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Showing posts from May, 2013

MOOCs, power relations & the tacit knowledge of academic socialization

Professors in the philosophy department at San Jose State University are refusing to teach a philosophy course developed by edX, saying they do not want to enable what they see as a push to "replace professors, dismantle departments, and provide a diminished education for students in public universities."
(Why Professors at San Jose State Won't Use a Harvard Professor's MOOC)The more I engage with the MOOC debate (e.g.), the more I am wondering whether the focus on lecturing, teaching and the virtual or physical classroom experience ignores important and powerful debates in higher education. These are debates that those institutions that are at the forefront of the MOOC trend tend to conveniently ignore.

My reflection will focus on the argument that academic socialization, learning the tacit knowledge that comes with a university education and the powerful ‘soft skills’ happen to a large extent outsi…

Links & Contents I Liked 77

Hello all,

Welcome to the final link review from Canada! We are getting ready for our move to Sweden next week and I just scheduled an interesting post for next Thursday to tie the link review over before it shall resume in two weeks' time again.
But this week is definitely a worthy collection before the short hiatus: Highlights include reflections from Uruguay on the rise of a new social movement in the shadow of unsustainable global mining and environmental practices, the problem of 'tourist funders' in the think tank industry, the challenges of local aid workers to build managerial careers in the industry and of international colleagues to engage in a meaningful way; impressions from Lebanon on a generation that doesn't know what 'peace' really means round off the development part of the review.
Plus, check out new research on the link between mobile phones and violence and the gender citation gap in IR!

Enjoy!

Development
DfID's aid spend on contractors com…

Links & Contents I Liked 76

Hello all,

Quite a range of interesting links (as you would expect...)! My move to Sweden and co-authored research on the development blogosphere lead right into more interesting links on American food aid, Canadian ODA and Kenyan anti-corruption efforts. There's more on the power of social media, the difficult times of international journalism and two pieces on an individual exit from the aid industry and organizational exit strategies of project funders round off the development part.
The interview with the author of 'Interviewing Users' is a great pieces on the value of organizational ethnography, before a peace researcher lifts the curtain of the academic paper production process and confesses 'I never knew Kenneth Waltz'! Finally, OnThinkTanks asks for more social science innovation in Latin America and an open-access special issue of the Political Studies Review engages with 'tyranny of relevance' and impact.

Enjoy!

New on Aidnography
Aidnography will be m…

Aidnography will be moving to Sweden!

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I am very, very excited about joining Malmö University’s School of Arts and Communication as a Senior Lecturer in Communication for Development!

I am joining a fantastic and truly multi-disciplinary team of colleagues who have been involved in teaching and researching Communication for Development for almost 15 years, featuring a flagship distance learning MA program and a bi-national Centre for Communication and Glocal Change comprising Danish and Swedish universities.

I am really looking forward to developing my teaching and research agenda on ‘digital development’ further in collaboration with colleagues from political science, journalism, anthropology as well as media and design studies as envisioned by the statement on Communication for Development (ComDev):ComDev is both an interdisciplinary field of study and a research field, as well as a professional practice. Studies about the impact of media and culture in societal change, local and globally, is combined with practical app…

Links & Contents I Liked 75

Hello all,

This week's review is another ode to the joy of being part of the great development blogosphere where many colleagues and friends contribute great insights to many debates:
Talesfromthehood's new book, critical reflections on the differences between fair trade in coffee and clothing, insights from the World Bank's work in Guatemala that evoke many dark shadows of the past, how a new Southern WTO director could boost legitimacy, an important discussion on bloggers and blogging in the UN, 6 reasons for a social media strategy and 7 strategies for women in development to speak truth to power feature many dear friends.
Finally, I am commenting in the academic section on a post with more advice on the 'perfect' application, wondering about the right balance between a response to a 'standard' job description and standing out from the crowd.

Enjoy!

Development
About *Missionary, Mercenary, Mystic, Misfit*
Mary-Anne has moved on, grown since the disastrous a…

Links & Contents I Liked 74

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Hello all,

Welcome to the weekly development & academia link review! Lots to see & read this week: My recent presentation on development blogging and disseminating research is now available in different formats; I disagree (to some extent) with Daniela Papi on 'hero worshiping' in the aid industry, but I enjoyed great reflections on managing aid-related long distance relationships & professionalism; and there's more: Bill Gates looking at stats, cartoons & fights on the Everest and against cast-discrimination - plus an interesting USIP talk on conflict prevention & technology.
From Australia comes an interesting debate whether 'dumpster diving' should be taught in university  - and why critical, maybe even radical pedagogical approaches matter. Plus you are introduced to 'science's biggest con-man' who has currently 50+ retractions of papers to his name...

Enjoy!

New on aidnography
Development blogging, disseminating research & buildi…