TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

+5
thespidersfrommars
Shanks
atila
jojomojo
Intruder
9 participantes

Página 3 de 5. Precedente  1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Siguiente

Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Lun 13 Dic 2021 - 3:06

Post for answers previous post

A) Share your answers to these questions with your partner:

1. Do you read poetry in your own language? Why? Why not?

2. Do you find poetry difficult? Why? Why not?

3. Have you ever read a poem in English?

B) Gary Snyder is an American poet who started out as a member of the Beat Generation. If you want, you can find out more about him here:

Gary Snyder
https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/gary-snyder

Now read one of his poems and answer the questions on the worksheet:

December in Yase

A poem by Gary Snyder

Read this poem and answer the questions:
1) What do you think the poem is about? Choose the best description:
Lost love
Growing old
Fate
All of the above
2) What emotions does it express?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Miér 15 Dic 2021 - 14:26

Choosing a synopsis has been a real tough task because, IMHO, there isn’t any outperforming the rest in all aspects, hence the need for analysis.

I would refer to the different texts as ISLAND (Group 1), MEETALLAND (Group 2), NIHIL (Group 3) and FLOODED (Group 4).

I strongly believe tha t a good PLOT is the mos t important part of a film, therefore I’m finally opting for NIHIL (Group 3).

First, they have wisely set a point in time (Year 2029) which undoubtedly helps the reader picture that scenario, whereas other groups haven’t.

I’ve found NIHIL very unsettling, because it describes a situation not so different from present times and its deadline is close enough, and that’s a great hook. On the contrary,as the other stories happen somewhere in time, in the past or in the future, it’s not so easy to build an emotional connection with them.

I have also taken into account that NIHIL seems to me like a brand new story, while others make me recall old movies or present-day regulations in some countries.

As regards CHARACTERS, NIHIL simply complies with the standard rule by introducing a hero and a heroin, altough they don’t see much action according to the synopsis. In contrast, characters in MEETALLAND and FLOODED are more lively. Hats off to Group 4 (FLOODED) for the lovely Maya, could’t help falling in love with her if I you were a teen...

Concerning the DEVELOPMENT, I must say that NIHIL falls short of expectations as it’s basically a teaser to a bigger story, because it just sets the scenario for the action which would take place in a sequel. Despite some loose ends, the other three groups deliver a full developed story.

In Chapter ACTION, ISLAND could be the winner thanks to the abundance of violent riots and demonstrations., while in FLOODED there is only a mention of a “long, hard and dangerous trip”

Finally, while two stories have an ENDING , the other two will remain waiting for a sequel.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Dom 19 Dic 2021 - 18:34

Activities to do by December 22

This week you should be working on chapters 4, 4.1 and 4.2 of the Topic 3 activity book.

There is a new assignment in Topic 3, "Writing: a personal narrative". The dealine is January 12 (the first class of the second term), but you can start posting your texts from now.

The same applies to the 21 Lessons forum (parts II, III and IV). The deadline is January 10.

As usual, don't forget to do some work on MyELT. I have noticed that hardly anybody has done the tasks from Units 3 and 4, so it's time to start catching up.

Have a good week and see you next Wednesday for the last class before the holiday.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Dom 19 Dic 2021 - 19:01

Topic 3: Activity book

4. Communication: body language

Ted Talk: "Your body language shapes who you are"

No subtitles


Subtitles


Listening tasks
https://drive.google.com/file/d/12L7dZns1E9qmNGz93FELY9N_2Roy2rYz/view

Key
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1YN78edzY4ZMtGa45qaFAUnLWFT7NWNvK/view
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Miér 22 Dic 2021 - 0:29

Topic 3: Activity book

4. Communication: body language

4.1. Negotiating: reading

Business and life lessons text
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1G4ZjfzXE1ylFRelu62C42BEyrc3sQL0N/view

Tasks
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1V-5Zr8oFV8WoAiIaD_ap3KR33Vj0KbRY/view

Key
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1dPfTNKJOC1yZGamkpdRg6nohpX999FrA/view
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Miér 22 Dic 2021 - 0:48

Topic 3: Activity book

4. Communication: body language

4.2. Communication across cultures: reading

Communication across cultures text
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1zZvINytt-IHqyur5_C4VcpHDgGNCD5Uu/view

Worksheet (to check in class)
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1T-LRJzuu8Ih0zyPX4jegwbWBjBBP5diH/view

Text:
Communicating Across Cultures

Jan 24, 2019

By Carol Kinsey Goman, Ph.D.

Two psychiatrists meet on the street. One psychiatrist says to the other, "How are you?" The
second psychiatrist nods, hurries away, and thinks, "I wonder what he meant by that?"

If communicating person to person can be so difficult, then it's a safe bet that communicating
across cultures is even more challenging. Each culture has set rules that its members take
for granted. Few of us are aware of our own cultural biases because cultural imprinting is
begun at a very early age. And while some of a culture's knowledge, rules, beliefs, values,
phobias, and anxieties are taught explicitly, most of the information is absorbed
subconsciously.

Take this scene in a Chinese cemetery. Watching a Chinese man reverently placing fresh
fruit on a grave, an American visitor asked, "When do you expect your ancestors to get up
and eat the fruit?" The Chinese replied, "As soon as your ancestors get up and smell the
flowers."

The challenge for multinational communication has never been greater. Worldwide business
organizations have discovered that intercultural communication is a subject of
importance—not just because of increased globalization, but also because their domestic
workforce is growing more and more diverse, ethnically and culturally.

We are all individuals, and no two people belonging to the same culture are guaranteed to
respond in exactly the same way. However, generalizations are valid to the extent that they
provide clues on what you will most likely encounter when dealing with members of a
particular culture.

High-context vs. Low-context
All international communication is influenced by cultural differences. Even the choice of
communication medium can have cultural overtones. For example, advanced industrialized
nations rely heavily on electronic technology and emphasize written messages over oral or
face-to-face communication. Certainly the United States, Canada, and Germany exemplify
this trend. But the Japanese, who have access to the latest technologies, still rely more on
face-to-face communications than on written messages. The determining factor may not
be the degree of industrialization, but rather whether the country falls into a high-context or
low-context culture.

In some cultures, personal bonds and informal agreements are far more binding than any
formal contract. In others, the meticulous wording of legal documents is viewed as
paramount. High-context cultures (Mediterranean, Slav, Central European, Latin American,
African, Arab, Asian, American-Indian) leave much of the message unspecified, to be
understood through context, nonverbal cues, and between-the-lines interpretation of what is
actually said. By contrast, low-context cultures (most Germanic and English-speaking
countries) expect messages to be explicit and specific. The former are looking for meaning
and understanding in what is not said—in body language, in silences and pauses, and in
relationships and empathy. The latter place emphasis on sending and receiving accurate
messages directly, and by being precise with spoken or written words.

The business challenge for someone from a low-context culture is to realize the importance
of building and maintaining personal relationships when dealing with high-context cultures.

A major in the U.S. Air Force told me, "The most important thing I learned on my
international assignment was not to rush meetings with the typical 'American, take-charge
attitude.' I was present when the outgoing chief took the new officer to meet a key contact
and I watched, helpless and horrified, as the new man destroyed in five seconds what the
incumbent had taken a year to build. Undoubtedly the new chief thought he was creating the
impact of a hard-charging young executive, but in reality he was tearing down a delicate
relationship."

Sequential vs. Synchronic
Some cultures think of time sequentially, as a linear commodity to "spend," "save," or
"waste." Other cultures view time synchronically, as a constant flow to be experienced in the
moment, and as a force that cannot be contained or controlled.

A friend from Venezuela was invited to a party in the States. The hours on the invitation were
stated as 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. This was almost inconceivable to the Venezuelan. "How
can anyone know when the party will be over?" she asked. To her way of thinking, a party
can't be "timed." It begins when it begins and ends when it ends.

Whether time is perceived as a commodity or a constant determines the meaning and value
of being "on time." Think of the misunderstandings that can occur when one culture views
arriving late for a meeting as bad planning or a sign of disrespect, while another culture
views an insistence on timeliness as childish impatience.

In sequential cultures (like North American, English, German, Swedish, and Dutch),
businesspeople give full attention to one agenda item after another. In many other parts of
the world, professionals regularly do several things at the same time. I once cashed a check
at a Panamanian bank where the teller was counting my money, talking to a customer on the
phone, and admiring the baby in the arms of the woman behind me. To her, it was all
business as usual.

The American commoditization of time not only serves as the basis for a "time is money"
mentality, it can also lead to a fixation on timelines that plays right into the hands of savvy
negotiators from other cultures. A Japanese executive explained: "All we need to do is find
out when you are scheduled to leave the country—and, by the way, it amuses us that you
arrive with your return passage already booked. We wait until right before your flight to
present our offer. By then, you are so anxious to stay on schedule that you'll give away the
whole deal."

In synchronic cultures (including South America, southern Europe and Asia) the flow of time
is viewed as a sort of circle, with the past, present, and future all interrelated. This viewpoint
influences how organizations in those cultures approach deadlines, strategic thinking,
investments, developing talent from within, and the concept of "long-term" planning.

There's a joke about an American and a Chinese businessman sitting on a park bench in
Hong Kong. The American is saying, "Well, you know I've been in Hong Kong for my
company for 30 years. Thirty years! And in a few days they are sending me back to the
States." The Chinese executive replies, "That's the problem with you Americans: here today
and gone tomorrow."

Orientation to the past, present, and future is another aspect of time in which cultures differ.
Americans believe that the individual can influence the future by personal effort, but since
there are too many variables in the distant future, we favor a short-term view. This gives us
an international reputation of "going for the quick buck" and being interested only in the next
quarterly return. Even our relationships seem to be based on a "what have you done for me
lately?" pragmatism.

Synchronistic cultures have an entirely different perspective. The past becomes a context in
which to understand the present and prepare for the future. Any important relationship is a
durable bond that goes back and forward in time, and it is often viewed as grossly disloyal
not to favor friends and relatives in business dealings.

Affective vs. Neutral
With much angry gesturing, an Italian manager referred to the idea of his Dutch counterpart
as "crazy." The Dutch manager replied. "What do you mean, crazy? I've considered all the
factors, and I think this is a viable approach. And calm down! We need to analyze this, not
get sidetracked by emotional theatrics." At that point, the Italian walked out of the meeting.

In international business practices, reason and emotion both play a role. Which of these
dominates depends upon whether we are affective (readily showing emotions) or emotionally
neutral in our approach. Members of neutral cultures do not telegraph their feelings, but
keep them carefully controlled and subdued. In cultures with high affect, people show their
feelings plainly by laughing, smiling, grimacing, scowling, and sometimes crying, shouting,
or walking out of the room.

This doesn't mean that people in neutral cultures are cold or unfeeling. (All cultures will
express irrepressible joy or grief.) But in the course of normal business activities, neutral
cultures are more careful to monitor the amount of emotion they display. Research
conducted with people who were upset about something at work noted that only some
cultures supported expressing those feelings openly. Emotional reactions were found to be
least acceptable in Japan, Indonesia, the U.K., Norway, and the Netherlands and most
accepted in Italy, France, the U.S., and Singapore.

Reason and emotion are part of all human communication. When expressing ourselves, we
look to others for confirmation of our ideas and feelings. If our approach is highly emotional,
we are seeking a direct emotional response: "I feel the same way." If our approach is highly
neutral, we want an indirect response: "I agree with your thoughts on this."

It's easy for people from neutral cultures to sympathize with the Dutch manager and his
frustration over trying to reason with "that excitable Italian." After all, an idea either works or
it doesn't work, and the way to test the validity of an idea is through trial and observation.
That just makes sense—doesn't it? Well, not necessarily to the Italian who felt the issue was
deeply personal and who viewed any "rational argument" as totally irrelevant!

When it comes to communication, what's proper and correct in one culture may be
ineffective or even offensive in another. Culture is, basically, a set of values shared by a

group of people. These values affect how you think and act and, more importantly, the kind
of criteria by which you judge others. Cultural meanings render some behaviors as normal
and right and others as strange or wrong. In reality, no culture is right or wrong, better or
worse; just different. In today's global business community, there is no single best approach
to communicating with one another. The key to cross-cultural success is to develop an
understanding of, and a deep respect for, the differences.

https://www.amanet.org/articles/communicating-across-cultures/

Tasks:
Communicating across cultures worksheet

Briefly define the following categories described in the text:
1. High-context vs. Low-context
2. Sequential vs. Synchronic
3. Affective vs. Neutral

Find synonyms or definitions for the words in bold (line
numbers are given)
:
1. take for granted (8-9)
2. overtones (31)
3. binding (39)
4. paramount (41)
5. cues (43)
6. tearing down (58)
7. timeliness (74)
8. commoditization (83)
9. grossly (111)
10. sidetracked (118)
11. scowling (124)

Discuss:
1. Think of your own culture. How would you classify it according to the categories in
the text? Do you think these categories are useful to describe your culture?

2. Think of a culture you have experienced (because you’ve travelled or lived abroad,
because of people you know...). Do the categories in the text apply to it?


Última edición por Intruder el Miér 22 Dic 2021 - 14:00, editado 2 veces
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Miér 22 Dic 2021 - 0:52

Post for answers previous post:

Tasks:
Communicating across cultures worksheet

Briefly define the following categories described in the text:
1. High-context vs. Low-context In a low context culture nothing matters but explicit, specific and straight communication whereas in a high context culture some other qualitative aspects such as non-verbal communication are regarded.
2. Sequential vs. Synchronic  Low context cultures tend to regard time as an asset which can be traded, bought or sold and therefore they always seek to make the most of their time, while people from high context cultures don`t feel this time pressure
Another difference, low context cultures focus on short term future when  making decissions, while high context cultures also regard past and present times

3. Affective vs. Neutral Being affective means being emotional, showing your feeling and emotions when expressing yourself, while being neutral means keeping them under control, being reluctant to show them.

Find synonyms or definitions for the words in bold (line numbers are given):
1. take for granted (8-9) to believe something to be the truth without even thinking about it:
2. overtones (31) something that is suggested, but is not clearly stated:
3. binding (39) used to describe an agreement, contract, etc. that cannot be changed or stopped
4. paramount (41) more important than anything else
5. cues (43) a signal for someone to do something:
6. tearing down (58) to intentionally destroy a building or other structure because it is not being used or it is not wanted any more:
7. timeliness (74) the fact or quality of happening at the best possible time or at the right time:
8. commoditization (83) Regarding time as product that can be traded, bought, or sold:
9. grossly (111) extremely, very
10. sidetracked (118) to direct a person's attention away from an activity or subject towards another one that is less important:
11. scowling (124) looking at someone or something with a very annoyed expression

Discuss:
1. Think of your own culture. How would you classify it according to the categories inthe text? According to the given definitions, I have no hesitation in classifying my own culture as a low context one
Do you think these categories are useful to describe your culture? I think that they were even more useful in the past before globalisation and immigration grew. Nowadays there is a melting pot in  many countries which makes them increasingly harder to classify.

