Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Polish EU Presidency looking to expand Erasmus to non-EU students

LAZY – The future outlook of the European Students’ Union (ESU) is the main topic of discussion for 120 students’ representatives from all over Europe who meet in Lazy, Poland, for the 22nd European Students’ Convention from 30 August till 3 September. The plan from the current Polish EU Presidency to open up the Erasmus scheme to non-EU countries is also high on the agenda.

ESU is the umbrella organisation of 45 national unions of students from 38 European countries and represents around 11 million students at the European level. Allan Päll, ESU Chairperson, said: “Access to higher education within Europe is increasingly under threat. We are standing at an important crossroad. How we choose to react at this very moment, will lay the foundation of the future of higher education and the students’ movement in Europe.
Expanding the Erasmus scheme to non-EU countries is another hot topic for the students and the Polish EU Presidency is pushing for this. The Polish Minister for Higher Education, Barbara Kudrycka, who was speaking at the event on 30 August, said: “We would very much like to see a widening of the Erasmus-scheme to non-EU countries, not only our Eastern neighbors but also for example the ones in the southern neighborhood. According to me, the best diplomats for countries are students and scientists.”
Many internal and external changes have taken place in the last decades for ESU. ESU started off in 1982 as an information exchange office between 7 Western-European national unions. The last 30 years ESU has become a professional lobby organisation with 45 member unions from 38 European countries. The fall of the Berlin Wall but also for instance the Bologna Process have led to an accelerated cooperation between European countries on higher education. The ESU unions will ask themselves how they can be more relevant for students in Europe and will ponder how they can improve their internal communication structures.

Monday, 29 August 2011

4th September at Square Tower - 'Love Southsea' Market - 11am-3pm

Small antiques, boutique businesses, not on the high street finds for your home, beautiful jewelry and so much more to look at.
Have a delicious cup of tea and a slice of cake courtesy of our vintage tea party girls all served up to you on old fashion vintage crockery.

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4th September Portsmouth Multicultural Festival

The event takes place at Castle Field, in Southsea, Portsmouth and features live music from around the world.
As well as music the festival will have clothes stalls, ethnic crafts, advice stands, food stalls, face painting, adult and children's workshops, Latin rhythm & Salsa dance workshops, Street dance, and fun for all the family.

Italian market at Gunwharf Quays 1-4 September, Portsmouth

There will be Italian bread and pastries, olive oil and vinegar, marinated olives, cheese & salami, arancini (rice balls), biscuits and sweets! If you want to take a bit of Italian style home, there will also be a Murano Glass craft stall.

Conference About Micro-Level Analysis of Well-Being in Central Asia, Berlin

Deadline: 30 September 2011
Open to:  Researchers from several disciplines, especially economics, sociology, geography, and anthropology
Venue: 10-11 May 2012 in Berlin, Germany


The German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) invites submissions for an international research conference on the micro-level analysis of well-being in Central Asia on 10-11 May 2012 in Berlin, Germany. The transition from a planned to a market economy has had dramatic consequences in all post-Soviet republics but especially so in Central Asia. Twenty years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, DIW Berlin wishes to examine the well-being of individuals and households in these countries.

The conference aims at bringing together researchers from several disciplines, especially economics, sociology, geography, and anthropology, in this conference. DIW Berlin does not impose any specific definition of well-being but welcome papers using different concepts. All papers should have an empirical focus and use quantitative or qualitative data at the micro level. A non-exhaustive list of research topics includes:

* Trends in poverty and inequality
* Effects of migration on well-being
* Human capital and labour market developments
* Household coping strategies in transition situations and their effects on well-being
* Relevance of social networks for well-being
* Political transition and its effects on well-being
* Conflict and well-being
* Religion and well-being
* Measurement of well-being (for example, objective vs. subjective measures)

Other papers of relevance to the micro-level analysis of well-being in the region are also welcome.
DIW is delighted that the keynote lecture will be delivered by Nauro Campos (Brunel University, UK).

Funding for travel and accommodation may be available for researchers who are either early in their careers and/or currently live in Central Asia. If you wish to obtain financial support, please indicate this with your abstract submission.


How to apply?

