Bertrand Piccard is one of Europe’s most sought-after motivational speakers, applying his ballooning experience to discuss motivation, adventurous spirit and the psychology of communication and team-working along with the management of stress and the unknown.
Dr. Bertrand Piccard was born on March 1st 1958 in Switzerland into a family of explorers and scientists. He seemed to be predestined to perpetuate one of the greatest family adventures of the 20th century. This scientist-adventurer, psychiatrist and aeronaut combines science and adventure to explore the human soul.
After a classical education, he studied medicine, became a senior consultant in a psychiatric hospital, and specialised jointly in psychiatry and psychotherapy for adults and children. An expert in hypnotherapy, he is lecturer and supervisor for the Swiss Medical Hypnosis Society.
Always interested in the study of human behaviour in extreme situations, Bertrand Piccard was one of the pioneers of hang gliding and microlight flying in the 1970s and became European champion in hang- glider aerobatics in 1985.
After qualifying as a balloon pilot, he won, with Wim Verstraeten, the first transatlantic balloon race (Chrysler Challenge, 1992) and then initiated the “Breitling Orbiter” project. Captain of three attempts, he succeeded with the Englishman Brian Jones in completing the first non-stop round-the-world balloon flight, achieving the longest flight in terms of both duration and distance in the history of aviation: 45,755 kilometres in 19 days, 21 hours and 47 minutes (capturing a total of 7 world records).
After this circumnavigation, considered the last great adventure of the 20th century, Bertrand Piccard and Brian Jones were decorated with the Olympic Order and the gold medal of the French Ministry of Youth and Sport and received among others the highest distinctions of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, the National Geographic Society, the Explorer’s Club, and numerous aeronautical, scientific and sporting associations in Europe and the United States of America.
Honorary Doctor of Science, Bertrand Piccard also received the Grand Prix of the Académie des Sciences Morales et Politiques de l’Institut de France and was named as a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations Population Fund.
His two books “Une Trace dans le ciel”, and “The Greatest Adventure” (written with Brian Jones, translated into 9 languages, best seller in France (Robert Laffont) and Germany (Piper Verlag) have contributed to Bertrand becoming know as “Le Savanturier”, someone who is endeavouring to combine the scientific background inherited from his family with his desire to explore the great adventure of human life.
Bertrand Piccard is one of Europe’s most sought-after motivational speakers.
- Adventure is a state of mind: the metaphor of the round-the-world balloon flight
- Team spirit and psychology of communication
- How to play with the winds of life
- Coping with crisis situations
- Managing stress