SWITCH is a short story written by Kirk Grech as part of TEXT's Eternal Pyre Writing Competition. The short story was also printed in Issue 36 of THINK Magazine. Narrated by Ian Farrugia

Notes: Episode contains mild profanity, local politics and frank opinions.

For our final episode, Nika and I decided to sit back and reflect over the last season of ReTHINK. What starts off as an exercise in nostalgia quickly develops into a lively discussion about our sense of self and identity, Stoicism and Buddhism and politics.

99.9% of humans’ DNA is the same.

http://www.genomenewsnetwork.org/resources/whats_a_genome/Chp4_1.shtml

 

Skinner’s pigeon experiment in which subjects are rewarded with food and as a result, keep getting the dopamine hit

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/bf-skinner-the-man-who-taught-pigeons-to-play-ping-pong-and-rats-to-pull-levers-5363946/

Coercive Design and Social Media
https://www.researchgate.net/figure/Characteristics-of-Coercive-and-Enabling-Process-Design_tbl1_261457845

How much of the population is addicted to social media?
https://www.statista.com/statistics/1081292/social-media-addiction-by-age-usa/


Why does being wrong feel like an attack
https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/feb/28/why-being-wrong-really-hurts

https://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2016/12/28/14088992/brain-study-change-minds

 Stoicism and Buddhism
https://dailystoic.com/stoicism-buddhism/

The internet and social media are a hallmark of modern society. A plethora of tools exists to help us consume, create, edit and curate the swathes of data available at our fingertips. But how has this renaissance of information affected younger generations? Are children more adept at navigating cyberspace? Or are we the ones who need to reTHINK cyberculture?

We discuss with Dr Velislava Hillman who, throughout her research, she has reinforced the need to voice children’s and young people’s perspectives and experiences.

Further Reading

Jean Twenge - Generation Me and The Narcissism Epidemic
https://www.bookdepository.com/Narcissism-Epidemic-W-Keith-Campbell/9781416575993
http://www.jeantwenge.com/the-narcissism-epidemic-book-by-dr-jean-twenge/

Shoshana Zuboff - The Age of Surveillance Capitalism
https://www.bookdepository.com/Age-Surveillance-Capitalism-Professor-Shoshana-Zuboff/9781781256855
https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2019/03/harvard-professor-says-surveillance-capitalism-is-undermining-democracy/

Commonsense Media -
https://www.commonsensemedia.org/

Facebook Likes can predict personality traits
https://www.researchgate.net/publication/235906499_Private_traits_and_attributes_are_predictable_from_digital_records_of_human_behavior

Sonia Livingstone - Global Kids Online
http://globalkidsonline.net/about/members/sonia-livingstone/

Digital Futures Commission
https://digitalfuturescommission.org.uk/

How China is using A.I. in the Classroom
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JMLsHI8aV0g

In this episode, we meet up with Gareth Mitchell from the BBC's Digital Planet Podcast. We discuss the impact the Internet Shutdowns in Kashmir have had on democracy, what the internet actually is and who owns it, we also touch upon the Splinternet and how related it is to the global political theatre. 

Gareth Mitchell hosts the BBC’s Digital Planet Podcast. He lectures in broadcast and written journalism at Imperial College London. Before his interest in technology, Gareth used to participate in bellringing. He is also a pilot and is a licensed amateur radio operator.

Resources;

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-50819905

https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-51620158
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/oct/22/what-is-the-internet-13-key-questions-answered
https://www.unoosa.org/oosa/en/ourwork/spacelaw/treaties/introouterspacetreaty.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Splinternet
https://www.economist.com/briefing/2010/09/02/a-virtual-counter-revolution
https://www.businessinsider.com/splinternet-us-china-internet-trump-pompeo-firewall-2020-8

 

December 9, 2020

Designing Success

If you want to share your passion with the world, your first step should be understanding your audience. This is where human-centred design comes in - its about understanding the context of your work and figuring out people's needs. Daniela Quacinella joins us for this weeks ReTHINK podcast to tell us more!

