Welcome to Nathalie Nahai, In Conversation (formerly known as The Hive Podcast), the series that enquires into our relationship with one another, technology and the natural world.
Join me as we dive into the complex and challenging questions of our time, and explore how some of the greatest minds are forging new and exciting paths forward.
For more resources and information about the show, please visit nathalienahai.com/in-conversation/
126. Orienting Towards Wisdom, Beauty & Compassion In Turbulent Times / Jo Confino
Today, I have the joy and privilege of being in conversation with Jo Confino, an executive coach, facilitator, journalist, sustainability expert and Zen mindfulness practitioner, whose work at the intersection of personal transformation and systems change has been an inspiration to me and to many, many others around the world.
If you’ve followed Jo’s journey, you may have encountered his thoughtful conversations on the popular podcast, “The Way Out is In” – a beautiful and uplifting series he co-hosts with Brother Phap Huu, the abbot of Little Hamlet at Plum Village, who for 17 years was the personal attendant to Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh. Having worked closely with this community for the past 14 years, Jo is also an advisory board member of Parallax Press, which publishes books on mindfulness in daily life.
With 40 years of experience as a journalist, Jo has worked on regional and national newspapers and websites, with an emphasis on business and finance, including three years as Wall Street correspondent for the Daily Telegraph. Until recently, he was the executive editor, Impact & Innovation and Editorial Director of What’s Working at the HuffPost in New York, where he served as a member of the senior leadership team. During his five years there, Jo developed long-term editorial projects based on social, environmental and economic justice.
Before joining HuffPost, Jo was executive editor of the Guardian, where he created and managed the sustainability vision and strategy for the Guardian and its parent company Guardian Media Group. Chairman and editorial director of the Guardian Sustainable Business website, during his 23 years there, Jo set up and managed a unique multi-stakeholder development project in the Ugandan village of Katine, and he helped create the Guardian’s environment and global development websites.
A fellow of the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce, Jo is also a trustee of Theatre for a Change, whose purpose is the empowerment of women and girls, particularly in their sexual and reproductive health.
Having chaired and facilitated events and conferences all over the world for the past 20 years, Jo also runs workshops and roundtables for attendees including CEOs, prime ministers and NGO heads. He is currently working with Leaders Quest, which helps leaders and companies align profit with purpose as well as Future Stewards, a coalition of partners working together to build a regenerative future.
Recorded on 14th September 2023.
The Way Out Is In: https://plumvillage.org/podcasts/the-way-out-is-in
125. Viticulture: Cultivating Connection, Ecosystem Health & Belonging / Antonio Graca
In today’s conversation, I speak with Antonio Graça - Head of Research and Development at Sogrape Vinhos SA, a family run vineyard and business founded on the principles of circularity, renovation and transformation.
Secretary for the Sustainable Development and Climate Change expert group of the International Organisation for Vine and Wine (Paris), Antionio has an MSc. in Oenology, and leads masterclasses and lectures for young professionals at universities all around the world. As well as sitting on the Executive Committee of the Oenoviti International network, Antonio assisted Comité des Entreprises Européennes de Vin in the creation of the first European research agenda for the wine industry, which was published as a position paper in 2016.
He serves as expert by technical commissions of the Spanish Wine Federation, Association of Wines and Spirits of Portugal and Association of Port Wine Companies, and also sits as tasting judge for high-profile international wine competitions such as the International Wine Challenge (London) and Mundus Vini (Neustadt). From 2003 and 2014, Antonio served in the board of the Association for the Development of Douro Viticulture, and in 2009, he cofounded the Portuguese Association for Grapevine Diversity, and was on its Board of Directors until 2021.
Having published many scientific works over the course of his career, Antonio is currently focusing on agroecology, biodiversity, digital transition, climate change adaptation, resilience and system dynamics of the food and wine value chain. Beyond his professional interests, he is a humanist and a firm believer in the founding principles of the European Union, and he uses his free time to raise awareness to the fundamental role played by wine in civilisations and to the ethnic and cultural heritage of Portuguese explorations still surviving around the world.
I first met Antonio at a very special gathering, hiking a short stretch of the Camino de Santiago in Northern Spain, and I was so struck by his presence, thoughtfulness and passion for the living world that I had to invite him onto the podcast. Our conversation explores a whole array of intertwining themes and ideas, and I hope that our exploration inspires you to reconnect more deeply into the food, the place and the biodiversity of where you live.
Thinking in Systems – Donella Meadows: https://www.chelseagreen.com/product/thinking-in-systems/
124. Big Tech, Personal Sovereignty & Resisting A Cashless Society / Brett Scott
In this conversation, I speak with Brett Scott - an author, journalist, economic anthropologist and former financial broker.
Writing on everything from the cashless society, fintech and cryptocurrency, to monetary reform, economic activism, and the politics of tech, Brett’s work has been published in The Guardian, Business Insider, New Scientist, Huffington Post, Wired Magazine and CNN.com, and he regularly appears on TV shows, radio broadcasts and documentaries across the world.
His latest book Cloudmoney: Cash, Cards, Crypto and the War for our Wallets (Penguin/HarperCollins, 2022) explores the battle between cash and digital money, and has been described by the Financial Times as a ‘compelling case against the contactless society’. His previous book, The Heretic’s Guide to Global Finance (Pluto Press, 2013), isß a hands-on guide to financial activism and alternative finance for people who wish to change the financial sector for the better.
Brett also publishes a Substack newsletter called Altered States of Monetary Consciousness, the link for which I’ll provide in the shownotes.
I first met Brett when I interviewed him on the course I curated with Advaya, Seeking Freedom In The Digital Age, and since our conversation so much has accelerated and evolved in the world of technology, finance and AI that I wanted to invite him onto the podcast to explore where we’re going, what the digitisation of finance could mean for us, and how we might reclaim our agency in the face of an increasingly cashless society.
