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Young Global Leaders--Anderson Cooper and Leonardo DiCaprio Are In The Most Exclusive Private Social Network In The World.


The World Economic Forum out of Davos just announced its new 2008 list of YGLs??oung Global Leaders. In a growing universe of private social networks, the YGL network has got to be one of??f not THE??ost exclusive sn around. A few weeks ago, I predicted that Cameron Sinclair, who founded Architecture for Humanity would become a YGL??nd he did.

YGLers can find out who fellow members of the social network are in any particular city around the world by clicking on the map site (can?? do it here, sorry). Works for regions too. Want to chat with a fellow YGLer if you??e visiting Silicon Valley, call up Marc Benioff, Shai Agassi, Sergy Brin, Gavin Newson (San Fran mayor), Jerry Yang or John Battelle. If you??e in New York City, Business News TV star Maria Bartiromo is a YGLer.

Sinclair?? on the list of some 200 new YGLers from 65 countries that include Vikram Akula, Chief Executive Officer and Founder, SKS Microfinance, India (I spent a dinner with Vikram and his outfit is helping hundreds of thousands of people??nd has a portfolio of loans that?? sounder than Bear Stearns); Steffi Graf, Founder and Chairperson, ??hildren for Tomorrow? Germany; Wadah Khanfar, Director-General, Al Jazeera Satellite Network, Qatar; Mugo Kibati, Group Chief Executive Officer, East African Cables, Kenya; Shakira Mebarak, Singer and Manager, Pies Descalzos Foundation, Colombia; and Michelle Peluso, Chief Executive Officer, Travelocity.com, USA; among others. Anderson Cooper anchor on CNN is a new YGL. So is the actor, Leonardo DiCaprio. Eric Anderson, the CEO of Space Adventures made the cut.

We have royalty on the YGL list. The Queen of Morocco, Lalla Salma and the King of Bhutan, H.R.H King Jigme Khesar Namgyal Wangchuck. The global royal network is not something most of us are connected to but it is fascinating for the Queen of Jordan to bring them into the YGL social network (I’m assuming she’s the one who knows them).

The Director-General of Al Jazeera Satellite Network, Wadah Khanfar from Morocco is a new YGL. So is the Governor of Lousiana, Bobby Jindal.

Hmm.. One of my favorites on the 08 list is George Walker, Managing Director and Global Head of Investment Management for—-Lehman Brothers.

Elon Musk, the chairman of Tesla Motors, the much-publicized electric sports-car company, is a new YGL.

There are other YGLers from the past who are in the social network: Sergey Brin, Co-Founders of Google, USA; Crown Prince Haakon of Norway; Malvinder M. Singh, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Ranbaxy Laboratories, India; Hiroshi Nakada, Mayor of Yokohama, Japan; Nicky Newton-King, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, JSE, South Africa; Carlos Danel, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Banco Compartamos, Mexico; and Jack Ma Yun, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Alibaba Group, People’s Republic of China.

The YGL grouping is perhaps the paramount networking network in the

globe. It already includes such notables as Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Co-Founders of Google, USA; Crown Prince Haakon of Norway; Malvinder M. Singh, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Ranbaxy Laboratories, India; Hiroshi Nakada, Mayor of Yokohama, Japan; Nicky Newton-King, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, JSE, South Africa; Carlos Danel, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Banco Compartamos, Mexico; and Jack Ma Yun, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Alibaba Group, People's Republic of China. Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia is YGLer, as is Newsweek's columnist Fareed Zakaria.

You can check out this year's winners--and the work the YGLers are doing in health, education and other fields--at the YGL site.

I do have one question when it comes to selecting this unique group of achievers. That's the selection committee. The selection committee is chaired by Queen Rania of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and is composed mostly of media titans. Here are many of the 31 judges:

Nicolas Beytout Editorial Director, Les Echos, France

Carl-Johan Bonnier Chairman, Bonnier AB, Sweden

Ferruccio de Bortoli Editor-in-Chief, Il Sole - 24 Ore, Italy

Hubert Burda Publisher and Chief Executive Officer, Hubert Burda Media, Germany

Carlo Caracciolo Chairman, Gruppo Editoriale l’Espresso, Italy

Juan Luis Cebrian Echarri Chief Executive Officer, Grupo Prisa, Spain

Chang Dae-Whan Chairman and Publisher, Maeil Business Newspaper and TV, Republic of Korea

Mathias Döpfner Chief Executive Officer, Axel Springer AG, Germany

Jorge Fontevecchia Publisher and Owner, Diario Perfil, Argentina

Steve Forbes President and Chief Executive Officer, Forbes Inc., USA

Tom Glocer Chief Executive Officer, Reuters Group Plc, United Kingdom

Shekhar Gupta Editor-in-Chief and Group Chief Executive Officer, The Indian Express, India

Hisashi Hieda Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Fuji Television Network Inc., Japan

Juan-Pablo Illanes Director, Empresa Periodistica El Mercurio SAP, Chile

Nabil A. Al Khatib Executive Editor, Al Arabiya News Channel, United Arab Emirates

Jihad B. Khazen Director, Al Hayat Newspaper Ltd, United Kingdom

Arnaud Lagardère General Partner and Chief Executive Officer, Lagardère SCA, France

Giovanni Di Lorenzo

Editor-in-Chief, Die Zeit, Germany

James R. Murdoch Chief Executive Officer, British Sky Broadcasting Group Plc, United Kingdom

Gavin K. O’Reilly Chief Operating Officer, Independent News & Media Plc, Ireland

Nduka Obaigbena Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, Thisday, Nigeria

Aroon Purie Editor-in-Chief and Chief Executive Officer, The India Today Group, India

Michael Ringier Chairman, Ringier AG, Switzerland

Jonathan Rothermere Chairman, Daily Mail and General Trust Plc (DMGT), United Kingdom

Prannoy Roy President, New Delhi Television (NDTV), India

Rui Chenggang Director and Anchor, China Central Television, People’s Republic of China

Marjorie Scardino Chief Executive, Pearson Plc (The Financial Times Group), United Kingdom

Peter Sullivan Group Editor-in-Chief, Independent Newspapers, South Africa

Arthur Sulzberger Chairman and Publisher, The New York Times, USA

Robert Thomson Editor-in-Chief, The Times, United Kingdom

Elizabeth G. Weymouth Washington Post Group, Newsweek, USA

Mehmet Ali Yalçindag President and Chief Executive Officer, Dogan Media Group, Turkey.

Is this the optimal group of people to decide on the young global leaders of tomorrow? Aren't many of them in mainstream media struggling with business models that are melting down, hapless in the face of new technologies? What do you think?


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