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United Kingdom

On Henry David Thoreau
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Halcyon In Kal… 16 March 2017

In the 1840s Henry David Thoreau swapped his busy schedule in Concord, Massachusetts, for a wooden hut he built himself near Walden Pond. We had the privilege to visit Walden in July 2012; it exceeded expectations in its tranquility and beauty - and the swim in the pond itself was unforgettable.

See also:

On T.S. Eliot

Customer
East Coker

T.S. Eliot died over 50 years ago now. His legacy remains profound and his poetry moves me deeply.

In August 2016 I had the privilege of visiting his final resting place, East Coker.

I listen to the peerless Little Gidding at least once a quarter, sometimes more often, and almost every line entrances, as if peering through a veil at something once known, but half-forgotten because not looked-for.

On what mattered in the past

Customer
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Asking which shifts, in which centuries, really shaped the modern world. a historian identified 10 leading drivers of change, century by century (see below).

Meanwhile, Prospect believes that reflecting on the past can give great in sight into the present and has published accordingly The past in perspective e-book.

See also:

What's Happening? - Europe

Customer
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Please see below selected recent intelligence about Europe. This is a synthesis of major recent developments at competitors, business schools, thinktanks, media, commentators, and other key influencers.

 

May 2016

 

  • Eurozone GDP is now predicted to expand 1.6% this year, less than the 1.7% growth of 2015, while consumer prices are seen up 0.2%, below the 0.5% increase projected in February.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Happened? - Europe

Customer
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Please see below selected pre-2016 ntelligence about the Asia Pacific region. This is a synthesis of major recent developments at competitors, business schools, thinktanks, media, commentators, and other key influencers in our external environment.

 

December 2015

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On Careers

Customer

Imagine a job "big enough for the spirit".

Roman Krznaric gave a talk on his book, How to Find Fulfilling Work, as part of the launch of The School of Life’s practical philosophy book series. Krznaric offered five essential ideas for career change, drawing on career advice from Leonardo da Vinci, Aristotle and a woman who gave herself the unusual 30th birthday present of trying out 30 different jobs in one year.

On Dawn

Customer
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If you've ever wondered why bird species sing in a particular order as the sun rises, rhe UK Wildlife Trusts and the Royal Horticultural Society, which run the Big Wildlife Garden competition, explain what you might hear and when.

Up at 5am on 17th May 2012; the Belgian dawn not only full of unseasonal frost, but also alive with an almost deafening inter-bird competition to see how could rule the airwaves. Need to do that again as the longer days have arrived in Spring 2016.

 

On Altruism

Customer
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Imagining, while still healthy, donating organs to total strangers without expecting anything in return. The BBC nterviewed a man who did just this after his wife committed suicide.

She had been suffering from progressive multiple sclerosis, and when the pain and suffering became too much for her to bear, she took her own life, leading him to a suspended prison sentence - for failing to stop her - and ultimately to the decision to help others to live by doing as much as he possibly could - by giving away one of his kidneys and part of his liver, and then waiting to become a bone marrow donor.

On Objects

Customer
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A History of the World was a partnership between the BBC and the British Museum, involving schools, museums and audiences across the UK. One can listen to and download all the episodes of the radio series A History of the World in 100 objects.

One hundred 15-minute programmes, each focusing on an object from the British Museum’s collection told a history of two million years of humanity through the objects we have made, starting with the earliest object in the museum’s collection.

My personal highlights included the following:

1. Mummy of Hornedjitef (-260BC, Egypt): status, legacy, journey beyond death (see image).

2. Olduval Chopping Tool (-2m, Tanzania): adaptable, can skin and butcher animals