Please send a one-page abstract and a short CV as pdf files to and indicate “Central Asia 2012” in the subject heading. The submission deadline is 30 September 2011. Notification of acceptance will be sent out by the beginning of November 2011. The deadline for full paper submission is 31 March 2012. Submitted papers may be considered for publication in peer-reviewed journals (e.g. in a special issue). Further information on the conference will be placed at this website (to see the website, please click here).
Submissions should be in English, which is also the conference language.



Organising Committee:
Tilman Brück, DIW Berlin and Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Matthias Schmidt, Freie Universität Berlin
Susan Steiner, DIW Berlin
Manja Stephan, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

The Official Website

Call For Papers On The Topic “EU And Its Neighbors”

Deadline(for abstracts): 30 September 2011
Open to: All interested
Prize: Your article will be published in the journal

Analytical is an electronic journal published by Analytica, think-tank from Skopje, Macedonia which is focused on studying and analyzing the recent and ongoing socio-political and economic developments in the Western Balkans and the wider region. The journal will include contributions that approach certain subject area from various perspectives: political, IR, economic, historical, sociological, educational, public policy, etc.
Analytical now accepts submissions for the eighth issue. The topic of the upcoming issue is:

EU and its Neighbours
(The Western Balkans and the prospects of the neighbourhood policy – lessons learned from the Arab spring)

The past two decades have been years of political and economic turmoil for the neighbouring countries of the EU27, from its immediate neighbourhood in the Western Balkans to its partners in the Mediterranean union. Nowadays, faced with diverse challenges like: the EU integration process, economic crisis, protests, fights against dictatorship regimes, and sustainable development, the countries of the EU’s neighbourhood have different agendas when it comes to their relations with the Union.
What has been achieved so far; how will the new EEAS cope with the demanding events that unfold; where will the acceptance of new members stop; what will the Arab spring bring to the table in the future relations – are only few of the issues which concern the decision-makers in the EU and its neighbours.. Drawing from the experience of different countries, we encourage research papers that will set ground-breaking research and recommendations for the future of the relations between the EU and its neighbours in the Western Balkans, Eastern Europe, South Caucasus, North Africa and the Middle East.

The papers

Analytical’s aim is to represent a wide spectrum of disciplines and approaches, comparative and multi-disciplinary perspectives are stronglyt encouraged, and proposals using new research methodologies are welcome. Submission of original research papers including but not limited to the following themes are invited:
  • The future of the Western Balkans integration in the EU
  • Turkey and the EU, is there a way to get the integration back in game?
  • Can the EU transfer the lessons learned from the Balkans to the South Caucasus?
  • Mediterranean Union – failed idea or successful project?
  • The EEAS and the EU Future Enlargement
  • Prospects for new relations between the new Arab democracies and the EU
  • The future of the neighbourhood policy
  • The papers should be original and not previously published.
  • MS Word Document
  • Papers should be written in Chicago referencing style
  • Times New Roman, 12pt, 1.5 lines spacing, 2cm margins.
  • Limited to 3500 – 5000 words (including bibliography)
  • Paper abstracts of up to 500 words and a short CV should be sent with full contact details (E-mail, Telephone, Postal Address) to
Deadline for abstracts is 30 September 2011.
Final deadline for papers is 31 October 2011.
The Official Webpage

Internship At Analytica, Macedonia

Deadline: 11 September 2011
Open to: University students, both undergraduates and graduates, no citizenship requirements
Remuneration: No salary

Analytica welcomes university students, both undergraduates and graduates, to apply for a residential internship at Analytica, Skopje – Macedonia. There are no citizenship requirements. The internship duration is – 15 October – 30 December. Good research skills and very good knowledge of English are required. Candidates should have strong interest in policy research in one or more of the following fields as well as good administrative skills:
  • European studies
  • Security studies
  • South East Europe
  • Regional cooperation
  • Public administration
  • Foreign affairs
  •  Energy and Infrastructure
  •  Environmental studies


The residential internship is unpaid. However, upon completing the internship the interns will receive internship completion certificate as well as publication of their policy papers.


