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Newsletter: 2020 November

TCG Newsletter 2020 Nov city and islands

“How could you have a soccer team if all were goalkeepers? How would it be an orchestra if all were French horns?”

- Desmond Tutu, Archbishop, Nobel Peace laureate 1931-

The falling leaves drift by the window, the autumn leaves of red and gold...November is always the month when the deep voices of Nat King Cole (or Frank Sinatra) will come to my mind (“The Autumn Leaves by Nat King Cole.”I enjoy autumn because the air is crisp and cool, and it is also the start of the mushroom (Cèpesseason.

In terms of festivities, starting with the 1st November, the Siamese and Tai culture will celebrate Loi Krathong, paying respect to the goddess of water. Then our Indian friends will celebrate the festival of lights (Diwali) on the 14th, and on the 15th, people in Japan will celebrate the 7-5-3 Day for the children. This year, Thanksgiving is to be celebrated on the 29th in America, though Covid-19 may complicate families’ arrangements to get together.

One important day to remember by many, especially in Europe, is the 11th of November. It is Armistice day to recall the end of World War I. Ironically, it is also known in Asia as a day for super sales because of the massive discounts made famous by the e-commerce giant Alibaba. It was to encourage singles to go on a shopping spree on ‘Singles’ Day’ (the digits 11:11 indicates one-one, i.e., being single.) Finally, for those who have young children at home or in their entourage, the 20th November is World Children’s Day. With that, let’s bring some sunshine and smiles to the faces of our little ones!

Enjoy November, albeit the nostalgic air of the falling autumn leaves!

TCG Newsletter 2020 Nov survival of the friendliest
A Journey A Month…
Your Story. Our Story. The Human Story.

“Survival of the Friendliest,” might that be a typo? Do you mean Charles Darwin’s evolutionary theory, “Survival of the Fittest?”

No, it was not a typo. I meant to share the new evolutionary theory based on the research of Dr. Brian Hare, a professor of evolutionary anthropology at Duke University. This view will challenge the known Darwinian concept that says species survive based on biological fitness in a mechanism of natural selection.

If you are interested, please watch this video clip from National Geographic (~7mins):

TCG Newsletter 2020 Nov nat geo explores

There are several studies around the theory of survival, including AI simulations on gene selection/survival. Contrary to our common understanding of Darwin’s evolutionary theory, it now seems that maybe sociability is actually the skill that has helped us successfully survive and evolve as a species.

After reading the research, I am intrigued by this new theory that we probably wouldn’t have survived through the years if we did not exercise our mutual interdependence with our fellow human beings.

TCG Newsletter 2020 Nov egosystem vs ecosystem

The video also mentioned the study on Egosystem versus Ecosystem. Being a curious person, I wonder if the upcoming US Presidential election would provide some supporting points. To me, this new evolutionary theory may explain why it is so crucial for us to develop our Cultural Intelligence (CQ) so that we can create our connection with others on a global scale. It will undoubtedly propel humanity to another level in creative collaboration, for us to achieve many more technological breakthroughs as we continue to thrive for our species’ survival in this universe.

Hopefully, the study triggers some thoughts on how we want to interact with our fellow human beings. (By the way, if you are a dog-lover, Dr. Hare also has some fascinating research on dogs’ behaviours. He is the co-founder of Dognition – google his name for more Youtube clips: here is one: The Genius of Dogs.)

Stay safe, Happy Thanksgiving, and wishing all well.

We, at TransCultural Group (TCG), are determined to play our parts in making the world a better place, and we have teamed up with the Cultural Intelligence Centre, U.S.A to bring their well-researched and designed CQ assessment tools to our clients in the Asia Pacific.

We are passionate about building bridges and breaking down walls. Please join us in this journey.

Beyond Boundaries – Crossing Cultures

TCG togetherness

The world is fascinating, simply because 

differences exist...

Spread the words, share the vision, do our part!


Keng Keng Tan
Founder & CEO
TransCultural Group