Garry Kasparov has been defeated in his bid for the presidency of the World Chess Federation, by incumbent president, and controversial figure, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.
Kasparov is an articulate critic of Russia – the country he lived in, and played chess for, until his retirement in 1995, and the campaign turned into a battleground for two old rivals, one who once dominated chess and another, Vladimir Putin, who leads the country.
Putin threw his diplomatic resources against Kasparov and in support of Ilyumzhinov, and the fight over the chess federation leadership became a proxy for a broader debate, about personal freedom and political democracy, in which Russia is currently embroiled on an international scale, in the wake of the Crimea crisis, and the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.
Both candidates travelled the world in a bid for support from the member countries whose vote would conclude the race.
Kasaprov may not have succeeded, but his presence in the political realms of freedom and human rights, and in the corporate world of coaching and inspiring businesses, is flourishing and growing.
'Challenging', 'forceful' and 'entertaining' are some of the refrains used by businesses who have seen Kasparov speaking about subject matters ranging from decision-making to strategic planning and from innovation to intuition.
Copyright Speakers Corner 2017