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Indonesia’s Changing Place in the World: A Conversation with Gita Wirjawan,
Indonesia's Minister of Trade, 2011-2014
November 21, 2022 | Episode #35
NEW YORK – In Episode #35 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Gita Wirjawan about Indonesia’s changing place in the world. The economy of Indonesia, the world’s fourth most populous country, has been growing quickly in recent years. Rapid economic growth has been accompanied by a more influential presence on the global stage. Wirjawan, a successful business leader, educator and Minister of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia (2011-2014), has a unique perspective on Indonesia’s growth and development.
America’s Reconciliation with Vietnam: A Conversation with Ted Osius,
President and CEO of the US-ASEAN Business Council
August 15, 2022 | Episode #34
WASHINGTON – In Episode #34 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Ted Osius about diplomacy, the history of America’s reconciliation with Vietnam and business opportunities in Southeast Asia. Osius is President and CEO of the US-ASEAN Business Council and, previously, US Ambassador to Vietnam. Osius is also the author of the excellent new book “Nothing Is Impossible: America’s Reconciliation with Vietnam.”
Singapore as a Business Gateway for Southeast Asia: A Conversation with Jacqueline Poh, Managing Director of the Singapore Economic Development Board
April 26, 2022 | Episode #33
NEW YORK – In Episode #33 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Jacqueline Poh, Managing Director of the Singapore Economic Development Board, about business opportunities in Singapore and Southeast Asia. With a population of 700 million and a rapidly growing, increasingly digital middle class, Southeast Asia is on track to become the fourth largest market in the world by 2030. The business opportunities are significant.
Building Montreal’s Ecological Resilience: A Conversation with Anne Charpentier, Director of the Montreal Botanical Garden
November 23, 2021 | Episode #32
MONTREAL – In Episode #32 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Anne Charpentier, the Director of the Montreal Botanical Garden, about the botanical garden's efforts to lead an ecological transition and adapt to climate change in Montreal. Like many cities around the world, Montreal has been affected by climate change. Heat waves, higher temperatures and black ice storms are more frequent. The goal of the Montreal Botanical Garden is to be an example of successful climate adaptation for Montreal and for Canada.
Tourism in Singapore: A Conversation with Keith Tan,
Chief Executive of the Singapore Tourism Board
December 23, 2019 | Episode #31
SINGAPORE – In Episode #31 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Keith Tan, the Chief Executive of the Singapore Tourism Board, about the role of tourism in Singapore. Singapore takes an innovative, big picture approach to developing its tourism sector. In a wide-ranging interview, Tan discusses the size and diversity of tourism in Singapore and efforts to develop new skills and new technologies to help the sector grow. He also describes several new large-scale tourism initiatives.
Nature Conservation in Hong Kong: A Conversation with Andy Brown, Executive Director of Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden
July 8, 2019 | Episode #30
HONG KONG – In Episode #30 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Andy Brown about reforestation and nature conservation in Hong Kong. Brown is the Executive Director of Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden. Kadoorie Farm is a non-governmental organization doing a variety of things to help make Hong Kong more green and nature filled. Kadoorie Farm’s activities include important work in flora and fauna conservation, wild animal rescue, nature education and sustainable living.
Building a National Dance Company: A Conversation with Janek Schergen, Artistic Director of the Singapore Dance Theatre
May 24, 2019 | Episode #29
SINGAPORE – In Episode #29 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Janek Schergen about how to build a national dance company. Schergen is the Artistic Director of the Singapore Dance Theatre. The dance company performs classical, neo-classical and contemporary ballets, including a number of world premieres. The company also produces a variety of educational and outreach programs.
How to Build a Museum: New York’s Tenement Museum
March 20, 2019 | Episode #28
THE LOWER EAST SIDE, NEW YORK – In Episode #28 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Kevin Jennings about how the Tenement Museum uses storytelling to tell the stories of immigrants to New York’s Lower East Side and to educate museumgoers about the immigrant experience today. Jennings is the President of the Tenement Museum. The Tenement Museum is an excellent example of how a smaller museum with a limited collection can make a big impact through an emphasis on compelling storytelling.
