|February 2006, Issue
NANOTECHNOLOGY, ECONOMY, ICT, WATER, PHILOSOPHY, URBAN DEVELOPMENT, EDUCATION,
MEDICINE, FOOD, MOBILITY, MUSIC, INTERNET, ENERGY, MEDIA, RELIGION, BIOTECH,
POLITICS, BRANDING, TECHNOLOGY, ENTERTAINMENT, KNOWLEDGE SOCIETY, TRADE,
ARCHITECTURE, LEARNING, SENIOR CITIZENS, DEMOCRACY, SCIENCE, CULTURE
the power of cultural diversity in international business
SUMMIT FOR THE FUTURE
Finn Drouet Majlergaard, founder and managing partner,
Gugin International Business Development
the power of cultural diversity in international business
A special Summit for the Future on Risk Report
How come that companies, who have been doing business internationally
for decades suddenly fail? And how come that companies who wouldn't
have had a chance 25 years ago suddenly become a global success?
This paper deals with the links between cultural awareness, corporate
strategy and performance. It is based on my 15 years of experience
in international business management, academic research in this field
and experiences from our company Gugin, who helps corporations in
Europe, US and Asia improving their international businesses.
But lets look at why it has become so important to take different
cultures into consideration.
Cultural awareness has become important due to increased globalisation.
The global political structures have changed. We do have a United
Nations that almost all countries respect and honour and the post
war division of the world has changed after the collapse of the Soviet
Union. New countries have been born and we have a more diverged political
picture. We create political/economical relations in new ways e.g.
the ASEM (Asia-Europe Meeting) process, which is a direct result of
these changes. By 1992 East Asia accounted for 24 percent of global
production. By comparison, the EU accounted for 35 percent and North
America for 28% of global production. According to World Bank figures
from 1991 - 1993 growth of real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in East
Asia averaged 8.7 percent. On the basis of growth rates recorded during
1978 - 1991, many economists including those from the World Bank projected
that East Asia's GDP would overtake that of North America and EU in
Economically we are emerging as well. Europe is turning towards larger
entities with common currency, one Central Bank and merges and close
collaborations between stock exchanges. ASEAN is another good example
however different. But since its foundation in 1967 a lot has changed.
Evolving relations between the EEC/EU and ASEAN have lead to a lot
of initiatives, such as joint ventures in the exploration of AEAN
resources, the possibility of EEC participation in ASEAN manufacturing
activities and the mobilisation of capital for financing ASEAN projects.
Technologically the Internet has made it possible for companies to
market themselves virtually everywhere and enabled the companies to
establish inexpensive global infrastructures. And when you need to
go abroad it is less expensive than ever before, so we travel much
more than 20 years ago.
So from both a political, economical and technological point of view
we are encouraged to discover cultures we have only little knowledge
about. For the adventurer it is good news but for international corporations
it might as well be bad news.
We have been working with two types of companies: Those who want to
expand their international business in either Asia or Europe and those
who have tried and faced a lot of challenges they didn't predict or
could even imagine. We like the first group very much, because we
can help them become successful before they make any serious mistakes,
however it is more interesting to look closer at the last group -
those who tried and didn't have their expectations met.
You can read the full report: click
for the Future on Risk
cohabitation of peoples through commerce and collaboration
in a global marketplace exposes us to the cultural component of
risk as well as the relativity of need. One person's desire for
sustainability is opposed by another one's desire for material
growth. The management of risk across cultural boundaries needs
to link different views of the future, of the good gamble, the
just reward, the allocation of responsibility,
the distribution of hazard
and equitable access to opportunity. How does this structure our
partnerships and alliances? What competencies are required to
make this work?
Finn Drouet Majlergaard, Founder
& Managing Partner, Gugin
Cross-cultural competence - a key success
factor in a globalised world
In a world of rapid change, the success
factors for companies will inevitably change as well. The "American
way" of thinking is no longer universal. Strong Asian economies
require holistic thinking and new ways of organising our corporations.
As goods and services become commoditised local norms and values
become more important. Being close to local cultures with diversified
organisational structures and systems might be the key to success
in the future - but are we ready to change?