The deadline for submitting an application for the Residential Internship Program is 11 September 2011. The residential internship is unpaid.
Interested applicants should send their CVs together with the application form Incomplete applications will not be considered as valid. An interview may be required.
How to fill in the application form
The application form is not editable. You have to download it first. To do that, go to the up left corner of the web page, click file then download as and you can choose Word. Once you have filled in, you should send it to the email address provided above together with your CV.
Applications for non residential internships will not be accepted. Only successful candidates will be contacted.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact
IMPORTANT NOTE: This internship call is one of the three regular calls for internship and has nothing to do with the extraordinary internship as part of the Security Program which has also been recently published at Analytica’s webpage and on Mladiinfo.
The Official Webpage

Young Press conference - Deadline 1rst September

The European Youth Press is selecting 10 young journalists to participate in the Young Press conference organised by Evens Foundation and StampMedia in Antwerp, Belgium, from the 27th to the 29th of October. The conference offers young European reporters a superb opportunity to express their views on the media and journalism and to build up contacts with their peers.
Deadline: 1st of September
The event will focus on the following topics: the omnipresence of instant media, the threat on high-quality journalism, the spread of biased information and on new models and experimentation by independent journalists. Renowned speakers such as Robert Fisk, Sylvie Kauffman, Henk Blanken, Annabel McGoldrick, Alex Wood, Olaf Koens and Ingrid Lieten are expected to attend.
If you are a young journalist aged 18-26 engaged with these topics and have some journalistic experience please send your CV, motivation letter and a material you’ve produced to by the 1st of September. The material can be anything from an article to a video, audio or photo feature. Where the materials are not in English, a short summary in English should be provided.
Young journalists who have been already engaged with the European Youth Press and/or its member organizations will receive priority. All costs are covered by the organizers of the conference. Participants will have to pay a participation fee of 100 Euros.

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Enquete sur le cout de la vie étudiante 2011

More information about the cost of life in France for students (in french):

Friday, 26 August 2011

Atenei, ecco le "eccellenze" italiane Bologna in testa, le "piccole" spiccano

Medicina a Padova, architettura a Ferrara, scienze a Trento. È la classifica delle facoltà stilata dalla Grande Guida all'Università Repubblica-Censis


La migliore facoltà di Medicina in Italia? È di sicuro a Perugia. E certamente anche a Milano. E poi a Verona, a Pavia, ce n'è una a Firenze, un'altra a Siena, e perché no una a Brescia... A sentire l'opinione degli universitari iscritti, l'Italia è piena di "migliori facoltà di medicina". Ognuno rivendica la superiorità dell'ateneo che ha scelto, o dovuto scegliere. Gli studenti e anche i professori. Ma la migliore facoltà di medicina in Italia è solo una: quella dell'università di Padova. Non per simpatia, per merito. I suoi docenti sono di altissimo livello, così come le aule, i computer in dotazione, la biblioteca e tutte le altre strutture (didattica, voto 109). La percentuale degli studenti che portano a termine il ciclo di studi nei tempi stabiliti è tra le prime in Italia (produttività, 100). Ha ottimi rapporti con università estere (relazioni internazionali, 96). Produce progetti di ricerca innovativi e di qualità, riconosciuti universalmente nel settore medico (ricerca 110). Meriti che gli valgono, nella classifica del Censis delle "vere" migliori facoltà italiane, una valutazione complessiva di 103,8 punti su un massimo di 110 (e un minimo di 66). L'eccellenza italiana doc. E tra i grandi atenei Bologna "la dotta" si conferma al primo posto, come nel 2010.

Una valutazione che è stata fatta, ateneo per ateneo, facoltà per facoltà, sulla base di quattro parametri oggettivi, costruiti con dati reali e indicatori forniti dalle stesse università. Ne è venuta fuori una guida utile per il neodiplomato che non vuole basarsi solo sulle chiacchiere per scegliere, e utilissima al genitore che deve fare i conti con eventuali spostamenti fuori sede.

E così si scopre che bisogna andare a Bologna per avere il top della facoltà di Psicologia, che prende il voto pieno, 110, per la didattica e la produttività. Per diventare medici e avere il posto assicurato o quasi (lavora il 97,2 per cento di chi si laurea nel settore sanitario, secondo i dati del consorzio universitario AlmaLaurea) bisogna trasferirsi a Padova: non c'è solo la miglior facoltà di Medicina e Chirurgia (103,8 punti contro i 98,2 di Perugia e Milano Bicocca), ma anche quella di Veterinaria. A Ferrara invece si trova il gotha di Architettura (con un punteggio di 105,4 ha scavalcato in questa materia l'università di Sassari, fino all'anno scorso in cima alla classifica).

