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Dr. Samantha Nutt        

Founder & Executive Director, War Child North America

Dr. Samantha Nutt is an award-winning humanitarian, bestselling author and acclaimed public speaker. A medical doctor and the founder of the renowned international humanitarian organizations War Child USA and War Child Canada, she is an expert in the field of foreign policy and geopolitics, as seen through the lens of more than twenty years of practical experience working with women and children in war zones across the globe.

Dr. Samantha Nutt is a recognized expert in all aspects of foreign policy as it relates to conflict and humanitarian crises. She can offer passionately held opinions on a wide range of subjects, including the impact of western foreign policy on civilian populations, the damage caused by the arms trade, the root causes of terrorism, and the unprecedented migration crisis. She is a passionate advocate for women living with war, and has written extensively about sexual and other forms of violence against women, and how to address it. Her critically-acclaimed book, Damned Nations: Greed, Guns, Armies & Aid, was a #1 bestseller.

Samantha is a consummate media performer and public speaker, unafraid to present challenging opinions with clarity and authority but with a lightness of touch that brings humanity to the subject matter. She is a much sought-after opinion leader in her native Canada, and increasingly in the US. She now splits her time between Toronto and New York. She is a regular panelist on CBC’s flagship national news program, The National, and a contributor to leading media outlets in Canada. In 2013, she interviewed Secretary Hillary Clinton in front of an audience of five thousand, and recently gave an acclaimed TED Talk on the global arms trade at the TED Talks: War & Peace event at The Town Hall Theater in New York, which aired on PBS and has garnered over one million views on TED.com in only six months.

In July 2011, Samantha was appointed to the Order of Canada, Canada’s highest civilian honour, for her contributions to improving the plight of young people in the world's worst conflict zones. In addition to her work with War Child, she is on staff at Women’s College Hospital in Toronto and an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Toronto.

Speech Topics

Samantha Nutt Customizable Speech Topics

Dr. Samantha Nutt can speak to a variety of inspirational topics that are customizable to your corporation or audience. Topics include the following: Leadership Matters: What it means to be a global citizen in an interconnected world Taking Your Vision to Action Corporate Social Responsibility: What does it really mean and how can you achieve it? Humanitarianism and Aid: How to promote a more equitable world. Global Health: When prevention is worth even more than the cure. More than a Paycheque: The meaningful career path. Creating a Groundswell: Fostering movements and achieving social change.

Conflicted? The World of War

This presentation takes a compelling look at the impact of war – the truth, the lies and the reality on the ground – and the major events currently shaping our world. Geared towards students, educator and general audiences, this captivating presentation examines our growing global economic and security inter-dependence and explores the meaning of social justice and community in the 21st century.

The Price of Inaction

So what does it take to realize a vision of the world in which we act on our responsibilities as citizens? To do a better job (not necessarily even a perfect job) of protecting civilians caught in the crossfire of war? To reduce, if not eliminate, the threat of war as a propagator of death and disease and destruction and unfathomable hardship? What will this take?

In this presentation, Dr. Nutt explains that it takes nothing less than a dramatic shift in the way we think about war. It takes a moral and philosophical transformation around the privileged position we occupy in the world – geographically, politically and economically – and the responsibility that comes along with this.

Corporate Governance

Doing the “right” thing in business isn’t without its ambiguities, or even its liabilities. When do ethical screens trump financial considerations? How are these assessments weighted and what matters to shareholders? Will you be in breach of your fiduciary duty if you prioritize human rights over hard math? What is your legal obligation either way?

In this thought-provoking presentation geared to investors, asset managers and business leaders, Dr. Nutt reflects on the changing ethical and fiduciary responsibilities facing businesses, and the meaning of governance and risk at a time of growing consumer activism and evolving international legislation. She examines the true meaning of transparency and corporate social responsibility, and makes the case for why businesses willing to embrace these changes will land on top.

Damned Nations: Greed, Guns, Armies & Aid

This presentation explores some of the concepts and themes in Dr. Nutt’s #1 bestselling book, Damned Nations. Suitable for audiences looking to understand more about current and international affairs, this gripping keynote is a valuable introduction to the challenges and opportunities facing our world.

Culture & Identity

When we talk about diversity, it’s important to start with an understanding of global events that are shaping our world, and the impact these can have on schools and even in the workplace. North America’s ties to some of the crises currently playing out around the world run very deep, from the Ukraine to events in Syria, Egypt, Sri Lanka, Nigeria, Iraq, Sudan, Eastern Congo, Pakistan and Afghanistan, to name but a few.

This presentation is especially relevant to educators and employers by offering practical tips for understanding and promoting culture and diversity.


Leaders have strength, courage and conviction. Were they born with these illusive qualities, alongside a perfect balance of knowledge and charisma, or have they simply learned to communicate their experience and ideas more effectively than the rest of us? Leaders encourage us to inspire, to think and to demand more of ourselves and of our society. They connect us to something larger than ourselves. But is leadership just ingrained in certain people, or can it be acquired? Can we all be leaders?

In this presentation, Dr. Nutt looks at the meaning and significance of leadership. She maps out ways in which we can all be more effective leaders – in the world and in the workplace – because the capacity to lead exists in each and every one of us.

When Women Lead

A popular choice for International Women’s Day and other events celebrating women’s leadership, this presentation combines humor and personal reflections on women in the 21st century and why the women’s movement is unfinished everywhere. Dr. Nutt’s often satirical take on hot topics such as “Lean In” and whether “women can have it all” offers an engaging, thought-provoking and entertaining examination of the challenges women still face in the world and how women (and men) can advocate for change. This presentation is also suitable for businesses and other groups looking to promote diversity and strengthen gender equality at the senior management and executive levels, as well as on Boards.

Student Activism & Public Engagement

How can students have a global impact? What really does make a difference? And is it possible to do more harm than good? In this riveting and inspiring speech, Dr. Nutt outlines how students can get involved in global efforts and provides them with practical tools for getting started.

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