December 3, 2020

The Bold World of Bees

The humble bee is responsible for 80% of all pollination worldwide, according to Greenpeace. These industrious, little insects transfer pollen between flowering plants, helping them to grow, breed and produce food. However, the loss of habitat and food sources, exposure to pesticides and climate breakdown have begun to take their toll on bee populations across the globe. 

Bees are also susceptible to the gut parasite, Nosema Ceranae, which can kill an entire bee colony in a matter of weeks. Prof David Mifsud and his team are looking to probiotics (live bacteria that can guard digestive systems) to help protect bee colonies from this swift killer.

https://www.um.edu.mt/think/probiotics-to-the-rescue/

Depression and Anxiety are the most common mental disorders in Europe. Just as exercising and eating well help our physical health, we need to find ways to help our mental wellbeing. Dr Paulann Grech will be joining us for this week's episode. We'll be discussing mental health, psychology and her recent book, "Dealing with Coronus" - as well as a variety of ways we can improve our mental wellbeing.

Further Reading

You can buy a copy of Dr Grech's book here - https://www.kitegroup.com.mt/product/dealing-with-coronus-self-help-notes-for-a-pandemic-paulann-grech/

You can read THINK's article on Mental Health here - https://www.um.edu.mt/think/dare-to-think-and-other-mental-health-tips/

References

Worker's earn the 'right to disconnect' - https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-38479439

Mental Health: Fact Sheet, published by the World Health Organization - https://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/404851/MNH_FactSheet_ENG.pdf

Support for Mental Health - https://www.richmond.org.mt/

COVID-19 & Mental Health - A snapshot on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental wellbeing across Malta & Gozo - https://app.powerbi.com/view?r=eyJrIjoiNWMzMTQwZmMtYjdiMy00ZWZkLTgzNTItNjFkOTRmNmQyZDM1IiwidCI6IjczMjdkNTExLWQ3Y2QtNDZkNy05NDEzLTdkYjkzY2FlNGYwOSIsImMiOjh9

Looking after our mental health while working from home - https://www.who.int/campaigns/connecting-the-world-to-combat-coronavirus/healthyathome/healthyathome---mental-health

The European Mental Health Action Plan 2013 - 2020 - https://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0020/280604/WHO-Europe-Mental-Health-Acion-Plan-2013-2020.pdf

A Mental Health Strategy for Malta 2020-2030 - https://deputyprimeminister.gov.mt/en/Documents/National-Health-Strategies/Mental_Health_Strategy_EN.pdf

 

November 18, 2020

10 Years of Jellyfish Spotting

When speaking of jellyfishes, we usually think of painful stings. Because of this, jellyfish blooms can affect tourism, but they also have impacts in aquaculture and, in the past, even caused shutdowns of power stations. But not every jellyfish is born the same: different species require different approaches, either in the healing of a sting or the amount of caution needed when encountered. At the same time, observing seasonal trends of jellyfish spotting is a good way to access environmental problems, like climate change and water quality variation. When it comes to jellyfishes, there is more than what meets the eye. Today we welcome Professor Alan Deidun to unravel the hidden mysteries of these curious creatures and the importance of citizens’ contributions to his work.

https://www.um.edu.mt/library/oar/handle/123456789/26181
https://www.um.edu.mt/think/ten-years-of-jellyfish-spotting/

November 11, 2020

For the Price of a Coffee

Journalists allow for a democratic society which holds its politicians accountable. In exchange, reporters and editors must maintain a high standard of professional behaviour. But what does the future hold in store for journalism?

David and Nika discuss with Prof. Mary Anne Lauri how the global pandemic, shrinking revenues, and the murder of a journalist has changed Malta's media landscape. 

https://www.um.edu.mt/think/for-the-price-of-a-coffee/

Maltese drivers spend an average of 52 hours in traffic each year. Taming the traffic beast is no mean feat. We ask Dr Odette Lewis about her Master Plan for traffic management and what can be done to help address the situation. 

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