Per il corso di laurea in Economia, la tappa obbligata per chi vuole il massimo è ancora l'università di Padova, mentre è in calo quella di Trento, passata dal secondo al quinto posto nella graduatoria. Per Farmacia, Trieste ha scalzato Bologna, finita al quarto posto. Giurisprudenza, una delle facoltà con più iscritti in Italia, ha la sua espressione massima nell'ateneo di Siena, ma da segnalare il gran passo in avanti fatto da quello di Udine, dal diciasettesimo al sesto posto in un anno. Il salto di qualità dell'ateneo friulano non si registra soltanto nelle materie giuridiche. Udine primeggia nella classifica di Lettere e Filosofia (nel 2010 era settima), Lingue e Letterature straniere, Scienze della Formazione. Roma vince la "gara" tra facoltà di Scienze Motorie, Milano è la capitale morale di Ingegneria, con il Politecnico che ottiene un punteggio di 101,6, seguito poco più indietro da quello di Torino.

Non sempre, però, le migliori facoltà si trovano negli atenei più grandi. Il Censis li ha valutati sui parametri dei servizi offerti, delle borse di studio, delle strutture, della rete Internet e dei rapporti internazionali. Se è vero che Bologna (90,7 di punteggio) è in testa nella sezione "big", quelli con più di 40 mila iscritti (Milano è sesta, la Sapienza di Roma settima), l'eccellenza si trova negli atenei medi come quello di Trento, che ha raccolto un punteggio medio di 101,4 grazie soprattutto al numero e alla consistenza delle borse di studio offerte agli iscritti e alla qualità ottima del collegamento a Internet di aule e laboratori. (20 luglio 2011)

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Five classic mistakes to avoid when dealing with the media

Getting PR coverage is a great way to raise the profile of your business but convincing journalists to write about your business is not easy. Tom Maddocks reveals five common mistakes that people make when dealing with the media and explains how to get it right.
Making smart use of the media can be a highly effective (and cheap!) marketing tool for small firms, but it is always surprising how many small business owners don't make the effort, or fail to grab the opportunity. They are either scared of talking to the media for fear of being misquoted or respresented in a negative way, or they simply think no-one would be interested in them.  Here are five mistakes people make that are easy to avoid.
  1. Not understanding the “media mindset”. The more you understand how the journalist thinks, the more likely you are to be able to deliver something he or she is looking for. All they want is something that will catch the attention of their readers (or viewers, or listeners). So your business on its own may not stand out, but maybe your personal story will be of interest — did you overcome adversity in some way to get going, or did you make a radical career change that people might find fascinating (city trader to sheep farmer, perhaps?). Or do you have some strong views about local or industry issues that other people in your area or sector would find interesting and relevant? Think as creatively as possible to give them an “angle”.
  2. Not responding quickly enough. Reporters and editors are busy people, so if they call up looking for comment or opinion, get back to them as soon as possible. Reporters know people are sometimes hard to get hold of, so they will often put out a couple of calls and the company that responds most quickly most often gets the quote. 
  3. Not preparing for the interview. Problems most often occur when people just respond to the journalist's questions, rather than thinking clearly about what they want to get across. Then, all too often, they put down the phone afterwards and think. “I think that went OK, but what a shame he never asked me about our new product/battle with the planning authorities/industry award – I could have told him some really interesting stuff!” Or they think up a pithy quote in the bath that night, instead of having it all ready-prepared for the reporter. So if you are approached by a journalist, always find out what they are looking for, and say you're busy at the moment but will call back shortly. Use the time to really think about what you want to get across and what would be of interest to their particular readership or audience. 
  4. Not getting to the point. This is particularly important if you get the chance to go on radio or TV! Journalists are under pressure to deliver a lot of material quickly. They get frustrated by people who go into endless irrelevant detail rather than getting on with it. So give them the bottom line point as soon as possible — you can always back it up with the evidence afterwards. Otherwise they may just lose interest and go elsewhere.
  5. Talking in jargon. Don't make the mistake of assuming everyone knows as much about your industry as you do. Even if you are talking to a trade publication, the reporter is unlikely to be as much of an expert as you are. If you talk in gobbledegook you are likely to be misunderstood, misquoted or just ignored. Use the vernacular not technical language — in other words think you how you would explain it to a friend or family member, who is not in the same line of business.   
Tom Maddocks was a reporter on the BBC’s Money Programme and is a leading media training expert — to receive his FREE Essential Media Training Toolkit visit .

