Oct 202017
 
Life, Meaning and Purpose – Reflections on the Life of a Parent and Grandparent

My last conversation with my father was when he rang on a Sunday afternoon recently, complaining of the symptoms of a stomach upset and the fact that his hiatus hernia was giving him trouble. The discomfort persisted and his GP insisted that he attend Canberra hospital as a precaution. Reluctantly, my father went to the […]

 Posted by at 10:21 PM
Feb 242017
 
Cuba: Revolution, Communism and Happiness

It takes less than 60 minutes to fly from Miami to go back to a world of 60 years ago in Havana, Cuba. It is a world that is truly unique, dominated by 60 years of revolutionary ideology. Miami is a city which displays the full spectrum of American life. It celebrates the country’s diversity, great strengths, culture, dynamism, violence, […]

 Posted by at 1:49 AM
Jul 062014
 
Can people have hope and thrive in the world's largest slum?

What does the word ‘slum’ conjure in your mind? Lots of sad, very poor people, squashed together, living in abject misery? Despite my South Asian origins and work in developing countries, more often than not I would unquestioningly accept that stereotype. And what prospect could there be for redeveloping a slum in which both slum […]

 Posted by at 2:00 AM
Sep 282012
 
Can It Pay to Study What I Love?

Following my speech to its graduates last year, the Australian National University’s College of Business and Economics gave me the honour of addressing its Prize and Scholarship winners at a recent ceremony.  As I prepared my talk, I thought about my hopes and concerns for our students. The modern world offers them almost limitless possibilities. At […]

Apr 282012
 
Cradle Mountain Tasmania - A Photo Essay

  Cradle Mountain from the beautiful Dove Lake  If you want to enhance your wellbeing by communing with nature and really experiencing the great outdoors, few places offer better options than the island of Tasmania. It’s off Australia’s southern tip and too often left off maps of Australia that just show the mainland. On a recent visit […]

Jan 062012
 
My first graduation speech: a very special day

Recently I was asked to be the Guest Speaker at a graduation ceremony at my alma mater, the Australian National University in Canberra. As I joined the grand and very formal Chancellor’s procession, leading into the hall, I felt quite emotional. I remembered my own graduation 30 years ago, a great family day, attended by both of my […]

 Posted by at 11:55 AM
Nov 292011
 
"Decadence: Decline Of The Western World"

The Western world seems to be in decline – but what is really happening? What are the forces behind this? Five years ago Pria Viswalingam approached me to join him in producing a film on the topic. “We can destroy ourselves by cynicism and disillusion, just as effectively as by bombs.”      Kenneth Clark […]

Nov 292011
 
Give A Christmas Gift That Makes A Difference

  Possibly the best gift you could give your children this Christmas is to teach them the value of giving. While there is strong psychological research showing giving increases the sense of wellbeing of the giver, we are not born with this knowledge. The truth is people consistently over-estimate the impact on their wellbeing of […]

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