Postcards

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Applying McKinsey Survey Results to Small Non-Profits?

A recent HBR article - Where Boards Fall Short - made me think about my board service experience with the Good News Project, a 501-c-3 nonprofit which provides opportunities for volunteer services and contributes to poverty alleviation in St. Lucia and other islands of the West Indies. What are the transferable lessons and actions? Shortlink: http://wp.me/p27qSt-IR Read More

Postcard from Portugal

Recently, I had a chance to join my colleague Petrus Gildenhuys as part of an AA1000 assurance assignment and visit Portugal. It was a beautiful drive to site: the undulating landscape was interrupted by idyllic villages, and we lost count of the number of storks we noticed along the way. The World Cup was dominating small talk, although it was starting to compete with news about the troubled Portuguese bank Banco Espirito Santo.    http://wp.me/p27qSt-EQ

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Postcard from Burkina Faso by Bill Kennedy

In the early 1990s, on a trip to Moscow for the European Bank, I was given a personal tour of the Kremlin’s gold chamber where the most precious gold crowns, scepters and church utensils were manufactured for the Czar’s courts.   “Unbelievable” I exclaimed to my guide, “I had no idea you had created such treasures.” “Really?” he replied, “Why are you surprised? Russia is not Burkina Faso!”   http://wp.me/p27qSt-Ec Read More

Jealous of Conservation Biologists? Postcard from South Africa

As I reflect on recent trips to a game lodge and Kruger National Park, and wildlife aspects of gold mining or renewable projects, I realize that I feel jealous of conservation biologists I work with. Are you jealous too? What do you think makes a good conservation biologist?   http://wp.me/p27qSt-Dd

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Inspiring Women associated with Kumtor Gold

A recent visit to the Kumtor gold mine in Kyrgyzstan provided opportunities to meet a series of inspiring women. These include staff eager to adopt best practice and entrepreneurs who form part of Kumtor's local procurement and supply chain.

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p27qSt-CR

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Postcard from London: Meeting at EBRD, Harpenden or Joburg?

Temporary being based in the UK has its upsides. It is not as cold as Wisconsin (-26 F yesterday) and you can easily visit Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge (stadium). Reconnecting with colleagues and friends can be more tricky. Luckily, we could arrange to meet in Joburg.

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p27qSt-Cv

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Funny Breathelizing Tests by Kyrgyz Police

My next car to drive in Kyrgyz Republic

Driving in emerging markets requires courage. But it also provides endless stream of funny stories. Most pale when compared to traffic police stops as demonstrated by this example from the Kyrgyz Republic.

(Shortlink: http://wp.me/p27qSt-Am)

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Visiting Yuri Gagarin’s Bust – Postcard from Kyrgyzstan

Mehrdad Nazari visiting Yuri Gagarin Bust in BarskoonAs the negotiations around the Kumtor Gold Mine are continuing with more audits and inspections, I had a chance to stop for a picture at one of the more famous tourist sites in the Barskoon valley: a bust from Yuri Gagarin, the first human to journey into outer space in 1961.  - (Shortlink: http://wp.me/p27qSt-A6)   Read More

Postcard from the Panama Canal

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As we were watching in awe how large container ships were guided through the Miraflores locks of the Panama Canal, I wondered if the tourists around us were aware of the on-going expansion of the Panama Canal, co-financed by IFC, ADC, IADB, EIB and JBIC, and the emerging $40 billion competition in Nicaragua. (Shortlink: http://wp.me/p27qSt-yd)

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Postcard from Naryn, Kyrgyz Republic

Working as an international ESIA and CSR consultant has its perks. This includes visiting fascinating people and places off the beaten track. But finding problems, such as lack of access to safe drinking water, remains depressing. (And don't mention jet-lag...) Read More