Prezi – The Online Presentation Tool: Lessons Learnt

The ability to give clear and interesting talks is an important skill for any professional. More so for academics who need to talk about their work constantly to gain attention. So I have been looking to improve my presentation skills.  To expand my tool-set beyond MS PowerPoint, I recently took a risk with a fascinating online […]

Innovation and the Luxury Fever

I recently read Robert Frank’s book Luxury Fever – Why Money Fails to Satisfy in an Era of Excess (1999) after a particularly enlightening course on consumption theory. This was one of those courses that made me rethink some previously held philosophies about consumption, capitalism and even innovation. Among other topics, the professor talked briefly […]

The Dark Ages of Grad School

We all get into grad school with grand ideas. Ideas to change the way basket weaving is perceived by path-dependent academics… to open minds and horizons, to move knowledge forward. To do ground-breaking research. And for the ambitious ones, to win the Nobel prize (or settle for a conference ‘best-paper award’). These grandiose feelings and […]

Academic Confidence

As a graduate student you’re expected to make a ‘scientific contribution’ to existing knowledge. Matt Might illustrates this process in an illuminating graphic. The first challenge for a new PhD student is to find out if they truly have mastered all human knowledge on their subject of interest. Does one ever get to that point? […]

Academic Lexicon

I thought I had a good grasp of English. At the very least, an advanced level of fluency. This confidence was temporarily erased when I attended a seminar two days into my programme. This guy, an elderly, tweed-jacketed, distinguished European professor of economics walks into the room, whiteboard marker in hand. He starts to talk […]

Considering a PhD in Germany

In my decision to pursue higher education abroad, I considered several potential desitinations. Top on my list were English-speaking countries in the following order: USA, Canada, UK and Australia. The US fascinated me, Canada is next to the US :), the UK’s education system is familiar, and Australia would have been fun based on my […]