From Africa to America: Wasafiri establishes office for work on intractable problems in USA
BY IAN RANDALL
Whether it is violent extremism, climate change, Ebola, or food production, Wasafiri Consulting has helped navigate Africa’s most intractable and complex challenges. Now it is setting up its US headquarters in Asheville, North Carolina, in order to apply its expertise to America’s own wicked problems.
The head of Wasafiri USA, Ian Randall, explained “Large-scale problems appear intractable when the quality of our collective response is inadequate relative to the nature of the problem. We help diverse partners come together to better understand an issue and then collaborate on ambitious change agendas.”
Ian hopes that Wasafiri’s approach, forged in the crucible of Africa, will prove catalytic in addressing issues in the US, whether it’s rocketing opioid addiction, a shortage of affordable housing, or the resilience of Appalachian forests to climate change. He reflects, “Our current clients are leading development funders such as USAID, the UK Government and the Rockefeller Foundation. Whilst we’ll need to develop new clients and business models for US-based work, we are confident that our approach is vital in a world that is ever more interconnected, volatile and uncertain.”
The Collider, Asheville’s own climate change innovation hub, will provide Wasafiri with its HQ in the USA. At 6.15pm, on Friday November 3rd, the Collider will host Wasafiri’s debut event: “Leadership for Intractable Problems: Lessons from navigating complex change in Africa.” Whether from business, government or the non-profit sector, anyone working on systemic challenges is invited to join a conversation with Wasafiri’s leadership team about how change happens.
Click here for more information on the event.