2. Think of a culture you have experienced (because you’ve travelled or lived abroad,because of people you know...). Do the categories in the text apply to it? I lived in Mexico for 12 years in three different time periods, working for the local subsidiary of spanish companies and I remember being asked so many times in Barcelona: “It’s got to be easy for you because you speak the same language” and my repply was always the same “We speak the same language but we often mean different things with the same words”
Probably the way they regard time would be the most irritating thing for someone coming from Europe.
Male and female roles in Mexico were way too different from the ones we’re familiar with here

Fidelity / Infidelity depending whether it concerns a relationship or labour.


Última edición por Intruder el Dom 2 Ene 2022 - 12:15, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Jue 23 Dic 2021 - 3:04

Writing: a personal narrative

Opened: Wednesday, 15 December 2021, 12:00 AM

Due: Wednesday, 12 January 2022, 11:59 PM

A) Read this story about a case of deceptive appearances:

Story: First impressions can be deceiving.
https://www.reddit.com/r/TalesFromRetail/comments/57ny93/first_impressions_can_be_deceiving/

B) Write a similar narrative for an online forum about a time when your first impression of a person proved to be totally wrong, and about the consequences of your mistake. The tone should be informal and colloquial.

Make sure you use precise and vivid language to describe the person and the setting, and also how you and/or the other person felt.

Your story can be based on truth or totally fictional, and it should be 275-300 words long.

Sample Text:
First impressions can be deceiving

This happened years ago when I worked in an office supplies store. I was working in the pens/pencils/markers/etc. aisle from where you can see the cashiers and store entrance. We were moderately busy this night, and there were 4 or 5 customers lined up at each of the two opened cash lines.

A gentleman came into the store and made a beeline to me (I guessed he was in a bit of a rush). I noticed he was dressed impeccably: fancy tailored suit, coat, scarf, fancy watch, etc. Obviously my first impression was he must be some rich corporate type. This was reinforced when he kindly asked me for the special type of pen used to sign checks. I showed him what he needed, he thanked me. Perfectly quick, smooth, and painless customer interaction. A model customer. I got back to my work as he went to line up to pay.

Roughly a minute later, I catch him through my peripheral vision leaving the aisle adjacent to mine and heading straight for the exit. Odd. I look towards the cash line he was in. Barely moved. Uh oh. There was no way he could have paid for his item already. I went over to the aisle he came from to confirm my suspicion. Right in plain sight on the fucking shelf was the fucking empty opened package of the fucking pen I just gave to him. Ugghh. I felt personally robbed.

I reported it to the manager of course, but there was nothing we could do by that point. I guess he was too rich and self-important to wait in line and pay.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Dom 2 Ene 2022 - 12:39

Activities to do by January 12

These are the activities you need to do before we meet again on January 12:

From the Topic 3 activity book, chapters 4.4 and 4.5

The Topic 3 writing assignment ("A personal narrative")

The forum activity about parts II, III and IV (deadline: January 10)

The assignments from units 3 and 4 of MyELT.

Enjoy the holidays and let's hope we can all meet again in the new year having had a fun and relaxing time.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Dom 2 Ene 2022 - 14:11

Topic 3: Activity book

4. Communication: body language

4.4. "Fighting talk": reading


"Fighting Talk" text
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Pti0MrGaiH-wz8xe6dHZkn4p24fZMD7U/view

Tasks with key
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1CAcyXDoekpIVAwz5jVT58miAGtKTCPVp/view
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Jue 6 Ene 2022 - 15:43

Topic 3: Activity book

4. Communication: body language

4.5. The future of language: listening and discussion

A) Listen to a section from a BBC 4 podcast about communication and technology.

Podcast: The future of language
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1f-OK917lgbCqYXYKqms3L-ARORnUGOhB/view

Follow the instructions on the worksheet:
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Nak5ufvhPbMOcNkcKvckfdyqW4Mz8jMgt1OAVR3rtmM/edit#

The future of language: a BBC4 podcast
Part 1: from minute 26:23 (after the music) to minute 31:36

The first part of the podcast is an interview with Professor Rajesh Rao about brain-to-brain communication. Before you listen to the interview, read this text about one of the experiments described in the interview:

https://www.washington.edu/news/2013/08/27/researcher-controls-colleagues-motions-in-1st-human-brain-to-brain-interface/
University of Washington researchers have performed what they believe is the first noninvasive human-to-human brain interface, with one researcher able to send a brain signal via the Internet to control the hand motions of a fellow researcher.

A photo showing both sides of the demonstration.
University of Washington researcher Rajesh Rao, left, plays a computer game with his mind. Across campus, researcher Andrea Stocco, right, wears a magnetic stimulation coil over the left motor cortex region of his brain. Stocco’s right index finger moved involuntarily to hit the “fire” button as part of the first human brain-to-brain interface demonstration.University of Washington

Using electrical brain recordings and a form of magnetic stimulation, Rajesh Rao sent a brain signal to Andrea Stocco on the other side of the UW campus, causing Stocco’s finger to move on a keyboard.

While researchers at Duke University have demonstrated brain-to-brain communication between two rats, and Harvard researchers have demonstrated it between a human and a rat, Rao and Stocco believe this is the first demonstration of human-to-human brain interfacing.

“The Internet was a way to connect computers, and now it can be a way to connect brains,” Stocco said. “We want to take the knowledge of a brain and transmit it directly from brain to brain.”

The researchers captured the full demonstration on video recorded in both labs. The following version has been edited for length. This video and high-resolution photos also are available on the research website.

Rao, a UW professor of computer science and engineering, has been working on brain-computer interfacing in his lab for more than 10 years and just published a textbook on the subject. In 2011, spurred by the rapid advances in technology, he believed he could demonstrate the concept of human brain-to-brain interfacing. So he partnered with Stocco, a UW research assistant professor in psychology at the UW’s Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences.

On Aug. 12, Rao sat in his lab wearing a cap with electrodes hooked up to an electroencephalography machine, which reads electrical activity in the brain. Stocco was in his lab across campus wearing a purple swim cap marked with the stimulation site for the transcranial magnetic stimulation coil that was placed directly over his left motor cortex, which controls hand movement.

The team had a Skype connection set up so the two labs could coordinate, though neither Rao nor Stocco could see the Skype screens.

Rao looked at a computer screen and played a simple video game with his mind. When he was supposed to fire a cannon at a target, he imagined moving his right hand (being careful not to actually move his hand), causing a cursor to hit the “fire” button. Almost instantaneously, Stocco, who wore noise-canceling earbuds and wasn’t looking at a computer screen, involuntarily moved his right index finger to push the space bar on the keyboard in front of him, as if firing the cannon. Stocco compared the feeling of his hand moving involuntarily to that of a nervous tic.

“It was both exciting and eerie to watch an imagined action from my brain get translated into actual action by another brain,” Rao said. “This was basically a one-way flow of information from my brain to his. The next step is having a more equitable two-way conversation directly between the two brains.”

A diagram showing the cycle of the brain-to-brain interface demonstration.
The cycle of the experiment. Brain signals from the “Sender” are recorded. When the computer detects imagined hand movements, a “fire” command is transmitted over the Internet to the TMS machine, which causes an upward movement of the right hand of the “Receiver.” This usually results in the “fire” key being hit.University of Washington

The technologies used by the researchers for recording and stimulating the brain are both well-known. Electroencephalography, or EEG, is routinely used by clinicians and researchers to record brain activity noninvasively from the scalp. Transcranial magnetic stimulation is a noninvasive way of delivering stimulation to the brain to elicit a response. Its effect depends on where the coil is placed; in this case, it was placed directly over the brain region that controls a person’s right hand. By activating these neurons, the stimulation convinced the brain that it needed to move the right hand.

Computer science and engineering undergraduates Matthew Bryan, Bryan Djunaedi, Joseph Wu and Alex Dadgar, along with bioengineering graduate student Dev Sarma, wrote the computer code for the project, translating Rao’s brain signals into a command for Stocco’s brain.

“Brain-computer interface is something people have been talking about for a long, long time,” said Chantel Prat, assistant professor in psychology at the UW’s Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences, and Stocco’s wife and research partner who helped conduct the experiment. “We plugged a brain into the most complex computer anyone has ever studied, and that is another brain.”

At first blush, this breakthrough brings to mind all kinds of science fiction scenarios. Stocco jokingly referred to it as a “Vulcan mind meld.” But Rao cautioned this technology only reads certain kinds of simple brain signals, not a person’s thoughts. And it doesn’t give anyone the ability to control your actions against your will.

Both researchers were in the lab wearing highly specialized equipment and under ideal conditions. They also had to obtain and follow a stringent set of international human-subject testing rules to conduct the demonstration.

“I think some people will be unnerved by this because they will overestimate the technology,” Prat said. “There’s no possible way the technology that we have could be used on a person unknowingly or without their willing participation.”

Stocco said years from now the technology could be used, for example, by someone on the ground to help a flight attendant or passenger land an airplane if the pilot becomes incapacitated. Or a person with disabilities could communicate his or her wish, say, for food or water. The brain signals from one person to another would work even if they didn’t speak the same language.

Rao and Stocco next plan to conduct an experiment that would transmit more complex information from one brain to the other. If that works, they then will conduct the experiment on a larger pool of subjects.

Their research was funded in part by the National Science Foundation’s Engineering Research Center for Sensorimotor Neural Engineering at the UW, the U.S. Army Research Office and the National Institutes of Health.

What does “Vulcan mind meld” mean? What is the origin of this phrase?

Now listen to the interview and answer the following questions:

What was the main difference between the two experiments described?
In what way does the professor say that “privacy is really important”?
What is the interviewer referring to when she says, “Wouldn’t that be exhausting?”
What does the professor say about “markers” and “tags”?
According to the professor, how would brain-to-brain communication work between speakers of different languages?
When does he argue we may use normal language, as opposed to brain-to-brain communication, in the future?
Part 2: from minute 31:26 to minute 33:39
Listen to the two presenters commenting on the previous interview and answer the following questions:
Who expresses more negative feelings about brain-to-brain communication, the man or the woman?
One of the presenters says that language is “the lingerie of thought”, and compares it to “petticoats”. What do you think he means?

Part 3: from minute 33:39 to minute 39:00 (music)
You are going to listen to an interview with another professor, Finn Brunton, who talks about language and the internet. Are the following statements true or false, according to what he says? Try to correct the false statements.

Our television screens are watching us.
The term “bellyfeel” has been created recently.
Most of us know the risks of doing online searches.
Our searches are used to produce poems.
Freedom is not necessarily threatened by machines generating language.
Chess playing machines can collaborate with humans.
In the future, computers may write our emails.
A novelist’s writing style could be faithfully replicated after their death.
Prepare to discuss these questions in class:
What beneficial and harmful uses of brain-to-brain communication can you think of?
How do you feel about your internet searches being “read” by AI?


B) Read this declaration about the subject of brain-computer interfaces and answer the questions:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1XurLy1qj_XPhtBR4cnLetpvbTN6pe7-J-H4ejQVkfBQ/edit#
Declaration on the ethics of brain–computer interfaces and augmented intelligence
Yi Zeng, Kang Sun & Enmeng Lu
AI and Ethics volume 1, pages 209–211 (2021) Cite this article

Progresses and risks

Brain–computer interfaces (BCIs) are a transdisciplinary field of, but not limited to, brain science and artificial intelligence. It can be divided into invasive, semi-invasive, and non-invasive BCIs. Invasive (e.g., micro-electrodes) and semi-invasive (e.g., ECoG) BCIs are mainly aimed at the medical field, to solve problems in brain diseases, and cognitive dysfunction for brain injury patients. Non-invasive BCIs (e.g., EEG, MEG, PET, fMRI, and fNIRS) are currently aimed primarily at the general consumer market to augment and expand human cognitive function.

BCIs are a disruptive technology that repairs, augmenteds, expands, and extends human intelligence. It is one of the important means to achieve augmented intelligence. The purpose of augmented intelligence is to augment human intelligence and cognitive ability as an assistive technology, not to replace it. One of the original intentions of the BCIs and augmented intelligence technology is to help patients with motor nerve dysfunction. Today’s BCI technology is not only used to treat injuries and diseases, but it can also be used for game control, to help disabled people control wheelchairs, to help and improve learning, and to be used in the military field.

BCI technology has a bright future in general, especially in medical treatment and expanding human cognition. While its development is in a very infancy stage, and many potential applications based on the current BCIs will be with risks out of control. For example, deep-brain stimulation (DBS) is a BCI technology used to treat Parkinson’s diseases, severe obsessive–compulsive disorder, and severe depression, and the potential risks to use the current DBS are still with a long list, including wound infection, paresthesia, seizures, intracerebral hemorrhage, hemiplegia, cerebral infarction, and iatrogenic harms.

Although much recent progress seems very encouraging, once BCIs are mature enough for various mind-reading tasks and used in various scenarios, it is nearly impossible for individuals to keep their thoughts private, which will lead to great challenges for personal privacy and human agency. In addition, how should we interact and treat people who use BCIs to extend their memory and learning or extend their physical motor skills? Is it fair that empowered people will benefit more than those who did not use the technology? These ethical issues have attracted attention, and are just the tip of the iceberg.

The declaration
We advocate the development of human-oriented, sustainable BCIs and augmented intelligence to ensure promotion of human flourishing. Based on existing ethical considerations of BCIs, we issue the following declaration:

Privacy protection: When conducting scientific experiments and technical services of BCIs and augmented intelligence, attention should be paid to the boundaries of brain data collection and analysis. If user-related disease information, potential health information, and other privacy-related information (such as the information that users do not want to share, but obtained through BCIs) are obtained, they should be processed reasonably. Informed consent should be obtained for obtaining and using user-related private information, and appropriate mechanisms for user authorization revocation should be provided.

Identity and responsibility: recognition BCIs may affect people’s perception on the self and personal responsibility, including moral responsibility and legal responsibility (for example, when people use BCI-related equipment, due to insufficient training, absence of concentration, hacker intrusion, or equipment failure with the BCIs, they may cause harm to the external environment and other humans. These may not be the subjective wishes of users). Therefore, when applying BCI technologies, especially invasive BCIs, to the human body, it is necessary to pay close attention to the changes in users’ recognition of self, identity and responsibility, and prevent negative impact on affecting human identity and responsibility recognition.

