Young Egyptian doctor Mai Abdalla leadership innovation teamwork

Listen to the Ninth Dialogue for Learning, Leadership, and Impact

Reda SadkiWriting

The Geneva Learning foundation’s Dialogue connects a diverse group of learning leaders from all over the world who are tackling complex learning, leadership, and impact challenges. We explore the significance of leadership for the future of our societies, explore lessons learned and successes, and problem-solve real-world challenges and dilemmas submitted by Contributors of the Dialogue.

In the Geneva Learning Foundation’s Ninth Dialogue for Learning & Leadership, we start with Dr. Mai Abdalla. After studying global health security in at Yosei University South Korea and both public health and pharmaceutical science in her own country, Egypt. By the time she turned 30, Dr Abdalla had already worked with the Ministry of Health, UN agencies, and the African Union Commission. The accomplishments of her professional life are just the starting point, as we want to explore where and how did she learn to do what she does now? What has shaped her practice of leadership?

We are privileged to have Key Contributors Laura Bierema and Bill Gardner, together with Karen Watkins, three Scholars who have dedicated their life’s work to the study of leadership and learning. As we learn about Mai Abdalla’s leadership journey, they share their insights and reflections.

Here are a few of the questions we have explored in previous episodes of the Dialogue:

  • How do you define your leadership in relationship to learning?
  • Do you see yourself as a leader? Why or why not? If you do, who are your ‘followers’? Are you a ‘learning leader’ and, if so, what does that mean?
  • How do you define leadership in this Digital Age? How is it different from leadership in the past?
  • When and how did you realize the significance of the leadership question in your work and life? Who or what helped you come to consciousness? What difference did it make to have this new consciousness about the importance of leadership?
  • What is your own leadership practice now? Can you tell us about a time when you exercised ‘leadership’. What were the lessons learned? What would you do the same or differently if confronted with the same situation in the future?

In the second half of the Dialogue, we explored the leadership challenges of other other invited Contributors, including:

  • Sanusi Getso on leadership to establish antenatal care services for a neglected community.
  • Alève Mine shares her quandary about how to understand something for which no scaffold exists in one’s current view of the world.