Haim Harari is among many things one of the founding fathers of the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria). Together with Olaf Kübler and Hubert Markl, Haim authored the Report of the International Committee published in 2006 which to this day serves as blue-print for the development of IST Austria. Before he assumed this function at IST Austria he had a spectacular career as particle physicist only matched by his spectacular career as president of the Weizmann Institute, omitting his eminent role as science educator and skipping his outstanding qualities as author. Since 2007 I had the honor to work with him at IST Austria. On November 18, 2020, Haim turned 80. To celebrate him a team at IST Austria collected texts of his fellow-travellers. Here is my take.Weiterlesen
Here is this year’s selection of Other Christmas Charols. As usual a random selection of inspiring and reflective tunes. I do not own the rights to any of these songs. Go and buy them. Last years‘ lists can be found here. The tracks can also be found on the YouTube playlist and (in a redacted form) on Spotify.Weiterlesen
And now for something completely different. In 2005, I had the honour to publish the book „The Nicobars Islands. Cultural Choices in the Aftermath of the Tsunami“ by my friend Simron Jit Singh, then a scholar at the Institute of Social Ecology Vienna. Simron is an Indian anthropologist who’s work on the Nicobar Islands proved to tremendously exceed the enormous scientific value of the publication in itself as it became the reference book for that part of the population of the Nicobar Islands who had survived the apocalyptic Tsunami of Christmas 2004. With this book the survivors were at least partly enabled to re-establish their culture in spiritual and material terms. At the same time the population had to struggle with a second aftermath, that of aid organizations, bureaucracy, and the general onslaught of „civilisation“. In 2014, Raphael Barth presented his film „Aftermath-The second flood“ re-telling these events and processes. The screening of this film next week at the Boku Kino will be followed by a panel discussion, among others yours truly participating, hosted by the formidable Verena Winiwarter and organized by BOKU – Universität für Bodenkultur Wien, Boku Kino, and Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften. The book was published by Czernin Verlag and should still be in stock. The foreword can be found here. Do come.
Edit 19|10|08: The research project on the negative impact of disaster aid was conducted by Marina Fischer-Kowalski (Institute of Social Ecology) and her team, and funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF). For more see abstract
By chance, I came across an image on Facebook which was taken on the day of my birth, May 7, 1964, showing shops on the busy Kärntner Straße close to my parents‘ flat in the centre of Vienna. The photographer was the American Charles W. Cushman. A quick research led me to his photo collection which, today, is part of the Indiana University Archives. The colour images taken on and around my birthday constitute a random selection with no connection to me or my family. Weiterlesen