Autonomy of decision making: BCIs and augmented intelligence devices should not be used to replace and weaken human decision-making ability when they have not fully proved that they can ensure to keep the risks below the human level. The autonomy of human decision making and judgment should be respected and maintained.

Safety and security: BCIs can cause infection, headaches, and other injuries to humans due to device implantation or interfaces with the devices. It can also be exploited due to technical loopholes or design defects of its equipment, and is prone to failure. Therefore, key techniques need to be open and transparent as necessary to reduce potential risks. The stability, safety, security, adaptability, and reliability of BCIs devices need to be continuously improved to avoid design flaws which may cause negative side effects to other human beings and the environment. Reasonable safety and security mechanisms should be gradually designed and implemented to avoid execution of possible negative intent implementation.

Informed consent: BCIs and augmented intelligent product and service providers need to clearly inform users of the potential risks of related products and services and clearly obtain user (or authorized representatives) consent. Users (or authorized representatives) have the right to suspend the use of related products and services, and related service providers (including medical) should follow the users' wishes to make the appropriate adjustments.

Accountability It should be required that the design, development, use and deployment phases of BCIs and augmented intelligence are accountable. Key technologies should be open as necessary, and the relevant part of the systems should have necessary levels of transparency, explainability, predictability. In addition, the traceability of faults and risks should be ensured.

Fairness: BCIs and augmented intelligence have the potential to enable users to gain stronger cognitive abilities. It is possible to gain a clear advantage in competition with ordinary people who do not have the financial possibilities to use these technologies. Developed areas and high-income people are more likely to obtain BCIs and augmented intelligent technologies than ordinary people in backward areas to augment their social superiority, which may widen the gap between the rich and the poor, leading to unfairness in social activities such as employment and education. Therefore, it is necessary to pay attention to the potential fairness controversy when efforts are put to obtain benefits from enhancing existing human intelligence. Attention needs to be paid to avoid bringing unfairness through introducing BCIs and augmented intelligence in the area of education, work, resource allocation and many others.

Avoiding bias: The thoughts and behaviors of those who use BCIs and augmented intelligence to repair and augmented human intelligence may be different from those who have not applied these technologies. However, no bias should be allowed against people who use BCIs and augmented intelligence. Relevant users should be fully respected. Their dignity should not be compromised, and all their due rights should be ensured.

Moderate use: Many aspects of BCIs and augmented intelligence are still in the very early stages of development, especially that the maturity of related equipment and algorithms still need to be improved. In addition, its long-term impact on humans and society is still unclear. Therefore, the use of BCIs and augmented intelligence products and services should follow the principle of moderate use. It is recommended that they should be used after careful evaluation, and should be used when necessary, so that the negative impact on humans could be minimized.

Avoid misuse: One should avoid applying related products and services without an adequate understanding of the potential negative effects of BCIs and augmented intelligence products and services. One should also avoid improper application without understanding the scope of application of related products and services.

Prohibition of abuse and malicious use: It is prohibited to abuse BCIs and augmented intelligence products and services that violate the dignity and fundamental human rights. It is prohibited to abuse related technologies to undermine social stability, trust, justice, unity and peace. It is prohibited to maliciously apply related technologies and services to engage in illegal activities or seek improper benefits. It is prohibited to use loopholes in related technologies and services to engage in illegal activities or seek improper gains. Users should not use BCIs and augmented intelligence to avoid their own responsibilities.

Multi-stakeholder governance: The ethical issues of BCIs require profound discussions, debates and long-term attention from scholars in Brain and Neuroscience, Medical Science, Artificial Intelligence, Material Science, Electrical Engineering, Philosophy, Ethics, Sociology, and many other fields. Research institutions, industries, governments and the general public need to be involved. Various countries and intergovernmental organizations should gradually establish BCIs and augmented intelligence governance frameworks and mechanisms in a democratic manner, and conduct practices and evaluations, so as to continuously support the grounding and implementation of relevant ethical principles.

Discussion
The formulation of ethical declarations and principles is only the starting point for the responsible development of BCIs and augmented intelligence. What is more essential is to implement the declarations and principles from technical and social perspectives, and establish an effective evaluation mechanism to ensure that the declarations and principles are effectively implemented as expected.

BCIs and augmented intelligence systems are not like traditional tools, such as a knife, a tool itself with very limited safety mechanisms and risk precautions (For example, a knife cannot identify potential harm for human and other living beings and assist the avoidance of them). The service providers of BCIs and augmented intelligence systems should be more accountable and take more responsibilities. Well-designed BCIs and augmented intelligence systems can have monitoring components which can be used to monitor and help avoid specific types of potential harms to others. Hence, if the users of BCIs and augmented intelligence systems intend to take actions to do harm to others (even to themselves), they should be gradually designed and implemented to be with more safety and risk precaution mechanisms to avoid the execution of possible negative intent implementation, such as do harm to others.

In the absence of ethical considerations, the development and use of BCIs and augmented intelligence will greatly reduce the public’s trust and acceptance of innovative technologies, and have potential risks that will have irreversible negative impacts on human society. Embedding ethical considerations in the full life cycle of BCIs and augmented intelligence products and services, and continuously developing and benefiting from multi-stakeholder governance can ensure the sustainable development of BCIs and augmented intelligence, and ultimately contribute to human flourishing and sustainable development of human society.

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s43681-020-00036-x


What are the two main benefits and risks of BCIs outlined in the first section?
What is the overall purpose of the declaration?
What do the authors argue is necessary beyond ethical declarations?
Are the authors confident that BCIs can be implemented in an ethical way?
Which points in the declaration are likely to be implemented in your opinion? And which aren't?


Última edición por Intruder el Miér 12 Ene 2022 - 12:43, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Jue 6 Ene 2022 - 15:44

POST FOR ANSWER
Topic 3: Activity book

4. Communication: body language

4.5. The future of language: listening and discussion

The future of language: a BBC4 podcast
Part 1: from minute 26:23 (after the music) to minute 31:36

The first part of the podcast is an interview with Professor Rajesh Rao about brain-to-brain communication. Before you listen to the interview, read this text about one of the experiments described in the interview:

What does “Vulcan mind meld” mean? What is the origin of this phrase?

Now listen to the interview and answer the following questions:

What was the main difference between the two experiments described?
In what way does the professor say that “privacy is really important”?
What is the interviewer referring to when she says, “Wouldn’t that be exhausting?”
What does the professor say about “markers” and “tags”?
According to the professor, how would brain-to-brain communication work between speakers of different languages?
When does he argue we may use normal language, as opposed to brain-to-brain communication, in the future?
Part 2: from minute 31:26 to minute 33:39
Listen to the two presenters commenting on the previous interview and answer the following questions:
Who expresses more negative feelings about brain-to-brain communication, the man or the woman?
One of the presenters says that language is “the lingerie of thought”, and compares it to “petticoats”. What do you think he means?

Part 3: from minute 33:39 to minute 39:00 (music)
You are going to listen to an interview with another professor, Finn Brunton, who talks about language and the internet. Are the following statements true or false, according to what he says? Try to correct the false statements.

Our television screens are watching us.
The term “bellyfeel” has been created recently.
Most of us know the risks of doing online searches.
Our searches are used to produce poems.
Freedom is not necessarily threatened by machines generating language.
Chess playing machines can collaborate with humans.
In the future, computers may write our emails.
A novelist’s writing style could be faithfully replicated after their death.
Prepare to discuss these questions in class:
What beneficial and harmful uses of brain-to-brain communication can you think of?
How do you feel about your internet searches being “read” by AI?


B) Read this declaration about the subject of brain-computer interfaces and answer the questions:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1XurLy1qj_XPhtBR4cnLetpvbTN6pe7-J-H4ejQVkfBQ/edit#
Declaration on the ethics of brain–computer interfaces and augmented intelligence

What are the two main benefits and risks of BCIs outlined in the first section?
What is the overall purpose of the declaration?
What do the authors argue is necessary beyond ethical declarations?
Are the authors confident that BCIs can be implemented in an ethical way?
Which points in the declaration are likely to be implemented in your opinion? And which aren't?


Última edición por Intruder el Miér 12 Ene 2022 - 12:56, editado 3 veces
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Jue 6 Ene 2022 - 15:46

21 Lessons forum (parts II, III and IV)

Due: Monday, 10 January 2022, 11:59 PM

Write a short post (no more than 200 words) commenting on an idea/argument/opinion from this part of the book that you find interesting and that you agree or disagree with.  You may also comment on somebody else's post.

You should not write a summary of the chapter(s) you're referring to. Just give your opinion about one particular aspect of Harari's arguments.

The teacher has posted an example. You may respond to it if you like.

Example:
I find Harari's views on religion rather bold and uncompromising. I think I've hardly ever come across anybody so critical of the very concept of faith. He seems to rely solely on a rational and secular approach. As an unbeliever, I find his stand appealing though perhaps too extreme. In my view the spiritual (for lack of a better word) side of human experience cannot be dismissed so easily, whatever the shortcomings of organized religion. On the other hand, he admits that some religious traditions recognize and share the secular values he describes, so on the whole I'd say his views in this regard are quite nuanced. What do you think? Feel free to disagree with me, of course!
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 11 Ene 2022 - 1:30

Intruder escribió:21 Lessons forum (parts II, III and IV)

Due: Monday, 10 January 2022, 11:59 PM

Write a short post (no more than 200 words) commenting on an idea/argument/opinion from this part of the book that you find interesting and that you agree or disagree with.  You may also comment on somebody else's post.

You should not write a summary of the chapter(s) you're referring to. Just give your opinion about one particular aspect of Harari's arguments.

The teacher has posted an example. You may respond to it if you like.

Example:
I find Harari's views on religion rather bold and uncompromising. I think I've hardly ever come across anybody so critical of the very concept of faith. He seems to rely solely on a rational and secular approach. As an unbeliever, I find his stand appealing though perhaps too extreme. In my view the spiritual (for lack of a better word) side of human experience cannot be dismissed so easily, whatever the shortcomings of organized religion. On the other hand, he admits that some religious traditions recognize and share the secular values he describes, so on the whole I'd say his views in this regard are quite nuanced. What do you think? Feel free to disagree with me, of course!

Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Miér 12 Ene 2022 - 14:58

Intruder escribió:Writing: a personal narrative

Opened: Wednesday, 15 December 2021, 12:00 AM

Due: Wednesday, 12 January 2022, 11:59 PM

A) Read this story about a case of deceptive appearances:

Story: First impressions can be deceiving.
https://www.reddit.com/r/TalesFromRetail/comments/57ny93/first_impressions_can_be_deceiving/

B) Write a similar narrative for an online forum about a time when your first impression of a person proved to be totally wrong, and about the consequences of your mistake. The tone should be informal and colloquial.

Make sure you use precise and vivid language to describe the person and the setting, and also how you and/or the other person felt.

Your story can be based on truth or totally fictional, and it should be 275-300 words long.

Sample Text:
First impressions can be deceiving

This happened years ago when I worked in an office supplies store. I was working in the pens/pencils/markers/etc. aisle from where you can see the cashiers and store entrance. We were moderately busy this night, and there were 4 or 5 customers lined up at each of the two opened cash lines.

A gentleman came into the store and made a beeline to me (I guessed he was in a bit of a rush). I noticed he was dressed impeccably: fancy tailored suit, coat, scarf, fancy watch, etc. Obviously my first impression was he must be some rich corporate type. This was reinforced when he kindly asked me for the special type of pen used to sign checks. I showed him what he needed, he thanked me. Perfectly quick, smooth, and painless customer interaction. A model customer. I got back to my work as he went to line up to pay.

Roughly a minute later, I catch him through my peripheral vision leaving the aisle adjacent to mine and heading straight for the exit. Odd. I look towards the cash line he was in. Barely moved. Uh oh. There was no way he could have paid for his item already. I went over to the aisle he came from to confirm my suspicion. Right in plain sight on the fucking shelf was the fucking empty opened package of the fucking pen I just gave to him. Ugghh. I felt personally robbed.

I reported it to the manager of course, but there was nothing we could do by that point. I guess he was too rich and self-important to wait in line and pay.

Think it was 1990. We were celebrating someone’s birthday (was it mine?) at the office. As it was getting real late, I invited some colleagues to carry on partying at  my flat, which was nearby.When the party was over everybody left but Abner, a university student who was teaching English freelance at my company at that time.As he didn’t have a car I offered to give him a ride home, so I asked him for his address. It was so far...and so late... and we had been drinking so  much....that I finally invited him to stay overnight. I can’t exactly remember now how it happened, but he settled permanently in my apartament As my company paid the rent I never asked him to share costs but he voluntarily handled the housekeeping.

Abner was something like the ideal friend to me. He was very charming  and polite, funny and confident, and we shared the same hobbies: we were very keen on  History and Politics, we loved to daytrip outside the city on weekends to visit ancient ruins, old mining  towns, colonial villages  or natural springs. We went so often to the football games at the UNAM or the Azteca, and we liked the same music and never missed any rock gig in town. Since I first met him he was going out with a cute classmate . They both were tall and thin and made a beautiful couple, while I was dating some girls to pass the time.

Coming back sooner than scheduled from a business trip, I discovered to my astonishment that Abner was leading a perverted double life every time I was away. Once I found evidence of his bizarre behaviour , I gathered the courage to call him and asked him to leave. God knows it didn’t hurt him more than me! I was amazed at how angrily he reacted, scowling at me, denying  all facts and calling my girl friend a liar. He packed and slammed the door so violently that I was afraid for a long time of being stabbed by him dressed while opening the door.

Sometime later, I told my broker the whole story, and she gaped at me and said “I really thought you  two were in a gay relationship!. When I first met you  I got a kind of crush on you and dreamt of asking you out, but when you introduced me to Abner...we  women can notice this....my dream was over....”


Corrections by
jojomojo Jue Ene 13 2022, 21:43

Abner was something like the ideal friend to me. He was very charming and polite, funny and confident, and we shared the same hobbies: we were very keen on History and Politics, we loved to take day trips outside the city on weekends to visit ancient ruins, old mining towns, colonial villages or natural springs. We often  went to the football games at the UNAM or the Azteca, and we liked the same music and never missed any rock gig in town. When I first met him he was going out with a cute classmate . They were both tall and thin and made a beautiful couple, meanwhile I was dating different girls to pass the time.

