Category: Ideas

Young People Are Ignored by the Mainstream Media

In 1997, Gangland: cultural elites and the new generationalism dominated Australia’s book scene. Arguing that young people were under-represented in Australia’s mainstream media, subjected to ‘moral panics’ and increasingly demonised by the press, the book painted a picture of youth culture in crisis.

Thomas Jefferson: How Law Should be Part of a Broad Training in the Liberal Arts

I find it interesting sometimes to contrast the narrow, vocational-based education system we have today with the kind of education system envisaged in the late 1700s. Often, the aim back then was to receive a broad-education in what today we understand as the liberal arts and sciences, before advancing onto a broad education as to ...

Automating Job Applications: Should a Robot Apply For a Job on Your Behalf?

An estimated 90% of large companies are using automated software to read and respond to resumes. From tracking software that reads a resume looking for keywords, to automated emails, phone interviews and skills testing – companies are doing less manual processing than ever before. If companies are using automated software in hiring, then job applicants should be able to ...

Expert culture has killed the innovator in workplaces

Over the last few decades, the Western world has had an increasingly specialised workforce, with workers trained in narrow skills, for increasingly narrow positions. However, the more narrow our jobs have become, the less capable we have become in inventing new technologies, products and ideas. Innovative ideas tend to come, not from specialised experts, but ...

Degrees of separation: companies shed degree requirements to promote merit over qualifications

At the end of 2016, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) revealed that close to two-thirds of all Australians had completed a degree or apprenticeship. The growth in the number of people attending a university or TAFE has risen out of a cyclical demand-driven system called “academic inflation”. Think supply and demand. If an employer ...

Lifetime Employment in Japan: Casual Work, Part-Time Work and Women under Equal Opportunity Law

Lifetime employment has long been the cornerstone of corporate governance in Japan. College graduates at large firms have traditionally been guaranteed employment until retirement. These graduates, almost exclusively men, are guaranteed job security in return for complete loyalty to their company of choice. Originally sustained by cultural forces of “loyalty” and collectivism, the lifetime employment ...

The Election of Donald Trump Sounds the Death Noll for Privilege and Identity Politics

It’s May 26, 2016 and Donald J. Trump attends a presidential rally in Bismarck, North Dakota. “We’re going to make America wealthy again,” he tells the crowd of mostly white, mostly middle-aged men. “You have to be wealthy in order to be great, I’m sorry to say.” In the middle of an argument against trade ...

How Specialisation is Destroying My Generation

Gertrude Stein originally called those who returned from World War I a ‘lost generation’, disoriented, wandering directionless through life, battered and broken by the war and unable to contribute to literary endeavours. Today’s youth face not a war of arms, but a war of credentials. Lost beneath a pile of requisite qualifications, the credentialism required ...

Pokemon Go, Augmented Reality and the Future of Technology

In 1974, the philosopher Robert Nozick came up with the idea of an ‘experience machine’, a thought experiment which involved the following situation: Suppose there was an experience machine that would give you any experience you desired. Super-duper neuropsychologists could stimulate your brain so that you would think and feel like you were writing a ...