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HELLO, my name is Marko van Gaans

  • Lives in Vientiane, Lao People's Democratic Republic
  • Speaks English and Dutch
  • Holds events in Bhutan, Chile, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Kenya, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Mongolia, Macau, Malaysia, Netherlands, Nepal, New Zealand, Peru, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam, Cambodia and Lao People's Democratic Republic
  • Works for Wu-Wei Research Institute
  • Years as a Facilitator: 2
  • Number of events held: 9

Past Attendee Ratings

8.7 / 10.0 Public events (Based on 37 evaluations)
Last 12 months: 8.8 / 10.0 (Based on 32 evaluations)

Past Attendee Feedback

Short Bio

Like you, Marko has always wondered about the definition of the word leadership. Is it a noun or a verb? Is it about charisma and decisive action? Pinstripe suits and power ties? Is it just meant for the happy few, or is there a whole different narrative?

Having spent eight years as a Non-Commissioned Officer in the Royal Netherlands Army, been an educator for over two decades and, most importantly, with almost half a century of in-the-trenches life experience, Marko’s views are radically different. He appreciates, and shares with you, that leadership really is a state of being and not about the title or position. Leadership is for everyone, every day; it’s how we should live our lives.

A quixotic polemicist by nature, Marko is renowned for his practical, street-savvy presentation style. Through a fusion of real-life stories and engaging conversational techniques, he connects with you at an intimate, intense and individual level.

Presently, Marko serves as Philosopher-in-Residence, Workshop Facilitator and Principal Analyst at the Wu-Wei Research Institute, a Hong Kong-based think tank concerned with researching discerning questions about the ontological Self and sustainable living in contemporary urban society.

Prior to this current position, Marko, a philosopher and human geographer by education and passion, trained senior NATO officers in computer simulated war games and taught, among many others, government officials in Laos.

Special interests

The romanticised version of a Philosopher-in-Residence must be one of the most appealing careers possible: to read great thinkers, think deep thoughts, and while away the days in a beautiful office, surrounded by books, a hot mug of coffee, and perhaps some inspiring jazz in the background.

As an experienced philosophical anthropologist and human geographer, Marko observes how we spend our lives perpetually building in what should be empty spaces, reflects on the effects that art, literature and urban living have on the Soul and the City, and investigates the philosophical merit the Daoist concept of Wu-Wei (無為) might bring to this.



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Marko 's Management 3.0 Qualifications

  • Certificate of Practice