Coming back sooner than scheduled from a business trip, I discovered to my astonishment that Abner was leading a perverted double life every time I was away. Once I found evidence of his bizarre behaviour , I gathered the courage to call him and asked him to leve. God knows it hurt me more than it hurt him ! I was amazed at how angrily he reacted, scowling at me, denying all facts and calling my girl friend a liar. He packed and slammed the door so violently that I was afraid for a long time of being stabbed by him while opening the door.

Sometime later, I told my broker the whole story, and she gaped at me and said “I really thought you two were in a gay relationship!. When I first met you I got a kind of crush on you and dreamt of asking you out, but when you introduced me to Abner...we women can notice this....my dream was over....”

✅


Última edición por Intruder el Miér 19 Ene 2022 - 18:58, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Lun 17 Ene 2022 - 20:32

Activities to do by January 19

This week we're starting Topic 4, "Sustainable economy". You should do the tasks in chapters 1, 1.1 and 1.2.

As regards MyELT, there are new assignments from units 5 and 8 that you can start working on.

And of course, carry on reading 21 Lessons for the 21st Century and post your comments on the forum if you haven't done it yet.

Have a good week.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Lun 17 Ene 2022 - 20:40

Topic 4: Activity book

1. Energy poverty: listening

Watch this talk by a Kenyan expert and answer the questions in the worksheet.

"How to bring affordable, sustainable electricity to Africa | Rose M. Mutiso"



Worksheet:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Y83VbyUqXjBdM1fExqWlVNSQGN4UYyiB/view

A) Summarize what the speaker says about the three main mistakes made in trying to solve energy poverty in Africa.

B) Explain the meaning of these words and phrases by using synonyms or definitions in English. The approximate minutes in the recording are given:

1. from scratch (00:54)
2. off-grid solar (02.41 and several times later on)
3. grapple with (03:46)
4. binary threshold (04:17)
5. bumps against (06:38)
6. solicitous narrative (07:08)
7. at scale (07:52)
8. glacial pace (08:40)
9. tradeoffs (09:35)
10. either-or framing (10:36)
11. is endowed (10:48)
12. quirks (11:54)

C) Discuss:
1. Bearing in mind Rose M. Mutiso’s arguments, what role do you think rich countries
should play in solving energy poverty globally?
2. In your opinion, is solving the problem of energy poverty compatible with sustainability?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Lun 17 Ene 2022 - 20:41

Post for answers previous post:

A) Summarize what the speaker says about the three main mistakes made in trying to solve energy poverty in Africa.

B) Explain the meaning of these words and phrases by using synonyms or definitions in English. The approximate minutes in the recording are given:

1. from scratch (00:54)
2. off-grid solar (02.41 and several times later on)
3. grapple with (03:46)
4. binary threshold (04:17)
5. bumps against (06:38)
6. solicitous narrative (07:08)
7. at scale (07:52)
8. glacial pace (08:40)
9. tradeoffs (09:35)
10. either-or framing (10:36)
11. is endowed (10:48)
12. quirks (11:54)

C) Discuss:
1. Bearing in mind Rose M. Mutiso’s arguments, what role do you think rich countries
should play in solving energy poverty globally?
2. In your opinion, is solving the problem of energy poverty compatible with sustainability?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Lun 17 Ene 2022 - 22:51

Topic 4: Activity book

1. Energy poverty: listening

1.1. "The magic washing machine": listening

subtitled in spanish


no subtitles



"The magic washing machine" listening tasks
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1CulGsG4tTP1M7BX826NxT5tKHolXn5V1/view

Key
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1vzwz-6tNcEZ2_uQPHLZIFcqbDcHsJNXq/view
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 18 Ene 2022 - 0:23

Topic 4: Activity book

1. Energy poverty: listening

1.2. Green consumerism

Green consumerism text
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1XT7iybfyjGhbJ4ajnOPTuw7A8eNvcMQY/view

Green consumerism questions
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ES5uhwDe46iUp46VLIu_uDa9zUmmwHq2/view

Key
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Pna2n_T0SpcdTzeenofrFhvgBQc49ruC/view
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Miér 19 Ene 2022 - 19:05

Intruder escribió:
Intruder escribió:Writing: a personal narrative

Opened: Wednesday, 15 December 2021, 12:00 AM

Due: Wednesday, 12 January 2022, 11:59 PM

A) Read this story about a case of deceptive appearances:

Story: First impressions can be deceiving.
https://www.reddit.com/r/TalesFromRetail/comments/57ny93/first_impressions_can_be_deceiving/

B) Write a similar narrative for an online forum about a time when your first impression of a person proved to be totally wrong, and about the consequences of your mistake. The tone should be informal and colloquial.

Make sure you use precise and vivid language to describe the person and the setting, and also how you and/or the other person felt.

Your story can be based on truth or totally fictional, and it should be 275-300 words long.

Sample Text:
First impressions can be deceiving

This happened years ago when I worked in an office supplies store. I was working in the pens/pencils/markers/etc. aisle from where you can see the cashiers and store entrance. We were moderately busy this night, and there were 4 or 5 customers lined up at each of the two opened cash lines.

A gentleman came into the store and made a beeline to me (I guessed he was in a bit of a rush). I noticed he was dressed impeccably: fancy tailored suit, coat, scarf, fancy watch, etc. Obviously my first impression was he must be some rich corporate type. This was reinforced when he kindly asked me for the special type of pen used to sign checks. I showed him what he needed, he thanked me. Perfectly quick, smooth, and painless customer interaction. A model customer. I got back to my work as he went to line up to pay.

Roughly a minute later, I catch him through my peripheral vision leaving the aisle adjacent to mine and heading straight for the exit. Odd. I look towards the cash line he was in. Barely moved. Uh oh. There was no way he could have paid for his item already. I went over to the aisle he came from to confirm my suspicion. Right in plain sight on the fucking shelf was the fucking empty opened package of the fucking pen I just gave to him. Ugghh. I felt personally robbed.

I reported it to the manager of course, but there was nothing we could do by that point. I guess he was too rich and self-important to wait in line and pay.

Think it was 1990. We were celebrating someone’s birthday (was it mine?) at the office. As it was getting real late, I invited some colleagues to carry on partying at  my flat, which was nearby.When the party was over everybody left but Abner, a university student who was teaching English freelance at my company at that time.As he didn’t have a car I offered to give him a ride home, so I asked him for his address. It was so far...and so late... and we had been drinking so  much....that I finally invited him to stay overnight. I can’t exactly remember now how it happened, but he settled permanently in my apartament As my company paid the rent I never asked him to share costs but he voluntarily handled the housekeeping.

Abner was something like the ideal friend to me. He was very charming  and polite, funny and confident, and we shared the same hobbies: we were very keen on  History and Politics, we loved to daytrip outside the city on weekends to visit ancient ruins, old mining  towns, colonial villages  or natural springs. We went so often to the football games at the UNAM or the Azteca, and we liked the same music and never missed any rock gig in town. Since I first met him he was going out with a cute classmate . They both were tall and thin and made a beautiful couple, while I was dating some girls to pass the time.

Coming back sooner than scheduled from a business trip, I discovered to my astonishment that Abner was leading a perverted double life every time I was away. Once I found evidence of his bizarre behaviour , I gathered the courage to call him and asked him to leave. God knows it didn’t hurt him more than me! I was amazed at how angrily he reacted, scowling at me, denying  all facts and calling my girl friend a liar. He packed and slammed the door so violently that I was afraid for a long time of being stabbed by him dressed while opening the door.

Sometime later, I told my broker the whole story, and she gaped at me and said “I really thought you  two were in a gay relationship!. When I first met you  I got a kind of crush on you and dreamt of asking you out, but when you introduced me to Abner...we  women can notice this....my dream was over....”


Corrections by
jojomojo Jue Ene 13 2022, 21:43

Abner was something like the ideal friend to me. He was very charming and polite, funny and confident, and we shared the same hobbies: we were very keen on History and Politics, we loved to take day trips outside the city on weekends to visit ancient ruins, old mining towns, colonial villages or natural springs. We often  went to the football games at the UNAM or the Azteca, and we liked the same music and never missed any rock gig in town. When I first met him he was going out with a cute classmate . They were both tall and thin and made a beautiful couple, meanwhile I was dating different girls to pass the time.

Coming back sooner than scheduled from a business trip, I discovered to my astonishment that Abner was leading a perverted double life every time I was away. Once I found evidence of his bizarre behaviour , I gathered the courage to call him and asked him to leve. God knows it hurt me more than it hurt him ! I was amazed at how angrily he reacted, scowling at me, denying all facts and calling my girl friend a liar. He packed and slammed the door so violently that I was afraid for a long time of being stabbed by him while opening the door.

Sometime later, I told my broker the whole story, and she gaped at me and said “I really thought you two were in a gay relationship!. When I first met you I got a kind of crush on you and dreamt of asking you out, but when you introduced me to Abner...we women can notice this....my dream was over....”

✅

Jojo, 15 minutes before deadline I could not submit my narrative because there was a 300 word limit, so I needed to abridge as follows, 300 words long!

We were celebrating someone’s birthday at the office. As it was getting real late, I invited some colleagues to carry on partying at my flat, which was nearby. When the party was over everybody left but Abner, a university student who was teaching English freelance at my company at that time. As he didn’t have a car I offered to give him a ride home, so I asked him for his address. It was so far...and so late... and we had been drinking so much....that I finally invited him to stay overnight. I can’t exactly remember now how it happened, but he settled permanently in my apartament.

Abner was the ideal friend to me. He was very charming and polite, funny and confident, and we shared the same hobbies: we were very keen on History and Politics, we loved to go out on weekends to visit ancient ruins, old mining towns, colonial villages or natural springs. We often went to the football games, we liked the same music and never missed any rock gig in town. He was going out with a cute classmate and they made a beautiful couple, while I was dating some girls to pass the time.

Coming back sooner than scheduled from a business trip, I discovered to my astonishment that Abner was leading a perverted double life every time I was away. Once I found evidence of his bizarre behaviour, I gathered the courage to ask him to leave. God knows it hurt me more than it hurt him! I was amazed at how angrily he reacted, scowling at me, denying all facts and calling my girl friend a liar. He packed and slammed the door so violently that I was afraid for a long time of being stabbed by him while opening the door.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Miér 19 Ene 2022 - 19:09

And here are some feedback comments and corrections from teacher...

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Decept10

I've got A grade! Million thanks jojo, you're the Queen!
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 25 Ene 2022 - 22:20

Activities to do by January 26

This week you should do the tasks from chapters 1.6, 1.7 and 1.8 of the Topic 4 activity book.

You should also carry on reading 21 Lessons and doing the assignments on MyELT.

Have a good week.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 25 Ene 2022 - 22:26

Topic 4: Activity book

1. Energy poverty: listening

1.6. "How I fell in love with a fish"

1. Watch the video and do the activities in the worksheet:



"How I fell in love with a fish" worksheet
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1MafRrzdIJElgaGwxit2LGNsZf-deStsm/view

Key
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1roTKtETkKzqlD1zf9qOMvVAIqvAPewke/view

2. Prepare to discuss these questions:

a. Do you think that Miguel's farming ideas could be exported elsewhere?

b. Is this type of farm the answer to the global food problem?


Última edición por Intruder el Miér 26 Ene 2022 - 1:36, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 25 Ene 2022 - 22:27

Post for answers previous post

2. Prepare to discuss these questions:

a. Do you think that Miguel's farming ideas could be exported elsewhere?

b. Is this type of farm the answer to the global food problem?


Última edición por Intruder el Miér 26 Ene 2022 - 1:37, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 25 Ene 2022 - 22:28

Topic 4: Activity book

1. Energy poverty: listening

1.7. The carbon dividend: reading

Read the following text and do the activities on the worksheet:
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/jan/05/simple-way-green-economy-cash-prizes-carbon-dividend
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1uR0lrjwBb9fZnohM-N8kl6tU47ue7Y0m/view

"There's a simple way to green the economy --and it involves cash prizes"
Henry D Jacoby
The ‘carbon dividend’ is so elegant that it seems too good to be true.
Governments should make it a post-pandemic priority

Over the past year – when societies around the world have had to grapple with their
greatest challenge in decades – climate change hasn’t been at the top of the agenda. But
that doesn’t mean it’s gone away. Far from it – in fact, we just experienced the hottest
September in 141 years, and extreme warmth recorded in the Arctic continues a disturbing
trend. When the focus turns back to this ongoing existential threat, hopefully we’ll have
learned some lessons from the pandemic about what can be achieved when imaginative
thinking is brought to bear.

Our approach towards tackling the climate crisis is necessarily going to be multipronged.
But one powerful tool is that of a carbon tax. So far, however, only a few nations have taken
this route. Why?

First of all, how do taxes on carbon work? Basically, they penalize fossil fuels for the CO2
emitted when they’re burned, and in doing so offer a two-part advantage compared with
other measures. They make non-polluting industries and products more competitive, and
yield a flow of revenue that can be used to calm opposition to emissions reduction.

Weaning our economies off fossil energy involves making it less financially attractive. In
market economies, most personal and business decisions are driven by prices, and
wherever a fossil fuel is the cheapest source, and not forbidden, it will continue to dominate.
Not only that, but fossil energy is a determined adversary, ploughing money back into
research and development designed to push costs down so it can remain competitive, even
as renewables become cheaper. A price penalty on fossil emissions counteracts this.

There are several ways to raise the prices of coal, oil and natural gas. For example, you can
build a tax-and-trade system, which limits total emissions but encourages emitters to trade
their carbon allowances. It’s simpler, however, to just tax fossil fuels when they’re burned, as
it sends a clear price signal to the market, which a variable trading price doesn’t. At the
moment, taxes on fossil energy are collected across the supply chain, from the point of
production, as with US state severance taxes, to final sale, as with gasoline taxes in many
countries. It’s messy.

For environmental effectiveness, and ease of collection, carbon taxes are best imposed at
the earliest point you can: the wellhead or the mine mouth, the refinery output gate, or the
port of entry for imports. That way, the incentive to reduce emissions spreads down through
the economy. For example, a US tax of $50 per metric tonne of CO2 would raise the price of
oil leaving the Texas oil patch by about $21 a barrel, and increase prices throughout the
country for motor fuel and products made using oil-based energy. This would percolate
down to your local store: environmentally friendly goods would become relatively less
expensive, and carbon-intensive ones would be pricier.

So, if taxes on carbon are so effective, why aren’t they more widely used? Well, perhaps it’s
because of the associations we all have with the “T” word. Tax is when you take money
away – from businesses, and once that feeds through into prices, from individuals. No one
likes the idea of having less money. Then there are those who argue that adding taxes hurts
the economy as a whole. Yes, this ignores the fact that any tax would be less damaging to
GDP than the effects of climate change, which is having devastating impacts. But the
short-termism built into the economic status quo makes that hard to appreciate.

