Refugees and other distress migrants have been forced to leave their homes in exceedingly large numbers for the past 18 months. It has become commonplace to refer to the current situation as the worst refugee crisis since World War 2, with over 65 million people – a figure in excess of the entire population of many countries – forcibly displaced.
There’s obviously been a lot written about Bob Dylan during the last couple of days, not all of which I have found to be very thoughtful. Insights from his fans about the personal importance of particular songs or lyrics have been a big plus, while articles that seek to categorize him in any number of genres that he separated himself from throughout his career have been a minus. So, feeling inspired by the former group, I’ve decided to mull over the moment that I fell in love with his music.
In the week of a brutal street murder by a gang of Neo-Nazis, a demonstration of many thousands ensues in Helsinki. Almost in the same breath, the “immigration critical” MEP, Jussi Hallo-aho, of the Finns political party – a national populist movement variously known as the Perussuomalaiset, Sannfinländarna, or True Finns – raises the view that for each refugee received, ten nurses could be paid to take care of the elderly. With the characteristic ambidextrousness of the party, the True Finns’ leader Timo Soini gestures a condemnation of the week’s violence.
In the world of childhood education, no nation on Earth has a better reputation than Finland.
Despite a wide range of ongoing social and economic challenges, Finland's education system - its teachers, schools, and teacher training universities - are the envy of educators around the world.
The lessons from Finland's schools can inspire any nation and any school system.
Weapons of war are designed to kill people. That is the unpleasant truth. It is true of guns, bombs, artillery shells, grenades, IEDs … you name it.
No one wants to go to war. No one wants to kill or be killed. But there are times – whether it is in defending a nation, pursuing a terrorist organization, or stopping a humanitarian catastrophe – when the use of force is essential and justified. And fundamentally, the use of force means killing those who are the perpetrators, those who stand in the way
The European Union has lost a significant part of its soft power in Russia. It is no longer viewed as a success story worth being a part of, or developing a partnership with.
A call for strategic cooperation between Europe and Russia, which implies normalization of relations and the lifting of EU sanctions against Russia as the first step, can often be heard across European capitals and Brussels. Business representatives count on reviving export opportunities to spur new growth, and politicians hope to jointly address security challenges, with the crisis in the Middle East, terrorism, and migration being at the top of the list.
Last month, Memphis Meats cooked and served the world’s first cultured meatball. It was made of real beef, but was produced without slaughter through the culturing of cells. In this process a small amount of muscle tissue is harmlessly taken from a living animal and placed in a nutrient-rich serum in which the cells multiply and grow to be harvested as meat. This exciting development holds much promise for offsetting many of the problems associated with livestock production, such as climate change, antibiotic resistance, and animal welfare.
Welcome to the dawn of the post-animal bioeconomy: an industry built around the creation of animal products produced through biotechnology that does not require the killing of animals, and New Harvest is playing a central role in its development.
"University, Inc." is expanding its footprint across Finland. The small Nordic country, once seen as a poster child for education is experiencing the most direct corporate takeover of its universities. Last year, as part of the continuing wave of austerity measures, Prime Minister Juha Sipilä told the country's parliament that his coalition government had "decided on a total of €4 billion in cost savings in public finances during this parliamentary term". As a result, Finnish higher education is now more firmly on the neoliberal tracks with little chance of slowing down.
It is time for Finland not only to export its education ideas, but to also embrace an even larger vision that can help Finland achieve its true destiny among nations.
It is time for Finland to serve as the Global Intellectual Capital Exchange of Education.
We can cite current real world examples of leaders whose days are numbered precisely because they remained silent or chose to collaborate in the destruction of their brothers and sisters, rather than to oppose these senseless, endless wars.