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Tudor House Museum, Southampton, Hampshire, UK


The Tudor House Museum Reopens After Nearly a Decade
I was lucky enough to be invited to a preview of this restored Tudor House prior to its reopening to the public this month, following nearly a decade’s closure, so I thought I would share with people what I experienced.
At the rear of the garden, where the wall once formed part of the town defences, are the remains of a Norman merchant’s house, romantically referred to as King John’s Palace so visiting the Tudor House gives you a glimpse of Southampton’s historic walls as well as the house itself.
Tudor House was built at the end of the 15th century, in 1492, after Jane William, a widow who owned the three existing medieval properties on the site, married John Dawtrey, Controller of Customs in Southampton, during the reign of Henry VII.
Over its first few centuries (it encompasses over 800 years of history on one site) it was the home of some of Southampton’s most prominent citizens, people who, although not of noble birth were of significance in the area, involved at a local regional and national level in the legal and financial management of England.
As well as John Dawtrey, who created the building, Sir Richard Lyster lived there with his second wife, whose portrait by Holbein is in the Royal Collection.  He was Chief Justice of England in the mid 16th century.
Recently, archaeologists have uncovered human remains, a lonely finger, where medieval stone foundations were also revealed. The cellar was filled in approximately 1650/1700 when the house started to go into decline.   
After the cellar was filled in a later resident lived in Tudor House who was George Rogers, a successful 18th century artist. Later still a Victorian bonnet-maker Eliza Simmonds also resided in the house.
As early as the 1800s the status of the house began to decline. The coming of the railways in the 1840s and the growth of the new port facilities moved the centre of trade away from the Old Town and by the late Victorian period the House was in serious decline.
Excavations in the garden revealed another medieval house with a huge cellar that no one knew existed situated behind the Cottage; this was the smallest, lowest status building on the site dating back pre 1837.
Perhaps the most important past owner was W F G Spranger, a Justice of the Peace (JP) who bought the house before 1898, rescuing it from near collapse. He renovated it between 1898 and 1911 with the assistance of the architect E Cooper Poole before turning it into a museum by 1911. The Tudor building was recreated as near to its assumed original state as was possible. The ground floor frontage was completely restored. Plasterwork above was removed to reveal the underlying timbers and brickwork. Timbers to support the porch were added. There is however, a possibility that the works done by Mr Spranger actually led to some of the problems the house experienced in the next century. The Corporation purchased Tudor House from Mr Spranger in 1911 for the sum of £4500, which was half what Spranger had spent on its restoration, and in 1912 it became Southampton’s first municipal museum. 
In the late 1990s surveys revealed that the structure of the building was deteriorating and it needed substantial renovation to secure its future. A Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £3.5m, as well as £1.8m from Southampton City Council ensured the final phase of the restoration could be completed.
The restoration of Tudor House and Garden has been made possible by a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £3.5m, as well as an additional £1.8m from Southampton City Council which allowed for the completion of the final phase.
The restoration of the Tudor House and Garden was approached in two phases. Firstly, it was made watertight and structurally sound. Some of the oak on the frontage of Tudor House had to be replaced whilst a range of domestic artefacts, were uncovered from excavation work on site, shedding light on daily life in the house. 
The most interesting part for me was the discovery of the graffiti and witch marks on the wall of the house which dates back to around 1570 and 1620. At the time, the house stood near the waterfront and belonged to ship owners. There are over 25 ships pictured on the wall, as well as caricatures of people and animals. 
After the building was made watertight and structurally sound, the project focused on improving access to parts of the building that the public were unable to access. These included platform lifts to make the first floor fully accessible for the very first time and in areas where the house has no public access, such as the attic and cellar, a computer-generated tour of these areas is now available for visitors to view on the ground floor.
Tudor House has been made more accessible to everyone with a descriptive tour of the house for people with visual impairments and touch tours are also provided.
There is now a newly landscaped garden from the new café, which serves locally-sourced produce. The garden now features a bronze ‘Touch model’ of the Old Town, enabling visitors to get a sense of how the house fitted into the street scene of the town. New fully accessible toilets have also been installed along with some modern technology to help with the visitors’ interpretations of the building:
  • Lenticular panels - Visitors will be intrigued by panels which show several rooms in different historical periods with the images changing as you move past them.
  • Guida Rotate - Is a brand new piece of interactive technology that allows the user to find out more information about the history of the room it is located in, and the objects within it. The Guide Rotate is a new design of equipment and Tudor House will be the first location in the world to showcase it.
The house is now presented to visitors as a tour explaining the origins, heyday and decline of the House and the start of its current life as a museum.  
I would recommend experiencing the “Introductory Show” especially if you have children in your party – I will not say more but I must admit sitting on the benches watching and listening was one of the highlights of the tour round the house (apart from the graffiti which still remains my favourite part of the house).
Other features include the Old Town Model, the stocks and pillory, the air-raid shelter and of course sitting in the knot garden with a drink at the end of the tour finishes the experience of perfectly before the children pester in the gift shop (which I think has something for everyone).
For further information and updates on Tudor House visit or call 023 8083 3007. For regular updates visit the Tudor House Facebook page at     
Children under 7 - Free entryAdults - £4.75Over 60’s and FOSMAG members, concessions - £3.75Children 7-16 - £3Free admission for carers accompanying a paying disabled person. 
The House is open seven days a week, 10am to 5pm.
To join the Tudor House and Garden emailing or postal list to receive regular updates please either email, call 023 8083 4563, or write to us at Arts and Heritage, Civic Centre, Southampton SO14 7LP.
For further information and regular updates visit the Tudor House Facebook page.      

