On one particularly memorable birthday, international development expert Bruce Purdy found himself in an uncomfortable position. The Afghani warlord he’d been sent to help had just told him that if he didn’t turn around and leave immediately, he would personally kill him. Purdy didn’t need to be told twice, which is why he is alive today to tell that story and others in A Journey Through the Developing World starting Thursday, March 7th.
Purdy takes participants on a wild rollercoaster of a ride from the Civil War in Beirut to the Velvet Revolution in Eastern Europe, and more recently, to the chaos and confusion rising out of the Arab Spring as he discusses the policies, procedures, major actors and tough challenges facing much of the globe. Learn about the difficulties of rebuilding trust in fragile financial systems, investing in economic development and infrastructure, funding basic services like water and sanitation, harnessing the massive influx of people migrating into urban areas, or grappling with gut-wrenching poverty. Infused throughout the course will be personal vignettes — some humorous and some not so humorous — of more than 45 years of one man’s trek and his quest to make a difference.
Purdy is an international development consultant with more than four decades of experience planning and financing rural and urban infrastructure projects in more than 25 emerging and developing economies. His experience includes planning and implementing donor-funded programs within the water and sanitation, education and transportation sectors, and working directly with national, regional and municipal officials and civil society institutions to create the conditions for reform and to implement policies to improve service provision to local citizens. Purdy holds a B.A. from Ohio Wesleyan University, an M.A. from the University of Maryland, and undertook extensive coursework in strategic and organizational planning at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. Currently, Purdy is developing the Global Urban Leadership Program in the School of Public Policy at the University of Maryland.
A Journey Through the Developing World is two sessions, Tuesday March 7th and 14th from 1-2:30 PM. HYBRID (in person at the Peachblossom YMCA, via ZOOM or recording.). To register, visit https://chesapeakeforum.org.
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