Get an experience of Harvard in PJ

  • Metro News
  • Friday, 11 Jan 2019

Kim, co-founder and president of the Center for Asia Leadership which is co-organising the workshop, will share his insights.

GET a gist of Harvard University’s course on Adaptive Leadership at an upcoming two-day workshop entitled “Adaptive Leadership: Driving Transformation and an Adaptive Culture”.

The workshops are held in various cities in Asia and on Feb 21 and 22, it will be at Menara Star, Phileo Damansara Commercial Centre, Section 16, Petaling Jaya as an event organised by Star Media Group in collaboration with the Center for Asia Leadership.

It is an introductory workshop based on leadership frameworks taught at Harvard Kennedy School and Harvard Business School as well as Design Thinking mindsets and tool kits taught and practiced at the Stanford Design School.

This programme is ideal for working professionals in decision-making roles, government officials, community leaders and entrepreneurs.

Center for Asia Leadership co-founder and president Samuel Kim said, “There are two aspects to leadership – technical and adaptive. The technical part is about what we do while the adaptive part explores why we do what we do.

“The technical aspect is about doing things right and the adaptive aspect is about doing the right thing,” he said in a phone interview.

According to Kim, Adaptive Leadership is a year-long course at Harvard and participants will get the essence of it at the intensive two-day session.

At Center for Asia Leadership, 70% of the course has been customised for the Asian context.

Shavurov, a Harvard alumni experienced in public sector reforms across continents,  is one of the speakers.
Shavurov, a Harvard alumni experienced in public sector reforms across continents,  is one of the speakers.

Prior to establishing the centre, he has worked for 14 years in varying sectors from strategy consulting and social entrepreneurship to international development, politics, and government.

Having taken the course at Harvard coupled with his experiences working in various countries such as the United States, South Korea and the Philippines, he was able to have a first-hand experience of why some countries or corporations do well while some continue to be mediocre and others go downhill.

“Many people do not enjoy having to face problems, especially in Asia. They don’t want to talk about the elephant in the room.

“In the workshop, we will discuss why is it so important to face the problem and the more we know about the problem, the better,” he said.

He added, “The technical challenge can be fixed by one person, but the adaptive part requires a mentality shift and dealing with people with stakes in the problem. Problems arise when you use a technical approach to a problem that requires an adaptive one and you do not address the core problem.”

He hopes to bring the Harvard experience to participants.

Uddenberg, who heads an innovative San Francisco-based architecture firm, is also speaking at the workshop.
Uddenberg, who heads an innovative San Francisco-based architecture firm, is also speaking at the workshop.

“At Harvard, 50% of your grades are based on class participation. It is not about taking notes, but exchanging thoughts with people from different career backgrounds.

“It will be an experiential workshop. Participants get materials in advance so they can read up ahead and discuss during the workshop.

“A leader has to address things that are broken in the society or organisation, and it is not a one-man effort as the task requires you to be able to work with other stakeholders.

“It is about closing the gap between reality and aspirations,” he said.

Aside from Kim, the teaching faculty at the workshop will include Signo Uddenberg, who holds a masters in science in Sustainable Design and Construction from Stanford University, and leads the Innovation and Experience Design practices at a San Francisco-based architecture firm; and Umar Shavurov, who holds a masters in public administration from the Harvard Kennedy School and has worked extensively over the last decade internationally on public sector reforms in Latin America, West Africa, and Central Asia.

This programme is claimable under HRDF. Fees are RM2,600 (Early/Group Rate), RM2,800 (Regular Rate).

Early rate is applicable for registration before Jan 21. Registration closes on Feb 14.

For details, visit to register, call 03-7967 1388 ext 1477/1432 or email

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