Other Places to Visit and Historical Facts for Southampton
If you like history and still have time why not walk down to the end of Bugle Street and get onto a Red Funnel Ferry (or Red Jet if you are in a hurry and have no car) and go to the Isle of Wight to visit Osborne House and Carisbrooke Castle, along with many other museums.
Alternatively, you can stay in Southampton to visit the Maritime Museum, Merchants House and up to the Civic Centre to see one of Southampton’s best kept secrets – the Art Gallery.  In 2012, and if all stays on track, the new Sea City Museum will open. This will include information about the Titanic which when it went down took with it many Southampton residents who made up the crew. Also you may like to visit the Bargate Monument, although not a museum (its more like an arch) it was through here that Henry V marched his men on the way to the famous Battle of Agincourt in France and for American readers you could visit Mayflower Park and the seafront, as it was from near here that the Pilgrim Fathers sailed to America. If you have the time and are able to do so Tudor House Museum will furnish you with a map of the Southampton Old Town Walk which will take you around some of the best-preserved medieval Town Walls in England, with over 90 listed buildings and 30 ancient monuments. There are other walks too such as the QE2 Mile.
If you are making a trip to Southampton and in a car you may like to visit another of my favourites Wilton House in Wiltshire or Mottisfont Abbey both with amazing gardens and beautiful houses to explore.

Seven Tips to Promote Your Small Business Blog

You’ve started a blog for your small business, and you (or your designated writer) have been putting out some great content. However, no one seems to know that your blog even exists. How do you get the word out about your blog and get some people to read it?
Here are 7 fairly simple and practical ways to share your blog:

1.  Start an account with StumbleUpon and submit your posts there.  StumbleUpon is an excellent social bookmarking site that allows you to share content as well as discover some incredible websites, blog posts, and videos you would have never come across otherwise.  One word of caution:  If you “stumble” your own posts, you must “stumble” other people’s content as well.  StumbleUpon frowns on people who only share their own content, and it looks really self-serving, anyway.  Whenever I submit one of my own posts, I always spend a few minutes “stumbling” and “liking” other people’s content that I find truly engaging. I really enjoy StumbleUpon and know many other people who do as well.
Along with StumbleUpon, there are many other bookmarking sites that you can use to post your content, such as Digg, Delicious and Reddit.  Take some time to explore at least one of them and try posting your links to it.

