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Visar inlägg från november, 2010

What a nice weekend!

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Just came home from a really nice trip to the town in which Eder grew up: Santa Cruz do Sul - a beautiful little town (yes 100 000 inhabitants is a little town compared to Porto Alegres 1,5 million). Lots of green trees, cobblestone and nice nature surrounding the town. The town is really a German settlement. If your Portuguese is not that good (mine is not) you'll be just fine speaking German (I am not).

So, on Saturday morning we left Porto Alegre early with two cars heading for Santa Cruz. It's about a two-hour ride, mainly through rice- and tobacco fields. At around ten we arrived at Eder's parents' (and parrot's) new house. They recently sold their big house in which Eder grew up for a smaller house that better serve their new life as retired.



































































A walk around the city soon reveals the German roots of the inhabitants. They look about as fit for the sun as I am (skin color as a pig). The main attraction of the walk was the park in which the yearly Oktoberfest take…

Learning lab finished

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The one-week learning laboratory, in critical thinking about social science safety-literature, with Sidney Dekker and James Nyce was today finished after a discussion about the notion of culture and the medical professional identity. The second discussion was based on Bosk's Forgive and Remember. An interesting discussion given that James Nyce is, as Bosk, a social anthropologist.

This weekend the gang is going to Santa Cruz where we will visit Eder's parents in Santa Cruz do Sul and have the MOAB (Mother Of All Barbecues). An entire weekend in the name of meat is promised! The detox period will need to last long past Christmas :-)

Some pictures of James Nyce's last day in class are attached.

Life in Brazil continues...



Barbecue - Brazilian style

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Just showing some pictures to introduce you to the Brazilian barbecues. Actually, as you can see, Eder and Betina have got an indoor barbecue in their living room (crazy!). The meat (as well as potatoes, sandwiches, and everything else that you intend to eat) is prepared on biiig skewers. So, how much meat are you supposed to eat? They calculate 500 g per person (for everyone - meaning that a 27 year old man is expected to eat about 1 kg of red meat) sausages excluded.

As Roel say: "It is not the favelas that kill you; it is the gauchos with their big-ass barbecues!"

Life in Brazil continues...




Thunder outside the classroom!

That really creates the right atmosphere for Jim's teaching!

He passed!

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After two and a half hours of struggling with the committees question, and another thirty minutes of waiting for the committees decision my friend and Brazilian host Eder Henriqson was yesterday evening declared Doctor with 4 A (=excellent!). Some pictures attached.

The celebration party took place at a nice pub downtown with a band playing U2's It's a beautiful day for Eder. 
Today we are back in class. Sidney has just left us to fly back to Sweden (where he will prepare his move to Brisbane, Australia) and the command has been taken by professor James Nyce. He is just about to begin our journey through the history of social science, introduced by polarizing social science using the different views of Max Weber and Emile Durkheim. Heavy stuff - Here we go!
Life in Brazil continues...








Time for Eder's thesis defence!

Ladies and gentlemen! This is JB live from Eder's thesis defence seminar that is just about to start. The format is the following: Eder will have 20 minutes to present the thesis. Then the word will be given to the four members of the decision committee (one at a time) who will do the scientific spanking (Eder's words). After that the decision committee will gather to make their decision.

The word has now been handed over to Eder... And we all wish him the best of luck!

First day of the learning lab

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Today we began the five-day learning lab in critical reading of systems safety literature (and social science in general). We are about twenty people going through one author's argument at a time. Today we have discussed Rochlins appeal to treat safety as a social construct, Cillier's tracing of complexity theory in postmodern philosophy, as well as Pidgeon and O'leary's man-made disaster theories. Some pictures of Sidney leading the discussion are attached.

The fruit salads in this country are really worth their price! Chopped fruits covered in fresh orange juice served in a plastic cup for not more than 15 Swedish kr.

Life in Brazil continues...






Pictures from the seminar

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Sidney Dekker - the rock star

So the last two days we have been busy with the International Seminar on Safety in Complex Systems which was organized by our host Eder. There were more than 350 attendants and the main attraction was of course Sidney's speech - the grand finale of the seminar! And what a nice show he gave the spectators! Two hours of human error, complexity and towards the end discussions of justice, ethics and governance. I will miss him when he now leaves us in Lund for his new position as director of the Key Centre of ethics, law and governance in Brisbane, Australia. A natural move though - he has been continuously drifting from human factors and systems safety towards post-modern philosophy in topics of criminalization, ethics and governance. It will be fun to follow his new new advancements. 
Tomorrow the learning-lab starts by Sidney leading a discussion in just these questions: systems safety, complexity, justice, ethics. On wednesday Jim Nyce will take over and deepen the discussion about…

Walking around the PUCRS campus

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Today we did a visit to the campus of Eder's university: Pontifícia Universidade do Rio Grande do Sul. It's a private university hosting around 30 000 students (so about the size of Lund). We met up with our American friends Pup and Crista, had a lunch with Eder and then got a tour around the campus guided by Guido from the aviation college. 


Tomorrow the seminar on safety and complexity starts. Life in Brazil continues...