Tahiti Seasteading Gathering 2017

Our Distinguished Speakers

We are pleased to present an outstanding lineup of experts in their fields, presenting on various topics related to the technologies, legislation, and processes that will facilitate the creation of the first floating islands in French Polynesia. See the May Tahiti Event Speaker Page for detailed bios, and be sure to check back for updated speaker information.

President Edouard Fritch

President of French Polynesia

Teva Rohfritsch

Vice President of French Polynesia

Francis Vallat

European Network of Maritime Clusters Chairman

Senator J. Kalani English

Senate Majority Leader, Hawaii State Senate

Jacques Rougerie

Architect, Member of the Institut de France

Tony Hsieh

CEO of Zappos, Downtown Project (Las Vegas)

Lelei Lelaulu

World Bank IFC Advisory Panel on Business and Sustainability

Lenick Perennou

Researcher, PhD Candidate

Tua Pittman

Master Ocean Navigator

Karina Czapiewska

Blue Frontiers VP Project Development

Wang Chien Ming

Professor of Civil Engineering at University of Queensland

Cécile Gaspar

Founder and president of Te Mana o te Moana NGO

Neil Davies

Director, UC Berkeley Gump Station, Moorea

Nathalie Mezza-Garcia

Researcher & PhD Candidate

Olivier Archambaud

Founder, Human Underwater Society

Alexandrine Wan

Sustainable Tourism Specialist

Pascal Erhel Hatuuku

Culture, tourism and environment consultant

Zephanii Smith

National Council Member, United Nations Association

Serge Planes

Director of the CRIOBE (CNRS-EPHE-UPVD), Moorea

Ari Eisenstat

Co-Executive Director, UN Global Sustainability Index Institute

Tom W. Bell

Special Economic Zone Legislation Expert

Susanna Dokupil

CEO, Paladin Strategies

Jim Von Ehr

Nanotechnology Expert, Inventor & Entrepreneur

Pauline Sillinger

Ecological design and sustainable development specialist

Hervé Bossin

Medical entomologist at Institut Louis Malardé, Tahiti

Egor Ryjikov

Co-founder and managing partner of Weber CoMechanics

Joe Quirk

Seasteading Institute Author & Seavangelist

Randy Hencken

Seasteading Institute Executive Director

Marc Collins

Co-founder Blue Frontiers

Bart Roeffen

VP Architecture Blue Frontiers

Greg Delaune

PPP & Sustainable Economic Development Expert

Mark Lutter

Lead Economist at NeWAY

Robert Viglione

Blockchain strategist

John Hawkins

Workforce Development Expert

Philippe Lemonnier

Founder, Pacific Ventury

Oriol Badia Rafart

Director of Business Development at Malloy Aeronautics Ltd.

Rachel Murch

Downtown Las Vegas Subscriber and Organizational Change Consultant

Speaker Series & Schedule of Events

The gathering features a speaker series on Monday and Tuesday morning, and all day Thursday. All seminars are free and open to Tahiti residents who preregister. 

The full agenda (see below) for paid guests includes a lagoon boating excursion, circle island tour, a locally hosted lunch and afternoon garden party, a moonlit dinner cruise on large outrigger canoes, and a reception hosted by the President of French Polynesia. We have also allowed for plenty of free time for you to network and explore the island.

Monday Morning Speakers:

Starts at 8:30 AM

  • Teva Rohfritsch: Vice President of French Polynesia
  • Randy Hencken: Managing Director of The Seasteading Institute; CEO of Blue Frontiers
  • Marc Collins: Co-Founder of Blue Frontiers; Seasteading Institute Ambassador, French Polynesia
  • Lelei Lelaulu: Advisor, World Bank IFC Advisory Panel on Business and Sustainability
  • Greg Delaune: Public Private Partnerships & Sustainable Economic Development Expert; VP Partnerships Blue Frontiers; Seasteading Institute Ambassador 
  • Alexandrine Wan: Sustainable Tourism Specialist
  • Tony Hsieh: CEO of Zappos; Founder Downtown Project, Las Vegas
Monday Afternoon & Evening

Lunch: At Le Méridien  (for paid guests)

Afternoon: Lagoon boat excursion

Evening: Free time

Tuesday Morning Speakers:

