Science Film Festival Workshop – Bangkok, Thailand (2018)

Cover Illustration: Science Film Festival Philippines /   

I’ve been working these past few weeks with Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan on the second edition of Science Film Festival in India. We’ve got some amazing films this year, and I’m very excited to be part of the organizing team.

Photographs from the Science Film Festival workshop held between August 20-22, 2018 in Bangkok, Thailand, led by the amazing Andreas Klempin from Goethe-Institut Thailand.

Along with Geetha Vedaraman from Goethe-Institut (Chennai) and other wonderful participants from a dozen countries, I am really thrilled to be able to introduce some of my favorite DIY experiments and science activities in a workbook for primary/secondary teachers and students around the world.

Here I presented activities on the future of farming in response to this year’s top film selections that explore current food trends and crises, and the coming food revolution powered by AI and agricultural robots, bio-engineering, advocacy, among other critical factors.

About Goethe-Institut

The Goethe-Institut/ Max Mueller Bhavan is the cultural institute of the Federal Republic of Germany with a global reach. We promote the study of German abroad and encourage international cultural exchange. We also foster knowledge about Germany by providing information on its cultural, social and political life.

About Science Film Festival 

The Science Film Festival is a celebration of science communication and enjoys a unique position in Southeast Asia (Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, The Philippines, Vietnam), South Asia (India, Sri Lanka), Sub-saharan Africa (Burkina Faso, Namibia, Mali, Rwanda, Ethiopia, South Africa) North Africa and the Middle East (Egypt, Jordan, Oman, Palestinian Territories, Qatar,Sudan and the United Arab Emirates). In cooperation with local partners it promotes science literacy and facilitates awareness of contemporary scientific, technological and environmental issues through film and television content with accompanying educational activities. The festival presents scientific issues accessibly and entertainingly to a broad audience and demonstrates that science can be communicated in an educational, as well as entertaining manner. The event has grown considerably since its first edition in 2005, becoming the largest event of its kind and one of the biggest film festivals worldwide in terms of audience reach.

By facilitating cooperation between local and international agencies from the scientific, cultural, educational and environmental sector, with the generous support of the international film and television community, an effective infrastructure is put in place for the dissemination of scientific understanding and access to knowledge. All films are synchronized into local languages to offer viewers access to the content without language barriers. During the festival period, the films are screened non-commercially in museums, schools, universities and other educational venues through coordinated efforts of partners with existing networks and the capabilities to organize such screenings. The festival offers a platform for cultural exchange through which different approaches to the world of science converge.

The Science Film Festival 2018 takes place in 23 countries from October to December, 2018. In India we have selected 38 films for the festival. 10 films for the age group from 9 to 12 years and 13 films for the age group from 12 to 16 years. We have selected 15 films for the University (17+) & General audiences. There will be activities accompanying all the films for which self-explanatory sheets will be provided to the teachers.

 

Future of India Fellow

I am now a Future of India Fellow!

The four-week long fellowship program to be held in New Delhi from June 11 – July 6, 2018 will be attended by “a distinguished cohort of highly motivated individuals selected through a rigorous process from applicants across the world studying in some of the world’s leading universities…. This is an exciting opportunity for bright young people across India to come together and think through the Future of India with those at the apex of India’s policymaking.” 

About the Fellowship

“The Fellowship will focus on developing an understanding of the political considerations and implications of different policy choices to build a new generation of liberal, democratic and compassionate young leaders across India. Senior Congress leaders like P. Chidambaram, Salman Khurshid, Sam Pitroda, Jairam Ramesh, Ajay Maken, K Raju, Shashi Tharoor, Meenakshi Natarajan, Sachin Pilot and academics and activists have committed to teaching parts of the course. The Fellowship will bridge the gap between the theory and practice of policymaking, by facilitating interactions with leading policymakers, field visits, and simulation exercises.

The idea is to broad-base the NSUI platform to offer space for multiple forms of political activity and give bright young people an opportunity to engage with Congress leaders they may otherwise not have access to. This is an attempt too to provide space to young people who are aligned with Congress ideology but *not ready* to join the Party.” [* emphasis yours truly.* ]

Here’s what really excited me about the program:

Week 1

– Public Policy & Analysis – Role of the State in Development
– The Birth and Evolution of Indian Policy
– Governance and Public Institutions: 
Strengthening Democracy and the Current Crisis
– Reforming the State: Limits of Democratic Government
– Public Administration and Management
– Tryst with Destiny – Indian Economic Policy

Week 2


– Role of the State – Ensuring Access
– Bridging the Bharath vs India Divide
– Resource Management
– Reforming the State: Limits of Democratic Government
– Legal System
– India’s Place in the world

Week 3

– Role of State – Ensuring Equity
– Governance and Public Management
– Reforming the state: Limits of Democratic Government
– Ensuring Sustainable Development
– Power to the people
– Urban Poverty and Citizenship
– Careers in Politics and Public Policy

Week 4

– Fundamentals of Democratic Nations
– Role of State – Ensuring Justice
– Conflict Management in a Democracy
– Electoral Management and Power Politics
– India’s Place in the World
– Policy Communications

Be the change!   ️    

The Three Types: Dreamers, Doers and Achievers

What kind of people are you surrounded with: the dreamers, doers or achievers? A simple model which I sketched to explain and understand people better:

Three Types

Who are the dreamers?

These are the types who can talk. Those who want to learn to read music today and a foreign language tomorrow, but their desire to accomplish these never translate into meaningful action.

Favourite Quote:

“I think, therefore I am.” — René Descartes

Who are the doers?

These are the butt of people’s jokes. These are the crazy ones who think different, stay different. They never lose sight of the fact that the only thing which sets them apart from other millions is they think and they do. And they don’t give up easily.

Favourite Quote:

“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” — Gandhi

Who are the achievers?

These are the types who never, never give up; those who dream and do and are successful, but still manage to stay hungry, foolish and humble!

Favourite Quote:

“Sometimes, if you aren’t sure about something, you have to just jump off the bridge and grow wings on your way down.” — Danielle Steel

Note: See the context here on Quora.