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Showing posts from 2010

When 2010 leaves…

This blog is my New Year’s Eve cocktail. Today I’ll  keep on writing this as and when thoughts come to my mind, amidst some other works, till I think it's enough. Therefore, there may not be a proper order. Well, it's fine, I don’t want to edit their order…let them appear on this page as they come…

The first imprint of 2010 in my mind is the recognition of climate change as a reality. Though it is a hard reality, the second imprint gives some relief. So what is the second imprint? – It is the knowledge that world as a general recognize climate change as a reality. This informed situation gives some expectation for 2011. Yes, let us hope that 2011 will strengthen the initiatives to save our green planet.
Another deadly thing comes to my mind is the plight of 925 million people who live in acute hunger with a child dying every six seconds in this world because of undernourishment related problems ( See FAO release) . We have to reduce hunger numbers substantially for any tangible…

Cancún Agreements & Knowledge/Technology/Support/Funds Sharing

As a volunteer supporter of OER and open technologies, I think, the agreements adopted by the United Nation’s Climate Change Conference in Cancún, Mexico (that concluded on 11 December, 2010) have opened up promising venues for knowledge/technology/support/funds sharing. This is definitely the most required thing and hence a great success. Because pushing planet friendly technologies to the frontline by sharing, adopting and supporting will provide a very strong framework for all other initiatives to succeed in protecting our green planet. Let us take a look at some of the highlights as seen in the Conference’s Press Release
Developing country actions to reduce emissions are officially recognised under the multilateral process. A registry is to be set up to record and match developing country mitigation actions to finance and technology support from by industrialised countries. Developing countries are to publish progress reports every two years.The Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development M…

Taking OER beyond the OER Community; my response 3

Taking OER beyond the OER Community  is a joint initiative of  UNESCO and Commonwealth of Learning (COL). I am posting here my responses in the series of online discussions conducted as part of the above initiative.  My responses to the queries on the two themes:- (1)  Policy and capacity (2) What works, what does not and under what conditions?were added here earlier. Today, response to the queries on the third themeCopyright and the development and re-use of OERs is given below (See the forum at http://lists.esn.org.za/mailman/listinfo/oer-forum).

 The capital for our thought process is the unimaginably huge investment made by the generations from times unknown. It is this selfless capital investment that build civilizations, which in turn support and facilitate the continued flourishing of the thought process. Locking them up with copy rights actually means betraying generations and stopping the further development of civilizations. Therefore Laws on copy right including IPR should …

Taking OER beyond the OER Community; my responses in the online discussions

Taking OER beyond the OER Community  is a joint initiative of  UNESCO and Commonwealth of Learning (COL). I am posting here my responses in the series of online discussions conducted as part of the above initiative.  The responses in this blog are related to the queries on the following two themes:- (1)  Policy and capacity & (2) What works, what does not and under what conditions?. Discussions on the third themeCopyright and the development and re-use of OERs will commence from tomorrow (15/11/2010) (See the forum at http://lists.esn.org.za/mailman/listinfo/oer-forum)
Theme: Policy and capacity:
Definitely Neil is right in his analysis of the economic changes taking place in the education content market and, in fact, I would say, it is a desired change also. Apart from all other crucial academic issues that demand the production and distribution of OER, now we have environmental causes also.
When knowledge repositories are not open, so called reinventing the wheel will happen a…

When simplicity would mean survival...

Do we have an one word solution for all the problems of our world? Yes, we do have. That one word magical answer is SIMPLICITY.

Mahatma Gandhi, India’s father of nation has told that “I cannot help thinking that it would be a great catastrophe. a great national tragedy, if you were to barter away your simplicity for this tinsel splendour"

As today (October 10) being World Mental Health Day, it is an ideal time to think about simplicity in life. Because, the struggles we engage in to own luxuries are the major reasons for stress in day-to-day life which  in turn leads to unhealthy mental conditions.
None of us seems to disagree with the merits of simplicity. But when it comes to practice we usually opt to linger. Why does it happen?...  It is where we realize the deadly influence of luxuries over our habits. It is able to suppress and surpass prudence and facts that caution against the evil effects of luxuries.

Let us take the case of Hypercholesterolemia and Gout. Most of us in th…

Vienna

Saturday, 22, 2010; sixth day of the International Training Programme at ICPE, Slovenia and it was the day for second field trip; our destination was Vienna - the capital city of Austria (the previous day we visited Venice). Apart from the status of the capital city, Vienna is also one of the nine states in the Republic of Austria. It is also the prominent cultural, economic and political centre of Austria.
Our bus started from Hotel Austria Trend at 7.30AM. The distance from Ljubljana, Slovenia to Vienna, Austria is around 383 km and it took around 4 hours to reach Vienna. The highway to Vienna goes through the enchanting beauty of Slovenian villages.