2. Make sure that you give readers the ability to share out your posts by adding share buttons to each post on your website. WordPress and other blogging platforms make this pretty easy to add. However, you can also check out for a solution to including sharing buttons on your site.

3.  Many of you do this already, but make sure you share your post on Facebook. Preface the link with a comment or question. Ask your social media power partners to share it out as well.

4.  Share a link to your post on Twitter, more than once.  Sure, you may already tweet your posts, but do you tweet them several times, spaced out over a couple of days, for maximum exposure?  Posting once is not enough. Try using a tweet scheduler such as Twaitter, Tweetdeck or Buffer.  Vary the tweets that you send out with the link.  Experiment with catchy headlines, questions and hashtags in your tweets.  Also, if you are going to use Twitter in this way, make sure that you are tweeting other content besides your post over and over again.

5. Comment on other people’s posts and include the link to your own post when you are asked to enter in your website URL for validation. In other words, instead of entering in your general website address, enter in the URL for your specific post. Don’t talk about your post in the comment, however- that is not cool. Be thoughtful and give an authentic comment; if you do, people are apt to take a closer look and check out your link. This tactic is more effective if you comment on a blog post in the same industry as yours.

6.  Share you post as a status update on your LinkedIn profile.  Also, post it as a discussion item in any of the relevant LinkedIn groups that you have joined. Each group has its own rules for posting, so check with the Group Rules for their guidelines (if a group has guidelines, they show up under “Group Rules” on the right-hand corner of the group’s home page above the “Manager’s Choice” box).

7.  Give your readers an opportunity to subscribe to your blog so that they receive an email each time you post something.  There are several services out there that allow you to add a subscription function to your website. is one of the better known services, and they do charge a monthly fee, but they keep a database of your subscribers and give you many options for including an attractive subscription form to your website.
These are just some of the things you can do to get more pairs of eyes across your blog. Please share your own ideas.

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The Brighton & Hove Food and Drink Festival

From 1rst September to 4th October

The Brighton & Hove Food and Drink Festival is the largest festival of its kind in the south of England, running for 10 days every April and throughout the entire month of September.

With local producers, growers, restaurants, bars and food retailers firmly at it’s heart, it’s a showcase of the fantastic food, drink and hospitality to be found in the city and surrounding Sussex.

“As comprehensive a festival as you will find in the UK this summer, this month-long homage to Brighton, Hove and the wider Sussex food scene takes in pretty much every taste-related activity you could think of… For foodies who like to keep it local, the Big Sussex Market, which attracted over 40,000 people last year, is a shopping experience without parallel. Best start saving.” – The Guardian ‘Word of Mouth’, May 2011

Explore our website and tuck in to Brighton & Hove with us!

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British Museum - an exibition - Treasure of Heaven until 9th October

Part of the Treasures of Heaven exhibition focuses on pilgrimage. Christian pilgrimage emerged around 330 BC. Rome, Santiago de Compostela, Cologne and Jerusalem are some of the most well known Christian pilgrimage destinations.
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Call for EYP participants at the Young Press conference

The European Youth Press is selecting 10 young journalists to participate in the Young Press conference organised by Evens Foundation and StampMedia in Antwerp, Belgium, from the 27th to the 29th of October. The conference offers young European reporters a superb opportunity to express their views on the media and journalism and to build up contacts with their peers.

Deadline: 1st of September
The event will focus on the following topics: the omnipresence of instant media, the threat on high-quality journalism, the spread of biased information and on new models and experimentation by independent journalists. Renowned speakers such as Robert Fisk, Sylvie Kauffman, Henk Blanken, Annabel McGoldrick, Alex Wood, Olaf Koens and Ingrid Lieten are expected to attend.

If you are a young journalist aged 18-26 engaged with these topics and have some journalistic experience please send your CV, motivation letter and a material you’ve produced to by the 1st of September. The material can be anything from an article to a video, audio or photo feature. Where the materials are not in English, a short summary in English should be provided.

Young journalists who have been already engaged with the European Youth Press and/or its member organizations will receive priority. All costs are covered by the organizers of the conference. Participants will have to pay a participation fee of 100 Euros.

