Dambisa Moyo – WOMAN of ACTION™

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A Celebration of Women™

is elated to Celebrate the Life of one of our world’s greatest female minds in the area of the one form of energy that is upside down at this time in history: MONEY. A multi published, world acclaimed author of many books, this powerhouse has taken our globe’s world of finance by storm, offering her solutions through her speaking, writing and more …

Also finding time to devote to philanthropy, this woman’s mission of choice is the development of children through her patronage of Absolute Return for Kids (ARK), a hedge-fund supported children’s charity.

 

 

 

WOMAN of ACTION™

 

Dambisa Moyo

 

Dambisa Moyo

 

 

 

Dambisa Moyo is a Zambian-born economist who analyzes the macroeconomy and global affairs.

dead-aid-cover-or8She is the author of Dead Aid: Why Aid is Not Working and How There is a Better Way For Africa (2009), How the West Was Lost: Fifty Years of Economic Folly – And the Stark Choices that Lie Ahead (2011) and Winner Take All: China’s Race for Resources and What It Means for the World (June 2012).

She has traveled to more than 50 countries over the last decade, during which time she has developed a unique knowledge base on the political, economic, and financial workings of emerging economies, in particular the BRICs and the frontier economies in Asia, South America, Africa and the Middle East.

Her work examines the interplay between rapidly developing countries, international business, and the global economy, while highlighting the key opportunities for investment.

She is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Dead Aid: Why Aid is Not Working and How There is a Better Way for Africa and How the West Was Lost: Fifty Years of Economic Folly and the Stark Choices Ahead.

Her third book, Winner Take All: China’s Race for Resources and What it Means for the World, was published in June 2012, and also received critical acclaim.

In 2009, Dambisa was named by TIME Magazine as one of the “100 Most Influential People in the World,” and to the World Economic Forum’s Young Global Leaders Forum. Her writing regularly appears in economic and finance-related publications such as the Financial Times and the Wall Street Journal.

dambisa_moyoDambisa Moyo is part of a generation of Africans who have studied modern economics and finance and pursued careers in developed economies. They know how the private sector works, and they have seen how millions of people have escaped poverty thanks to economic growth and the jobs it has created. From that perspective — and from a deep concern for her native Africa — Moyo, 40, has written Dead Aid, an indictment of the “development industry” for creating destructive aid dependency in Africa.

Moyo, who was born in Zambia and educated at Harvard and Oxford, contends that aid has made African governments unresponsive to the real needs of their people and indifferent to the private sector. It props up corrupt governments and, in the worst cases, it has abetted regimes that have destroyed some African countries.

Moyo’s proposal to phase out all government-to-government aid in five years is probably overstated for effect; she herself is willing to consider a 10-year plan. And her general argument is not without flaws. She notes the massive foreign aid that South Korea received from 1950 to 1980 without acknowledging it as a spectacular success. And while she fails to acknowledge the lifesaving progress achieved by efforts against malaria and HIV/AIDS, she also states clearly at the outset that her book is not about the aid to Africa whose primary aim is humanitarian.

Unsurprisingly, the development industry doesn’t like her critique. But advocates of aid do have to come to grips with Moyo’s fundamental question: Why is Africa so much poorer after receiving billions of dollars in assistance? Just as important, how can young African professionals like Moyo be attracted back home, not out of charity but to pursue opportunities?

Wolfowitz, a former World Bank president and U.S. ambassador to Indonesia, is at the American Enterprise Institute

Her Professional BIO

  • Dambisa Moyo is an international economist who analyzes the macroeconomy and global affairs. She has travelled to more than 50 countries over the last decade, during which time she has developed a unique knowledge base on the political, economic, and financial workings of emerging economies, in particular the BRICs and the frontier economies in Asia, South America, Africa and the Middle East.
  • Dambisa serves on the boards of Barclays Bank, the financial services group, SABMiller, the global brewer, and Barrick Gold, the global miner. She was an economist at Goldman Sachs, where she worked for nearly a decade, and was a consultant to the World Bank in Washington, D.C.
  • Her work examines the interplay between rapidly developing countries, international business, and the global economy, while highlighting the key opportunities for investment.
  • She is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Dead Aid: Why Aid is Not Working and How There is a Better Way for Africa and How the West Was Lost: Fifty Years of Economic Folly and the Stark Choices Ahead.
  • Her third book, Winner Take All: China’s Race for Resources and What it Means for the World, was published in June 2012, and premiered at #13 on the New York Times bestseller list.
  • In 2009, Dambisa was named by TIME Magazine as one of the “100 Most Influential People in the World,” and to the World Economic Forum’s Young Global Leaders Forum. She is a member of the Atlantic Council.
  • Dambisa is a contributing editor to CNBC, the business and finance news network. Her writing regularly appears in economic and finance-related publications such as the Financial Times and the Wall Street Journal.
  • She completed a PhD in economics at Oxford University and holds a Masters degree from Harvard University. She completed an undergraduate degree in chemistry and an MBA in finance at American University in Washington, D.C.

winner-take-all-cover-fs8Winner Take All is the new book by Dambisa Moyo, the New York Times bestselling author of Dead Aid and How The West Was Lost.

