People often ask me, “So how did you end up in this work?” I’m never quite sure how to respond to that question. The easy answer is that my professional and academic pursuits led me across international borders, which inevitably brought me face-to-face with cultural differences. I needed a way to navigate those differences. But cultural intelligence was not simply a practical solution for me. It became a necessity in order to hold together the increasingly complex, diverse world I was encountering. For me, cultural intelligence was as much a discovery as a pursuit. And in some ways, cultural intelligence found me.

I grew up in a fundamentalist environment and I never left the continent until college. All my childhood friends and classmates ...

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