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James Blake  

Journalist, Analyst & Advisor

James Blake is a journalist, analyst and advisor. For more than a decade, he has worked at the intersection of international security, humanitarian crises and refugee and migration issues, which includes advising world leaders, international businesses and large NGOs.

In 2015, James was in Turkey conducting interviews with Syrian, Iraqi and Aghan refugees fleeing into Europe as part of the International Rescue Committee's preparation for what became the European Refugee Crisis. He subsequently helped advise the organization in setting up programs and advocating on behalf of the refugees to international governments and bodies. More recently, he was in Northern Mexico, conducting interviews with asylum seekers fleeing Central America into the US, while also investigating how Mexican cartels are moving into fentanyl smuggling and how they distribute the drugs across the US.

James has worked as a ghost writer to David Miliband the former British foreign secretary, and President and CEO of the International Rescue Committee and briefed him prior to engagements at the UN.

James also acts as a ghostwriter and advisor to global Mayors attached to the Mayors Migration Council, which includes the Mayors of Los Angeles, Milan and Bristol. He is currently advising this group of mayors in their efforts to establish the Mayors Migration Council which is changing international policy around refugees and migration from walls and division to open inclusive cities.

James regularly publish articles for Foreign Policy, and investigative articles for Jane's Intelligence Review, the New Humanitarian and gives interviews to leading outlets including the BBC, Channel 4 News, CBC Canada. James is designated as a global expert by Duco, the global consultancy.

During his career, James also advised the International Monetary Fund on security and intelligence developments in the Middle East and North Africa, which included following a coup in Egypt and in the aftermath of terrorist attacks in Afghanistan, and worked for two leading intelligence advisory firms. He has written risk assessments on terrorism and geopolitical issues for some of the world’s largest companies.

James holds Master of Arts degrees in International Relations from St Andrews University, Scotland and Near and Middle Eastern politics from the School of Oriental and African Studies (distinction).

James has traveled widely across the Middle East, North Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and South-East Asia. James has provided expert comment on political and security issues to a range of media outlets, including the BBC, Channel 4 News and CBC (Canada) and has spoken at large security-related conferences on both sides of the Atlantic.


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Speech Topics

The coming migration and refugee crisis - and how the US and global cities must lead the efforts to prepare for it

How the intelligence agencies and homeland security apparatus must respond to the rise of extreme right-wing terrorism

Mexican cartels and how to solve the fentanyl crisis in the US based on my time in Mexico investigating the issue

How the leading companies and NGOs prepare and respond to international crises

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