We all know the world’s resources — the commodities that underpin our daily lives and economies — are scarce. ORDER NOW

Dambisa is a contributing editor to CNBC, the business and finance news network.
 
 

 

ark logoBut how many of us know what that really means for the global economy today?

She is a patron of Absolute Return for Kids (ARK), a hedge-fund supported children’s charity.

She completed a PhD in economics at Oxford University and holds a Masters degree from Harvard University. She completed an undergraduate degree in chemistry and an MBA in finance at American University in Washington, D.C.
 
DAMBISA TED TALKS

TEDx Brussels 2010 – Dambisa Moyo – How the West was Lost

Dambisa Moyo is a Zambian economist and bestseller author of Dead Aid (2009) which became a New York Times bestseller. She holds a Doctorate in Economics from Oxford University and a Masters from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. Her new book is called ‘How the West was Lost’.
 

 
Her second book, How the West Was Lost, examines America’s faulty policies and decisions and looks at how the scales have tipped away from Western industrialized economies and towards the emerging world.

She has a direct way of speaking that is no-nonsense without being bombastic, and, whether you agree with her ideas or not, she is armed with the knowledge to, at the very least, make a compelling case. Her new book, Winner Take All: The Race for the World’s Resources, examines the global battle for commodities set to play out in the 21st century, in which China will be the main power-broker.

‘China is attempting the death-defying feat, which no one has attempted in the history of the world, which is to move a billion people out of poverty,’ she says. ‘When I speak to Chinese policy-makers the thing that annoys them the most about Western policy-makers is that they’re not given any credit for anything. There’s always bad news. I’m sympathetic to the Chinese; no one has stood up and said, “Gosh, what you guys have done – I’m impressed.”’

One might say that’s because of their human-rights record. ‘But you know what? I would say issues around human rights – either you’re going to take a hard stance, or you’re not. You can’t borrow money from China the way the US has done and then turn around and say, “But you’ve got a human-rights problem.” You can’t be half pregnant. Of course there’s work to be done.

The world in general will get much more out of China if it treats them as an ally and says, “Look, these are things that are not going to fly,” rather than try to humiliate them, which is what I think the penchant has been.’

CHINA_SS5Moyo’s fundamental argument is that the Chinese are securing hard commodities (extracted through mining) and soft commodities (from crops) while the West struggles to keep up. ‘Resources are not infinite,’ she says. ‘[It’s estimated there] will be nine billion people on the planet by 2050. The fact that there are going to be three billion new people in the middle class by 2025, and the fact that there are going to be many more people in urban areas [means] there will be significant demand pressure for things like arable land, for water, energy and minerals.

‘If you look at the data, which I’ve done in this book,’ she continues, ‘[you’ll see] the disconnect between the demand and the lack of supply – supply is scarce, it’s depleted and it’s finite – clear indications for higher prices and potentially a situation where there’s going to be more conflict around the world. There are already 25 wars raging today that have their roots in commodity scarcity. And research from the US predicts more wars around water in the decade to come.’

It’s rather an apocalyptic vision. ‘We need to be doing something very aggressive to solve this problem,’ she states. ‘We, as in the global community.’

With this ominous prediction, you’d think the West was doomed. But it’s in Moyo’s nature to be an optimist. ‘To my detriment,’ she says with a laugh. ‘I do believe in the innate good of people. I believe if people have the right information they will do the right thing. I think whether it’s aid to Africa, the global economy or commodities, these crises have had their origins in people not having information [about] the implications of their actions.’

Moyo’s day begins early. ‘Waking up at 6am is late!’ She will go to the gym or run around the park – less out of vanity, than to clear her mind. Her time is divided between homes in London, New York and Zambia, though mostly, she says, she’s travelling and on a plane. ‘I love it. Nobody can tell me what it’s like in Columbia – I’ve been there. Russia – I’ve been there. I try to get this information first hand.’ She’s created makeshift homes in different places.

‘If I go to Singapore I have friends there. If they came to Zambia they’d feel the same way. I’ve made connections and I have friends in many, many countries.’

She enjoys meeting people and exchanging ideas – having conversations all over the planet.

It’s safe to assume these conversations are not idle small-talk. But when it comes to her private life she pulls back. She is unwilling to reveal anything personal. She’s not married? ‘No.’ She smiles. And children? Another no, another smile. The silence hangs in the air. ‘This is the extent of my answer.’ She exhales.

‘I have a gorgeous nephew. My sister and her husband live in London. It’s something that would be lovely to have.’

