Sunday, January 31, 2010

Making music collaboratively

I was at "The Light Within" last night here in London at Cadogan Hall. It showcased the Ismaili Community Ensemble (ICE), the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, and Alim Qasimov's team of musicians from Azerbaijan.

The ICE played a few numbers first, and Qasimov and crew came on after the interval. Later, both groups were on stage and recreated one of Qasimov's pieces that was representative of Central Asian vibes.

The photo is a quick snap I took without anybody looking during the collaborative performance. The four people in the front in red are Alim Qasimov and crew, and the surrounding band is part of the ICE. The pieces they individually as well as collaboratively performed were beautiful. They brought back in me a sense of the lighter yet powerful sounds I don't usually hear in my dose of electronic beats.

A lot of what I've been stuck on doing in the last few years is building information collaboratively. But yesterday I realized that information is wide and deep, and is not restricted to text on print. It is encompassed in music, illustration, sound and emotion. Who says we can't use multiple forms of learning to create, exchange and develop knowledge?

Saturday, January 30, 2010

So, what is a "career" afterall?

It's funny - I look at myself as a product of privilege and good fortune because I had the opportunity to get educated in the United States, but when I think of what my "career" looks like, I have no clue what's going on.

I find that a lot of my friends might feel the same way. In my opinion, a career represents a body of work that you have either previously done, are currently doing or plan on doing in the future, that is your function in society. When I was applying to university in 2004, a career meant our IB grades and coursework, our intended university study focus, and the schools we were applying for (all 200575639302247304 of them for us folks who needed financial aid).

But after university, a career meant (again) your grades and important works from your degree, any relevant intern/externship experience, and your intended work options.

Here's where I get a little confused. If career comes down to work options, and we keep what I like to call the former definition of career, then these work options would have to reflect your study interests. This is, of course, assuming that your work options require you to have focused your education around that type of work.

Now, how many of you reading this (echoes about the walls of the Internet, and comes right back to me) feel like what you studied in school or any experience from your jobs could be used for purposes other than to serve one particular field?

I think there's much more room for lateral thinking in the 21st century. I also think that now more than ever, we need to consider knowledge as interrelated, connected and collaborative. We need to define a career today as a multi-dimensional work ethic that involves humanistic values, not necessarily pinned down as scholarly definitions.

It's difficult for me to imagine the future as involving focused careers as we define them today. I believe a "focused career" will involve a variety of disciplines meshed together to create new areas of results-oriented, and socially beneficial work.

So the next time you're surfing job openings (because there's so many jobs available these days, right?), and you don't feel like you're up for the requirements of the position, try selling what you already can do in relation to the position. Who knows - the people hiring you may not see an immediate need for other, non-related skills and interests, but those interests may be vital for the long-term.

Carpe diem.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Tanzania hosting YGL summit in May! (via Vijana FM)

Tanzania to host Young Global Leaders summit in May 2010
Young Global Leaders (YGL) - a branch of the World Economic Forum - will hold is seventh annual summit in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania from May 2-7, 2010.

The summit promises to engage youth in sustainable projects that directly relate to the economic and social progress of people.

An extract from the summit notice webpage:

"This event promises to be the largest gathering of YGLs where they will have an opportunity to interact with local and international organizations working in the YGL “Global Redesign” areas of activity: health, environment and sustainability, education and youth, entrepreneurship, values and governance. The YGL Annual Summit will be an occasion to connect local experiences with global issues and to understand the underlying development environment."

Read more:
World Economic Forum homepage
YGL homepage
YGL summit notice webpage
Vijana FM

Hello 2010

Getting geared for school starting tomorrow, working with Aliya on getting her into GPISH, and focussing free time on Vijana FM and DJ gigs. That's about it for now. Make sure you stop by Vijana FM, especially if you'd like to syndicate our blog posts to your audience and beyond! (Thanks for the logo, Neechi!)