How to set priorities for 2020?

The unstable political situation that Lebanon is facing has its impact on our priorities for 2020. With the beginning of this year, let us reflect on our previous acts and future decisions. Our goals should always be smart SMART: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time bound. Strategic and tactical objectives should convergence into the ultimate and long term plan that we have for ourselves.  Check out this interview for “Parents Talk” on Mariam TV for further insights and some piece of advice!

Sustainability Champion Says Progress Requires Unlikely Collaborations

When Hasan Youness was growing up in Lebanon, he often ran errands for his parents. But there was one thing he wouldn’t do: get cigarettes for his father. “Get your own cigarettes, dad, and feel free to use the balcony,” Youness recalled saying, as recounted in a September blog post. “Didn’t you see the picture of the lungs of smokers in the science book?!”

That is why it is surprising that, today, Youness has engaged in a dialogue with Philip Morris International (PMI) and formed an unlikely friendship with its social impact and sustainability lead, Jennifer Motles. His motivation is one he says the tobacco giant shares: creating a world without cigarettes. 

Youness is a strategic advisor to the U.N. Global Compact in Lebanon and professor of strategic management and sustainability at Lebanese International and Notre Dame Universities. He’s also a leading voice for the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), including SDG 3, Good Health and Wellbeing. For him, there is no other way to achieve the goal than by working with all stakeholders involved—even those who others demonize.   

“When it comes to making progress on the SDGs, we cannot afford to exclude anyone,” Youness said in an interview with TriplePundit, during which he was clear that he is not an employee or consultant for PMI. “If an organization is engaged and demonstrating that they’re making a real effort, then it’s imperative to include them in the discussion.”

Who can lead Lebanon out of political crisis?

As prime minister’s post remains vacant, deadlock is widening sectarian divide, leading to rise in violence.

There has been more than 40 days of largely peaceful protests in Lebanon. But as the political stalemate continues, the country is sliding into turmoil. In recent days, the demonstrations have turned more violent. On Sunday November 24, supporters of the two main Shia groups attacked protesters in Beirut. Unrest followed in other parts of Lebanon with various sectarian backgrounds.

Sunni leader and caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri has made it clear he is not going to form the next government. So the question remains: Who will?

Who can lead Lebanon out of political crisis? Check out my interview with presenter Nastasya Tay and guests Ibrahim Mneimneh, political commentator and Rami Khouri, professor at the American University of Beirut and senior fellow at Harvard Kennedy School, on Aljazeera English.