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June 16, 2013

The Emergence of the Chief Global Officer – A case for new skills for an interdependent world


I’ve created this website with a multitude of goals in mind – part professional and part personal.

First and foremost, the world  – at least the one we have come to know – is profoundly different today.  It’s changing faster than at any time in human history.  From global climate change to disruptive technological innovations, from the emerging wealth of nations to the changing global balance of power – indeed the changing nature of that power itself —  all these bring both volatility and opportunity.

I see the need for new decision-making skills to help put these rapid and dynamic changes into perspective, to weave and thread key ideas together into a cohesive, meaningful whole.  And I have created this site as a vehicle to say something about the interdependence of world affairs with an emphasis on developing practical skill-sets. I seek to tie together these changes and foster the skills necessary to understand the world today.

Second, I have a passion for all things globally related.  Each week, I attend briefings on global affairs, hearing talks by thought-leading experts, journalists, diplomats, and decision-makers with valuable perspective on the interdependence of world events.  With this site, I intend to create a sounding board for expressing my own learning and to share it with others.

Third, I have a desire to help serve others in their path toward learning and understanding, study and engagement in this interdependent world.  Whether you are engaged in work at an NGO or a philanthropic association, or a healthcare worker engaged in global health, or a business professional with eyes and ears pointed to world events, I seek to help fill some gaps and help hone and sharpen understanding of what it means to be a Chief Global Officer.

Fourth, I travel occasionally, and I created this site as a means to put context around my global travel experiences and frame them toward greater understanding of the cultural, political, economic, social and technological dynamics of the world we live in today.

As a continuous “world watcher” and student of global affairs, and by attending weekly in-person briefings on global events, I have created this site as a means to document my own ongoing learning, understanding, growth, experience, and exploration of what I see as the emerging role of the Chief Global Officer.

For me, the Chief Global Officer is someone who can put the changing world into context.  Today, all work is global work.  All action has global implications.  All decision-making must include a global perspective to be valid, effective and lasting.  The Chief Global Officer adds more value not only for the disciplines of business and economics but for the world citizen broadly speaking.

Just as the information technology revolution gave rise to the Chief Information Officer and the Chief Technology Officer; and just as innovations like social media and search engines and database technology and electronic commerce called for new roles like the Chief Knowledge Officer or the Chief Marketing Officer, so too are rapid and dramatic changes in global inter-relationships giving rise to the need for a Chief Global Officer.

The role of the Chief Global Officer is highly inter-disciplinary.  It can touch upon topics as diverse as global climate change, and urbanization, water resources, and tools of diplomacy and peace-building; the CGO can be part social scientist, part technologist, part engineer, part urban planner, part diplomat, part geographer, part human rights advocate, part poverty alleviator, part historian, and part engaged world citizen.

The Chief Global Officer may find herself engaged in new business planning or helping to foster new skills within her organization.

I seek to fill the pages of this site with regular updates and briefings, dispatches from my own international travel as a cross-cultural volunteer, discuss my own insights as a technology professional into the coming disruptions from continued advances in technology, share thoughts and ideas on the emerging interdependence of global affairs, provide book review, interview decision-makers, and solicit your feedback, all from the prospective of the new and emerging role of the Chief Global Officer.

Read more from What, Who and Why

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