Starts at 8:00 AM

  • Senator J. Kalani English: Senate Majority Leader, Hawaii State Senate
  • Neil Davies: Director, UC Berkeley Gump Station, Moorea
  • Serge Planes: International Expert in Marine Ecology
  • Egor Ryikov: Co-founder and managing partner of Weber CoMechanics; Co-founder and VP Engineering, Blue Frontiers 
  • Wang Chien Ming: Professor of Civil Engineering, University of Queensland
  • Jim Von Ehr: Nanotechnology Expert, Inventor & Entrepreneur; CEO Zyvex Labs; Board Member The Seasteading Institute
  • Oriol Badia Rafart, Director of Business Development at Malloy Aeronautics Ltd.
  • Ari Eisenstat: Co-Executive Director, UN Global Sustainability Index Institute; Seasteading Institute Ambassador 
  • Zephanii Smith: National Council Member, United Nations Association
  • Nathalie Mezza-Garcia: Researcher & PhD Candidate Centre for Interdisciplinary Methodologies, University of Warwick
Tuesday Afternoon & Evening

Lunch: At Le Méridien  (for paid guests)

Afternoon: Free time to explore the island … go explore the beauty of French Polynesia and feel the sand between your toes!

Evening: Moonlight dinner cruise on large outrigger canoes


(for paid gathering participants)

Important meet at Le Méridien at 8:30 AM

Morning: Circle island tour

Lunch: Hosted at a local restaurant

Afternoon: Hosted garden party and networking event

Evening: Free time

Thursday Morning Speakers:

Starts at 9:30 AM

  • Tua Pittman: Master Ocean Navigator
  • Pascal Erhel Hatuuku: Culture, tourism and environment consultant
  • Bart Roeffen: VP Architecture, Blue Frontiers; Principal DeltaSync & Blue 21
  • Karina Czapiewska: VP Project Development, Blue Frontiers; Principal DeltaSync & Blue 21
  • Lenick Perennou: Polynesian Floating Architecture Researcher, National School of Architecture and Landscape of Bordeaux  
  • Pauline Sillinger: Environmental specialist
  • Cécile Gaspar: Founder and President of Te Mana o te Moana NGO
  • Hervé Bossin: Medical entomologist at Institut Louis Malardé, Tahiti
Thursday Afternoon Speakers:

Starts at 1:00 PM

  • Susanna Dokupil: CEO, Paladin Strategies; Seasteading Institute Board Member; Advisor, Blue Frontiers
  • Philippe Lemonnier: Founder, Pacific Ventury; Maritime Legal Expert; Master 2 in International Business Law – Maritime Law (Honours) – University of Nantes (France)
  • John Hawkins:  Director, Workforce Development, Emsi-Economic Modeling 
  • Mark Lutter, PhD: Lead Economist at NeWAY Capital; George Mason University
  • Robert Viglione: Blockchain Strategist; Co-Founder Zencash and ZClassic; Co-Founder and CEO of Secure Blockchain Systems LLC; Head of U.S. & Canada Ambassadors for BlockPay
  • Tom W. Bell: Special Economic Zone Legislation Expert; Professor, Chapman University; VP Legal Affairs Blue Frontiers
  • Olivier Archambaud: Founder, Human Underwater Society
  • Francis Vallat: European Network of Maritime Clusters Chairman
  • Jacques Rougerie: Visionary Architect – Oceanographer
  • Joe Quirk: Seavangelist & Best Selling Author of ‘Seasteading’; co-founder of Blue Frontiers
Thursday Evening: Reception at the Presidency

(for paid gathering participants)

President Édouard Fritch will host a closing reception and send off at the Presidency

Additional information:

What to wear: 

  • The general dress code for the conference will be casual, which for local professionals often means shorts and tropical button up shirts. You will want to bring light clothing. 
  • For the moonlit party on the outrigger canoes, do not wear heels. Bring a swimsuit for an optional moonlight swim.
  • Dress for the reception at the presidency will be “business chic”.
  • It’s advised to bring a small umbrella.

The weather in Tahiti in May is warm and tropical and it will likely be too hot to be comfortable in formal dress, a tie, and/or jacket. Highs will reach into the mid 80s(F)/26+(C), and evenings will cool down to low 70s(F)/23-(C). 

For more on what to wear in Polynesia, see this article.

Schedule at a glance

When and where for paid participants. The speakers series is free to local Tahiti Residents with preregistration.

