Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Atlas Liberty Forum, LA

The forum was held April 24-25 at Hyatt Regency Century Plaza, LA. This would be the 3rd Atlas Liberty Forum that I have attended. The first was in Chicago in 2004, the second was in Atlanta in 2008. The liberty forum is held annually by the Atlas Economic Research Foundation to gather leaders of free market-oriented think tanks, public policy institutes, and some academics and individuals who are thinking of putting up their own think tanks or research NGO. In those 3 liberty forum that I attended, the most important lesson that I gained was the networking with new and old friends. The discussion panels on certain topics were helpful too, but it's the networking during coffee and lunch break, opening and closing cocktails, and small meetings that are very helpful.

Here with Peter Holle of FCCP-Canada, Jo Kwong, Atlas VP, Margaret Tse of IL-Brazil, and Xingyuan Feng of CIPA-China. My network with leaders of fellow Asian think tanks is also expanding.

One may also befriend some known personaties in the liberty or free market movement. Among the cool guys that I met there was Michael Reagan, a son of former US President Ronald Reagan.

Atlas is further strengthened with the entry of Tom Palmer, formerly with Cato. Tom is now the head of the Atlas Global Initiative where major international projects are being undertaken by Atlas, like the Freedom to Trade (F2T) campaign and coalition, in association with the IPN in London.

Atlas is very kind to me, especially Jo Kwong. They helped me with some travel scholarship to enable me to attend those huge forum that usually attracts nearly 300 people from 30+ or 40+ countries every year.

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