Inside the Minds of People at the Cutting Edge of Life Science: How Great Leaders Think

Life Sciences, Pharmaceutical,
  • Thursday, May 13, 2021

At a time when the Life Sciences has never been more important to society, we have been speaking with inspirational individuals who are driving progress.

These incredible leaders have opened up and willingly shared their stories with us and we have been blown away by their wisdom, perspectives and life stories. Now, we are able to share these stories with you first-hand.

In this unique webinar, participants will hear from four distinguished industry leaders with inspiring stories. They will share insights on the experiences, people and decisions that shaped their successful careers, talking about what constitutes great leadership and how that contributes to innovative, breakthrough science.

Register for this webinar for a rich and personal discussion covering a wealth of topics essential to our society today, including how to encourage more women to work in the life sciences industry, the essence of good leadership, the strength of diversity in business, organizational culture, building an empowered organization and more.


Jo Pisani, The RSA Group

Jo Pisani, Non-Executive Director, The RSA Group

Jo Pisani is a Management Consultant and Chartered Engineer with three decades of senior commercial experience.

With an earlier career in engineering at BP, followed by eight years as a project director at SmithKline Beecham (now GSK), Jo then moved into management strategy consulting at Booz Allen Hamilton. For eighteen years until 2019, Jo was a Partner with PwC Strategy, leading the UK Pharma and Life Sciences practice, a 500-person business focused on supporting clients with strategic planning, consulting, tax, audit and deals.

More recently, as well as joining The RSA Group, Jo has taken Board positions at the Dementia Research Institute, a £290M initiative leading the UK’s dementia research efforts, LifeArc and MedCity in London.  She is also a trustee for FindACure and LAM Action and is a Non-Executive Director for several UK start-ups in pharma, manufacturing, digital health and cell and gene therapy.

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Niven R Narain, BERG

Dr. Niven R Narain, Co-founder, President & CEO, BERG

Dr. Niven R. Narain is Co-Founder, President & CEO of BERG. He has been recognized as a pioneer in technology development at the intersection of Biology and AI and is inventor of the Interrogative Biology® platform.   Under his leadership, actionable disease insight has fueled a deep pipeline of assets subject of over 650 issued and pending US and international patents. He is an industry thought leader in precision medicine, drug development, and AI/ML serving as a frequent speaker at Economist, Bloomberg, Financial Times, Wired, and Aspen Ideas in addition to many international meetings on medicine and technology. Dr. Narain is a member of the NASA/Gene Lab Steering Committee, Advisor to US DoD leadership on breast and prostate cancer, R&D Committee Chairman for the School of Applied Computational Sciences at Meharry Medical College and forged strategic partners with industry, academia, and US and UK governments. He also serves on the Advisory Board of Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics at Harvard Law School and the Healthy Aging Initiative Commission at No. 10.  He has been featured on CNN, BBC, CNBC, FORBES, Fox Business, NYT, and the WSJ, among others. Dr. Narain is most passionate about improving patient care and enabling increased access to innovative medicines towards improved healthcare outcomes.

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Dr. Jackie Hunter, BenevolentAI

Dr. Jackie Hunter, Board Director BenevolentAI

Jackie Hunter, PhD DSc CBE FBPharmacolS, FMedSci, FZSL is a Board Director of BenevolentAI, which is applying its AI technology across the whole of Pharma R&D from target ID, through chemistry to patient stratification and clinical trials. She is Chair of several Boards including the Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst and Brainomix Ltd.

Jackie has over thirty years of experience in the bioscience research sector, working across academia and industry, including leading neurology and gastrointestinal drug discovery and early clinical development for GlaxoSmithKline. She founded OI Pharma Partners in 2010 to support the life science sector in harnessing the power of open innovation and was Chief Executive of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.

She holds personal chairs from St George’s Hospital Medical School and Imperial College and in 2010 she was awarded a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for Services to the Pharmaceutical Industry.

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Shiva Dustdar, European Investment Bank

Shiva Dustdar, Head of Division, Innovation Finance Advisory for the European Investment Bank

Shiva Dustdar is a leading innovation finance expert with over 25 years of experience at J.P. Morgan, Fitch Ratings and now at EIB in New York, London and Luxembourg. She is known for her visionary and integrative thinking, growth mindset, inclusive and authentic leadership style, and relentless drive to make things happen. Shiva is a regular speaker on innovation and sustainable financing, gender smart investing, digital and green financing and actively engaged in networks that promote sustainable and mission-oriented financing.

She currently heads the Innovation Finance Advisory Division at the European Investment Bank (the EU Bank) which she set up in 2013 and has since scaled up to be a highly successful financial advisory practice under the InnovFin Advisory (IFA) brand name.

Shiva holds a BA in Economics with Magna Cum Laude from Columbia University and an Executive MBA from London Business School (LBS). She serves on advisory boards promoting academic excellence and sustainable development and enjoys mentoring students and young entrepreneurs at the cross section of science and finance. Shiva is married and has two grown up children.

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Who Should Attend?

Senior professionals who are:

  • Aspiring and existing leaders from any sector or background
  • Life science executives searching for leadership advice
  • Women in leadership looking for guidance and role models
  • C-suite professionals

What You Will Learn

In this webinar, participants will gain:

  • Advice from the experts on what good, effective, inclusive leadership means
  • How to achieve this leadership and the mindset needed to lead well
  • Insights on building resilience, facing adversity, embracing your differences and being confident
  • An understanding of why diversity is vital to success
  • Golden nuggets of advice that leaders from any industry sector would gain incredible value from

Xtalks Partner

The RSA Group

The RSA Group is the pre-eminent executive search firm in global Life Sciences. Providing a unique combination of executive search and executive interims, we deliver results through data driven due diligence. Our Proof of Candidate® approach is based on evidence and in-depth comparative analysis, supporting clients to make better hiring decisions. Since 1981, our consultants have drawn on their wealth of executive search and industry experience to deliver a focused solution to our clients. Large enough to be global and small enough to remain local, we are where you are, with locations in the UK, USA, China, Germany, Singapore, Switzerland, and Turkey. To learn more about The RSA Group, visit

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