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A Fireside Chat with Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

April 16, 2024 2:00 pm
Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is the first African and first woman to head the World Trade Organization, building on a long career where she guided Nigeria through debt distress and introduced sweeping economic reforms across two terms as finance minister.  She was also a leader at the World Bank across a 25-year career and has chaired or served on the Boards of many leading global institutions, including Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. She has faced criticism and death threats, including demands from criminal elements to stop fighting corruption.
David de Ferranti’s recent book, Reformers in International Development: Five Remarkable Lives, traces Okonjo-Iweala’s life and career, from childhood to the present day—the difficulties she faced, the tough choices she has had to make, her accomplishments and setbacks, and what she has learned along the way about leadership, decision-making, and international development—drawing on decades of discussions. His book sets Ngozi’s experience in the context of recurring themes across the lives of four other development leaders and influencers from Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
Join CGD for a conversation between Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and David de Ferranti on her career trajectory, lessons for others working in international development, and her thoughts on the challenges facing international institutions today.


Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO)

David de Ferranti, Author, Reformers in International Development: Five Remarkable Lives; Former president and founder of Results for Development Institute (R4D)


Masood Ahmed, President, Center for Global Development


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