Give and Receive

I can give you incredible curiosity that leads to exploring what you are about, I connect dots that appear and show a network of opportunities. With enthusiasm and Dutch straightforwardness I like taking challenges in all types of profit markets. What I’d like to get is the opportunity to use these strengths in Southern Africa, as I see a growing population that is losing their heritage instead of letting their heritage grow into great heights. 

100% Open, Roland Harwood, sharing means growth, let me ask you the same way he did: What can you give, and what would you like to get?


Richard Saul Wurman

I did not know about this man before I picked up a library book where he wrote a piece I agreed with completely. Which was about how to organise information. A field called information architecture. While looking him up he turned out to be even more interesting. He loves journeys and asking questions, the not knowing of things is what he sells. Have a look at his other talks too. He embodies and breathes what I grew up with: stay curious! 

Daryl Davis’ exceptional friendship

Daryl Davis, friends with the KKK based on the things they had in common. He never asked the Klan members to convert, but some did because they knew better. I will inspire you with a movie and a story

As you might have noticed my last messages have been a lot about diversity, unseen hate against the ‘other’ and the idea of self respect. Our globalizing world is becoming more diverse than ever, or was this always this way. The media becomes stronger in polarizing our world with many different messages. On top of that our possible future leaders in Europe could be populists who are not that friendly to strangeness. Time to build and show our similarities and get the best strength out of the differences. Let’s do this together! 

Positive News

Yes, yes, thank you Alexander, finally a sound that shows how else we can talk and think about refugees. A problem, a blessing or an opportunity? Working on a refugee project I come across many different approaches towards this exceptional group. Migrants are of all times. When I look into the history of my country, the Netherlands, I see mostly stories about moving around the globe. Sadly I cannot say we have done amazing things everywhere, but there was growth, development and the creation of opportunities at the heart of most missions. The stories of the past are that of heroes. Now we see these asylum seekers as the saddest, scariest of all. The media plays a huge part in this conversation, so big that even local leaders don’t wish to speak their mind because they might not be voted in the next round. I wish for them to listen to Alexander as well. This man has an extraordinary way to explain the real impact. This is not as negative as it seems. Enjoy! 

Nina in conversation with South African architect Mbusi

Do you think social responsibility is a topic in South Africa at the moment?
I think it needs to be one. It would sort out so much of the nonsense I see on my Facebook daily.
For Social responsibility to be most effective, it needs to be proceeded by self love, as in a while movement
what kind of nonsense?
I wouldn’t want to uphold any social standards if I felt my country doesn’t treat all it’s citizens the same, even worse doing it along someone who is “the perfect south African”
It is interesting that you talk about self love when I say social responsibility. Because the way we use it here is very different. Love your explanation, makes a lot of sense

Each life has to be given value. Every single one.
People must feel that way.
From that point onwards, it must be clear that it belongs to the owner. Along with that comes the responsibility
Anything that happens to it, the owner (the person) is directly accountable. I feel like that will also help people align themselves with their purpose.
The purpose outside of the family they are born into
What they are really here to do. A lot of people die after living and working for so many years never knowing to look any further or any deeper at things. Those doors need to open. This ties into schooling. Children should grow up always learning to understand that they are all valid.
They need access to current information about the world and to see what is really going on around the globe. This will teach them to be critical thinkers when comparing problems from around the world and the pros and cons of how those problems are dealt with.
Is this something South Africa is talking about in the media for example?
No I haven’t heard anyone talk about it
It’s literally the first time. I see my Facebook Nina
People are so irresponsible with their means and influence.
People are so quick with opinions bit are quiet when it’s problem solving time. What I do like though is that the country is talking about an array of issues.
I want to collaborate in the conversations.
How can we step in as designers Mbusi?
By writing a book
Let’s replace the “the sun” posters in town with messages to open up a conversation
I has to be colourful and like children’s books
Cos when people don’t listen you have to treat them like children
It has to be celebrating like african tribes show celebrations
Just life lessons. How to behave in public….
I paused there because there is a great deal of confusion with this. South Africa is operating on 1993’s social behaviour with the more pressing adjustments done first.
There is something in what you say though. Social Responsibility in the west doesn’t mean a single persons’ responsibility to care about their surroundings. It has mostly to do with the government and with companies needing to understand their impact on the social structures and the environment when they make decisions for their companies.
Like the concept of personal space
It varies across cultures.
I’ll explain
Of course the most pressured adjustments are made first.
But there is an underlying infection that keeps feeding the small fires we try to put out first because they light up too strongly
And the description you gave is one of these infections. How many South Africans I have met who do not value themselves because of their heritage is insane and sad
But the responsibility in my eyes lies in the government and companies to show a difference.
And also in the more social intelligent people to show the alternative
In a shopping que, the person behind often stands too close. I’m the first to notice this and I often move because it is uncomfortable and I do a quick security check on myself. But then I think about the likelihood of that person having always grown up sharing smaller spaces and I stand firm but understanding. In the same situation another person could turn around and say something demeaning to a person who already could be feeling like the world is against them.
You’re completely correct.
The government should be the first to take a position on how to implement and maintain the social responsibility movement.
I get you.
It’s a complicated act.

