Speakers Profile - Yassmin Abdel-Magied

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Yassmin Abdel-Magied is a Sudanese diaspora writer, broadcaster, and award-winning social advocate.

A 'recovering' mechanical engineer, Yassmin has published four books with Penguin Random House, including two middle grade novels (You Must Be Layla and Listen, Layla) which have both been optioned for screen. Listen, Layla was named 'Notable Book' by The Children's Book Council of Australia, and 2022 Honour Book for Children's Africana Book of the Year by Howard University. Yassmin's fifth book, Stand Up and Speak Out Against Racism, is due to be published in 2023.

Yassmin has been the recipient of artist residencies and fellowships from the Australia Council, Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris, Hedgebrook, Virginia Centre for Creative Arts, Kimmel Harding Nelson Centre for the Arts, RUPERT in Lithuania and more. In 2020, Yassmin co-wrote the sold-out immersive theatre production at London's Kensington Palace, United Queendom. She is an alumni of the 2020/21 Soho Theatre Writers Lab, 2021/22 Tamasha Playwright Collective, and a current member of the 2023 Criterion Theatre New Writing Cohort on London's West End.

Yassmin's commentary and criticism has appeared in TIME, The Guardian, Australian Review of Books, The New York Times, Times Literary Supplement, Vogue and more. Her critically acclaimed essays have also been published widely, including in the best-selling It's Not About The Burqa and The New Daughters of Africa.

Yassmin is a globally sought-after speaker and advisor on social justice issues and inclusive leadership. She has delivered workshops and keynotes in 25 countries across five continents. Her internationally acclaimed TED talk, What does my headscarf mean to you, has been viewed over 2.5 million times and was chosen as one of TED's top ten ideas in 2015.

With over a decade of governance experience across sectors, Yassmin's work is informed by both theory and experience. She founded Youth Without Borders at the age of 16, leading it for nine years before starting Mumtaza, focusing on the empowerment of women of colour. She has been awarded numerous awards for her advocacy, including the Young Voltaire Award for Free Speech and Queensland Young Australian of the Year, and currently sits on the Trustee Board of the London Library, previously serving on the Boards of the Queensland Museum, ChildFund Australia and the domestic violence prevention organisation, OurWatch.

Yassmin has presented TV and podcasts in Australia, Britain and the US, including national current affairs show Australia Wide, ground-breaking documentary The Truth About Racism, and Hijabistas, a series looking at the modest fashion scene in Australia. She is a regular news and current affairs commentator on the BBC, Aljazeera, Monocle 24 and can be heard hosting podcasts such as Motor Mouth (on becoming a Formula 1 driver), EY's Better Questions (helping CEOs lead into the future), and The Guilty Feminist.

In all her work, Yassmin is an advocate for transformative justice and a fairer, safer world for all.