Sunday, March 26, 2017 | RECENT NOTES

Its the gig economy!

In the last few months I have seen several articles that suggest courier companies in Britain aspire to the status of the WWE, where all the wrestlers act as “independent contractors”. In November I read that ”a cycle courier who travels up to 50 miles daily has told a tribunal she has a fear of getting less work if she does not do what is asked of her in her job.”

I saw two slightly more surprising cases this week in which people effectively pay their “employers” in order to have time off ill. Of course, they do not actually have “employers”. Life is wrestling and this is the gig economy!


Headline of the Week: bagels

In today’s Guardian I noticed a story with the headline “Fight on UK train after people kept placing bagels on travellers’ heads” which seemed, in this age of post-fact journalism, well worth reading.

This, I thought, needs preserving for future generations – for reasons that I intend to make up as I go along.


Monday, March 13, 2017 | THERE WE WERE


Tuesday, May 10, 2016 | ESSAYS

Learning through Teaching: a report on work in progress

This paper describes an ongoing project that aims to increase students’ control over their own learning, and to enable then to act as producers as well as consumers of information; and as genuine contributors to the spread of common and open knowledge. It outlines theoretical reasons for embarking upon the project and describes two stages of development: the production of an online course in MOOC format to test pedagogical and technical ideas, and the devising and production of a 5 credit (ECT) course for second year BA students in which the students spend their time devising and producing the online course they would otherwise have taken. Finally the paper offers some suggestions for how this approach might be refined and further developed.