French political map

June 18, 2012 § Leave a comment

1st UK People’s Health Assembly, Nottingham Trent University 10-11 July 2012

June 16, 2012 § Leave a comment

Network with health and social activists and help build a progressive local to global health movement in the UK. Learn about and discuss thesocialeconomicpolitical determinants of health, and the challenges ofconflict and climate.

Speakers include Allyson Pollock (prof. of public health, author NHS Plc.), John Lister (Director of Health Emergency), Tim Street (UK Uncut), Richard Taylor (doctor, former MP), Sarah Walpole (doctor, Climate and Health Council), and Roberto de Vogli (prof. of global health).

Take part in developing the UK People’s Health Manifesto

Visit http://www.phm-uk.org.uk/ for more details.

Žižek and red ink

June 11, 2012 § Leave a comment

Žižek on the Occupy movement: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2012/apr/24/occupy-wall-street-what-is-to-be-done-next

Stiglitz weighs in on Europe

June 8, 2012 § Leave a comment

This is the line from Joe Stiglitz: There is no example of a large economy recovering as a result of austerity. Meanwhile, society’s most valuable asset, its human capital, gets wasted and destroyed. Fortunately, there are alternative strategies.

The consequences of Europe’s rush to austerity will be long-lasting and possibly severe. If the euro survives, it will come at the price of high unemployment and enormous suffering, especially in the crisis countries. And the crisis itself almost surely will spread. Firewalls won’t work, if kerosene is simultaneously thrown on the fire, as Europe seems committed to doing: There is no example of a large economy—and Europe is the world’s largest—recovering as a result of austerity.

As a result, society’s most valuable asset, its human capital, is being wasted and even destroyed. Young people who are long deprived of a decent job—and youth unemployment in some countries is approaching or exceeding 50 percent, and has been unacceptably high since 2008—become alienated. When they eventually find work, it will be at a much lower wage. Normally, youth is a time when skills get built up; now, it is a time when they atrophy.

Joseph Stiglitz, “After Austerity,” May 8 2012, available online here

New post on student visas on Oecumene blog

June 4, 2012 § Leave a comment

I recently published a new post on the blog of the Oecumene project, discussing activism around student visas in the UK. Going through an old notebook today I found a succinct articulation of the basic idea I’m trying to put across in that post:

“Start with yourself” is the motto: one’s own position, engaging with the global from there…rather than starting from “solidarity with Sudan,” “solidarity with/for those people over there” – start from how you are directly implicated, rather than “I am in solidarity with you, so won’t buy Coca Cola.”

This note was penned during a workshop on counter-mappingI attended at Goldsmiths earlier this year:

Spacing Movements:  Activist cartographies, militant research and the politics of knowledge production

A workshop with Sebastain Cobarrubias and Maria Isabel Casas of the Counter-Cartographies Collective, for the Centre for Research Architecture.

So you want to analyse qualitative data?

June 4, 2012 § Leave a comment

Online QDA is a set of learning materials which address common issues of undertaking qualitative data analysis (QDA) and beginning to use Computer Assisted Qualitative Data AnalysiS (CAQDAS) packages.

Reading Randy on a Sunday afternoon

June 3, 2012 § Leave a comment

Organisations that have the potential to achieve success on ‘big picture’ issues disempower themselves when they instead focus on agendas – such as more police – that politicians are eager to accommodate. Grassroots neighbourhood groups have the power to redirect public debate over crime toward nonpunitive, preventive solutions; organisers endorsing such solutions are best serving their constituency’s concerns about crime…This is not ‘telling people what’s important to them’; rather, it is a process of ensuring that people know all the implications linked to pursuing certain goals…the issue is not whether residents’ concerns over crime should be ignored; rather, it is how to develop a specific agenda to address the local preconditions creating the criminal landscape. Once crime is placed in the broader context of an overall action plan for the neighbourhood, activism can move toward winning specific and demonstrable improvements in residents’ lives. (Randy Shaw, 1996, The Activist’s Handbook: A Primer University of California Press, p. 40-1)

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