Leoluca Orlando – The mayor of Palermo who says that the right of mobility should be a human right. Orlando has fought the mafia in Sicily and is now the mayor of its capital where he has a surprising approach towards the immigrants. He welcomes them personally when they arrive by boat and makes them Palermitans. Orlando would love to see a more welcoming approach of the EU towards the immigrants who come in. He states that these people have rights and should be given a chance and feel welcome. Immigrants who feel welcome will keep their eyes open of who comes in and take responsibility for their new country or city. Orlando would like to create a mosaic of people in a city instead of a painting with boundaries. He calls himself the mayor of all people from Palermo, children to elderly, locally born and the just arrived. He even called in a special board in his office to have a voice of the immigrants being heard represented by an immigrant woman. A call to mayors around Europe to make a change because the main governments can’t do it all. 

I might be biased because I am partly Palermitan myself, but also I agree with the way Orlando approaches the ‘new’ people arriving in Sicily. He wants them to be more free, welcomed and have rights much sooner, because globalisation should provide an exchange of people as well as a trade freedom. I wonder how they are being managed in a way that they understand the culture that is new to them. Also the Italians, in this case the Sicilians must have a vision on the way Orlando proposes we should treat the newcomers. But a warm welcome sounds like a very good foundation to base a new relationship from.


The real name of this artist is unknown. This Frenchman peels the layers of the cities to show the world who lives underneath the layers of doors, concrete buildings or underneath the plastic sheet of roofs. With enormous prints of people and a small message he reveals the suffering women in the favelas of Rio and lets Israeli meet Palestinian people with the same job. 

Open your eyes, look up from your screen, life is live and we must not forget who we have around us. You don’t have to be friends with everyone, but I strongly believe that we have more in common with the people we don’t know (yet) than we first thought. And we should all be acknowledged for being who we are. JR-Artist does that in his way and set up a community that helps you to print many portraits and show the people you think should be seen. 

Reed Hastings interview with Twan Huys – College Tour (Dutch public television program) 

Reed Hastings is founder of Netflix, a company he started because video rentals were becoming outdated. He was fascinated by the question he heard often in the video rental stores “I rented this film last week and I loved it, what would you recommend me for this week?” Hastings thought, being a math wizard, there must be an algorithm that can predict what people would like to see based on what they have seen in the past. Hence the reason one cannot stop watching Netflix shows. Binge watching of series and the power of his own shows is not based on what he wants, he works with a team that has a huge variety of background to make sure he avoids bias. Long story short, Hastings understands the magic of ‘hand picked’ service that goes hand in hand with as much diversity as possible. If you’d like to watch the full interview: here, most part is in English.

Strange & Familiar: Architecture on Fogo Island

A documentary that shows the story of a sleepy island just outside Canada that was getting an intervention from local born Zita Cobb who decided it needed an upgrade. Together with architect Todd Saunders she gave the island a makeover. What is so special about it? All the elements that were kept that are special for the islanders and their cultural expression. Product designers were consulted to fill a gorgeous inn that opened as part of the project. This is holistic design in all areas. 

The way all disciplines connected and kept the heritage of Fogo alive is a blessing if you ask me. I hope more places in the world can grow like this place, with pride and love for their culture.