CSCLeaders 2014: An Exciting Journey
Amazing. Inspirational. Empowering. Life-Changing: just some of
the words participants used to describe this year's
CSCLeaders. 87 leaders from 22 countries came
together for an exciting seven days in the UK to broaden their
horizons and develop their cultural intelligence as they
collaborated on a common challenge.
Participants heard from inspiring speakers on technology,
innovation and leadership in their worlds, including entrepreneur
Sascha Haselmayer, sustainability guru Will Day and policy maker
Senator Hugh Segal as well as leaders from local government, the
NHS, the community and representatives from global companies such
as Weir, Arup, HSBC, HP and Amazon. Common Purpose Chief Executive
Julia Middleton also spoke to participants on Cultural Intelligence, the subject of her new
This year's Study Tours in London, Manchester, Birmingham, North
East and Scotland were a great mix of technology and community
immersion. Participants experienced a dawn safari at Edinburgh Zoo,
explored technology in education with Prof Sugata Mitra, met Nobel
Prize winners at the Graphene laboratory and ventured into the new
London underground system with Crossrail.
Princess Anne, President of the Commonwealth Study Conferences,
joined participants on their study tours and also on the final day
of the programme when participants presented practical project
proposals in response to the Challenge: "how do you get societal -
as well as economic - value out of technological innovation?"
Project ideas included: Health Patch, the development of a
diagnostic device which provides visual information on an
individual's health and enables better understanding of
healthcare's needs across communities; LinkMe2, a web-based service
linking young people to young people's services globally and
CSCLeaders Ambassadors, a platform to empower all
CSCLeaders alumni to enhance their societal impact
through an online community. Participants will continue to
develop these ideas beyond the programme.
The leadership learning for participants was profound. Many said
that CSCLeaders had increased their understanding
of Cultural Intelligence and how to practice this in their own
leadership; they spoke of the value of working with such diverse
and inspiring people, of drawing on multiple perspectives when
tackling challenges. Others spoke of returning to their own worlds
energised, better able to spot opportunities and lead change:
"The programme has opened my mind to a whole new way of
thinking, collaborating, improving services through technology. It
has given me hope where I thought it was difficult and almost
impossible to think new ways of doing things to the community in a
way that enriches communities - 'never say never'."
"What a privilege it has been to live, work, study and collaborate
with such a diverse group of intelligent, committed and inspiring
"For me, the biggest learning was around Cultural Intelligence:
the power of embracing, going beyond your core values / beliefs and
consciously flexing / testing and challenging these beliefs.
CSCLeaders was an amazing opportunity to
understand and explore this with quite deep results from my own
personal perspective. It was then interesting how tapping into this
cultural intelligence could yield incredibly power results,
engagements and ideas. I did this during the study tour and amazed
"No matter where you are - a big city, a small remote village, we
find similar issues exist. Excellent, excellent, excellent
programme and people."
Participants will come together for a second time for Part two of
CSCLeaders 2014, which is a choice of four cities:
Singapore, Toronto, Lagos or Singapore. Part Two is an opportunity
to explore the Challenge in a completely different context.
Applications for CSCLeaders 2015 open 12 May
2014. Dates are: Part One - 12-19 April 2015, Part Two - three
locations, TBC. Find out more about CSCLeaders.