Conference Speaker on Western Relations with the Muslim World
Patrick Schwerdtfeger is a keynote speaker and leading authority on global business trends including demographic shifts and emerging economies around the world. He has spoken in the Middle East on various occasions and has made a number of videos about Islam and the War on Terror, all designed to explain Muslim realities to Western viewers. Patrick is passionate about understanding the world from the Muslim perspective and strives to help explain that perspective to Western audiences, but the reverse is also true. Muslim audiences will benefit from Patrick’s cultural understanding and balanced approach (described in more detail below).
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Keynote Speech: Geopolitical Issues in the Muslim World
The Muslim World is mired in a religious disconnect between Islam and capitalism. Although Western nations like to refer to it as “the free market system”, the reality is that capitalism (including greed, profit maximization and sex-based marketing) goes against many of the covenants in Sharia Law. Conservative Islamic clerics do not want democracy in their countries because they know that democracy will vote in increasingly liberal policies over time. Instead, Sharia Law draws a line in the sand and would never allow public opinion to erode those values.
The problem is that the internet is bringing the cultural differences around the world much closer together. People in Muslim countries are being confronted with Western lifestyles every time they visit Facebook or Twitter. Indeed, the “Arab Spring” has been fueled significantly by social media platforms. To make matters worse, economic development across the region (and particularly in GCC countries) is bringing Western business practices along with it and it’s getting increasingly difficult for religious institutions to resist those trends.
Many Muslim clerics point to Western values as being the root of all the world’s problems. Greed fuels corruption, both domestically and abroad. Democracy erodes cultural values over time. Capitalism gives power to the most selfish among us. And this doesn’t even touch on the Muslim fury over Israeli settlements, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the drone strikes in Pakistan and Yemen. Indeed, there are a host of issues on the table but despite them all, Western values are filtering in on all sides.
Business Speaker on Islamic Countries in the Muslim World
Governments in Islamic countries need to find a balance between their Muslim religious foundation and the Western systems that have proven so successful for business and economic development. Some modernization is inevitable for Islamic societies but their core Muslim values can still be maintained in other ways. What is the definition of modern technology-savvy Muslims? The answer to that question will guide policy decisions is Islamic countries. As a keynote speaker, Patrick will focus on the current realities and frustrations in the Muslim World as well as the global trends shifting the social landscape.