In the course of our discussion Moyo frequently refers to how lucky she feels and how, being born in a poor, landlocked country, she never expected her life to turn out this way. Her parents shaped her fundamental principles and sensibility. Both highly educated, they met at the university of Zambia. ‘Two of the first black graduates,’ she says proudly. Her mother, a banker, is the chair of a prominent Zambian bank, and her father received his PhD in America.

‘I had the good fortune to spend hours with my parents around the dinner table having debates on politics and economics. Politics in the West is a luxurious pastime. People tend to have the conversation “What do you think of this candidate?” at a cocktail party. But if you’re living in Africa or South America or Eastern Europe,it seems to me that it’s so intertwined with your ability to exist.’

She attended primary and secondary school in Zambia before an attempted coup brought her to America.

Did she ever feel any limitations growing up in Africa?

‘Absolutely not. Perhaps if I’d been born 10 years earlier during the colonial era I’d have a different view. But by the time I came along we were independent countries. African countries have done amazing things. The US has never had a woman president; we’ve had two in Africa.’

She credits her parents with not only giving her confidence but also instilling in her a sense of being able to aim high. She shrugs off labels of any sort.

‘People say to me, “What’s it like being an African woman?”

I am also an economist.

dambisa-moyo_2261716bNobody should be bogged down by how other people define them. People have said I’m not really African. Yes, I am. Those people are wrong and it’s not my business to correct them if they can’t be bothered to go to Africa and look around and see that there really are African doctors and lawyers. People have a penchant for horror stories, but that’s not the way people live [in Africa]. Of course there are wars and disease but in a population of a billion you could argue it’s relatively isolated cases. It’s not the case that the whole continent is in civil war and people are dying of HIV/Aids.’

So why, then, does she think there is so much more pity for Africans than, say, the Chinese?

‘I have no idea. There are more poor people in China than in Africa. More poor people in India than in Africa. My simplistic one line is that it boils down to money. The fact that the Chinese and Indians have delivered economic growth – I think that has shifted the view of them from being the horse to being the rider. Perhaps that’s where Africa has some room to grow.’

Just then her phone rings and she’s informed her car is waiting. She offers me a lift. Later in the day Moyo’s best friend, with whom she grew up, now a lawyer, will be arriving in town and she is excited to see her. As we head downstairs in the lift she says, ‘What I value most about her is that, whatever craziness my life takes on, she’s so grounded. If I have doubt I’ll usually go to her. There are times I have to make calls with confidential information that I can’t share with her, and then I try to think about people whom I admire, and what decision they would have made.’

An example? Nelson Mandela. ‘I imagine choices he’s made. They’re not easy choices. He spent 27 years in prison for an idea that the world didn’t buy into.’ And a less obvious example? She thinks for a minute. ‘Well, I absolutely love Tina Turner. I’ve never met her but she’s somebody who made a difficult choice at a particular time – with no idea how it would turn out.’

We continue the conversation in the car. Does she ever have a day with nothing on the agenda? No plans? She struggles with this one. She tells me she loves crime shows. ‘I like the ones that require you to think – Poirot. I’m a Law & Order addict.’ But then she admits she watches them on the go.

Suddenly she looks perplexed. ‘What do you mean by not doing stuff?’ I describe a day of waking up and having no plan. ‘I would struggle to do nothing,’ she concedes. ‘I’m not good at that. I would question why I had nothing to do.’

We’ve stopped at a red light. While we wait for it to turn green Moyo reflects, then says, ‘All I can do is live the best life I can right now. If that means that when I pass on I’ve done something that I think is useful to moving humanity forward, then I will have achieved more than I could ever have wished for. I don’t need another handbag.’

Winner Take All: The Race for the World’s Resources is available from Telegraph Books

Bill Gates and Dambisa MoyoDambisa Moyo is certainly no stranger to controversy. The Zambian economist’s reputation for provoking extreme reactions has clearly helped her rise to fame, putting her among the most recognisable faces on current affairs programmes and securing a frequent slot on the high-flying international lecture circuit.

Four years after her 2009 polemic Dead Aid hit the shelves, Moyo – branded the “anti-Bono” by the New York Times – is still one of the go-to thinkers for anti-aid soundbites.

Unfortunately, some of the classic questions Moyo tackles (such as, what is the relationship between aid and accountability?), and some of the criticism of how she uses evidence to support her arguments (the extent to which she’s mistaken the coincidence of low growth rates and high aid flows for proof that the former is caused by the latter, for example), has been drowned out by the backlash from those who defend development aid at all costs (Moyo’s core argument that aid has increased poverty, corruption and dependency in Africa is not directed at humanitarian assistance).  READ MORE

 
 

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A Celebration of Women™

welcomes this powerhouse visionary into our Alumni with open arms, and look forward to celebrating her next written word, taking action against poverty. Bringing light to a world filled with ‘good intentions’ with ‘bad consequences’.

 

 
carnations
 

Brava Dambisa!

 

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Comments

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