Martin holds a BSc in Business Administration from the Central University College, Accra, a Post-Graduate Certificate in Public Administration from GIMPA (Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration), Accra and a Masters in Media and Communication from the International University in Geneva, Switzerland.
He did his National Service at the Ghana National Commission on Children and continued as an Assistant Administrator in the same organisation for two years. He then left to the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research where he worked as an Intern/Project Assistant for one and a half years.
He is currently a Research Consultant at the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research Department of the WHO in Geneva.
His hobbies are Reading, Writing, Watching T.V/Movies, and listening to music. He has written various poems and articles for Ghanaian publications.
Five Questions with Martin Pieterson:
1. How long have you been writing poetry?
I have been writing poetry for 5 years.
2. Who are your favorite poets? Which poets have most inspired you and informed your work?
I like the poems of Wole Soyinka and William Shakespeare particularly for their clarity and beautiful language.
3. What do you hope to accomplish with your poetry?
I hope to publish my first book of poetry in the near future.
4. Has your time spent living in Geneva, Switzerland changed your perception on your homeland?
It has actually made me come to better appreciate my country and continent. In an international environment like Geneva, it feels good and proud to say you belong somewhere and also talk about the place. Some people, as a result of mixed marriages, can’t really point out a particular place and call it their home. In that vein, it’s a joy when you can boldly and proudly say, for example, that you are a Ghanaian and an African. Moreover, it has made me eager to know more about my country and continent. Often, your non-African friends would like know more about your country and continent, and hence ask lots of questions. As a proud Ghanaian and African you should be able to answer all of these.
5. What do you think can be done to better promote Ghanaian literature, and African literature in general, in Europe?
Ghanaian and African literature can best be promoted in Europe if Ghanaians and Africans in Europe come together to organize literary events. There could, for instance, be a day of Ghanaian or African Poetry recital (which could be in the local language with translation for non-Africans to understand), a day of staging African plays, or simply some fairs to just exhibit the works of African writers, both established and up and coming. Europe is eager to learn about African matters, hence we should create the platform for that. Moreover, our education should focus on teaching us more about our continent so we can easily share the knowledge when we go outside the continent. This could also be a way of readily bringing knowledge of our continent to the outside world, be it literature or other areas. African students tend to know more about Europe and the Western world than their own continent.