To evaluate the oil industry's latest technological advances; to study perspectives for the oil and gas sector; to discuss social expectations and how to meet them. These are some of the goals that 17th WPC organisers set for the Congress' scientific programme. According to Scientific Committee president, Randall Gossen, "Stress must fall on the fact that the oil industry is ready to listen to society and learn from it."
"Petroleum Industry: Excellence and Responsibility in Serving Society," the 17th WPC theme, will be discussed in four blocks that include keynote speeches by sector leaders such as CEOs from the major international oil corporations. OPEC president and the secretary general, Rilwanu Lukman and Ali Rodríguez Araque, respectively, as well as CEOs David O'Reilly, from Chevron Texaco; Abdallah S. Jum'ah, from Saudi Aramco; Alfonso Cortina, from Repsol YPF; Euan Baird, from Schlumberger; Edgar Ortiz, from Halliburton; and Eric Newall, from Syncrude Canada are some of the keynote speakers. Among the topics to be discussed is the sustainability of the oil industry, its risks and opportunities as well as existing perspectives and responsibilities as applied to sustainable development.
The scientific programme hinges on four blocks, namely: Excelling in the Exploration and Production of Oil and Gas; Excelling in Refining and Delivering Quality Petrochemicals; Excelling in Delivering Clean Energy and Quality Products from Natural Gas; Excellence and Responsibility in Managing the Petroleum Business with Economic, Environmental and Social Dimensions.
Each block in turn is subdivided into three review and forecast papers (RFPs), six forums and 10 poster sessions, where each presentation will be followed by a discussion on technology advances in specific areas of the oil industry. Authored by some of the most renowned executives of the international oil industry, the RFPs deal with the technological development of the sector, and provide a balance of the sector's greatest challenges and of ongoing research in the area. The Congress programme also includes theme luncheons, or opportunities for discussing social responsibility, for attending the WPC Excellence Awards presentation—a prize that is to be launched at this Congress—and for sharing views on current perspectives for the oil industry, a discussion to be led by OPEC secretary general Ali Rodríguez Araque, and the director of the International Energy Agency, Robert Priddle.