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Rahilla Zafar
Rahilla Zafar is co-author of the book 'Arab Women Rising' which profiles 35 entrepreneurs from across the Middle East North Africa region.

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Entries by Rahilla Zafar

Reflections on the Late King Abdullah From His Daughter Princess Adela

(1) Comments | Posted January 23, 2015 | 10:18 AM

Excerpted from Arab Women Rising: 35 Entrepreneurs Making a Difference in the Arab World, by Nafeesa Syeed and Rahilla Zafar, published by and copyright Knowledge@Wharton, 2014.

Her Royal Highness Princess Adela Bint Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud: A Royal Advocate for Women in Saudi Arabia

The daughter...

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Saudi Women Leaders Reshape Early Education

(0) Comments | Posted October 24, 2014 | 12:16 PM

Education today clearly ranks as a top priority for Saudi Arabia. The annual budget for higher education is now more than $15 billion; the government has invested money to fully fund Saudi students who wish to study abroad; and during the past seven years, the number of universities in the...

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Yasmin Altwaijri: A Saudi Scientist Tackles Mental Health and Obesity

(0) Comments | Posted October 24, 2014 | 11:55 AM


As one of Saudi Arabia's most senior scientists, Yasmin Altwaijri leads epidemiology research at King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre in Riyadh. She's been a pioneer in spearheading countrywide studies measuring obesity, diabetes, and mental health issues in Saudi Arabia. As the...

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A Treasure Gone in Kabul

(0) Comments | Posted January 21, 2014 | 11:04 AM


Afghans rally to denounce the attack on Taverna du Liban.
(photo courtesy of journalist Lotfullah Najafizada)


Taverna du Liban's owner Kamal Hamade holding one of his well known chocolate cakes (photo courtesy...

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Uncovering the Artistic Heart of Pakistan

(0) Comments | Posted May 13, 2013 | 5:27 PM

This week marks Pakistan's historic elections. It's significant because since the country's birth in 1947, it's the first time there's been a transition from one civilian government to another. Whether Pakistan is under military or democratic rule, the creative culture that exists throughout the country has always been represented through...

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A Kuwaiti Woman Leading Development Efforts in Yemen

(1) Comments | Posted April 18, 2013 | 10:43 AM

Having grown up in Kuwait, Maali Alasousi had the option to travel to the U.S. and Egypt to pursue her education, and then later start her own company. Up to that point in her life, her goal was to promote tourism in Kuwait. But she sold her company and refocused...

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Women in the Middle East Take Control of Family Businesses

(0) Comments | Posted April 2, 2013 | 2:26 PM

Rasha Shehada has been picked by her brother and sister to take over the family business Diamond Line when their father retires next year. In her mid-20's, she currently heads business development for the company her parents started in 1997 that's now grown into a leading hotel supply...

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Nayla Al Khaja and UAE's Burgeoning Movie Industry

(1) Comments | Posted April 1, 2013 | 3:28 PM

The tale of how Nayla Al Khaja became the United Arab Emirate's first female independent film maker is like the script of a drama itself, filled with hidden ambition, sacrifices and heartbreak.

As a student at Dubai's Women College, Al Khaja graduated with honors and briefly hosted a travel show...

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British Novelist Reflects on Friendship With Buzkashi Boys Cast

(0) Comments | Posted March 7, 2013 | 4:21 PM

Years before 14-year-old Fawad Mohammadi  became the pride of his native Afghanistan after co-starring in the Oscar-nominated Buzkashi Boys, he was a well known figure to Afghanistan's international community of aid workers. Like many children in Afghanistan, Mohammadi has spent much of his youth working on...

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New Year's Resolutions of America's Top Entrepreneurs

(0) Comments | Posted January 17, 2013 | 1:37 PM

My favorite place in New York City is General Assembly. Since I first started visiting a couple of years ago, they've evolved into a network of campuses for technology, business and design in nine locations around the world. General Assembly does amazing things for entrepreneurs. Tonight...

