Oxford Week Zero: Brain Fuel

As first impressions go, Oxford does a bang-up job.The most impressive bit? The breadth and depth of conversation. Topics from the week:

  • Transitional justice and Brazil’s Truth Commission, investigating crimes committed during the military dictatorship of the 60s-80s
  • Twitter’s efforts to establish a European sales office and their struggle to build a functional search tool
  • Water policy and conflict between India and Bangladesh
  • The formality of US v Italian email correspondence
  • Government policy toward the blind in India and sub-Saharan Africa
  • Indian regulation of foreign direct investment
  • The taxonomy of the study of math (er, “maths”) and the use of prime numbers in cyber-security
  • Why some western Norwegians are brunette instead of blonde
  • The continuing effects of the Chernobyl explosion in Ukraine on neighboring Belarus
  • Which coalition partners in Afghanistan are willing to get their boots dirty
  • Networked, fragmented, mercenary, and communal organizations
  • The efforts of Unilever, Safaricom, and other corporations to alter their strategy to include environmental and social considerations
  • The rebranding of social psychology as behavioral economics
  • The checklist method of decreasing medical inefficiency and error
  • Venture capital funds’ struggle to raise funds as pension funds pull back from high-risk investments
  • Amazon’s selling of as-you-need-it storage space and
  • The British military unit that scouts out wobbly countries to prepare to evacuate large numbers of citizens
  • Binomial and normal distributions
  • One architecture firm’s sneaky designing of a second potential use into its structures
  • The disappearance of housing reconstruction money in New Orleans
  • American conversational enthusiasm and overuse of superlatives
… in addition to 11 new swear words in Hindi, Arabic, French, Czech, and Bengali.

3 Replies to “Oxford Week Zero: Brain Fuel”

  1. “Why some western Norwegians are brunette instead of blonde?” Have you found the clubs w/ free champagne yet? And, why is this a topic of conversation? (PS: I noticed a serious lack of blondes at Yale SOM.)

  2. I don’t understand most of what you just said. Come to Jordan where at school we talk about things like “Letters aren’t as fast as emails” and “Hmm, it smells delicious!”

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