Yes – no one really likes taxes. They’re unpleasant to contemplate, and a hard sell,
politically. But what if there was a way all of that could be neutralised? A small but
imaginative policy tweak that rendered raising the price of CO2 pollution not a tax, but a gift?

There are many ways to manage the proceeds from a carbon tax. It doesn’t have to simply
disappear into government coffers. And that’s the secret: it’s possible to design systems that
achieve what is called revenue neutrality – where every dollar taken in tax is returned to
people’s pockets. One version of this idea would send the revenue to the public as a
per-capita carbon dividend, in an annual check.

For example, in 2020 a $50 per metric tonne CO2 tax would return each US household an
annual dividend somewhere between $1,500 and $2,000. That’s more than the pandemic
stimulus checks distributed to most US taxpayers in light of the extreme economic situation.
And yet it would come every year.

But what’s the point of collecting a tax if you just give the proceeds back? It all comes down
to incentives. The tax part of this arrangement would make carbon-intensive goods less
attractive, and green ones more so. Environmentally friendly businesses would thrive.
Polluting businesses would be incentivised to make their operations less damaging, driving
green innovation in the process. Gradually, via the millions of consumer choices made every
day, the economy would shift on to a more sustainable footing.

The dividend part would not only make millions of people happy – who doesn’t like receiving
a check in the mail? – it would have a social impact. Even when you factor in the increased
cost of energy and other goods, all but the highest income groups – those who consume the
most carbon-intense goods and services – would come out ahead, with the lowest income
group benefiting most of all. This result should be especially welcome in the wake of the
Covid-19 pandemic, which has imposed the harshest penalties on the least advantaged
communities and cast a harsh light on underlying disparities in income and wealth.

There are other revenue-neutral designs, but they’re not as good – one proposal, for
example, involves a tax swap. Carbon tax revenue could be used to lower a tax on labor, like
the payroll tax. But this would be less favorable than a direct rebate to lower-income
households. Cutting a corporate tax as part of a tax swap on the other hand, would favor
wealthier income groups.

A carbon dividend feels like a novel, unusual idea. There certainly aren’t many directly
comparable fiscal mechanisms in place. But if now isn’t the time to try bold new solutions –
when we’ve seen that governments can move mountains in the right circumstances – then
when is? And though it looks radical, the dividend really is just a rather elegant solution to a
major problem, which neatly circumvents many of the usual political objections to increased
taxation. It might even be the first highly popular tax.

Moving market-oriented economies off fossil energy is going to be a long and difficult
struggle. Funds will also have to be found to ease the burden of the energy transition in
fossil-dependent parts of the economy, helping displaced workers and supporting the
communities where they live. But marshaling the power of the price system to rebalance the
whole economy away from carbon-intensive industries – while supporting those on lower
incomes – seems like a wonderful place to start.

• Henry D Jacoby is emeritus professor of management at MIT and former codirector of the MIT joint program on
the science and policy of global change
Gary Yohe and Richard Richels contributed to the preparation of this article


https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/jan/05/simple-way-green-economy-cash-prizes-carbon-dividend

Worksheet
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1KrC3NbpkRUBRHCE9OPzoEHAKS1i_3S1C/view

“There’s a simple way to green the economy” worksheet

1. Answer the questions according to what the text says. Paraphrase, rather than quote the exact words used in the text.

a. What are the main advantages of carbon taxes?
b. What is the main disadvantage of the tax-and-trade system?
c. Is it better to tax emissions at their origin, or to tax the end product?
d. What’s the main advantage of the per-capita carbon dividend as opposed to carbon
taxes?
e. Who would benefit most from the per-capita carbon dividend?
f. What’s the disadvantage of a tax swap?
g. Why is now a good time to try to set up a carbon dividend?
h. What else, apart from a carbon dividend, will be necessary to move the economy
away from fossil fuels?

2. Try to guess the meaning of the words in bold in the text, or find a
definition in a dictionary if you can’t.

3. Discuss:
Which do you think is the more effective way to support renewable energy, carbon taxes or a
carbond dividend?
Can you think of any other ways to support a green economy?


Última edición por Intruder el Miér 26 Ene 2022 - 2:07, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 25 Ene 2022 - 22:29

Post for answers previous post:

“There’s a simple way to green the economy” worksheet

1. Answer the questions according to what the text says. Paraphrase, rather than quote the exact words used in the text.

a. What are the main advantages of carbon taxes?
b. What is the main disadvantage of the tax-and-trade system?
c. Is it better to tax emissions at their origin, or to tax the end product?
d. What’s the main advantage of the per-capita carbon dividend as opposed to carbon
taxes?
e. Who would benefit most from the per-capita carbon dividend?
f. What’s the disadvantage of a tax swap?
g. Why is now a good time to try to set up a carbon dividend?
h. What else, apart from a carbon dividend, will be necessary to move the economy
away from fossil fuels?

2. Try to guess the meaning of the words in bold in the text, or find a
definition in a dictionary if you can’t.

3. Discuss:
Which do you think is the more effective way to support renewable energy, carbon taxes or a
carbond dividend?
Can you think of any other ways to support a green economy?


Última edición por Intruder el Miér 26 Ene 2022 - 2:09, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 25 Ene 2022 - 22:29

Topic 4: Activity book

1. Energy poverty: listening

1.8. Food: listening

Extra listening: Jackie Savitz, "Save the oceans, feed the world



Prepare to discuss this question:

Which solution to the food problem is more feasible in your opinion, the one proposed in this video, or the one in "How I fell in love with a fish"?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Miér 26 Ene 2022 - 2:50

Post for answer previous post

Prepare to discuss this question:

Which solution to the food problem is more feasible in your opinion, the one proposed in this video, or the one in "How I fell in love with a fish"?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Vie 28 Ene 2022 - 20:08

Activities to do by February 2

Apart from carrying on reading 21 Lessons and working on MyELT, you need to do the following from Topic 4:

-Do the tasks from chapters 2.1, 2.2 and 2.3 of the activity book.

-Check the instructions to do the oral presentation assignment. The deadline for this assignment is February 16.

I've been sending you private messages about language problems on the 21 Lessons forum. If you haven't done it yet, correct the mistakes I pointed out by posting a reply on the same forum.

Have a good week.

Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Vie 28 Ene 2022 - 20:16

Topic 4: Activity book

2. Economic problems: speaking

2.1. "Breadline kids": listening and reading

1.Watch the video up to minute 12:04



and answer the following questions about the two Scottish families that appear in them::

a. What situation is each family in? What are the reasons?
b. What resources does each family survive on?
b. What are the consequences for the children in each case? How do they feel?
c. What are the consequences for the adults in these families? How do they try to cope?

2. Browse this document, paying special attention to the graphs in it (to see them you need to click on "Full article"). You don't need to read the document in detail, just skim through the page for the basic data.

Child poverty: Eurostat statistics explained
https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php?title=Children_at_risk_of_poverty_or_social_exclusion#Children_growing_up_in_poverty_and_social_exclusion

Answer this question: What are the main factors that lead to a higher risk of poverty and social exclusion in children?

3. Select at least five words or phrases that you've learnt from the segments you have watched. Use subtitles when necessary but bear in mind this is a challenging video because of the accents, and the automatic subtitles are often wrong as a result.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Vie 28 Ene 2022 - 20:18

Post for answers previous post:

answer the following questions about the two Scottish families that appear in them::

a. What situation is each family in? What are the reasons?
b. What resources does each family survive on?
b. What are the consequences for the children in each case? How do they feel?
c. What are the consequences for the adults in these families? How do they try to cope?

2. Browse this document, paying special attention to the graphs in it (to see them you need to click on "Full article"). You don't need to read the document in detail, just skim through the page for the basic data.

Child poverty: Eurostat statistics explained
https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php?title=Children_at_risk_of_poverty_or_social_exclusion#Children_growing_up_in_poverty_and_social_exclusion

Answer this question: What are the main factors that lead to a higher risk of poverty and social exclusion in children?

3. Select at least five words or phrases that you've learnt from the segments you have watched. Use subtitles when necessary but bear in mind this is a challenging video because of the accents, and the automatic subtitles are often wrong as a result.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Vie 28 Ene 2022 - 20:39

Topic 4: Activity book

2. Economic problems: speaking

2.2. Financial inequalities: reading comprehension

Covid-19 further exposes inequalities in the global financial system text
https://drive.google.com/file/d/15dZTq4pNqtBuzy53TO5AKW26vGe6hLVy/view

COVID-19 further exposes inequalities in the global financial system
December 16, 2020 12.20am AEDT
Ramya Vijaya
Professor of Economics, Stockton University

To stem the economic fallout from COVID-19, developed countries have injected an
unprecedented US$9 trillion into their economies.

The International Monetary Fund has recommended sustained fiscal support, emphasizing
greater spending on health care and environmental protection projects.

Meanwhile, countries in the “global south” – broadly, low- and middle-income countries in
Latin America, Asia and Africa – face more dire circumstances. They don’t have the ability to
inject that level of cash into their economies.

And it’s not only because their economies are poorer.

As an economics professor, I focus on the systemic inequalities in the global financial system
that block such access in developing economies.

With a greater public awareness of soaring inequality within countries, it is also important to
recognize the deep imbalances across the global financial system.

Inaccessible financing

Fiscal support in developed economies is often financed by deficit spending and government
borrowing. Countries like the United States finance a major part of deficits by borrowing from
companies and central banks within their own countries. Such borrowing remains in the
countries’ own currency, making them less risky.

The fiscal deficit in advanced economies – a group of 39 nations including the U.S., European
countries and Japan – is projected to expand to 14.4% in 2020 from 3.3% in 2019, according to
the IMF.

This deficit financing is practically inaccessible to developing economies, given the extreme
inequalities in global wealth. These nations secure most of their deficit financing through
lending from multilateral agencies like the International Monetary Fund. Or they borrow
dollars in international capital markets. They then have to pay back the debt in dollars, which
makes the loans more expensive if the value of their own currency drops.

Not all debt is equal

During the 2008 financial crisis, the limited availability of multilateral lending forced
low-income countries – particularly in Africa – to fund recovery efforts and infrastructure
expansion by borrowing dollars in private markets.

Caribbean nations also relied on private loans to recover from the financial crisis and multiple
hurricanes.

To reimburse these loans, low-income countries depend on money they make from the
exportation of raw materials, or commodities, and tourism, which are paid in U.S. dollars.

Dependence on the sale of commodities, an outcome of trade patterns established by the
European colonization of the global south in the 19th century, is often associated with
economic instability.

The 2014 crash in commodities prices, for example, caused big declines in dollar earnings in
the global south. It also led to a fall in the currency values of commodities exporters.

Consequently, interest payments and the value of dollar-denominated debt increased in
countries like Ghana and Mozambique. The commodities crash also increased debt burdens in
such countries as Brazil and Mexico. Facing a sudden devaluation of their currencies and lower
export earnings, many countries had to borrow more to continue to service previous loans.

Payments on external debt as a percentage of government revenues also ballooned.

Though low-income economies borrow less compared with their GDPs – an estimate of the
value of the goods produced by their economies – payment burdens are greater because most
payments are external and have to be made in dollars.

Ghana’s debt-to-GDP ratio in 2018, for example, was 59.3% compared with 90.5% for the
United States. As a group, the debt-to-GDP ratio in low-income economies – usually defined as
countries with per capita income of less than $1,000 – averaged about 20%, according to the
IMF. That compares with 105% in advanced economies. These numbers contradict the view
that low-income countries tend to overborrow.

Yet because of exchange rate risks and dollar payments, Ghana’s ratio of external payments to
revenue, for example, rose from 10% in 2014 to 40% in 2018.

These rising ratios also led to downgrades in credit ratings by private rating agencies and
classifications of high risk status by the IMF’s Debt Sustainability Framework.

Critics have denounced the Debt Sustainability Framework for focusing on payment capacity
and viewing all debt equally. They say that the IMF should distinguish between debt that is
wasteful, such as recurring administrative expenses, and debt that funds crucial infrastructure,
health and climate crisis projects.

Meanwhile, ratings downgrades led to higher costs for the new loans, as lenders sought higher
rates to mitigate greater perceived risk.

This, in turn, set off a new cycle of higher debt burdens.

Calls for debt relief

Amid COVID-19, key dollar-earning sectors in developing countries – tourism, commodities
exports and remittances – are projected to take deep hits. Group of 30, a research forum of
prominent economists, expects a $150 billion decline for low-income countries.

This has set off another wave of credit rating downgrades that will make borrowing
prohibitively expensive.

The African Peer Review Mechanism, a panel set up by the African Union, recently protested
these downgrades for blocking efforts to mobilize fiscal resources amid the pandemic.
In Morocco, for example, the credit rating downgrade may force the government to scrap plans
to expand health care spending during the pandemic.

So while advanced countries have spent about 8% of GDP on recovery efforts in 2020,
low-income countries have managed an average of 1.4% of GDP. And only 0.6% of GDP has
been spent in the health sector, according to the IMF.

Amid the pandemic, some economists have called for debt relief and an expanded allocation of
the IMF’s global reserve currency unit, known as Special Drawing Rights.

Proposed expansions of Special Drawing Rights would be allocated to each member country of
the IMF. That would allow increased access to a global currency unit and therefore reduce the
need for dollar earnings.

I believe such measures are a necessary corrective to the disparate burdens and systemic
inequalities in the global financial system.

https://theconversation.com/covid-19-further-exposes-inequalities-in-the-global-financial-system-150792


Worksheet
https://drive.google.com/file/d/17pWnkTPrObTyDUi9zt9rCiXxFtYQM-Lf/view

A) True or false? Correct the statements that are false according to
the text

1. The International Monetary Fund is against governments injecting cash into
economies to deal with COVID-19.

2. Due to the pandemic, all countries are having to borrow money from the IMF in order
to finance their spending.

3. One reason why low and middle income countries have difficulty repaying their debt
is a fall in their currency values.

4. The global south has a stable source of dollars thanks to tourism and the sale of
commodities.

5. It is only partially true to say that low-income countries are more in debt than
high-income ones.

6. There is a consensus that the IMF’s Debt Sustainability Framework helps low income
countries invest in infrastructure.

7. Rating agencies have made it more difficult for low income countries to fight the
pandemic.

8. The author of this article believes that the IMF could help solve inequalities in the
global financial system.

B) Underline difficult words/phrases in the text and look them up in a
monolingual dictionary. In class, compare which vocabulary you
looked up with your partners and check that you agree about its
meaning.