The Story of the Battery: A Conversation with Warrie Price,
Founder of New York’s Battery Conservancy
February 1, 2019 | Episode #27
THE BATTERY, NEW YORK – In Episode #27 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Warrie Price about the history and revitalization of the Battery in New York City. Price is the founder of the Battery Conservancy. In a wide-ranging interview, Price describes the history of the Battery and how it has been transformed into the urban refuge it is today. She also discusses how the rejuvenation of the Battery reflects the renaissance in public park building currently underway around the world.
Saving Central Park: A Conversation with Elizabeth Barlow Rogers,
Founder of New York’s Central Park Conservancy
October 19, 2018 | Episode #26
CENTRAL PARK, NEW YORK – In Episode #26 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Elizabeth Barlow Rogers about Central Park’s history and revitalization. Rogers is the founder of the influential Central Park Conservancy. In a wide-ranging interview, Rogers describes how Central Park was rescued from a state of neglect and degradation and transformed into the scenic and recreational masterpiece it is today. She also discusses a variety of lessons civic leaders can learn from the revitalization of Central Park and apply to ambitious, transformational projects in their own cities. Rogers is the author of the excellent new book “Saving Central Park: A History and A Memoir."
The New York Botanical Garden: Creating a Living Museum
June 21, 2018 | Episode #23
THE BRONX, NEW YORK -- In Episode #23 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Dr. Brian Boom, Vice President for Conservation Strategy of the New York Botanical Garden, about the history of the garden, conservation, creating a living museum and the value of long-term strategic plans. While many organizations are managed with a particular focus on the next calendar quarter’s results, the time frame for planning at the New York Botanical Garden is a bit different. “The next quarter for us really means the next quarter century,” Boom says. “Long-term planning is the key to our success.”
How to Build a Museum: The National Museum of Singapore
December 22, 2017 | Episode #22
SINGAPORE – In Episode #22 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Angelita Teo, the Director of the National Museum of Singapore, about the role of a national museum. The National Museum holds a special place in the life and development of Singapore. Through its exhibitions and programming, the National Museum tells visitors the fascinating story of Singapore's history and how Singapore has developed as a country over the past 52 years.
Books and Contemporary Culture in Singapore:
A Conversation with Book Industry Leader Kenny Chan
December 15, 2017 | Episode #20
SINGAPORE – In Episode #20 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Kenny Chan, Store Director of the Kinokuniya bookstore chain in Singapore, about books, Singaporean authors and the literary scene in Singapore. Chan is a champion of books and reading and a close observer of how books reflect contemporary culture in Singapore. He also has some very interesting insights into leaders, leadership and public service in Singapore. “With Mr. Lee [Lee Kuan Yew], my main lesson was nothing is impossible," he says.
Singapore’s Economy: A Conversation with Chng Kai Fong,
Managing Director of the Singapore Economic Development Board
December 19, 2017 | Episode #21
SINGAPORE – In Episode #21 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Chng Kai Fong, Managing Director of the Singapore Economic Development Board, about Singapore’s economy. Singapore has a well-deserved reputation for identifying emerging growth areas and managing its economy well. In a wide-ranging interview, Chng discusses advanced manufacturing, autonomous vehicles, startup culture and how Singapore is preparing its workforce for new opportunities emerging out of digital disruption.
China's Belt and Road Initiative: A Conversation with Will Doig
July 20, 2018 | Episode #24
In Episode #24 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with journalist Will Doig about China’s Belt and Road Initiative, railway diplomacy and infrastructure projects in Southeast Asia. The Belt and Road Initiative is an ambitious endeavor to make China a primary center of global economic activity through a network of infrastructure, industrial zones, supply chains and sea and land trading routes encompassing more than 60 countries. Doig is the author of the excellent new book “High Speed Empire: Chinese Expansion and the Future of Southeast Asia.”
