A quick note pointing you in the direction of Conde Nast Traveller’s The 50 People Changing the Way We Travel, in which I was fortunate enough to be included. The journalist Peter Browne was responsible for my blurb, and I’m delighted he managed to fit in what he calls Journeys by Design’s ‘low-impact, high-return philosophy’, and more than pleased that he gave Wild Philanthropy so much space. It’s a great platform for spreading the good sustainable development word.
This apart, I’m more interested in the other 49 on the list, and in particular the likes of David Attenborough, Luke Bailes, Leonardo DiCaprio and Jochen Zeitz. It’s an honour, of course, to be part of a list that includes luminaries from sectors as different as the tech industry, design, and futurist think tanks, and I love Conde Nast’s lateral thinking when it comes to profiling those who create worlds for the travelling imagination, not least filmmaker Wes Anderson, cocktail aficionado Tony Conigliaro and artist Yayoi Kusama. I’m no fan of Boris Johnson, but see that his inclusion gives the list something to kick against.
However, I know my area, and while Attenborough needs no introduction, DiCaprio needs something of a reintroduction, and both Bailes and Zeitz deserve championing at every turn. I’ll leave for you to read the DiCaprio write-up for yourself, save to say the foundation to which it refers was established in 1998, is a highly effective fundraiser, an equally fine lobbyist, and has been at the funding forefront of many a project, not least the Lion Recovery Fund, which it co-founded with the Wildlife Conservation Network.
Meanwhile, Luke Bailes is Singita’s founder, was until very recently its CEO, now sits on the board as Executive Chairman, and is summed up beautifully by Peter Browne. I would only add that Singita has been both inspiration and model for much of my own work, and that Wild Philanthropy has recently teamed up with its conservation arm to put together a conservation journey, in which travellers are afforded special access to its conservation teams and work.
Jochen Zeitz, finally, I first came across via his highly readable book The Manager and the Monk: A Discourse in Prayer, Profit, and Principles, which he co-wrote with Anselm Grün, and which sets out the stall for responsible capitalism. Since then, I’ve followed the impact he’s had on African travel closely, and have worked with Segera, both as destination and on the safari auction front. Zeitz’s foundation was the original founder of The Long Run, of which Wild Philanthropy is an affiliate member, and with whom we are collaborating in the design and delivery of Long Run-specific conservation journeys. I’m super interested to see where and what he turns to next.
On which note, and to end, here’s to the future of sustainable travel, to the role it plays in sustainable development in general, and to it being catalyst for changing the way we all choose to travel. I am extremely grateful to Conde Nast for the opportunity to get the message out there, and in the company of so many of the good, the great, and the deserve-to-be-heard.