Libya or Tunisia: Who Needs the Other More?

Libyan refugees at the crossborders between Tunisia and Libya.

Libyan refugees at the crossborders between Tunisia and Libya.

This post originally appeared at The Center for International Private Enterprise.

  • Diplomatic Ties

The Libyan conflict is not only causing tens of thousands of deaths, destroying a society, and wiping out a state. It also is spilling over into neighboring Tunisia, destabilizing its internal equilibrium, redefining cross-border interactions, and affecting all neighboring countries in the Maghreb.

Since the uprising against President Muammar Qaddafi in March 2011, Tunisia has seen a vast influx of Libyan refugees. Cars, decrepit vans, and trucks packed with families sitting among bundles of belongings, suitcases, and mattresses stream into Ras Jedir and Dhehiba – official border crossings in southern Tunisia.

Cherry Blossom Festival

IMG_4868If you think Cherry Blossom Festival is just a one-day or even half-day general event in DC, you are totally wrong.

Believe it or not, it actually lasts two weeks in April with various events scattered in the city. To name a few – fireworks, music stages, 5k run etc. During the time, the whole city is decorated with cherry theme – cherry flower stickers on trash cans on the street and ticket machine in metro stations. You can even find cherry flavored ice cream in some restaurants.

Passover Seder


Thanks for Julie’s invite, we had a great long dinner on Passover Seder.

It was very well prepared. Everyone was assigned a part to read at the Passover, with a well edited handbook in hand. When the reader finished reading, s/he will reflect and all others will eat a small thing accordingly. The reading and reflection lasted over two hours and we didn’t start having the main dish until 10pm. And the participants from different countries made the dinner more special – a global network.

The famous term “Impact Analysis”

Monitoring and Evaluation has been the important skill/requirement for many International Development Organizations. It does appeal to the project/program beneficiaries and the donors alike because it is suppose to give them an insight or picture of the actual outcome of the program/project. This definition of M&E has certainly transformed into various form depending on the engagement of the organization in the program/project. Some organizations utilize M&E at the start and end of the project to fulfill the actual requirement of the donors but more dynamic organizations consider M&E as a facilitating function that will guide and support the entire process of project/program implementation. Ideally M&E is a support function of the organization but it do come in the leadership role, as required, to get things done. Typically a lot of M&E professional are leading surveys, evaluations or sometime even research studies. So the role of an M&E professional might change in a day, where he/she has to switch his/her position from the technical backstopping to a front role in project planning and implementation.

How to gain willpower



Recently, I was reading The Willpower Instinct, by Kelly McGonigal. When I was searching some reviews, I found here are some notes that are very useful mentioned by most readers. All good tips. You are welcome.

  • Meditation

Meditation is a practice of your brain. Even if you are bad in meditation, it helps a lot to your daily life. You are bad at meditation, that’s because you are easily distracted. We need to pull back those thoughts which are faraway, and focus on what we should do right now. Focusing on our aim is part of our willpower.

My story with (NIJC)

In my first week with Heartland Alliance International (HAI) as an Atlas Corps fellow, I went on a tour around the office with my lovely manager Brooke McKean who introduced me to all of Heartland Alliance (the umbrella organization that HAI is under), when I saw a name plate where it is written, “NIJC Team Room.” I started guessing what the door meant before asking Brooke (…is this a Ninja room or something) and I said to myself, “What does a Ninja have to do with a non-profit organization office?” I finally ended up asking Brooke after we left what the Ninja room is for. At first she was confused and asked where I saw the sign. Once I told her where it was at and pointed to the sign, she told me it was the National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC).

The Prowess to Survive Powerlessness

Yesterday afternoon, while at my office in downtown Manhattan, New York, I was eagerly listening to environment specialists through a live video call, when I abruptly got disconnected. By the time I figured out that the internet system at my office was not working, something strange happened. The whole floor plunged into pitch black darkness. This highly unusual occurrence astonished me at first, but soon I realized that only a few months ago, this used to be a norm for me and I used to experience it as frequently as every alternate hour.

Hey ho, lets go!

Loving life is easy when you are abroad. Where no one knows you and you hold your life in your hands all alone, you are more master of yourself than at any other time” – Hannah Arendt

I always feel time flies, it seems like yesterday that I met my first fellow, Paul, in the airport. He went to welcome me and definitely made my arrival much warmer. Eleven months went by, I enjoyed Summer by having many picnics and laying down in the grass many afternoons; some fresh nights I went to watch a movie at some park or open area; I enjoyed the beautiful trees during Fall; the cold wind and slippery ice during Winter. And now I am enjoying the blooming of the flowers, the beautiful colors and smells around the city.

CreativeMapper, a 2015 geospatial revolution at Creative

Jack Dangermond

Esri’s Image

Humans have used maps since 2300 B.C., the days of ancient Babylon, Greece, and Asia through the Exploration Age and maps are just as useful and relevant today in the 21st Century. Throughout history, people created and used maps as a tool to help them plan, study and navigate through the world and the purpose of using maps has not  changed much. In the 21st century, modern satellite systems and contemporary mapping and surveying techniques are now able to measure and map places with very high precision and consistency.  As a result, maps have become absolutely critical to most fields of human endeavour and will be a critical part of my work during my Atlas Corps Fellowship.

Giorgio Armani on power suit and feminism


Early supermodel Gia Carangi wearing Giorgio Armani in 1980; © Armani, photos by Aldo Fallai.

Early supermodel Gia Carangi wearing Giorgio Armani in 1980; © Armani, photos by Aldo Fallai.


Represent Esquire China, I e-interviewed Italian fashion designer Giorgio Armani.

In 1980s, the second wave and the third wave of feminism was happening all over the world, and that’s when Armani created “power suit”. Younger generation might not be familiar with it, but I can illustrate in this way: nearly all the formal womenswear is inspired by Giorgio Armani’s power suit.

However, how is the designer’s own reflection on feminism and his creation?