Exchange to Change Sept 2017 20170911 E2C zomer web | Page 21

in the picture a l umni 21 Nahom Girma Fikresilassie DEM 2010-11| Ethiopia Jonathan Kamkosi Banda DEM 2004-05 | Malawi Where do you work? Senior Private Sector Officer at Africa Development Bank Group (AfDB) Country Office Malawi working on private sector development in Malawi and also on portfolio management for the AfDB’s Financial Institutional Projects in Southern Africa. How did IOB experience affect your life/ career? My IOB experience was a game changer in my life and my career. It developed my keen interest in addressing the development challenges African countries face through sustainable engagement of the private sector. If you were the director of a research fund, what is a research question that you would agree to finance? My passion is private sector development, with a focus on how the private sector can engage in a sustainable manner in addressing some of the development challenges Africa is facing. Where do you work? I am working at the Embassy of Ethiopia in Brussels as First Secretary in the Development and Technical Cooperation Affairs. How did IOB experience affect your life/ career? I would say the IOB experience has affected my life/ carrier positively in two major ways. The first one is that it has broadened my perspective and view of the world in a significant way. It allowed me to meet pleasant and smart people along the way that made my stay not only enjoyable but a truly learning one. I have also come to know and appreciate the rich Belgian culture and the hospitability of its people. By the same token, my stay at IOB has also opened my eyes to wonderful personalities and cultures of my classmates from my own continent, Africa, to Asia and Latin America. Secondly, the whole academic experience has changed how I approach my day-to-day work for the better. I believe the combination of these two has contributed for me to be assigned in Brussels. If you were the director of a research fund, what is a research question that you would agree to finance? I believe the availability and accessibility of high quality data is crucial for an effective and hands-on policy making as well as to fighting corruption and lack of good governance, especially in many developing countries. Currently, rapid technological advances and increasing internet accessibility are playing a major role in many aspects of our daily lives. So, my research question would be how could developing countries apply IT technology to install a comprehensive institutional capacity that enables them to produce better quality data in a relatively short period of time for policy making, increasing accountability and transparency and reducing corruption simultaneously. E xchange to change S eptember 2017