Knowledge, Democratisation and Power

My job takes me to meet and speak with people who have radically different ideas about the nature of knowledge: its origins, its history, its future. I love these conversations. They are often profound even if they are problematic in revealing, in some ways, how far apart very intelligent people can be on...

Humanities – a source of future value?

This is my first vlog. I discuss how recent reports from think-tanks and discussions with major employers point to a re-evaluating of the humanities – not along the lines of their inherent or social value (that is a separate argument) but along purely monetary lines.     References: Future...

Future Universities – teaching low-tech

Lots on the future of universities in the air. I’m sorry I missed the series at Cambridge with Martin Rees, Stefan Collini and others talking on the subject. I am mostly concerned with undergraduate education, rather than research. Two themes come to mind in this regard. 1. How we address learning in...

Global anxieties, local hope

My current job takes me out to talk to young people. I visit schools, and also they come to our university to discuss the Arts and Sciences (BASc) degree. I enjoy these occasions a lot. Occasionally I get a little carried away and can’t contain my enthusiasm, and end up confusing the message a bit, but...

Thoughts on the work of J M Greer: The Wealth of Nature

Reading The Wealth of Nature by J M Greer and enjoying it very much. The chapter called The Metaphysics of Money is particularly interesting and original – at least to me. Greer’s main message is that our civilization is, at best, in slow decline as we run out of the sort of concentrated energy...

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