Blog post by Matthew Cilia from Malta
For almost a year, I’ve been practicing the art of trying to master – or at least gain experience – in different areas. I started practicing the harmonica for a few hours a week, learn Italian and Spanish for just 10 minutes a day, practice mindfulness alongside a fitness routine and write fiction as soon as I wake up. Afterall, why limit yourself to one thing when the world’s your oyster? This way of living led me to SciCulture.
I remember receiving an email that offered a course focusing on transdisciplinary work and skills, mainly in the arts, sciences and entrepreneurship. To top it off, the course would be held in Greece! I signed up immediately and waited eagerly for a response.
After getting accepted three weeks later, I prepared for the journey. I spent the first two days travelling around Athens and saw the magnificent ruins of the Acropolis. I experienced Greek culture through their food, music, architecture and dancing.
The following week was composed of a variety of workshops that were hosted by lecturers and other professionals with expertise in the different disciplines covered in the course. I learned about the Age of the Anthropocene, our impact on the world and how our behaviours can be mapped against the perspective of deep time.
I experienced firsthand the design process to enhance thinking to become more creative and hence, effective, and how to use the business canvas model to begin visualising your business idea. I’ve also learned the power that poetry has to make an impact in which people can empathise with different experiences.
To go on – and I easily could – would make this post a bit overwhelming to read!
During the intensive week, we were informed that we are to participate in a project about how we envision education will be in 2050 and how we can use a transdisciplinary approach to improve our current educational system.
We were a team of Europeans, Chinese and an American: put the minds in a blender and you’ve got a variety of cultural backgrounds with different experiences, ways of thinking and skills which, if done right, can lead to new effective and holistic ideas regarding current issues. We pitched our idea on the final day and now we’re working overseas – thanks to social media – to continue developing our concept and present it in July in Athens.
This course has not only offered a wide range of topics for me to continue explorations and learning, but has also helped me to escape my comfort zone and try new things. Thanks to this philosophy, every day is an exciting one to keep on developing and learning, and SciCulture was definitely a huge learning experience!