"CEOs can't wait to read Sunny Bindra's articles every week."

Aug 14, 2011
Another famine caused by people, not nature

I have been trying to avoid mentioning our current famine, as I thought I had written all I could about famines in the past. Clearly not, though, judging by the actions and utterances of those who ought to know better. Seven years ago, I wrote some articles on this page about famines and the right […]

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Nov 07, 2010
Confessions of an Economic Simpleton

I have two degrees in economics, but I have never really known what to do with them. I never became an economist, you see – I didn’t quite grasp the arcane niceties of the subject. Or rather, I was too much of a simpleton to become an economist. Over the past few days I have […]

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Sep 26, 2010
Kenya’s population – biggest asset or worst nightmare?

Last week I asked you to think differently about Kenya’s population numbers and demographic profile. Half our population is aged under 18. Good or bad? Consider this: would you rather have the Japan problem? Japan’s population has peaked and is expected to decline for decades. That means fewer workers paying fewer taxes to support an […]

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Jun 06, 2010
Use knowledge and exchange to light up Africa

Last week I argued that if we want Africa to be lit up, we need to worry about knowledge, not electricity. If we generate and exchange enough knowledge, the electricity (and products and services and incomes) will come, as sure as day follows night. In 1958 a gentleman called Leonard Read wrote a short, readable […]

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Jan 24, 2010
What’s really news is never news in Kenya

What passes for ‘news’ in this country? I want to put to you that what you are consuming is not news at all: it is pointless and irrelevant trivia. Let me start with an admission: I am spending less and less time consuming Kenyan news, and it is months since I watched a full television […]

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Jan 17, 2010
Kenya’s international position also gives us hope

For the past two weeks this column has been trying to instil some hope in you, to suggest that maybe, just maybe, things will getter better for Kenya. To end the series, let me move you smoothly to a third reason for hope in 2010: our international position. If you want to understand Kenya’s role […]

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Jan 10, 2010
The Kenyan economy can soar, but leaders hold it down

Last week I asked Kenyans to harbour some hope in their hearts for what this next decade might bring. I suggested that 2010 might turn out to be recorded in history as the year in which we turned the corner by finally attacking, and fatally wounding, the beast we call impunity. Maybe, just maybe, we […]

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Jan 04, 2010
Learning from the fall of the Celtic Tiger

“FOR over a decade from the mid-1990s until 2007, Ireland’s economy grew more rapidly than any other in western Europe. Foreign investment poured in. Success at selling abroad made Ireland one of the world’s largest exporters per head. Opportunity attracted the enterprising. In less than a dozen years, a country long known for exporting its […]

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Nov 22, 2009
Like its football team, Kenya is failing to qualify

I was an angry man last weekend. The ill temper was sparked by a football match. I watched Kenya lose 2-3 to Nigeria at Kasarani, and in the process fail to qualify for both the World Cup and the Africa Cup of Nations. That in itself was not news, and should not have made me […]

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Aug 02, 2009
Bring Mother Earth back to the fore in Kenya

Wangari Maathai is back, grabbing our attention about the damage we are doing to our collective mother, the planet. But where has she been? The good lady became inordinately quiet these past few years, ever since she dabbled in politics. She should have been banging our eardrums about the Mau Forest debacle a long time […]

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May 18, 2009
Business lessons from 2008’s economic meltdown

“After 2008, it’s understandable that the average American would be as mad as hell at America’s business leaders. Executives, even in a good year, tend to rank towards the bottom in credibility with the public…The current economic crisis provides all the ammo for a populist backlash, as you – and your portfolio – know too […]

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Apr 06, 2009
To prosper in life, expect the unexpected

“It is easy to see that life is the cumulative effect of a handful of significant shocks. It is not so hard to identify the role of Black Swans, from your armchair (or bar stool). Go through the following exercise. Look into your own existence. Count the significant events, the technological changes, and the inventions […]

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Apr 05, 2009
The fibre-optic link is nearly here – but some should be worried

We are now getting very excited about the arrival of the various undersea fibre-optic communications cables in Kenya, are we not? I certainly am, probably more than most. The internet is a great tool for me: it is the medium through which I communicate most often; where I conduct most of the research I need […]

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Mar 29, 2009
Kenya’s reverse economics: squander everything that’s scarce

Finance Minister Uhuru Kenyatta tells us that we are going on a national belt-tightening exercise. Government is going to cut out unnecessary foreign trips, workshops, and conferences by its leaders and functionaries; we are going to cut out all unnecessary hiring of cousins and sycophants; and we are going to suspend all spending on luxuries. […]

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Mar 17, 2009
The Edge: Growing the Family Business – out this Friday, 20 March

The Edge is a quarterly management knowledge journal, carried as a free pullout in the Business Daily. This Friday (20 March), The Edge will focus on the business model that drives the Kenya economy: the family firm. Please make sure you get your copy. It will contain a compendium of articles by those who study […]

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Mar 16, 2009
Bubbles are like hurricanes, tearing through the economy

“Those are said to be the most expensive words in the English language, by the way: it’s different this time. You can’t have a bubble without good explanations for why it’s different this time. If everyone knew that this time wasn’t different, the market would stop going up. But the future is always uncertain—and amid […]

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Mar 01, 2009
Jams everywhere: gridlock is already here

Jam today, jam tomorrow. Jam in the morning, jam in the evening. Jam at midday, jam at midnight. Jam in the city, jam in the suburbs. Strawberry jam on your toast, traffic jam on your road. I got out of my house in the morning to go to work earlier this week, and found a […]

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Feb 12, 2006
Knowledge is the key future resource

Peter Drucker, widely acknowledged as the greatest management thinker of the past century, died 3 months ago. His death went largely unremarked here in Kenya; not surprisingly, as we tend to pay little attention to management – either as a concept, or as a way of doing things. Drucker was just a few days short […]

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