#AWEurope Recap: Sadiq Khan in Conversation with Huffpost’s Lydia Polgreen

#AWEurope Recap: Sadiq Khan in Conversation with Huffpost’s Lydia Polgreen

On Tuesday of #AWEurope, London Mayor Sadiq Khan sat down with HuffPost’s Editor-in-Chief Lydia Polgreen for an in-depth interview spanning the creative industries in London, Brexit, knife crime – and his thoughts on the 2020 US presidential election.

The session started with lively discussion on the predictions for the creative industry in the face of an uncertain Brexit, with the mayor urging advertisers and marketing professionals to embrace the responsibilities that come with such an important story-telling role – from childhood obesity to gender stereotypes.

The discussion quickly moved on to the impact of Brexit, with Sadiq criticising the government for failing on negotiations, and talking about the frustrating distraction Brexit is from tackling the local issues he really cares about. The mayor reiterated his support for a second referendum on the UK’s EU membership and appealed to advertisers to use their power as storytellers to put forward a positive message instead of the ‘Project Fear,’ campaign we saw last time around.

The discussion explored how social media is amplifying xenophobic speech, with the Mayor speaking candidly about the rise of bigoted rhetoric in the UK and US, noting the hate speech directed at him personally and the responsibility we all have to counter hateful narratives when we encounter them.

Lydia pressed Sadiq on one of the most controversial issues in London right now: knife crime. The Mayor spoke about the challenges associated with tackling violent crime rates that are rising across the country, highlighting the impact of central government cuts and how business and politicians need to come together to help young people.

The session concluded with some thoughts on the 2020 US election, with Sadiq arguing the next president of the USA was yet to announce – and highlighting the influence of the job in London and across the world. Whoever it is, he stresses, it can’t be Trump.

Watch the full session here: http://europe.advertisingweek.com/watch/-verizon-media-seminar-2019-03-19-1615

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