Founder, Global Chairman, International Centre for Consulting
Excellence [ ICfCE] Advisory Board, Club of Amsterdam
Never the Twain?
Many countries have traditionally
sent some of their best and brightest young people to the USA
and Europe to complete their management education. Shackled by
curricula largely designed to meet local needs these graduates
have returned with models, tools and techniques that can be close
to impossible to apply within the culture. The ICfCE is operating
Think Tanks designed to combine the best of Eastern and Western
understanding in a way that is sensitive to local cultures and
needs. Understanding of a culture demands knowledge of a country's
history, religion, philosophy, belief systems and present needs
that can only come from being a national of that country - or
of Amsterdam blog
of Amsterdam blog
now wit! Whither wander you?
The Future of Software Architecture
future of Futurist Tools
for the Future on Risk
about the future of Cross-Cultural Competence
than 1% of the world's languages are used on the Internet
Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) to support linguistic
and cultural diversity, and to protect and preserve languages
in danger of disappearance.
It promotes multilingualism on the Internet in order to make access
to its contents and services more equitable for users worldwide.
Today, more than 90% of content on the Internet exists in only
12 languages, so many users of the 6 000 languages in the world
are overlooked by this important communication medium. The “Initiative”
puts emphasis on the need of completing all the steps to ensure
the presence of a language in the digital world. Synergy and cooperation
with other institutions and initiatives is capital to achieve
longer term results regarding multilingualism in the cyberspace.
In an increasingly diverse business environment, managers must be
able to navigate the thicket of habits, gestures, and assumptions
that define their coworkers' differences. Foreign cultures are everywhere
- in other countries, certainly, but also in corporations, vocations,
and regions. Interacting with individuals within them demands perceptiveness
and adaptability. And the people who have those traits in abundance
aren't necessarily the ones who enjoy the greatest social success
in familiar settings. Cultural intelligence, or CQ, is the ability
to make sense of unfamiliar contexts and then blend in. It has three
components - cognitive, physical, and emotional/motivational. Although
it shares many of the properties of emotional intelligence, CQ goes
one step further by equipping a person to distinguish behaviors
produced by the culture in question from behaviors that are peculiar
to particular individuals and those found in all human beings. In
their surveys of 2,000 managers in 60 countries, the authors found
that most managers are not equally strong in all three of these
areas of CQ. The authors have devised tools that show how to identify
one's strengths and developed training techniques to help people
overcome weaknesses. They conclude that anyone reasonably alert,
motivated, and poised can attain an acceptable level of CQ.
about the Future
plans to be independent of oil in 2020
by Mona Sahlin, Minister for Sustainable Development, Sweden
Along with high oil prices and climate change, an increasing number
of countries are recognising the problem with fossil fuels. Sweden
has the chance to be an international model and a successful actor
in export markets for alternative solutions. But this requires conscious
investments - not a reactionary policy that obstructs the transition
to alternative energy sources and investments in the environment
of the future. Breaking dependence on oil brings many opportunities
for strengthened competitiveness, technological development and
progress. The aim is to break dependence on fossil fuels by 2020.
By then no home will need oil for heating. By then no motorist will
be obliged to use petrol as the sole option available. By then there
will always be better alternatives to oil.
the Google Future
by Business 2.0
Interviews with dozens of experts help us plot four scenarios illustrating
where Google's geniuses may be leading the company - and, perhaps,
all of us.
Scenario 1 (Circa 2025): Google
Is The Media
Google TV, Google Mobile and the rise of e-paper create the perfect
Scenario 2 (Circa 2015): Google is the
Free wi-fi, a faster version of the Web, the Gbrowser, and the cube
transform the technology landscape and our language.
Scenario 3 (Circa 2020): Google is Dead
The once-mighty search engine falls prey to privacy intrusion, optimizers
Scenario 4 (Circa 2105): Google is God
Human consciousness gets stored, upgraded and networked.
Event: Wednesday, March 1st, 16:30-19:15
future of Electronic Identity
its impact and benefits
for the individual and business
Wednesday, March 1st, 2006
16:00-16:30, Conference: 16:30-19:15
Ruyterkade 5, 1013 AA Amsterdam
[Building of the Chamber of Commerce]
Manager, Open Source Software programme OSOSS, National Co-ordinator
by Law - Is the European Directive valid in 10 years?