C) Discuss:
What other inequalities is the pandemic creating? What should be
done to correct them?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Sáb 29 Ene 2022 - 1:58

Post for answers previous post

Worksheet
https://drive.google.com/file/d/17pWnkTPrObTyDUi9zt9rCiXxFtYQM-Lf/view

A) True or false? Correct the statements that are false according to
the text

1. The International Monetary Fund is against governments injecting cash into
economies to deal with COVID-19.

2. Due to the pandemic, all countries are having to borrow money from the IMF in order to finance their spending.

3. One reason why low and middle income countries have difficulty repaying their debt is a fall in their currency values.

4. The global south has a stable source of dollars thanks to tourism and the sale of commodities.

5. It is only partially true to say that low-income countries are more in debt than
high-income ones.

6. There is a consensus that the IMF’s Debt Sustainability Framework helps low income countries invest in infrastructure.

7. Rating agencies have made it more difficult for low income countries to fight the pandemic.

8. The author of this article believes that the IMF could help solve inequalities in the global financial system.

B) Underline difficult words/phrases in the text and look them up in a
monolingual dictionary. In class, compare which vocabulary you
looked up with your partners and check that you agree about its
meaning.

C) Discuss:
What other inequalities is the pandemic creating? What should be
done to correct them?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Lun 7 Feb 2022 - 20:36

Topic 4: Activity book

2. Economic problems: speaking

2.3. "Can business be sustainable?": reading

Read the text and do the task:

Can business be sustainable?
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1KapbaFv5inOShTMsrkuwqln9Gu6LzcAO/view

Can business be sustainable?

1 Derek Morrison
Environmentalist

There’s an inherent contradiction in the idea of sustainable business. Why? Because nine
times out of ten the interests of business, namely profit, are directly at odds with the interests
of the planet. Farming organically and unintensively gives lower yields. Green energy is
almost always more expensive. Buying from fairtrade certified suppliers significantly
increases costs. Of course, companies are not insensitive to the popular appeal of sustainable
goods, but they know that ultimately the average household cannot afford them. So they
declare their commitment to sustainability (what we in the environmental movement call
‘greenwash’), knowing full well that the benefit of the concessions they make to the
environment is marginal. ‘For each $100 you spend with our airline, we’ll plant a tree’; ‘Use
this de-icer on your car; it uses 25 percent less rock salt than regular de-icers’; ‘Buy a plastic
shopping bag for life’. My issue with this is not that it is disingenuous, but rather that the
wrong motive is informing their actions. Companies shouldn’t be asking ‘How can we make
more profit from parading our sustainable credentials?’ If they truly care about the planet,
they should be asking ‘How can my business help the environment?’

2 Jane Samuels
Business Analyst

Well, there are two types of sustainability: sustainable in the original and strict sense where
you use resources in a way that doesn’t deplete them. But there is another sense that has
gained traction in recent years and that is the idea that ‘sustainable’ applies to any business
activity that is socially beneficial and worthy. Often these two definitions get mixed together
or blurred, which is not necessarily a bad thing. A good example is the Same Café in Denver,
a public-spirited restaurant with the philosophy that everyone deserves the chance to eat
healthily regardless of their ability to pay. Instead of having a pre-priced menu, each
customer of Same decides what they’re able to pay for their food: if you can afford to, you
pay more; if you can’t, you pay less; and if you have no money, you can volunteer to help out
at the café for an hour in exchange for your meal. The ingredients they source are fresh, local
and organic, so in that sense, the business model fits the original definition of ‘sustainable’,
but its real aim – to build a healthy community – goes beyond that. I think that’s a laudable
aim.

3 Ellie Rickman
Economist
I think the bigger question is: Is it possible to have a sustainable business operating within a
society or economic system that’s largely unsustainable? Whatever you do, there’s always
some part of the chain that’s less sustainable. If you make children’s toys from recycled and
eco-friendly materials and you package them for sale in recycled cardboard, that’s all well
and good. But you still have to use electricity to produce them. And if you take your business
international, you’re going to have to ship the toys by road and air. It’s never straightforward.
But don’t get me wrong. I don’t think people should be criticized for trying. In Brighton,
where I live, there’s a company that sells mushrooms grown in used coffee grounds that they
collect from coffee shops. That waste, albeit organic, would otherwise have been thrown into
the bin and not put to any good use at all. Small acts, as they say, can change the world.
(Keynote Proficient SB, p. 91)

Task
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1QWTqHacS2AGc-ymv5Lek3YBggiqEoGFy/view

Key
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1MspN-ksCWT_dWNyrFGng5pEfPQ_1DG_j/view
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Lun 7 Feb 2022 - 22:28

Activities to do by February 9

This week you should do chapters 2.8, 2.9 and 2.10 of the Topic 4 activity book, as well as the activities on MyELT.

You should carry on reading 21 Lessons, too. I'm not setting any new activities for now (though the forum is still open so you can still post a comment there if you haven't done so yet). However, ideally you should have finished the book by the end of this term, since there'll be a final task later on.

Remember that the deadline for the presentation assignment is February 16.

Have a good week.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Lun 7 Feb 2022 - 22:48

Topic 4: Activity book
2. Economic problems: speaking

2.8. UK housing crisis: vocabulary cloze

Read the text and do the task:

UK housing crisis
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1XyPbmDEOdTXtSbPG96mpiZs-kNUWnFQ3pq3wh4S0wfM/edit

Read this article and fill in the gaps with these words and phrases:

A. accounting for
B. crack down on
C. cut back on
D. in dire straits
E. into the long grass
F.  on its knees
G. out of bags
H. ramp up  
I. redress
J. rough sleeping


One in three adults in Britain ‘do not have a safe or secure home’
A new study shows ‘deep inequalities’ in the UK housing crisis caused by ‘decades of neglect’ from housing ministers.

HANNAH WESTWATER
26 May 2021

A “decade of neglect” has pulled as many as 22 million people into the UK housing crisis, new research has revealed.

One in three adults in Britain do not have a safe or secure home, the survey of 13,000 Brits by charity Shelter showed, with “deep inequalities” meaning Black people are 70 per cent more likely to be affected by the housing crisis than white people.

The findings come as “no surprise” after a “decade of neglect and failure by ministers on housing,” said Lucy Powell MP, Labour’s shadow housing secretary.

“The pandemic has shown the deep inequalities in our housing system, with those in insecure, overcrowded homes more at risk of the health and economic impacts of the crisis including many who were previously able to  keep up with their housing costs, but through no fault of their own are now__________ (1),” she added.

“Instead of an ambitious plan to deal with the housing emergency, ministers are weakening protections for people with Covid-related rent arrears, kicking renters rights and social housing reform   __________ (2), and diluting measures to build more affordable homes to rent and buy.”

A spokesperson for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government said: “It is unacceptable for people to live in unsafe accommodation,” adding that the government is “providing over £750 million this year alone to tackle homelessness and _________ (3) and investing over £12 billion in affordable housing”.

More than half (54 per cent) of people with a significant disability – 1.8 million UK adults – live in poor or overcrowded housing, struggle to cover rent on their incomes or have faced discrimination when trying to secure a home, compared to 30 per cent of people without a disability.

Shelter said the survey of 13,000 people used eight criteria to determine if someone’s housing circumstances could be considered “safe and secure”, including the affordability of their home, if it is unsuitable for their needs or in need of repair, and if they have experienced discrimination because of their race, gender, disability or sexuality. Shelter partnered with YouGov to carry out the research as well as analysing the government’s latest homelessness data.

“I pay good money for this place – I can’t afford a big food shop anymore. I really have to watch how I eat,” said Krystalrose, a 27-year-old single mother who was pulled into homelessness when pregnant and lived in a hostel before moving into her current home. Up to 65 per cent of single mums – _________ (4) one million adults – did not have a safe or secure home compared to 37 per cent of two-parent households.

“I thought for the amount of money it was going to be a proper home. I’ve tried to make it feel like one, but it’s not. The mould has ruined my daughter’s cot and all our clothes. We’re living _________ (5). “I’m asthmatic and we have both become ill because of it. It’s just been about coping. I’m on antidepressants now because of the stress.

“All I want is a home where we can feel safe and comfortable. The simple things like a wardrobe to pack your clothes away, a living room with a sofa to sit on, not having to share a bedroom. My daughter doesn’t know what that feels like. It’s like our lives can’t mover forward.

Nearly a quarter (23 per cent) of those surveyed, equivalent to 11.8 million people in the population, live in homes with major damp and mould problems, or struggle to keep them warm in winter.

People earning less than £20,000 per year were 70 per cent more likely to have housing problems compared to households earning £40-£45,000 per year, meaning 4.7 million adults on low incomes did not have safe or secure homes.

Four million people said they were regularly forced to _________ (6) essentials such as food and heating to pay rent or mortgage costs. The same number of people reported feeling worried they could be evicted.

Nearly half (49 per cent) of bisexual people and two-fifths (40 per cent) of gay or lesbian people were impacted by the housing crisis, compared to 32 per cent of heterosexual people.

“Decades of neglect have left Britain’s housing system _________ (7),” said Polly Neate, chief executive of Shelter. “A safe home is everything, yet millions don’t have one. Lives are being ruined by benefit cuts, blatant discrimination and the total failure to build social homes.”

The government must _________ (8) house building efforts to create 90,000 good-quality new social homes each year if it is to tackle the “unaffordable, unfit, unstable and discriminatory” housing system.

“Shelter believes a safe home is a human right, but the pain and desperation our frontline staff see every day shows this is still a long way off,” Neate added.

“That’s why we are fighting for the single mum who has to put her child to bed in a room covered in mould, and the disabled man living on the twelfth floor with a broken lift. We are fighting for everyone impacted by the housing emergency – and as we emerge from the pandemic, we want the public and politicians to do the same.”

The MHCLG spokesperson said: “It is unacceptable for people to live in unsafe accommodation and that is why we have given councils stronger tools to _________ (9) rogue landlords, including fines of up to £30,000 and banning orders.

“We’ve also announced major reforms to support tenants, including our Charter for Social Housing Residents, that will provide greater _________ (10) for residents, better regulation and improve the quality of homes.”

https://www.bigissue.com/news/housing/one-in-three-adults-in-britain-do-not-have-a-safe-or-secure-home/


Key
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1v0lKJQGMRm9Ktl3pMeJ_td6bWHND107jUcr9bSK1Oao/edit
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 8 Feb 2022 - 1:10

Topic 4: Activity book

2. Economic problems: speaking

2.9. The Collective: listening and speaking

Watch a video about "The Collective", a co-living business, and do the activities:

Video
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1OlSi4GBm140MZZBlK5Pfe90HOMbMq4v4/view

Activities
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1EjCcpB2v6Ua1PbGKjSoaYrFqWFGWwCCRrE2Rrxj4ZEc/edit
TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Tema_411
TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Tema_412
TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Tema_413

Key
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1FiktpUGGYrI9Nwo5Fi64UT3BqrGvBzYCeKEXalPTMos/edit


Última edición por Intruder el Mar 8 Feb 2022 - 1:36, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 8 Feb 2022 - 1:27

Post for answers previous post


Última edición por Intruder el Mar 8 Feb 2022 - 13:17, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 8 Feb 2022 - 1:29

Topic 4: Activity book

2. Economic problems: speaking

2.10. Sharing economy: speaking and listening

A) Introduction: Co-living

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Tema_410


B) Watch these three videos and answer the questions below:

Video 1:




Video 2 (watch the first 4 minutes only):




Video 3:




Questions:
1. What are the similarities and differences between these housing schemes?
2. Which of the co-housing arrangements in the videos is the best in your opinion? Why?
3. What down sides to co-living do you think the people in the videos might eventually experience?
4. Have you come across similar co-housing schemes where you live? Are they similar to the ones shown in the videos?
5. Would you ever consider co-living for yourself? Why?


Última edición por Intruder el Mar 8 Feb 2022 - 13:17, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 8 Feb 2022 - 13:15

Post for answers previous post:

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Tema_410
1) Have you ever experienced a "co-living" situation, for example a flat share or a dormitory. How was it?
Of course I have experienced many flat shares, but all of them happened long time ago when I was single. This question sounds funny to me because I took one of these experiences to write the personal narrative post about "First impressions can be deceiving". So this may give you a clue about my degree of satisfaction.
Overall, I’m happy to have experienced all these co-living situations, because you can`t really swear you know anybody if you have never lived with him or her. So, I regard them as steps in my human educational process.

2) What facilities and services would you want in a co-living space for you to feel comfortable living there?
I’d like to find there a dining place where to prepare and have your meals. I would also need laundry service. A room cleaning service would be much appreciated. Vending machines. Wi-Fi. Gym facilities. Outdoor spaces like a garden or an attic. Parking.
How much private space would you need , and what parts of a home could you share with others?
Assuming I would be living there as a single or a posted worker I would be happy to have a self contained room with a kitchenette and small refrigerator as well a microowen, and a small private bathroom. I could share every other area or service with others
3) Consider a target group of young  single urban professionals who can’t afford their own flat. What facilities and services would they need?

A self contained furnished room with kitchenette and bathroom
Free Wi-Fi
Laundry service
Room cleaning service
Dining area
Vending machines
Gym
Outdoor spaces to socialize: Garden or an attic.
Parking



B) Watch these three videos and answer the questions below:

Questions:
1. What are the similarities and differences between these housing schemes?
They are similar because they are all based on a mix of private and shared spaces. The main difference lie s on the core target. Behind the australian co-housing there is a main economical target, which is cutting down the cost of living. Of course there are other side goals, but not so important. You can notice it because this kind of residents won’t stay there for long, they just pay a rent.
There is also a cost saving idea on the grounds of the british co-housings, but this is not the core target. What matters the most is to fight the solitude and isolation that comes with old ages. It`s kind of  “let´s stick together” or “stronger together”
Another difference is that the australian co-housing is run like a business while the others are managed in a cooperative way.

