Our Speakers

You can find detailed biographies of speakers of 8th Women Directors in Turkey Virtual Conference which will be held with the name of ‘An Inclusive and Equitable Future’.


Ceyla Pazarbaşıoğlu, PhD

Director of the Strategy, Policy, and Review Department – International Monetary Fund (IMF)

Ceyla Pazarbasioglu is Director of the Strategy, Policy, and Review Department
(SPR) of the IMF. In this capacity, she leads the work on the IMF’s strategic
direction and the design, implementation, and evaluation of Fund policies. She
also oversees the IMF’s interactions with international bodies, such as the G20
and United Nations.
 
Prior to her current position, Ms. Pazarbasioglu held several posts at the World
Bank Group from 2015-2020, most recently serving as the Vice President for
Equitable Growth, Finance and Institutions. 
 
Ms. Pazarbasioglu previously worked at the IMF from 1992-1998 and 2003-2015.
She served in several capacities, including as Deputy Director in the Monetary and
Capital Markets Department, Assistant Director in the European Department and
as the mission chief for Ukraine. 
 
She joined the Government of Turkey crisis management team in 2001 to focus on
reforming the pension system before being appointed as Vice President of the
Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency of Turkey. During 1998–2001, Ms.
Pazarbasioglu served as the Chief Economist of Emerging European Markets at
ABN AMRO Investment Bank in London. 
 
Ms. Pazarbasioglu, a Turkish national, holds a doctorate in economics and finance
from Georgetown University and studied at Princeton University (visiting
scholar).


Melsa Ararat, PhD

Director – Sabancı University Coorporate Governance Forum

Melsa Ararat has been a faculty member of Sabancı University School of Management since 2001 and the director of the Corporate Governance Forum, of which she is the founder. Ararat, who previously worked as a manager in international companies, Europe and Asia, carries out studies aimed at the effective use of scientific research on socially important issues in improving the behavior and corporate management practices of companies.

Ararat, who has a master’s degree in Chemical Engineering and a doctorate in Management Sciences, has focused on corporate governance and sustainability. Ararat, a member of the award committee and the Business Ethics Committee of the ICGN, has been the coordinator of the IFC Emerging Markets Corporate Governance Research Network and the editor of the research bulletin since 2007.
Ararat is also the director of CDP operations in Turkey.


Murat Yeşildere

Senior Partner – Egon Zehnder

Murat Yeşildere graduated with Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering from Bogazici University and received Master of Science degree in Business Economics at Manchester (UMIST) United Kingdom.

Murat began his career as Treasury & Fund Management Manager at Philip Morris, and continued at GSD Holding and GSD Investment Bank as Vice President. He joined Egon Zehnder in October 2000 in Istanbul office and started as a Consultant to “relaunch” Financial Services Practice in Turkey and continued his career by taking diverse exposure in different practices in Egon Zehnder as well as leadership responsibilities in managing the Turkish practice. Murat Yesildere has been the Managing Partner of Egon Zehnder’s Turkish practice covering not only Turkey but also CIS and Caucasus until 2019. He is now the Senior Partner in Egon Zehnder’s Istanbul office.

He is a member of Fenerbahce Sports Club and PERYON. Besides his professional career, Murat is a regular columnist in Platin monthly magazine writing about leadership, economy, financial services, human resources, governance and management topics.
As a part of his efforts to promote diversity and gender equality, Yeşildere is the founding board member of YKKD (Yönetim Kurulu’nda Kadın Derneği) and Yanındayız Derneği.


Baroness Mary Goudie

Member – British House of Lords & 30% Club UK Steering Committee

Baroness Mary Goudie is a member of the British House of Lords and a global advocate for the rights of women and children. She works globally to promote gender equality, women’s rights, and peacebuilding.

She is an advisor to the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace, and Security and she is on the advisory board for the London School of Economics – Centre for Women, Peace, and Security, and a member of the advisory board of Women’s Forum, a leading platform dedicated to highlighting women’s voices and perspectives on global issues.

Baroness Goudie is also a member of the Gender Action for Peace and Security (GAPS) management board of advisors. A trustee of the El-Hibri Charitable Foundation, which fosters interfaith dialogue and establishes common ground and solutions to global challenges affecting mankind.  

Baroness Goudie is an active ambassador for ICRW, a global research institute whose mission is to empower women, advance gender equality, and fight poverty. As well as a founding member of the 30% Club steering committee, which aims to influence the chairman into bringing more women on to corporate boards across the world


Lorraine Hariton

President & CEO – Catalyst

Lorraine Hariton is President & CEO of Catalyst, a global nonprofit working with some of the world’s most powerful CEOs and leading companies to help build workplaces that work for women.

Lorraine’s extensive career includes senior-level positions in Silicon Valley, as well
as leadership roles across the private, nonprofit, and government sectors. Catalyst’s vision
and mission have long been a passion for Lorraine and she is honored to lead the
organization at this crucial time and to help write the next chapter in its 56-year legacy of
accelerating positive change for women.


Itır Akdoğan, PhD

Research Director – Turkish Economics and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)

After graduating from Notre Dame De Sion French lycée, she completed her BA in
communication at Galatasaray University, MA in international politics at Université
Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), and PhD in social sciences at Helsinki University. She is an
international e-democracy consultant with projects she worked for in Northern
Europe with the Ministry of Justice in Finland, and in Africa with German Corporation
for International Cooperation (GIZ).

She worked as UNDP Turkey’s program associate at Habitat Association between 2013-2015. Itir Akdogan is the research director of TESEV since August 2015. She is the author of the book “Dijital Politik Fantaziler” (Digital Political Fantasies). She continues her academic work with publications in the field of e-democracy. Her policy report “Women Participation in High Level Decision Making” is selected among world’s best policy reports on Global Go To Think Tank Index 2019.


Renee Adams, PhD

Professor of Finance – Said Business School, University of Oxford.

Renée B. Adams is a Professor of Finance at Said Business School, University of Oxford. She is a Fellow of the European Corporate Governance Institute and the Asian Bureau of Finance and Economic Research. She is an expert on corporate governance, bank governance and gender. She co-founded the American Finance Association’s “Academic Female Finance Committee” in 2015 and chaired it until 2020.


Daniel Ferreira, PhD

Head of Department and Professor of Finance – London School of Economics.

Daniel Ferreira is Head of Department and Professor of Finance at the London School
of Economics. He is known for his academic work on corporate governance, especially
on the workings of corporate boards, having written several influential articles on the
topic. More generally, his research interests span areas such as corporate finance,
organisations, business strategy, and microeconomics, with articles published in leading
journals in finance, economics, accounting, and management.

His academic work is policy relevant and has had significant media impact, being covered by The Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, and The Economist, amongst others. He has also offered expert advice to businesses, governments, and organisations, including the UK House of Commons, HM Treasury, the European Commission, the Bank of England, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and Norges Bank Investment Management. He was awarded a PhD degree in Economics from the University of Chicago in 2002.


Burçin Yurtoğlu, PhD

Professor of Finance – WHO Otto Beisheim School of Management

Burcin Yurtoglu is Professor of Finance at WHU – Otto Beisheim School of
Management. He holds a doctoral degree in Economics from the University of
Vienna. His research interests include corporate governance, corporate finance, and
competition policy with a focus on emerging markets.