Dennis van Ham, Consultant, Information
Risk Management, KPMG:
Electronic identity: are you (proven) in control?
van Beek, Program Manager, Passenger
Process, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol:
The new self service airport and the role of electronic
and our Moderator Homme
Member of the Club of Amsterdam Round Table
The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment
(MA) is an international work program designed to meet the needs
of decision makers and the public for scientific information
concerning the consequences of ecosystem change for human well-being
and options for responding to those changes. The MA was launched
by U.N. Secretary- General Kofi Annan in June 2001 and was completed
in March 2005. It will help to meet assessment needs of the
Convention on Biological Diversity, Convention to Combat Desertification,
the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, and the Convention on Migratory
Species, as well as needs of other users in the private sector
and civil society. If the MA proves to be useful to its stakeholders,
it is anticipated that such integrated assessments will be repeated
every 5– 10 years and that ecosystem assessments will be regularly
conducted at national or sub-national scales.
The four “foundation” reports of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment
were released on January 19, 2006. These 500-800 page reports
are the products of the four MA working groups and examine Current
State and Trends; Scenarios; Policy Responses; and Multi-Scale
Assessments. A summary report, containing the Summaries for
Decision-makers of the four technical assessment volumes, was
also released. The reports contain the detailed scientific assessment
(including literature citations) on which the MA synthesis reports
- Everyone in the world depends
on nature and ecosystem services to provide the conditions for
a decent, healthy, and secure life.
- Humans have made unprecedented
changes to ecosystems in recent decades to meet growing demands
for food, fresh water, fiber, and energy.
- These changes have helped to improve
the lives of billions, but at the same time they weakened nature's
ability to deliver other key services such as purification of
air and water, protection from disasters, and the provision
- Among the outstanding problems
identified by this assessment are the dire state of many of
the world's fish stocks; the intense vulnerability of the 2
billion people living in dry regions to the loss of ecosystem
services, including water supply; and the growing threat to
ecosystems from climate change and nutrient pollution.
- Human activities have taken the
planet to the edge of a massive wave of species extinctions,
further threatening our own well-being.
- The loss of services derived from
ecosystems is a significant barrier to the achievement of the
Millennium Development Goals to reduce poverty, hunger, and
- The pressures on ecosystems will
increase globally in coming decades unless human attitudes and
- Measures to conserve natural resources
are more likely to succeed if local communities are given ownership
of them, share the benefits, and are involved in decisions.
- Even today's technology and knowledge
can reduce considerably the human impact on ecosystems. They
are unlikely to be deployed fully, however, until ecosystem
services cease to be perceived as free and limitless, and their
full value is taken into account.
- Better protection of natural assets
will require coordinated efforts across all sections of governments,
businesses, and international institutions. The productivity
of ecosystems depends on policy choices on investment, trade,
subsidy, taxation, and regulation, among others.
for the Future
The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment devised four scenarios
to investigate the likely direction of change to natural systems
and human well-being over the next 50 years - depending on the
priorities adopted by human societies.
They were not intended as predictions but rather as “plausible
futures” reflecting different approaches to international cooperation
and to the care of natural systems.
Certain trends relevant to the pressures on natural systems emerge
from all scenarios. For example, the global population is projected
to rise to 8–10 billion by the middle of the century, with the
biggest growth concentrated among poor urban populations of the
Middle East, sub-Saharan Africa, and South Asia.
The conversion of land to agricultural uses continues to be the
main factor influencing change in biological diversity, but in
some regions other factors become increasingly important in coming
decades - the buildup of nitrogen in rivers and coastal waters,
for example, rises sharply in developing countries, especially
in Asia, with serious consequences for human health, fisheries,
and habitats such as coral reefs.
Under the four scenarios, climate change also has a bigger influence
on the services provided by natural systems - heightening the
risk of species extinctions, for example, increasing the incidence
of both drought and floods, and making hydroelectric power less
The scenarios diverge when it comes to the overall state of natural
services, with the most serious declines occurring in “futures”
where conservation takes low priority and where governments tend
to favor their own national or regional security over global cooperation.
