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With Apologies To Hillary It Does Take a Village

Bill Gates has said one of the most important issues facing our nation is how we educate our young. But something is missing in the national education debate, and sadly, we have been at a standstill for decades. Educators have been arguing with administrators about...

Mayors With a New Vision of Creativity and Innovation Wanted

John M. Eger – Huffington Post

Lionel Van Deerlin Professor of Communications and Public Policy, San Diego State University

Posted: 08/16/11

 

Almost 20 years ago, when San Diego Mayor Susan Golding was just elected, she had the foresight to launch a “city of the future” committee. San Diego really didn’t know what a city of the future looked like, but knew then you had to have fiber optics — lots of bandwidth in the ground. So it was fiber optics and bandwidth that was on everybody’s lips.

Today, understanding the challenges of the new global economy and knowing what it takes to succeed in the workplace of the future, we know it is not bandwidth in the ground that is so important as the bandwidth in people’s heads.

Within the next several months there are countless mayoral races that present an opportunity to talk about a new path for the future of cities.

It is the worst of times to have such a conversation, many would say, with pension deficits looming, services being cut and unemployment at an all time high. Yet, as the Cheshire cat said to Alice in Alice in Wonderland, “if you don’t know where you are going any road will get you there.”

It is time Americans know the road they must take. It’s also time we talk candidly about the connections between art, commerce, education and economic development and importantly, what communities everywhere must do to be successful in what is being called “the creative and innovative economy.”

Many cities are struggling to redefine themselves or reinvent a strategy to jumpstart economic development, and to figure out what is happening to our economy. We know it’s global, and as Thomas Friedman of the New York Times has told us, it’s “flat.” We know, too, it’s digital and that growth of the Internet and the World Wide Web is compelling development of a global economy. But it is creativity — simply defined as “the quality or ability to create or invent something original” — that best defines the characteristic most of us need to succeed in the new economy.

Support for STEAM Education Research Councils

The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MEST) and the Korea Foundation for the Advancement of Science and Creativity (KOFAC) will recruit teachers’ research councils for STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics) education in order to introduce STEAM education in elementary, middle, and high...

Graffiti Parks May Be the Answer

John M. Eger – Huffington Post

Lionel Van Deerlin Professor of Communications and Public Policy, San Diego State University

Posted: 08/9/11

Introducing a segment on graffiti last week, Lester Holt of NBC Nightly News rhetorically asked: what is the difference between “one man’s vandalism and another man’s artistic expression?”

Lee Cowen of NBC, who reported the story, talked about “the vast canvas (of) the inner-city” and the problems cities are having given the increase in graffiti.

Cowen was picking up many of the complaints from a New York Times story about LA that “tags (another name for graffiti) have popped up on guardrails along the dirt trails near Griffith Park across town. There are, almost daily, fresh splashes on walls in the San Fernando Valley, on downtown Los Angeles buildings and on billboards along the highways.”

The graffiti problem isn’t unique to LA. Most cities see this as a growing epidemic. But “artistic expression” is real, and in what is fast becoming a “creative and innovation economy” could be a good thing for cities across America.

Clearly something positive is happening and cities need to find a way to stop the “vandalism” and encourage the “artistic expression.” Graffiti Parks might be one answer.

Kids Are Wired Differently

In a book to be released later this month (August 18) called Now You See It: How the Brain Science of Attention Will Transform the Way We Live, Work, and Learn, former Provost at Duke University and founder of the Humanities, Arts, Science, and Technology...

Connecting Science and Art

Science and art often seem to develop in separate silos, but many thinkers are inspired by both. Novelist Cormac McCarthy, filmmaker Werner Herzog and physicist Lawrence Krauss discuss science as inspiration for art and Herzog's new film on the earliest known cave paintings....

Opera Ups Its Presence in Schools

According to the Washington Post citing a recent study by the National Endowment for the Arts, "The audience for the performing arts is slipping nationwide. But opera has proved to do slightly better than other classical forms -- orchestral music or ballet -- in terms...