Our first destination was Schonbrunn Palace, the historic home of the Hapsburg rulers and now one of the most important historic places in Austria. The Palace is on the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List since 1996. The palace is under the administrative control of the Austrian Federal Ministry of Economy, Family and Youth. The Schlo…

Need for State Owned Public Conveyance Systems

Though the title of the article is indicative of public transport systems in general, I would like to concentrate on the need for state owned public transport systems on roads. It is particularly important because of the gigantic proportion that the vehicles on road own with respect to all crucial parameters such as total number, the number of  passengers it transport, the number of accidents it make, the volume of oil it consumes, and  share  in environment pollution. 

A major portion of air pollution is caused by Carbon Monoxide (CO) emission and on an average more that 80% of the Carbon Monoxide emission is caused by Motor Vehicles. It is a very dangerous situation. It affects all categories of people and weakens physical strength, vision, ability to perform complex functions, learning activities  etc. Since the efforts for alternate fuel are yet to provide effective alternatives for hydrocarbon-based fuels, the only solution before the world is to think about ways to cut down the c…

Venice; the Floating City

Friday, May 21, 2010; it was the 5th day of our Training Programme at ICPE, Ljubljana, Slovenia and the day was for understanding the social, cultural and industrial lives in and around Slovenia - our destination was Venice and we started from Hotel Austria Trend, Ljubljana to Venice around 8 A.M by a bus arranged by ICPE. We travelled from Ljubljana to Trieste and further on to Venice. The journey took roughly three hours.
On the way to Venetian islands we took a short break at Jesolo. Jesolo town is in the north of Venice. The city is famous for its 15 km long beach. However we did not go to the beach side as it was only a short break and all of us were very particular about spending more time in Venetian lagoons. Therefore we just strode along some market places and assembled again near Gelateria LOVAT in the Nazario Sauro street for our onward journey to Venetian islands.
We arrived at a public parking area in the main land of Venice around 11AM. A local guide greeted us there and w…

An International Training at ICPE

As mentioned in my last blog on Slovenia, we arrived in Ljubljana airport on 16th May, 2010 as part of an international training programme on Budgeting, Accounting and Financial Management in Government Sector at International Centre for Promotion of Enterprises (ICPE). Mr Gašper Koprivšek, Project Manager of ICPE was waiting for us at the airport.

The training was a three week programme of National Institute of Financial Management (NIFM), Faridabad, India. Two weeks were covered in the NIFM and one week in ICPE. During the part of the training programme at NIFM, His Eminence the Ambassador of Slovenia to IndiaJanez Premožehas visited NIFM and provided us a picturesque as well as highly informative narration of Slovenia and its people. 
ICPE is a UN sponsored Intergovernmental Organization with member countries from Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe. ICPE facilitates transfer of technology, sustainable entrepreneurship, and promotion of knowledge based social change through resea…

SLOVENIA; An Ever Green Beauty in the Central Europe

As our Turkish Flight approached Ljubljana airport for landing in the afternoon on 18/05/2010, my heart overwhelmed in the mesmeric beauty of the nature below and I murmured to me “Slovenia is far more enchanting than what I’ve read”. I was a member of the group traveling to Slovenia in connection with a training programme organized by National Institute of Finance Management (NIFM), India in association with International Centre for Promotion of Enterprises (ICPE), Ljubljana, Slovenia.

God promise; once you see, Slovenia will conquer your heart!!! Slovenia is such a friendly and beautiful small nation on the globe in the Central Europe. Slovenia covers an area of 20,273 square kilometres by gloriously touching the Alps mountain ranges and bordering the Mediterranean Sea with Austria, Italy, Hungary and Croatia as neighbouring countries.

Slovenia is a country of enchanting greeneries. Look front, back, left and right; definitely you will be absorbed in the glory of Mother Nature irresp…

India; an emerging knowledge economy

In the new economic order of Knowledge Economy, knowledge leads the way for wealth creation. Knowledge is extensively used either as a product or a tool for economic prosperity. This blog highlights  the enabling environments in India that facilitate the emergence of India as a Knowledge Economy.

Enabling Environment: Formal Education System

Historic Innovations
With traceable history of formal education dating back to 5th Century BCE or BC, starting from Taxila and Nalanda, India stands among the world's most favourite Education Gateways. The developments in the 5th Century BCE had the strong back up of the centuries of experience acquired from the Gurukul system of education, perhaps the earliest form of residential education system, existed since the vedic period.
Whether it is vedic era or the era of ancient India or medieval era or colonial era or the present independent era, the education system in India, both formal and non-formal, managed to attain new heights steadily. This …

Knowledge Economies & Lifelong Learning

During my childhood, we children had heard a thousand times our grandparents, parents and teachers saying "Knowledge is the greatest wealth". We used to take it as a spiritual saying. But now all of us realize that it is a material truth as well. In the new economic order knowledge leads the way for wealth creation. Knowledge is extensively used either as a product or a tool for economic prosperity. Yes, Knowledge Economies are a reality now.

Practical knowledge to help organizations to overcome critical and unforeseen issues, domain expertise to frame and fine tune new strategies, technical knowledge and skill for optimum exploitation of available resources...these are the things most important now, far above products and finances. Non-availability of required information or knowledge during a critical hour may damage the market leadership of organizations and rewrite the economic equations overnight.

This paradigm shift in the economy has placed knowledge acquisition at th…