In the scenarios where natural assets see improvements across
entire categories, however, the world has taken action on a scale
well beyond anything under way at present - for instance, investments
in cleaner technology, proactive conservation policies, education,
and measures to reduce the gap between rich and poor.
Seeking a better way
An important part of this assessment is to report on possible
solutions to the stresses building up in the planet’s natural
infrastructure. Rather than a vain attempt to find a single panacea
for all problems, this has been a methodical look at the kind
of actions that have been found to work and at some of the underlying
barriers that need to be removed before those stresses can be
Three important messages emerge from this exploration. First,
protection of nature’s services is unlikely to be a priority so
long as they are perceived to be free and limitless by those using
them - effective policies will be those that require natural costs
to be taken into account for all economic decisions.
Second, local communities are far more likely to act in ways that
conserve natural resources if they have real influence in the
decisions on how resources are used - and if they end up with
a fairer share of the benefits.
Finally, natural assets will receive far better protection if
their importance is recognized in the central decision-making
of governments and businesses, rather than leaving policies associated
with ecosystems to relatively weak environment departments.
for the Future blog
for the Future blog
the power of cultural diversity in international business
the 21st Century Leadership
Leadership in Trade and Associated Risks
Strategic Leadership: Achieving Your Preferred
The Human Adventure
for the Future on Risk
by David Matsumoto, Linda Juang
David Matsumoto and new co-author Linda Juang show students the
importance of culture in explaining and understanding human behavior
in this new edition of the market-leading text, CULTURE AND PSYCHOLOGY.
Using a cross-cultural framework to evaluate psychology, and reflecting
the most current research, the authors engage students by inviting
them to understand and raise questions about traditional knowledge
and theories, and about the relationship of culture and psychology.
Vision for an Identity Metasystem
Vision for an Identity Metasystem
The Identity Metasystem is an interoperable architecture for digital
identity that assumes people will have several digital identities
based on multiple underlying technologies, implementations, and
providers. Using this approach, customers will be able to continue
to use their existing identity infrastructure investments, choose
the identity technology that works best for them, and more easily
migrate from old technologies to new technologies without sacrificing
interoperability with others. This paper introduces the principles
behind this approach in "The Laws of Identity"; it presents an
open and interoperable architecture for building the metasystem,
and it describes Microsoft's plans to participate in the identity
of the Identity Metasystem
Microsoft recognizes that the identity
metasystem will only gain widespread adoption if participants
filling all roles in the metasystem stand to benefit from their
participation. Fortunately, this is the case. Key benefits of
the identity metasystem include:
user control and flexibility.
Users decide how much information they disclose, to whom,
and under what circumstances, thereby enabling them to better
protect their privacy. Strong two-way authentication of identity
providers and relying parties helps address phishing and other
fraud. Identities and accompanying personal information can
be securely stored and managed in a variety of ways, including
via the online identity provider service of the user's choice,
or on the user's PC, or in other devices such as secure USB
keychain storage devices, smartcards, PDAs, and mobile phones
more comprehensible user experience.
The identity metasystem enables a predictable, uniform
user experience across multiple identity systems. It extends
to and integrates the human user, thereby helping to secure
the machine-human channel.
the reach of existing identity systems. The identity
metasystem does not compete with or replace the identity systems
it connects, but rather preserves and builds upon customers'
investments in their existing identity solutions. It affords
the opportunity to use existing identities, such as corporate-issued
identities and identities issued by online businesses, in new
contexts where they could not have been previously employed.
identity system innovation.
The identity metasystem should make it easier for newly
developed identity technologies and systems to quickly gain
widespread use and adoption. Claims transformers can allow new
systems to participate even when most participants don't understand
their native claims formats and protocols.
adaptation in the face of attacks.
New technologies are needed to stay ahead of criminals who attack
existing identity technologies. The metasystem enables new identity
technologies to be quickly deployed and utilized within it,
as they are needed.
new market opportunities. The identity metasystem
enables interoperable, independent implementations of all metasystem
components, meaning that the market opportunities are only limited
by innovators' imaginations. Some parties will choose to go
into the identity provider business. Others will provide certification
services for identities. Some will implement server software.