Scouting in New York City: A Conversation with Ethan Draddy,
CEO of the Greater New York Councils of the Boy Scouts of America
August 23, 2018 | Episode #25
CAMP ALPINE, NEW JERSEY – In Episode #25 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Ethan Draddy, CEO of the Greater New York Councils of the Boy Scouts of America, about leadership, character development, STEM programming and the opening of BSA programs to girls and young women. Scouting is much larger in New York City than many people realize. Through its professional staff and more than 4,000 adult volunteer leaders, the council serves more than 40,000 young men and women in the five boroughs of New York City.
Postcard from Xiamen, China
September 21, 2017 | Episode #19
XIAMEN, CHINA – In Episode #19 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks about the city of Xiamen and what its development represents about the future of China. “We hear a lot about what is going on in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, but much less about cities like Xiamen,” he observes. “Where cities like Xiamen are today says a lot about where China is going tomorrow.”
Singapore’s Botanic Gardens: A UNESCO World Heritage Site
August 29, 2017 | Episode #18
SINGAPORE – In Episode #18 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Dr. Nura Bte. Abdul Karim, Deputy Director of Research and Conservation of Singapore’s Botanic Gardens, about the history of the gardens, how the gardens came to be designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site and how the gardens help promote Singapore’s greater image. Dr. Nura describes how the gardens not only provide a pleasant place for research, education and recreation, but also play an important role in helping create the modern, “Garden City” image Singapore presents to the world.
How to Build a Museum: Singapore’s Asian Civilisations Museum
May 22, 2017 | Episode #17
SINGAPORE – In Episode #17 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Kennie Ting, the Director of Singapore’s Asian Civilisations Museum, about how to build a museum. Singapore has made significant strides in recent years to encourage the development of museums and other cultural assets through a combination of government policy and government and private sector support. The results of these policy initiatives are impressive. Ting also discusses how he and his colleagues are approaching making the ACM more attractive to younger, more digitally savvy museum-goers. “Whenever we do exhibitions, [we try to make sure] they are Instagram-able.”
Adventure Capitalist: A Conversation with Jim Rogers
May 12, 2017 | Episode #16
SINGAPORE -- In a wide-ranging interview, Thomas Fraser talks with legendary investor and world traveler Jim Rogers about investing in China, the future of North Korea, the quality of life in Singapore and philanthropy. Rogers describes several areas of investment he likes in China, including environmental cleanup, health care, tourism and agriculture. “I am bullish on agriculture everywhere, but especially in China,” he says. Rogers is the author of several excellent books, including “Adventure Capitalist: The Ultimate Road Trip” and “A Gift to My Children: A Father’s Lessons for Life and Investing.”
How to Build a Museum: The Nebraska National Guard Museum
March 28, 2017 | Episode #15
SEWARD, NEBRASKA -- In Episode #15 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Jerry Meyer, Executive Director of the Nebraska National Guard Museum, about how to build a new museum. The museum is an excellent case study about developing a small new museum. Fraser then discusses lessons that can be learned from the new museum project and opportunities in new museum building today.
Coming Soon to a Theater Near You: China’s Movie Industry
February 23, 2017 | Episode #14
In Episode #14 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser discusses the rapidly growing movie industry in China and presents his podcast’s first ever movie review … of the U.S.-China co-production of The Great Wall, starring Matt Damon. The film vividly illustrates how global much of pop culture has become. “Video gamers in Chicago and Chengdu are going to love The Great Wall!”
Fast Food in China: More Than Just Changing Tastes
January 31, 2017 | Episode #13
In Episode #13 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks about the evolving business strategies of Yum! Brands and McDonald's in China. He also discusses how China's rapidly evolving fast food market illustrates larger, more fundamental insights about doing business in China today.
WeChat: Mobile Commerce and Innovation in China
November 28, 2016 | Episode #12
In the first anniversary episode of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks about the phenomenal growth of the Chinese app WeChat and what this illustrates about the state of mobile commerce and innovation in China. “The flow of mobile commerce ideas and innovation between China and the rest of the world is increasingly a two-way street,” he observes. “If you are interested in the state of innovation in China, let me suggest you take a close look at WeChat.”