2. Which of the co-housing arrangements in the videos is the best in your opinion? Why?
I wouldn’t say there’s a best one since I think they all cater for different needs and they all seem to be succesful, according to their coverage by the media.
3. What downsides to co-living do you think the people in the videos might eventually experience?
I guess you won’t make the most of your experience If you don’t get on well with people
4. Have you come across similar co-housing schemes where you live? Are they similar to the ones shown in the videos?
I remember living in “casas de huéspedes” run by a lady owner, where I rented a room and had access to shared services and areas, like dining room, kitchen and bathroom. There were very few people living there compared with the places in the videos, so they’re not really similar.
5. Would you ever consider co-living for yourself?
Of course, I can figure out such a situation. Just imagine you have to move to a distant city because you have succeeded in getting a job there. A place like the australian co-living would be the perfect spot to settle down quickly, because otherwise it is hard and it takes time either to find the right place to be on your own, or to find the right partner to share.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Jue 10 Feb 2022 - 13:27

Oral presentation: an economic problem

Prepare a 5-minute-long talk, preferably on video, about an economic problem that affects your country or the world. You need to do the following:

1. Research the topic but don't copy large chunks of text from your sources. Rephrase them instead.

2. Structure your talk in a clear and coherent way. You might find the phrases in the attachment useful.

3. Make sure you use a range of appropriate vocabulary.

4. Check the pronunciation of new words beforehand.

5. Rehearse the talk before you record it, so that you can speak with natural intonation (NOT as if you're reading out a text in front of you).

6. Keep to the time limit. The possible recording time has been set to 10 minutes so that nobody has problems if their presentation is slightly longer than 5, but anything after minute 6 won't be assessed.

The deadline is February 16.

Click on the link belonging to record or upload your presentation:

This is an assessment assignment.

18:30 group

Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 15 Feb 2022 - 14:59

Intruder escribió:Oral presentation: an economic problem

Prepare a 5-minute-long talk, preferably on video, about an economic problem that affects your country or the world. You need to do the following:

1. Research the topic but don't copy large chunks of text from your sources. Rephrase them instead.

2. Structure your talk in a clear and coherent way. You might find the phrases in the attachment useful.

3. Make sure you use a range of appropriate vocabulary.

4. Check the pronunciation of new words beforehand.

5. Rehearse the talk before you record it, so that you can speak with natural intonation (NOT as if you're reading out a text in front of you).

6. Keep to the time limit. The possible recording time has been set to 10 minutes so that nobody has problems if their presentation is slightly longer than 5, but anything after minute 6 won't be assessed.

The deadline is February 16.

Click on the link belonging to record or upload your presentation:

This is an assessment assignment.

18:30 group



HOUSING

Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen

The topic of my presentation today is A SUSTAINABLE HOUSING SOLUTION FOR SPAIN

Since I was a teen I’ve been constantly listening to complains about how difficult it is to have affordable access to housing property in Spain.

And this makes me wonder, why are we still facing today the same issues we have experienced in the last 3 decades?

My main goal today is to share with you a succesful experience developed in another country.....half a century ago!

But first of all, let me take you back in time, to remind you of the infamous housing bubble that grew in Spain since the turn of this century, and finally burst in the summer of 2008, giving rise to a long and great recession.

It all started when local savings banks lose their heads and gave mortgages to all individuals regardless of their financial situation.
If financing the full  House price was not risky enough, banks even encouraged applicants to extend the loan to cover the cost of other commodities such as furniture, new cars or Caribbean Holidays.

Banks relied on the historically widespread belief that housing prices would never drop, no matter how high they eventually may rise. So they overfunded almost every application, confident that in the worst case, client default, they could recover their loan through a revaluated property.

We all know how it all ended: prices dropping sharply, client defaults,  bankrupcy, eviction, crisis  and unemployment.

What surprised me the most was the fact that our different administrations did absolutely nothing to prevent this bubble.

In my humble opinion, I think that the housing market in our country needs some Government rule. But not rules for rules’ sake, but a set of clever ones.

I will never get tired of emphazising how essential is for local politicians to learn from other countries’ experiences before trying to be, let’s say, creative.

And today I’m bringing the mexican experience to the table.

In mexican payrolls, besides the traditional social security contribution, there is another one, aimed to create a Housing Fund since its establishment in 1972. It is totally covered by employers who pay  5% on gross salaries.

To manage this housing fund, the mexican government created INFONAVIT, an agency which provides housing-related mortgage products, such as:
Mortgages to buy a new or existing home,
to remodel a home or
to build a new home
Or Cancel a mortgage previously given by a private bank

So, how does this System work? What do you need to get a mortgage from INFONAVIT?

First and obvious: only workers who are registered at the NHS can be applicants.

And second, you should have reached a mínimum of 1080 points according to nine criteria, such as your age, gross salary, cummulative balance in your account, permanent job or not, payment history of your employer, turnover rate...and so on...

It takes two to three years on average for a worker to reach this 1080 point thresold, and then you are eligible for a public mortgage. Again, the maximum amount you can take out depends on age and gross salary, being between 30 and 35 the best valued ages for obvious reasons.

I do really love this System because it has nothing but advantatges.

For exemple, you can join your credit with relatives or your couple and have a joint credit.

If you lose your job and therefore fall behind temporarily with your payments you´re not gonna be evicted. INFONAVIT will give you reasonable time to find another one.

If you have already paid an Infonavit mortgage (this means you’re around 50) you can apply for another one to remodel your house, or to buy a second home (for holidays?), or you can help partially a son or daughter increasing their credit amount.

And if you decide to do nothing else, all of the contributions made by your employers since the day you settled your first mortgage are kept till the day you retire, and then they’re immediately available for you.

Sounds good, doesn’t it?

But, what I like the most about this system is that it regards housing as a basic need rather than a market product subject to speculation.

Of course you can always get a mortgage from a private bank if you don’t want to stick to the públic System rules. But the important thing is that specualators can  do their business without having negative effects on the public System.

Last, but not least, I am adamant that this public Systems is kind of a life guidance for citizens: There is no real need to buy during your early 20’s, then you have other priorities....

Let me finish my talk with a question: If there’s been a Labour Party ruling Spain for 25 years out of the last 40....why haven’t they ever planned to set up something like this?

If you have found my talk interesting please click on the heart button below, Thank You!


Última edición por Intruder el Mar 22 Feb 2022 - 17:41, editado 1 vez
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 15 Feb 2022 - 14:59

Activities to do by February 16

You should do the activities in chapters 2.13 (task F, the rest was done in class), 2.14, 2.15 and 2.16 of the Topic 4 activity book.

Remember that the deadline to upload your video presentation is also February 16. You'll find the instructions and the link in Topic 4.

Have a good week.
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 15 Feb 2022 - 15:19

Topic 4: Activity book

2. Economic problems: speaking

2.13. Sharing economy: reading and speaking

A) This word cloud has been created from an online article. What do you think the article is about?

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Tema_414

B) These graphics appear in the article. What do you know about the apps mentioned in the graphics? Do you use them?


TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Tema_415

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Tema_416


C) In groups of three students, answer this question:

What is the "sharing economy"? How would you define it?

D) Read the first page of thIs text and compare the definition it gives with your answer:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1dLdd34Pv_WDc2QJLoY8qrPcA2T-Zymjv0HlO0fZf5Tk/edit

What Is The Sharing Economy?
Airbnb and Uber have taken the world by storm, and have driven the rise of the sharing economy. But what is the sharing economy?
By   Simon Lovick
Fri Mar 6 2020

You can cycle to work on a Lime bike, you can get home in an Uber. You can order food from Deliveroo and you can get rid of your old food on Olio.

As resources have become more expensive, and our awareness of reducing our consumption has grown, digital platforms and startups have offered a solution—sharing.

The sharing economy is expected to grow in excess of $300 billion by 2025.

So what is the sharing economy? Where did it come from, and where is it going?
What is the sharing economy?
A sharing economy is defined as an economic system in which assets and services are shared between private individuals.

It’s used as an umbrella term for many different services, apps, and products. Attila Marton, professor of digitalization at Copenhagen Business School, believes these can be divided into three distinct concepts.

First, you have the real sharing economy. This is sharing in its simplest form, such as food between a family or household products between flatmates. Wikipedia, for instance, came about as a platform where users could voluntarily contribute and share knowledge.

Secondly, you have gift giving. You share a product or service—like a birthday cake—in the expectation that others will reciprocate in the future. This concept grew out of the early days of the internet and the open source movement, where programmers would make software and coding freely available.

Napster, the early online streaming service, allowed users to upload their own music, in return for accessing other people’s music.  

Thirdly, we have the pseudo-sharing economy, which best encapsulates today’s sharing economy. This is an incorporation and monetization of the informal economy—small, unregulated transactions like street food, taxis, or anything that is seen as ‘off the books’.  

In this sense, many believe the term ‘sharing economy’ to have been misappropriated.

“The two most prominent sharing platforms—Airbnb and Uber—are very commercial and have very little to do with actual sharing in the sense of solidarity and community,” insists Christoph Lutz, associate professor of communication and culture at BI Norwegian Business School.  

https://www.businessbecause.com/news/insights/6736/what-is-the-sharing-economy


Why has the sharing economy grown so quickly?
Technology has been the biggest driver behind the sharing economy’s growth.

“Through digitalization, corporations have been able to tap into the informal economy and capture some of its value,” Attila explains. Micro-transactions and peer-to-peer reviewing have facilitated ease and trust in online sharing.

“These apps have brought underutilized resources online and efficiently matched them to demand,” says Ming Hu, professor of business operations and analytics at Rotman School of Management at University of Toronto.

It also plays into a culture shift for millennials and Generation Z-ers.

“People, especially young people, are more comfortable with accessing goods than owning them,” Christoph explains.

Spotify and Netflix, although not strictly sharing platforms, encapsulate the same sense of accessing shared resources rather than owning physical copies. The same logic can apply to anything from belongings on BorroClub to a spare car seat on BlaBlaCar.

Big investment has undeniably played a part in the growth of sharing platforms. SoftBank invested big sums in Uber and WeWork while they were scaling and attempting to get market share. While these companies still grapple with profitability, and with gaining public ownership, they are as reliant on investment as ever.


Is the sharing economy sustainable?
Many sharing platforms pitch an alternative to waste, pollution, and excess. But a question mark has been raised over whether they do more damage than good.

Bike sharing apps promise to take cars off the roads and encourage exercise: but photos of bike graveyards, from Chinese bike-sharing app Ofo, show the harm of sharing gone wrong—in their case, fast expansion in an oversaturated market.  

It's suggested that clothes sharing platforms, like Rent the Runway, are encouraging people to buy more clothes than they ordinarily would in the knowledge that they can hire them out.

“There is an environmental downside that we try not to think about as consumers,” Ming adds.

Sharing platforms also pose a threat to local economies. Airbnb has been accused of contributing to rising rent and gentrification. In cities like Berlin, Airbnb has been used to avoid local rent caps, while simultaneously making people dependent on subletting out their rooms in order to make rent.

“It profits from growth, while risks and losses are externalised to its environment,” Attila explains.

Financially, it’s still uncertain whether sharing platforms are able to successfully turn a profit—exemplified by the uncertainty around Uber and WeWork’s failed initial public offerings (IPO).

“The low number of profitable platforms and the speed with which new initiatives disappear suggests that financial sustainability is mostly not given,” Christoph believes.

Attila speculates that the business model of companies like Uber is self-defeating.

“What benefits the model is that the more Ubers there are on the road, the cheaper it will be for riders, and the shorter they’ll have to wait. But follow this to its natural conclusion, and it will create congestion, and you’ll have more empty Ubers driving around.”


What's next for the sharing economy?
There is a clear need for sharing economy platforms to change and diversify their revenue, towards more lucrative industries of the future—artificial intelligence and data.

Uber’s self-driving car business is already valued at $7.25 billion, while the company is also gathering more data about users’ travel behavior, including on public transport. Airbnb is also partnering with local tourism industries, now offering Airbnb Experiences.

Just as large existing platforms are updating their offerings, it’s likely that sharing will be applied to new, relevant industries. Construction, Attila believes, is one space where tools, resources, and workforces can be shared.

Energy also seems to present a sharing opportunity. Community microgrids enable small-scale access to renewable energy, sharing the cost between users and selling excess to regional or national grids.

This small-scale sharing is gathering traction through sharing platform cooperatives. These are putting more emphasis on ownership, for both workers and users. New York-based ride-sharing app Juno, for instance, only takes 10% commission from its drivers (compared to 20-30% that Uber takes), while it gives drivers the option to be contractors or employees.

“Time will tell if these present a viable alternative to large sharing platforms,” Christoph says, “But it’s an interesting counter-trend where we’ll likely see much more movement in coming years.”




E) The article addresses three more questions. Before reading, try to answer them in groups of three students:

Why has the sharing economy grown so quickly?
Is the sharing economy sustainable?
What's next for the sharing economy?

F) Now read the rest of the article. Are the answers in it similar to yours?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 15 Feb 2022 - 15:33

Post for answers previous post

A) This word cloud has been created from an online article. What do you think the article is about?


B) These graphics appear in the article. What do you know about the apps mentioned in the graphics? Do you use them?




C) In groups of three students, answer this question:

What is the "sharing economy"? How would you define it?

D) Read the first page of thIs text and compare the definition it gives with your answer:

E) The article addresses three more questions. Before reading, try to answer them in groups of three students:

Why has the sharing economy grown so quickly?
Is the sharing economy sustainable?
What's next for the sharing economy?

F) Now read the rest of the article. Are the answers in it similar to yours?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 15 Feb 2022 - 15:37

Topic 4: Activity book

2. Economic problems: speaking

2.14. Sharing economy: listening and speaking

A) Watch this video and make notes about the following points mentioned in the video in relation to the sharing economy:

Advantages
Disadvantages
Regulations
China
Attitudes to ownership



B) Discuss:
How balanced a view of the sharing economy does the video convey? Which does it emphasize more, the pros or the cons?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 15 Feb 2022 - 15:39

Post for answers previous post

A) Watch this video and make notes about the following points mentioned in the video in relation to the sharing economy:

Advantages
Disadvantages
Regulations
China
Attitudes to ownership

B) Discuss:
How balanced a view of the sharing economy does the video convey? Which does it emphasize more, the pros or the cons?
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 15 Feb 2022 - 15:44

Topic 4: Activity book

2. Economic problems: speaking

2.15. "Land": reading comprehension

Read the text and do the task:

"Land" text
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1IM2pjZCQ3sfg_QVCrzReeJwPzVS-p2Zt/view

"Land" reading task
https://drive.google.com/file/d/17YD02wOSymW6Y-XlSIbbmtyamdRQKVQ0/view

Key
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1-s3nJ-x4mI9QUMePOfENNWudTjQcbWka/view
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!! - Página 3 Empty Re: TOOL for Learning: Heading For The Final Exam!!!