Others will implement client software. Device manufacturers
and mobile telephone players can host identities on their platforms.
New business opportunities are created for identity brokers,
where trusted intermediaries transform claims from one system
to another. New business opportunities abound.
A benefit we will all share as the
identity metasystem becomes widely deployed is a
safer, more trustworthy Internet. The metasystem
will supply the widely adopted identity solution that the Net
so desperately needs.
Participants in the identity metasystem
can include anyone or anything that uses, participates in, or
relies upon identities in any way, including, but not limited
to existing identity systems, corporate identities, government
identities, Liberty federations, operating systems, mobile devices,
online services, and smartcards. Again, the possibilities are
only limited by innovators' imaginations.
Microsoft plans to build software
filling all roles within the identity metasystem (while encouraging
others to also build software filling these roles, including on
non-Windows platforms). Microsoft is implementing the following
software components for participation in the metasystem:
identity selector: "InfoCard" is the code name for
a WinFX component that provides the consistent user experience
required by the identity metasystem. It is specifically hardened
against tampering and spoofing to protect the end user's digital
identities and maintain end-user control. A visual "Information
Card" in the client user interface represents each digital identity
managed by "InfoCard". The user selects identities represented
by "InfoCards" to authenticate to participating services.
simple self-issued identity provider: "InfoCard"
also includes a simple identity provider that enables individual
PC users to create and utilize self-issued identities, enabling
password-free strong authentication to relying parties. A self-issued
identity is one where the user vouches for the information they
are providing, much like users do today when registering with
a Web site. We are implementing the simple self-issued identity
provider to help bootstrap the identity metasystem; we believe
self-issued identities will continue to be accepted for certain
classes of services. Identities hosted in the simple self-issued
identity provider will not include or store sensitive personal
information, such as Social Security numbers (or other national
ID numbers if these are developed) or credit card numbers. Self-issued
identities are not intended to provide the full range of features
that a managed identity provider can offer - the market is wide
open for companies to provide managed identity solutions to
Directory identity provider: This is a managed identity
provider integrated with Active Directory. It includes a full
set of policy controls to manage the use of Active Directory
identities in the identity metasystem. Active Directory Federation
Services, a new Active Directory feature shipping in Windows
Server 2003 R2, is the first step to integrating identities
in Active Directory with the identity metasystem.
The code-named "Indigo" Web services run time provides developers
a way to rapidly build and deploy distributed applications,
including relying party services in the identity metasystem.
The identity metasystem preserves
and builds upon customers' investments in their existing identity
solutions, including Active Directory and other identity solutions.
Microsoft's implementation will be fully interoperable via WS-*
protocols with other identity selector implementations, with other
relying party implementations, and with other identity provider
Non-Microsoft applications will have
the same ability to use "InfoCard" to manage their identities
as Microsoft applications will. Non-Windows operating systems
will be able to be full participants of the identity metasystem
we are building in cooperation with the industry. Others can build
an entire end-to-end implementation of the metasystem without
any Microsoft software, payments to Microsoft, or usage of any
Microsoft online identity service.
Innovation Trip in U.S.A. is a program
arranged for GLOBAL leaders to help them spark innovation and
creativity in their organizations, revolutionizing work culture
and reducing attrition. Tour includes workshops and places to
explore the US innovation and research industry inside out. Innovation
Trip will help leaders effectively execute and tap high-end work.
of Amsterdam Agenda
Season Events are Wednesdays 16:30!
16:30-17:45 Part I: Presentations
17:45-18:15 Break: Drinks
18:15-19:15 Part II: Discussion
of Amsterdam Season Events 2005/2006
the future of
- participatory democracy
Management - Reputation
is a new currency
- Ethics in Journalism
of Amsterdam Open Business Club
of Amsterdam Open Business Club
Are you interested in networking, sharing visions,
ideas about your future, the future of your industry, society, discussing
issues, which are relevant for yourself as well as for the 'global'
community? The future starts now - join our
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