David Rowan: Biography highlights

David is a keynote speaker on the corporate circuit who shares his insights into consumer behaviour, the digital era, social commerce and media.

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Full biography of David Rowan

David Rowan Keynote Speaker

  • Technology columnist for The Sunday Times
  • Deep knowledge of trends in technology, social media and consumer behaviour.
  • Interviews the world’s disruptors and innovators in order to share that insight with business leaders.
  • Early-stage investor in 40 tech companies.

David delivers fascinating and knowledgeable presentations full of insight into the future of technology together with lively examples and engaging clips which reveal that in some cases the future is already here.

He’s typically asked to speak about how innovation and technology are likely to impact a particular sector (from manufacturing to motoring), and what incumbent companies can do to protect themselves. He customises every talk, and in recent months has addressed audiences in finance, fashion, utilities, television, insurance, shipping, travel, real estate and business software.

He also speaks a lot about changing business models, and how companies can develop a culture of innovation. One talk he is asked frequently to deliver is titled “How smart companies are innovating”. Another is “Ten ways to stay ahead of tech innovation”.


He is the former editor-in-chief of WIRED magazine’s UK edition from 2009 to 2017, which won 2009 Launch of the Year at the British Society of Magazine Editors Awards.

In 2017, he moved from his role as editor-in-chief of Wired UK, to become the magazine’s editor-at-large, in order to explore the latest trends that will be changing the world as we know it. He spent a brief stint investigating the companies and entrepreneurs changing our world, spending time with the founders of WhatsApp, LinkedIn, Google, Spotify, Xiaomi, Nest, Twitter and countless other disruptive startups from Tel Aviv to Shenzhen before stepping down from the magazine entirely.

Previously he wrote the monthly Digital Life column in GQ magazine; the Tech Traveller column in Conde Nast Traveller, and tech and trend-watching columns for The Times. Trained at The Times, David edited The Guardian’s op-ed, education, analysis and Saturday features sections. In 2006 he was brought in as editor to modernise The Jewish Chronicle.

In 2009 David curated an exhibition of British creative talent for the UK Government’s Cabinet Forum conference as a speaker. His regular media appearances include BBC Newsnight, BBC Breakfast News, BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme and Channel 4 News. In 2010 David was a judge in the Brit Insurance Design Awards and the 2010 Conde Nast Traveller design awards.

He is a regular speaker and moderator at global conferences including; TED Global, DLD, SIME and NEXT, and at private corporate events for organisations including; Goldman Sachs, HSBC, Best Buy UK, and Nectar. He speaks on topics ranging from the future of luxury brands to the new rules of business in a mobile-internet age and has worked with; IBM, American Express, British Insurance Brokers Association, Estee Lauder, Interactive Advertising Bureau, KPMG, and Deutsche Bank.


David Rowan attended the University of Cambridge where he got an MA in History. He began his career in journalism at The Times in 1988 and worked briefly at The Independent before joining The Guardian, where he edited their websites among many other writing and editing roles.


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Available for:

After Dinner Engagement
Moderating and Emcee
Panel Participation

Watch David in action

1/4 videos
David Rowan on Non Bullshit Innovation at USI, Paris, June 2019
David Rowan on Non Bullshit Innovation at USI, Paris, June 2019
David Rowan on Non Bullshit Innovation at the Slovakia Tech Forum, October 2019
David Rowan on Non Bullshit Innovation at the Slovakia Tech Forum, October 2019
David Rowan's quest for genuine business innovation
David Rowan's quest for genuine business innovation
David Rowan at International Luxury Travel Market 2017, Cannes
David Rowan at International Luxury Travel Market 2017, Cannes
G8 Innovation Conference

I wanted to thank you for your time to moderate the G8 Innovation Conference. You set the tone for the day perfectly, engaging the audience and steering the presenters through a very full agenda. The feedback from the day has been overwhelmingly positive, which is largely due to your dynamism, good humour and professionalism.'

David Cameron
Prime Minister

'You were a star and a dream to work with and the perfect speaker for this event. We could not have asked for more.'

Broadband World Forum

'David gave a unique and fascinating presentation on the future tech trends which are shaping our industry. He was a very engaging speaker - I would highly recommend him to anyone looking to expand the minds of their audience.'


'Big thanks for joining us at Telefonica University. Everybody, including myself, really enjoyed your presentation, which set absolutely the right tone. Your presentation was a real highlight.'

Hong Kong

'Your contribution at the event was terrific. The content was highly relevant & extremely interesting. We also appreciated that you took on board the detail discussed on the briefing call ahead of the event. Your talk received the highest audience review on the feedback application. The level of your professionalism is unrivalled.'

World Economic Forum

'You were a stellar moderator - insightful and challenging to the speakers, witty and engaging for the audience, and very positive to work with.'


'Content was very good; thought provoking as hoped. Many positive comments received from our customers. Overall it was very good entertainment and we'd definitely recommend him to others. Extremely happy as you can tell.'

Unilever CMO

'Your presentation went down a storm (I knew it would) and I was able to refer back to it repeatedly over the two days as a stimulus to help drive the need for change.'

David's speaking topics

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