Mensaje por Intruder Mar 15 Feb 2022 - 22:34

YA PASADO A PAGINA SIGUIENTE, POST PARA RECICLAR

Topic 4: Activity book

2. Economic problems: speaking

2.16. Farmer protests in India

A) Read this report about farmers' protests in India in January 2021 and answer the questions according to what is said in it:

Violent clashes as Indian farmers storm Delhi's Red Fort
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1NFvYZfN961JK3Cft3jgYIUREelzWiGQt/view

Violent clashes as Indian farmers storm Delhi's Red Fort
Farmers protesting against new agriculture laws enter grounds of historic fort
as violence breaks out

Hannah Ellis-Petersen and Aakash Hassan in Delhi
Tue 26 Jan 2021 08.44 EST

Farmers protesting against new agriculture laws in India broke through police barricades around
the capital and entered the grounds of Delhi’s historic Red Fort on Tuesday, in chaotic and violent
scenes that overshadowed the country’s Republic Day celebrations.

Police hit protesters with batons and fired teargas to try to disperse the crowds after hundreds of
thousands of farmers, many on tractors or horses, marched on the capital. One protester was
confirmed to have died in the clashes and dozens of police and protesters were injured
.
Mobile internet services were suspended in parts of Delhi and some metro stations closed. As the
clashes continued into the afternoon, home minister Amit Shah met Delhi police to discuss how to
get the protests under control.

Standing on the ramparts of the Red Fort was Diljender Singh, a farmer from Punjab, who held
aloft the Nishan Sahib, the flag of Sikhism.

“We have been protesting for the last six months but government didn’t bother to listen to us,”
Singh said. “Our ancestors have charged this fort several times in history. This was a message to
government that we can do it again and more than this if our demands are not met.”

Tens of thousands of farmers have camped on the outskirts of the capital since November,
protesting against new laws that deregulate produce markets, which they say will destroy their
livelihoods, offer no protection for crop prices and leave them at greater risk of losing their land.

Authorities had agreed to let the farmers stage a tractor rally as long as they waited for the official
Republic Day parade to finish. But flag-waving protesters on at least four major arteries climbed
over or just pushed aside the barricades and concrete blocks and pressed on into the city.

Some protesters reached a junction about two miles from where the prime minister, Narendra
Modi, and other government leaders watched tanks and troops parade past and fighter jets fly
overhead. Modi waved to crowds and was driven back to his residence before any personal
confrontation with the farmers, the biggest challenge his Hindu nationalist government has faced in
its six years in power.

Jaspal Singh, 50, a farmer from Gurdaspur district in Punjab, said nothing would break the resolve
of the protesting farmers. “No matter how much force the Modi government uses we are not going
to succumb,” he said. “The government is trying to give a bad name to farmers by planting their
men among the protesters to do violence. But we are going to take this agitation ahead peacefully.”

Singh was among those who have been camped out at the Delhi border. “I have promised my
family and my villagers that I will not return home till the laws are repealed,” he said while walking
on Delhi-Karnal highway.

Agriculture employs more than 40% of India’s population but it is a sector plagued by poverty and
inefficiency, with farmers often selling their crops at less than cost. Rates of farmer suicides in
India are among the highest in the world.

Farmers say their plight has been ignored for decades and that the changes, aiming at bringing
private investment into agriculture, will only put farmers at the mercy of large corporations.

Malkeet Singh, 60, from the Mansa area of Punjab, said it was “now or never” as he walked
alongside thousands of fellow protesting farmers.

“If we do not protest right now against these black laws, our children will die of hunger. We will not
go back until the laws are reversed,” said Singh, who had walked 22 miles (35km) to reach the
protests.

The farmers say the new laws were introduced with no consultation and have demanded their
complete repeal. Nine rounds of negotiations with the government have failed to reach an
agreement.

The issue has now been raised with the supreme court, which suspended the laws and established
a special committee to attempt to sort the deadlock. However, farmers’ leaders said they would not
cooperate with the committee, accusing the panel of being too pro-Modi.

Last week, farmers rejected an offer by the government to suspend the laws for 18 months, saying
they would settle for nothing other than a complete repeal.

The government had attempted to get the supreme court to halt the tractor protest, saying it would
be “an embarrassment to the nation”.

The storming of the Red Fort prompted outrage from politicians who had been supportive of the
farmers’ cause. Amarinder Singh, chief minister of Punjab, urged farmers to vacate Delhi.
“Shocking scenes in Delhi,” he said in a tweet. “The violence by some elements is unacceptable. It
will negate goodwill generated by peacefully protesting farmers.”

Samyukta Kisan Morcha, an umbrella organisation representing more than 40 farmers’ unions,
condemned those who had taken part in the clashes and said that “anti-social elements had
infiltrated the otherwise peaceful movement”.

“We condemn and regret the undesirable and unacceptable events that have taken place today
and dissociate ourselves from those indulging in such acts,” said the group in a statement.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/jan/26/violent-clashes-as-indian-farmers-storm-delhis-red-fort


Questions
https://drive.google.com/file/d/19iyBYuqXK05wFexfnkzr7kgyfdYEJgnH/view
Violent clashes as Indian farmers storm Delhi's Red Fort
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/jan/26/violent-clashes-as-indian-farmers-storm-del
his-red-fort

1. Why are farmers protesting?
2. What political consequence of the protests is mentioned?
3. How do some farmers explain the violence in the protests?
4. What are the problems of the agricultural sector in India?
5. How will the new laws benefit large corporations according to farmers?
6. How have farmers reacted to new laws being suspended?


B)  Watch the video below and summarize its content in a text of maximum 200 words. This is NOT a writing assignment to hand it to your teacher, but you will read out your text to other students and compare it with their summaries.




C) Read the last two sections of this document ("Narratives" and "Victory") and answer these questions:

How India’s Farmers Launched a Movement Against Modi’s Farm Bills—and Won
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1x2gJkrY4WgyFswbD3v9KXJPy6wnfP6WR/view

How India’s Farmers Launched a Movement Against Modi’s Farm Bills—and Won

Hundreds of thousands of Indian farmers spent a year
relentlessly protesting the Modi government’s push to
corporatize Indian agriculture. Their fight offers a model for
social movements worldwide.


Toward the end of 2021, Indian farmers achieved the impossible:
a win against the right-wing government of Narendra Modi by
forcing a repeal of three draconian farm laws. This is the remarkable
story of how the farmers persevered through chilly winters, blistering
summers, monsoon floods, the pandemic’s second wave, and a
relentless, ruthless propaganda war unleashed by the government
through its lapdog corporate media.

Why Farmers Opposed Modi’s Farm Laws

When India gained independence in 1947, about 75% of its
population was engaged in agriculture, and yet the country faced the
specter of famine. By the early 1960s, on the basis of imported dwarf
Mexican wheat and genetically modified rice varieties, as well as
pesticides and fertilizers, India ushered in the Green Revolution in
North Indian states.

While India overcame its food security crises, no government in the
last half-century has effectively addressed the negative impacts of the
Green Revolution—soil depletion, water scarcity, illnesses such as
cancer, growing debt on farmers, and about 400,000 suicides among
farmers and other agricultural workers. At present, about 53% of the
population is still dependent—directly or indirectly—on the agrarian
economy, and about 86% of these farmers are small and marginal,
with only a few acres of land.

Given this growing penury, starting in the early 1990s as part of their
neoliberal approach, the World Trade Organization and International
Monetary Fund have pushed the country to adopt aggressive policies
to “depeasantize” the agrarian sector while pushing farmers and
labor into the migrant workforce in cities. In many ways, the plight of
the American farmer, pushed to the brink by neoliberal forms of
privatization, is a grim harbinger for Indian agricultural workers.

It was in 2020, while the COVID-19 pandemic raged worldwide and
people were confined to their homes under curfews and lockdowns,
that the government under the leadership of Modi’s Bharatiya Janata
Party decided to implement three draconian laws related to farming.
The first law allowed for private food-grain procurement; the second
allowed corporations to lease farmland to corporations; the third was
an amendment to the Essential Commodities Act, which now allowed
unlimited hoarding of food grains. The farmers sensed this was a
direct attack on their livelihood.

Mobilization

In summer 2020, when Parliament was not in session, the Modi
government published the farm laws as “ordinances” promulgated by
the president of India on the recommendation of the Union Cabinet.
Think of these as similar to “executive orders” by U.S. standards,
except that Indian ordinances require ratification by Parliament
within six months.

The government’s haste and the content of the laws drew the
attention of farmers in the northern state of Punjab. While armchair
economists praised the laws, farmers started spreading word of the
adverse intent of these laws among villages and towns in the state.
Along with the three original laws, two other laws provoked farmers’
censure: the criminalization of paddy stubble burning with huge fines
and imprisonment, and a proposal to privatize the power sector. The
farmers advocated that a minimum support price for their crops,
rather than a selling off, was the best way to infuse money into the
rural economy and save them from poverty and suicides.
In the northern Green Revolution states, farm unions are stronger
than in the rest of the country, where they have eroded over time. By
the time the government passed the laws in September, the farm
unions in Punjab were ready to protest. Union members blocked all
the railroads in the state and stopped collection of toll taxes on the
highways. Since they knew the laws would favor big businesses, the
unions blocked the corporate-owned gas stations, shopping malls,
and warehouses in the state. When the government did not budge, by
early November 2020, the Punjab farm unions united into a coalition
named Samyukt Kisan Morcha and made the announcement that on
Constitution Day, Nov. 26, they would march to Delhi, the capital of
India.
Solidarities
On Nov. 26, as the farmers from Punjab started their march, police in
the neighboring state of Haryana set up barricades on the roads in the
form of cement blocks and shipping containers, dug trenches, and
used tear gas and water cannons on the marchers.

The Punjab farmers found an unlikely ally—Haryana farmers who
were also protesting the same laws. In spite of the fact that the two
states have a half-century-old river water dispute, the farmers rallied
together. The next day, Haryana farmers started dismantling the
barricades and paving the way. As Punjab farmers advanced, in
accordance with their Sikh religion, the farmers even held langars—
communal eating—for the police officers on duty. It was a remarkable
gesture of openness and inclusivity toward friends and even foes.
Finally, braving the physical assault from police, the farmers from
Punjab and Haryana dug in on the outskirts of Delhi—at Singhu and
Tikri. They set up camps in tractor trollies and tents for many miles
on the road. Soon, farmers from west Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand
set up their camps on the eastern outskirts of Delhi, at Gazipur.
Camps sprang up at Palwal and on the Haryana–Rajasthan border at
Shahjahanpur.
Through the duration of the protests, the numbers of farmers
camping out varied from 50,000 on average to up to 700,000 at its
peak. The northern states are feudal, and patriarchy is still rife.
Breaking tradition, women farmers formed a key pillar of the
protests. It was the same with organized labor groups, who, owing to
the exigencies of daily wage earning, could not participate for a
greater length of time, but who nonetheless supported the protests.
One of the main slogans of the protests was “Kisan Mazdoor Ekta
Zindabad,” or “Long Live Farmer-Worker Unity.” When young and
old Hindu, Muslim, and Sikh farmers, supported by urban folks,
came together, they negated the right-wing BJP ploy to divide society
along cleavages of religion, caste, and gender. Instead, the protests
united the farmers through their kirrt—work.
Narratives
The farmers’ protests took place at two levels—on the ground and in
the media. As farmers reached Delhi, mainstream media, most of
which is controlled by big corporations, attempted to gather sound
bites from farmers. The farmers blocked all access by the
corporate media. Instead, they started their own media: social

solo supporters. They started articulating their daily activities at the
campsites and began issuing point-by-point rebuttals of the farm
laws. The slogan “No Farmers, No Food, No Future” caught
everyone’s attention.
Meanwhile, mainstream media started promoting the government’s
agenda, calling farmers “anti-national”—India’s equivalent of
“unpatriotic”—and claiming they were supported by
separatist elements. The farmers’ media countered this partisan
narrative. Social and international media spread the farmers’
messages worldwide.
As talks between the government and SKM dragged into 11 rounds
until mid-January 2021, icy winter rains battered the farmers. After
the events of Republic Day on Jan. 26, when some farmers marched
toward the iconic Red Fort to hoist the farmers’ and Sikh flags, the
government once more tried to paint the farmers as anti-national.
Talks broke down, and the long wait began.
Over the next 10 months, the protest sites ran their own stages and
kitchens. They replenished stocks from their villages. Haryana
farmers even provided a ready supply of milk and fresh vegetables. By
spring 2021, the pandemic’s second wave hit the world. Civil society
urged farmers to withdraw their protest, but they did not. By
summertime, scorching heat and monsoon floods troubled the
farmers. But they remained firm, innovating their encampments into
reinforced tents, wooden huts equipped with coolers, refrigerators,
and even washing machines. Meanwhile, due to the exigencies of
weather and accidents, over 700 people died over the course of the
protests.
During these long months, even as the media moved on, farmers
conducted huge gatherings in their states, some with over 100,000
people, to spread their message against the laws and build larger
solidarities. They made various calls for general strikes, which
farmers from other Indian states responded to enthusiastically. They
conducted a Farmers Parliament coinciding with the Indian
Parliament’s Monsoon Session, which gave them visibility. But such
efforts were evanescent. The only option that remained was to try to

affect the electoral process in key states in February 2022, not as a
political party but a pressure group.
Victory
All of a sudden, on Nov. 19, 2021, the prime minister announced the
unconditional repeal of the draconian farm laws. Yet, the trust deficit
was such that even after Modi’s public announcement, the farmers
suspended their protests after 22 days. They called it a suspension
because the issue of minimum support price on 23 crops across the
country is still pending, and the government has only promised to
form a committee to look into the matter. Depending on how the
committee fares, the farmers might pick up the protest again.
The farmers demanded a written guarantee that while the Parliament
withdrew the laws, which it did, the government would also repeal
the pollution act that criminalizes farmers for burning paddy husk
and withdraw a proposed electricity bill that seeks to privatize power
in the country. The unilateral repeal shows the government sensed the
protests had galvanized more support than it could quell, and it was
fast losing its electoral base.
For now, this victory is a direct blow to WTO, IMF, and World Bank
policies, and to the BJP’s privatization agenda. The Indian farmers’
protest is a model for all struggling people worldwide. Their relentless
and sustained protest shows that a sure resolve, control of resources,
and perseverance is key to winning against neoliberal forces
worldwide and ushering in a world where working people are the
focus of national economic policies.




1. What factors contributed to the farmers' success according to the article?
2. Judging from the facts reported in the text, do you this a short-term victory or a long-term one?
3. Do you agree with the author's conclusions in the last paragraph?


Última edición por Intruder el Miér 16 Feb 2022 - 0:57, editado 2 veces
Intruder
Intruder

Mensajes : 13145
Fecha de inscripción : 24/08/2016

Volver arriba Ir abajo

Página 3 de 5. Precedente  1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Siguiente

Volver arriba

- Temas similares

 
Permisos de este foro:
No puedes responder a temas en este foro.