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Nielsen's Rick Kash: Winning Companies Understand Profitable Consumers

(0) Comments | Posted June 12, 2012 | 12:56 PM

In How Companies Win, Rick Kash, vice chair of Nielsen along with its chief executive officer David Calhoun, explain how successful companies have switched to a new demand driven strategy. The book highlights examples from corporations such as The Hershey Company, Best Buy, IBM, Hewlett Packard...

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Irish Quartet's Debut Album Revives Memories of Living With Animal Collective

(0) Comments | Posted June 11, 2012 | 5:37 PM


Nearly 10 years ago I was a recent college grad living in New York City looking for a summer sublet. My lease was about to end and I still needed the summer to wrap up a project I was working on before moving to...

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Women Leaders of the Middle East: Thousands Rally in Saudi Arabia to Raise Awareness of Breast Cancer

(0) Comments | Posted May 30, 2012 | 5:33 PM

Courtesy of the Saudi Gazette

Breast cancer activism in Saudi Arabia has helped spark a cultural revolution bringing thousands of women together to help raise awareness. Earlier this month, 11 Saudi women climbed Mount Everest as part of a public...

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Women Leaders of the Middle East: Leena Al Olaimy, Helping MENA Find Its Green Side

(1) Comments | Posted May 21, 2012 | 11:36 AM

A few days ago I flew to Bahrain to meet Leena Al Olaimy, co-founder and managing director of 3BL Associates. Her firm works with a range of clients in the Middle East helping them incorporate a 'triple bottom line' strategy focusing on social equity, environmental sustainability,...

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A Business Student's New Required Reading: A Guide to Happiness and Staying Out of Jail

(0) Comments | Posted May 17, 2012 | 2:23 PM


Figuring out your purpose in life isn't what many people go to business school for, but perhaps it should be, according to Harvard Business School Professor Clayton Christensen. In fact, it's something he believes in so strongly that he's even created a...

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Women Leaders of the Middle East: Clinical Research Pioneer Maha Al-Farhan

(0) Comments | Posted April 17, 2012 | 5:33 PM

Maha Al-Farhan is a pioneer in bringing clinical research to the Middle East. Recently named Entrepreneur of the Year at the third annual Women in Business Forum in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), she founded her company ClinArt International in 2001. Her company conducts medical and clinical research at both...

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In Beirut, Tech Entrepreneurs and Investors Mingle at ArabNet Digital Summit

(0) Comments | Posted April 17, 2012 | 2:33 PM

When May Habib attended her first ArabNet Digital Summit last year, the former investment banker from Manhattan was looking for people and funding to make her startup a reality. At this year's conference, her newly minted translation startup Qordoba won the demo competition. "We're here to...

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Innosight's Michael Horn on How 'Blended Learning' and Technology Can Bridge the Education Gap

(1) Comments | Posted April 16, 2012 | 3:25 PM

Michael Horn sees the Internet providing access to a range of products and services that will help improve the way people can learn. While adult education is where on-line learning initially got its start, Horn predicts that half of high school courses in the U.S. will be taken...

Read Post's Mission to Tackle Global Social Challenges Through Design for All

(0) Comments | Posted April 10, 2012 | 3:18 PM

Jocelyn Wyatt is the Executive Director and Co-Lead of, the nonprofit organization started by Palo Alto, CA-based design consultancy IDEO to address poverty-related challenges through design and to encourage the use of a "human-centered approach" to innovation in the social sector. has worked with the Rockefeller...

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Kicking Junk Food in 3 Days

(0) Comments | Posted April 5, 2012 | 4:42 PM

Philadelphia isn't known for being a healthy city -- on the contrary, it's famous for its cheesesteaks. Initially when I saw the sign for Pure Fare, I didn't make the connection that it was even a restaurant. Just off of Walnut Street, I assumed it was one of...

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