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Challenging Default Mindsets

Rena Singer

Rena Singer was the featured speaker at Global Washington’s October 12 Executive Director Roundtable.

“The ultimate goal of communication is to facilitate a change in behavior rather than merely to disseminate information.” Easier said than done. But after six years as Landesa’s Global Communications Director and a long journalistic career, Rena Singer started her own strategic communications consulting agency and now stresses that often. She mentioned it on October 12 while leading Global Washington’s latest Executive Director Roundtable.

Singer connects brain science, communication and culture. Knowing how to best grab an audience’s attention means understanding the science behind the inner workings of the brain. Singer sited The Narrative Project in her presentation. The Narrative Project interviewed over 1,000 people in the US, UK, France and Germany. They wanted to know if attitudes regarding global development were negative or positive, generally speaking. They asked questions like, “Do poor countries tend to stay poor?” and “Over the past 20 years has foreign aid made a difference?” Over 70% of respondents answered negatively. Singer went on to share tips on how to challenge and reverse this inherent cynicism, and promote optimism within the global development sector. Read More

Syria and the Challenge of Transformational Resilience

By Jonathan Papoulidis, World Vision

A view of the convoy as Major General Robert Mood, head of the newly established U.N. Supervision Mission in Syria, leads a delegation to the Khalidiyyeh neighborhood of Homs to meet opposition members. Governments and donors must take a transformational resilience approach to Syria’s refugee crisis. Photo by: Nadine Kaddoura / United Nations

A view of the convoy as Major General Robert Mood, head of the newly established U.N. Supervision Mission in Syria, leads a delegation to the Khalidiyyeh neighborhood of Homs to meet opposition members. Governments and donors must take a transformational resilience approach to Syria’s refugee crisis. Photo by: Nadine Kaddoura / United Nations

The Syrian crisis has shaken an entire region and been at the epicenter of a global displacement crisis for the past five years. This crisis has turned some 20 million children, families and communities into refugees and 40 million into internally displaced persons within their own countries, according to UNHCR.

The humanitarian community has been under massive strain to deal with this global crisis. The cracks of this strain are evident in a string of significantly under-resourced humanitarian appeals across fragile states, including Syria and the regional response.

Read more on Devex. Read More

Seattle-based Leaders Meet with The Trust for the Americas

Trust logoOn September 29 at the Global Washington office, The Trust for the Americas hosted a discussion with Seattle-area companies and nonprofits with the goal of getting feedback and generating new ideas from a diverse group of leaders. Represented at the meeting were PwC, Tableau, Morgan Stanley, Mass Mutual, Waldron, Catalyst Innovators Group, Benaroya Company, World Vision, UW Bothell and New Majority Consulting.

The Trust for the Americas’ Chief Executive Officer, Linda Eddleman, and Director of Programs, Maria Liliana Mor, led the conversation. A Washington, D.C.-based organization, The Trust for the Americas has programs in 19 different countries stretching across central and southern America. Their programs primarily focus on providing technology and education to youth with physical disabilities. Their newest project is an extension of their Partnership in Opportunities for Employment through Technologies in the Americas program (POETA), and is being launched in Mexico, Jamaica and Colombia where The Trust and Microsoft have continued their long-standing partnership to create technology hubs. These hubs were modeled after technology centers at MIT and designed for physically disabled youth to have a space to push their technological understanding further and produce new inventions. Read More