Recorded on 12th September 2023.
https://alteredstatesof.money/brett-scott-books/Cloudmoney: Cash, Cards, Crypto and the War for our Wallets The Heretic’s Guide to Global Finance
123. Algorithmic Discrimination, AI Courts & The Digitisation Of Justice/ Giulia Gentile
In today’s conversation, I speak with Giulia Gentile, Lecturer in Law at Essex Law School, previously Fellow in Law at The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).
Specialising in research on EU constitutional law, AI regulation and the use of AI in justice systems, Giulia holds a PhD and an LLM from King’s College London (KCL), and has received scholarships and grants to fund her research from the EU Commission, the Max Planck Institute of European Procedural Law and the Centre of European law at KCL.
Having co-edited 3 books and authored more than 30 scientific publications, Giulia’s academic work has been cited, among others, by the UK Parliament, Advocates General at the CJEU, the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission, the European Banking Authority and the Slovenian Constitutional Court.
An Italian qualified lawyer who worked at the chambers of Judge Rossi at the CJEU and at the M&A Department of Clifford Chance Milan, Giulia has provided expert evidence to the UK Parliament on the UK system of fundamental rights protection and digital regulation, and to the EU Commission on the disabled people’s political rights and e-voting procedures.
I first came across Giulia’s work through a fascinating, thought-provoking article she co-wrote with Giovanni De Gregorio, exploring the issues arising from the digitisation of justice, which I wrote about on LinkedIn. And since law is an area which affects all of our lives, I wanted to invite her here to speak with us about how AI may transform the ways in which we interact with (and are governed by) the law, and how we might ensure that these changes respect our rights and values, towards a more flourishing future for all.
And a special shout-out to Stephanie Collinson, who introduced me to Giulia’s work, thank you so much!
Recorded on 2nd August 2023.
The digitisation of justice risks blurring the lines between public and private actors - Giulia Gentile & Giovanni De GregorioLawGPT? How AI is Reshaping the Legal Profession - Giulia Gentile
122. Abundance, Diversity & Regeneration, In Agriculture & Beyond / Andrea Abad
Today on the podcast, I speak with Andrea Abad, founder of Terra Viva Ibiza - a project that seeks to create a sustainable and healthy agricultural production system, based on the principles of agroecology, syntropy and regenerative agriculture.
Having started her career in marketing for large corporations such as Apple and Exxon Mobil, after six years in the countryside, an introspective awakening pushed Andrea to leave her profession and travel to Australia, where she lived in permaculture communities while learning how humanity can reintroduce itself to the cycles of nature.
Deciding to move to Ibiza to deepen her knowledge of sustainable tourism, a sector where she had previously worked for five years, Andrea founded Terra Viva Ibiza with the objective of growing food without the use of synthetic chemicals, respecting the natural cycles and the biodiversity of the environment while providing health to the soil.
A project which also provides an educational and social dimension, Terra Viva offers training and advice to farmers interested in adopting this model, as well as spaces for participation and meeting for the community. As well as regenerating a 20-hectare plot of land using the rational grazing system of chicken, rotational grazing of sheep and agroforestry principles, with the collaboration of Albert Tur Montells (Permaculture Association of the Pitiusas), they are also planting over 12,000 trees within a syntropic design.
I first met Andrea in October 2021 on a regenerative agriculture crash course at La Junquera, a regenerative farm and village in Murcia, Southern Spain, and I was so excited and inspired by her story and the work she’s doing, that I had to invite her onto the podcast to share her experience with you. I hope you enjoy our conversation.
Recorded on 12th July 2023.
https://www.terravivaibiza.com/https://ibizalandregeneration.org/The Way Out Is In (podcast): https://plumvillage.org/podcasts/the-way-out-is-in
121. On Leading With Presence, Compassion & Kindness / Thane Lawrie
Today I speak with Thane Lawrie, an award-winning Chief Executive Officer, author and Buddhist practitioner.
A graduate of the University of Aberdeen and University of Glasgow, Thane has had a diverse career which culminated in his leading and transforming a once struggling social enterprise, which went on to win numerous business awards both locally and nationally, including the prestigious Sunday Times Top 100 companies to work for in the UK.
Attributing this success to nurturing a strong workplace culture that focusses on the staff at the very heart of the organisation, not only has Thane published in academic peer reviewed journals in the field of health science, and also recently authored a beautiful book, The Buddhist CEO, which chronicles a moving tale of a man trying to balance his commitment to the ancient tradition of Buddhism with his role as a modern day leader.
At a time in which finding the headspace to even consider a contemplative practice can feel beyond the reach of many of us, Thane’s compassionate, practical and down-to-earth approach towards mindfulness and presence offers a route towards salving tender hearts and soothing restless minds.
Recorded on 12th July 2023.
The Buddhist CEO
https://www.thanelawrie.com/The Way Out Is In - https://plumvillage.org/podcasts/the-way-out-is-inOutrage And Optimism - https://www.outrageandoptimism.org/
I learn so much from this podcast. It really is my favourite go to source to stay informed about developments in the business world.
The host chose some excellent people to interview that I would otherwise never have heard of, but should.
They're a bunch of bougie liberals discussing how they can save the world with their "spiritual eco-capitalism." tiresome for all of us who don't look at social change as a game of profit and self-promotion
Thought provoking and interesting
Natalie interviews a broad range of people about lots of topics many of which are completely new to me . I find it fascinating and mind expanding although I’m not sure that’s the right phrase . She has a way of engaging with people that makes conversations flow and seems to have a knack for asking the right questions. Highly recommended.