What I’ve learnt so far…

I wan’t completely ignorant. I knew about globalisation, that the world was becoming more integrated. What with the internet, it’s a pretty difficult concept to deny.

However, what I have learnt, is that globalisation is far more complex, with far more issues than I could have ever imagined. Especially when it comes to media.

In my blog posts I’ve covered hip hop, cinema, television, international education, world news and media capitals. I didn’t know much at all about any of these subjects. It’s safe to say that I do now.

Hollywood Sign
Hollywood Sign (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Some of the most interesting things I’ve learnt about include transnational film, which I explored in Hollywood, Bollywood….Brazil?. What fascinated me most of all was my case study. The Motorcycle Diaries is a favourite movie of mine, but studying it in terms of a transnational film really opened my eyes. The entire production crew and actors were from right around the world.  I also learned that this is the case of most films these days.

In another week, in Not all sides of the story deserve a fair go,  I wrote about the problems of balance and bias in news broadcasting. Previously, I assumed that giving both sides of view equal airtime was a good, fair thing to do. But in the cases of some debates, this type of action actually distorts the reality of the situation. I investigated the vaccination debate, and especially the way in which two unequal sides were presented as equal.

The other highlight of this ten week journey was exploring how comedy transfers between cultures, in Is this a joke. As much as it was enjoyable to revisit Kath and Kim, Summer Heights High and Friends, it was interesting to analyse what makes comedy works, and what doesn’t. It seems that there isn’t really a formula for success, and there are infinite ways in which a comedy in translation can fail.

Of course, these are only some of the things I’ve learned, but, after ten weeks I think I’m in a position to look into the future, at the way in which media will continue to globalise.

For every positive of globalisation, there seems to be a negative. However, I think, upon analysis of what I’ve learnt, these problems will solve themselves as the world continues to become culturally and economically closer. For example, with the increased sharing of cultures, the sharing of comedy will become easier. And with the issue of what kinds of global events make the news, increasing travel and technology will allow global citizens further access to important/relevant news events from all over the world.

In a nutshell, what I have learnt is that, though globalisation has presented many problems, the potential benefits of a culturally, technologically and economically closer world are still unfolding. Globalisation isn’t finished with us yet.

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Leadership conference inspires students

The UOW  Students 4 Students National Leadership conference was underway over the weekend, attracting aspiring leaders from across the country and high profile speakers.

The high profile leaders came from a range backgrounds, including charities, multi-national companies, successful University of Wollongong graduates and action groups. They included Viv Benjamin, CEO of the Oaktree FoundationMichael Laverty, managing director of the Australian short film festival Tropfest and Jon Dee, the co-founder of Planet Ark and part of a multitude of initiatives in Australia and around the world.

Isaac Astill, Bob Brown’s 2013 Young Environmentalist of the Year , was one of the speakers to focus on issues to do with renewable energy and climate change. He commented about the decline in Australian debate about these issues.

Students were given the opportunity to interact with leaders such as Andrew Macleod, a former aid worker and business leader and Nikki Lovell, founder of One Village through a Q and A panel.

Young leaders worked in groups to solve local issues
Young leaders worked in groups to solve local issues

The conference, held on the 28th and 29th of September, was coordinated by University of Wollongong UniCentre Centre for Student Engagement students and aimed to inspire tertiary students to explore leadership opportunities. The theme for this year’s conference was “Change: It only takes one”. Students participated in lectures, workshops, networking activities and ‘change challenges’, where students attempted to come up with solutions for local environmental issues.

Misha, a UOW student in her first year of a law degree, and Vice President of the UOW Rotaract Club, said she “think(s) it’s important for young leaders to get together and share their inspiration”.  “It really empowered me to find a purpose and convinced me that it’s worthwhile” the active young leader said of the conference.

The conference concluded with a gala dinner at Innovation Campus. A raffle and auction helped to raise money for the conference’s charity partner, the Oaktree Foundation. The conference is in its 7th year this year.