Asma Ahmad

Presentation: Exploring Cultures with Empathy – A Journey across Cultures

The WHY: Envisage a future where human interaction is left for a complete coincidence, no structured outlet where people from all walks of life come together (more ignorance, loneliness, isolation, lost intelligence). Migration and travelling enhanced the diversity of places however the busyness of life often absorbs people causing more social and cultural issues. The PURPOSE: Zaha explores “Individual Culture” which is the norms that reside within each one of us that influence the way we manage our experiences, relate to ourselves and others. Zaha is built on 3 core values, Empathy, Inclusion and Curiosity to create more Cultural Intelligence (suspension of judgement, acceptance of cultural confusion, and eagerness to learn about others) THE HOW: Zaha XP leverages the physical cultural expressions (food, art, music, herbs etc) to reveal the emotional and human aspects behind them. People either self-express through the physical elements(Individual Culture) or co-create (allowing people to experience a meaningful application of a knowledge seemed strange).The documented content from the experiences is shared online to enhance sustainability. Stakeholders. Zaha builds relationship with art and creativity hubs to identify experience leaders. It executes on the agenda of culture-sharing (UNESCO, Ministry of Culture) and community integration guardians


I like to believe that I have the courage needed to explore all the ways to figure out the ‘be’ in what I was ‘born to be’. I have been going back and forth between understanding my pain and leveraging my passion to create something meaningful beyond myself, for the world. And I have finally woman-ed up to start building Zaha in January 2018. Zaha is a journey of a cultural movement that enables humans to re-examine the usefulness of their assumptions about themselves and others, through exploring the human and emotional aspects of cultures. Being judged at the age of 7 when my parents moved between countries because of war, I have been always intrigued by the otherness of others, tapping into their knowledge reservoir, and evolve. And Zaha has emerged from all of that. Leaving behind a 10-year of management consultancy experience and glamorous career with the Big 4 across MENA; a decision that has never been regretted. Living in a complete alignment with the essence of who I am feels just right.