This workshop style session will offer practical recommendations for Security, Enterprise Risk, Crisis and Business Continuity Managers related to designing, implementing and maintaining resilience programs in complex and/or volatile operating environments.
  • Conference Wrap Up & Final Discussion (30 minutes)
4:00 - 5:00 p.m. Closing Reception