Paul Kronenberg

Co-founder/Director of Kanthari & Braille Without Borders

Knighted by the Queen of the Netherlands for his work, the multi-award-winning Paul Kronenberg is a warm, uplifting and deeply compelling speaker who impresses audiences with his belief that real change starts from within, and with the right technology and support, then spreads rapidly from the individual out into society.

Biography

Would you quit a well-paid job overnight to join a person that you hardly know to start the first school for the blind in Tibet? Paul did exactly that and, looking back, has no regrets. In 1998 he left his comfort zone joining sabriye tenberken on an adventurous journey spending the next 19 years in Tibet where a school and an eco-friendly vocational training farm was realized.

Additionally, in 2006 the couple started Kanthari, a transformational leadership training centre for social change makers in Kerala, South of India. Paul was the driving force of the construction of the award-winning green campus. Till date 206 social change leaders from 45 countries were trained resulting in 130+ organisations that are positively impacting the lives of thousands of people who are situated on the margins of society every day. Participants address a wide variety of social issues related to environment, alternative education, disability, human rights, peace building, children and women empowerment and many more.

Paul is always on the lookout for answers that will help to build a better tomorrow; be it physical in terms of technical solutions, or be it mental, strengthening the self of others. As a public speaker, asking questions like “why?” and “why not?”, Paul uses wit and humour to paint the condition our world is in and makes one think and reflect about what can/must be done differently to become part of the solution instead of remaining part of the problem.
Paul not only has a personal story to tell, he recently battled lymphoma cancer, but has a treasure box of inspiring stories of survivors from the margins of society. These stories widened the horizons of the many audiences he and Sabriye have spoken to.

He has spoken at McKinsey, YPO, EO universities, The Vatican, Swiss Economic Forum, Accenture, several TEDx events, Wharton, and other company events, most recently he was hired to speak at EO and YPO events in Malaysia and Singapore, many universities across the world, the European Business School as well as Linkedin.

Topics

  • Balancing the drive for technological advancement with respect for human skill
  • Change from Within – the story of kanthari and of how people who have been marginalised have become forces for good instead of victims of circumstance
  • The need for the world to switch from a linear to a circular economy. This is where a solution for a more sustainable future lies.
  • Using your experience of overcoming adversity as a source of positive energy and strength.
  • Leadership from the margins
  • Rubinisation – slowing down urbanization
  • How the way we build affects our planet and what can be done differently
  • Power that lies in the Margins of society
  • Change from Within – where does intrinsic motivation come from
  • From Tibet to India; the story setting up Braille Without Borders and kanthari

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