Shenzhen and Suzhou: Encouraging Reading and Book Culture in China
September 21, 2016 | Episode #11
SHENZHEN, CHINA -- In Episode #11 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser discusses several noteworthy things being done in China to encourage reading and book culture. "In a country where everyone seems to be an avid smartphone user, I find it inspiring to see that people in Shenzhen ... and in other cities in China ... are doing a variety of things to encourage people of all ages to read traditional, physical books," he says.
China’s Economy: A Conversation with Arthur Kroeber
August 25, 2016 | Episode #10
BEIJING – In Episode #10 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Arthur Kroeber, Founding Partner and Head of Research at Gavekal Dragonomics, about China’s economy and opportunities China’s transition to a more service-orientated economy will create. Kroeber is the author of the excellent new book “China’s Economy: What Everyone Needs to Know.”
Warren Buffett's Investment Style:
The Value of Continual Learning
June 17, 2016 | Episode #8
In Episode #8 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser shares a few thoughts about the evolution of Warren Buffett's investment style and a recent investment in Apple. This story is an example of "how successful people and successful organizations can continue to learn and grow and evolve over long periods of time," he says.
Brexit: Making Sense of the Fine Print
July 14, 2016 | Episode #9
In Episode #9 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks about a few of the key legal issues leaders in London and Brussels are considering now that voters in the United Kingdom have voted to leave the European Union. "We are watching history unfold," he says.
The April 2016 Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting:
Buffett and Munger on Practically Everything
May 15, 2016 | Episode #7
OMAHA -- In Episode #7 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser shares a few thoughts about the wisdom of Warren Buffett and Charles Munger and what he learned at the recent Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting. "Like a number of the people there, I have been attending the annual meeting for years," he says. "What keeps me coming back? I always learn something new and valuable."
The Buffett Genre: Talking Books With Jim Ross
February 16, 2016 | Episode #6
OMAHA -- In Episode #6 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Jim Ross, Manager of the Hudson Booksellers bookstore at Eppley Airport in Omaha, Nebraska, about Warren Buffett, Charles Munger, the Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting and books. As listeners will discover, Ross's store is no ordinary bookstore. For the Buffett genre book list discussed in the podcast, please click here.
The Holiday Episode: Everything Barbecue at Chez Bubba
January 1, 2016 | Episode #5
GOEHNER, NEBRASKA -- In a special holiday episode of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks with Matt Howe, co-owner of the restaurant Chez Bubba, about everything barbecue. Chez Bubba may be a small business in a small community (Goehner, Nebraska, population 152), but like an increasing number of small business owners, Howe brings a well-informed global perspective to his business.
Thanksgiving 2015: Three Examples of How People Are Giving Back to Their Communities
December 5, 2015 | Episode #4
In Episode #4 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks about three noteworthy examples of how people are involved and providing leadership in philanthropy and volunteering. Stephen Schwarzman's Schwarzman Scholars program, Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan's pledge of Facebook shares and the volunteering of many people in Seward, Nebraska are all excellent examples of how people can get involved, he says.
Alphabet: Lessons from Google's Reorganization as a Holding Company
November 21, 2015 | Episode #3
In Episode #3 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser shares a few thoughts about what leaders of large, complex organizations can learn from some of the reasoning underlying the reorganization of Google as a holding company. "Every so often there is a corporate filing that ... points to a valuable lesson to be learned," he observes. Google's announcement that it is being reorganized as a holding company is "one of those gems."
Jack Ma’s Letter to Shareholders of Alibaba
November 13, 2015 | Episode #2
In Episode #2 of his podcast, Thomas Fraser talks about the value of annual letters and letters to shareholders. “As regular readers of my newsletter know, I am a big proponent of writing annual letters and letters to shareholders,” he says. “So, when I recently learned that Jack Ma, the chairman of Alibaba, has written a new letter to shareholders, it really caught my attention.”
Innovation and Brand Building in China
November 6, 2015 | Episode #1
BEIJING -- In the inaugural episode of his podcast, Thomas Fraser shares a few thoughts about innovation and emerging brands in China. “There is a debate going on in certain business and academic circles about whether Chinese companies can innovate and build brands,” he observes. “I would like to offer a more nuanced take on this question. The real question is not ‘whether’ Chinese companies can innovate and build brands, but ‘how soon?’”
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