Monday May 15
8:30 AMSpeakers SeriesLe Méridien: Matisse Room
12:00 PMLunchLe Méridien
1:00 PMLagoon TourBuses from Le Méridien
6:00 PMDinner reception at the AssemblyBuses from Le Méridien
Tuesday May 16
8:00 AMSpeakers SeriesLe Méridien: Matisse Room
12:00 PMLunchLe Méridien
1:00 PM to 5:00 PMFree time
5:00 PMMoonlit dinner on the lagoonBuses from Le Méridien
Wednesday May 17
9:00 AMCircle Island Tour/lunch/garden partyBuses from Le Méridien
6:00 PM Optional reception at the Pearl MuseumBuses from Le Méridien
Thursday May 18
Prior to 9:30 AMCheck out of hotel room
(leave luggage at hotel concierge)
9:30 AMSpeakers SeriesLe Méridien: Matisse Room
12:00 PMLunchLe Meridien
1:00 PMSpeakers SeriesLe Méridien: Matisse Room
5:30 PMReception at PresidencyBuses from Le Méridien

The First Tahitian Seasteading Gathering is sponsored by:

… and cosponsored by:

Thank you to our event partners:

Members of:


What are the options for Tahiti residents to participate and attend seminars?

We will offer options for locals to attend all of our seminars free of charge, and we will offer options for locals to pay to participate in the various activities we have planned. Please check back soon.

How do I purchase the Field Trip Package?

The Field Trip Package is booked through our travel agent. After applying and being accepted to participate in the gathering, our staff will put you in contact with the travel agency.

When is the gathering?

May 15-18. Most international participants will arrive the night of Sunday May 14th or sooner.

Who needs visas?

Residents of the US, EU and many other nations do not need a visa for tourist travel to French Polynesia. Be certain that you do not need a visa or arrange for a visa before booking your travel and field trip package. More information about visas for French Polynesia.

Who can attend?

This is a private event. Invited guests and their companions are welcome to attend. All seminars will be open and welcoming of Tahiti residents.

Can I extend my travel?

We encourage attendees to spend extra time in French Polynesia and to travel to other islands. Our travel agent can assist with additional travel.

Are companions welcome?

Yes! Families and friends are welcome to attend and participate in the events and/or take advantage of the chance to explore beautiful French Polynesia. This is a private gathering and space is limited, so please be sure to inform us about your travel companions.

Can I share a room?

Yes. Our travel agency can place you with other participants who would like to share a double occupancy room.

Is there discounts on airfare?

Yes. Our travel agency has discounted rates on travel from Los Angeles to Tahiti, May 14th-18th on Air Tahiti Nui. They may also be able to find you discounted rates from other locations Air Tahiti Nui travels from: Paris, Tokyo, and Auckland.

Are there discounts available on the field trip package?

We worked closely with vendors to put together a compelling package at a competitive price. The packages may include most meals, full island tours, a lagoon party, and a reception with President Fritch. Our margin on these packages is minimal and we are unable to offer discounts or scholarships.

Can I stay at another hotel or nearby lodging?

We strongly encourage participants to stay at the Le Méridien hotel with us. However, if the hotel is full or you choose to stay elsewhere, we are offering the conference and activity only package.

After I book my package, can I get a refund?

Upon booking confirmation, our travel agency is only able to issue refunds for the hotel portion of the travel, and only if canceled by certain dates.


Be among the first Seasteaders selected to attend the inaugural gathering and field trip to the world’s first seasteading pilot site in French Polynesia. This is your chance to join fellow Seasteaders (technologists, researchers, entrepreneurs, innovators, and trailblazers) from around the world and Polynesia who are interested in collaborating on the development of floating islands within the special governing framework established on the Polynesian seas.


Travel will be arranged through our local travel agency partners. The travel agent can support unique travel plans for attendees who wish to spend additional days in French Polynesia.


Four full days include breakfast (for hotel guests), morning seminars, lunches, afternoon island and lagoon tours, evening networking events including a dinner and celebration on Polynesian outrigger canoes, and a reception with President Fritch.


Significant others, family, and friends are encouraged to join us . . . after all we are creating a new society.

The Field Trip Package


We have arranged Field Trip Packages through our travel agency, which includes four nights lodging at the luxurious Le Méridien hotelseminars, most mealslagoon and island toursnetworkingmoonlight dinner and celebration on giant Polynesian outrigger canoes, and a reception at the Presidency with President Fritch.


Conference and Activities Only (no hotel)


Conference and Activities, Four Nights Double Occupancy 


Conference and Activities, Four Nights Single Occupancy

*Actual charges will be in euros

**Double occupancy price is per person in a shared room

Note: Packages are booked through our travel agency. The travel agency has strict cancelation policies. There are no refunds on the conferences and activities, and partial refunds on lodging depending upon when the cancellation transpires.