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FINST project makes steady progress

LONDON – ESU’s project on ‘Financing the Students’ Future’ (FinSt) – a hot topic in the world of higher education - is moving ahead rapidly. Members of the Project Team and Research Team met in London for the second Management Meeting of the project on 8-9 August. Although a lot of work still needs to be done, progress has been made on a number of aspects of the project and its outcomes.
First of all, from September 2011 to February 2012, a series of student representatives exchanges will take place. Aim of the exchanges is to share knowledge and practices on Higher Education (HE) financing, the HE landscape and on how the students are involved in financing debates across different ESU members. Student representatives across the ESU membership have the opportunity to apply to either the UK (NUS UK), Austria (ÖH) or Estonia (EUL). Each of these three national unions is organising exchanges for six representatives, resulting in a total of 18 places.

Austria and Estonia next in line
The call and selection process is now complete for the first two exchange periods that will be hosted by NUS UK in the last two weeks of September 2011. Calls for the exchanges in Austria (ÖH) and Estonia (EUL) are in the pipelines and will be launched in due course, so make sure to keep an eye out for it. The exchanges in Austria will take place in November - December. Estonia will welcome the representatives during January and February 2012.

Although each of the three host national unions will design their own programme, the exchanges are likely to include visits to local students’ unions, policy tutorials and debates, focus groups, dissemination activities and many more activities with a view to gauging the perceptions and attitudes of the visiting representatives towards the system in the host nation.

Five articles
Now that the surveys have been completed by the national unions and the project has received feedback on the mapping of HE and student financing systems, the Research Team members are working on the analysis of the results. This will lead to a series of five articles and a desk research report, the bulk of which will be completed in the coming months. Much of the work from the data analysis will feed into the Consultations Seminar in Liverpool and will be available to ESU members for information and/or comments and input.

Consultations Seminar
The Consultations Seminar will take place from 24 November to 27 November in Liverpool, UK. Currently the agenda is being finalised and the venue has been confirmed, with NUS UK eagerly looking forward to welcoming ESU members and others to Liverpool. The event will bring together members from ESU as well as other stakeholders across the HE sector to share knowledge and exchange opinions on HE financing.

By George-Konstantinos Charonis

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When Education was Dogma

Teachers enjoyed stature, but facts and creativity were absent in the communist classroom.
by Irena Jurjevic, Nino Chimakadze, Grigore Brinza, and Ksenia Korzun 24 August 2011
Throughout this month, Transitions will present a series of articles marking the anniversary of the fall of the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia. 

As we look at how life has changed – or stayed the same – over the past 20 years, TOL correspondents in Croatia, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine asked people in various professions to describe their working life today compared with conditions before 1991. This collection of interviews with teachers is the third in the series that resulted.


A professor of agronomy and agricultural economics at the universities of Zagreb and Zadar

The communist society was a society without freedom. Whether you wanted to or not, you needed to edit your own views. Not just the personal ones, but the scientific ones too. … At first glance, the society ruled itself, but in reality all the moves were made by the ruling party. Some of those restrictions came from constant changes in the system, so professors needed to use caution all the time and to watch daily happenings, especially who was the latest key person in decision-making so they could act in accordance with the current political decisions.

Today we have great personal freedom, but we have responsibility too. So today, as a university lecturer, you can be publicly called upon to defend your views, and that’s something we didn’t have before. Also, today’s system provides us with a lot more possibilities academically. For example, we can work at several different universities or institutes, or we can connect with institutions abroad. Nowadays it’s much easier to network with the scientific world, which, in communism, was possible only with the institutions in countries with the same ideological background.

I censored myself a lot, just as a lot of my colleagues did. We always had to be careful if someone is watching and listening. For example, I was reported to the secret police twice: for teaching capitalistic views and for teaching strictly in the Croatian language, which was forbidden.

That kind of pressure sowed fear among me and my colleagues. I couldn’t express myself as a professor or a free person. I felt thwarted, without any hope that I could change my situation. The only way out was to leave the country, as a lot of my colleagues did. I know a lot went to Canada, Australia, and New Zealand to lecture, but I chose not to. I wasn’t brave enough. When I got my first passport at the age of 27, and it was really hard to get one, I thought a lot about leaving, but I decided not to, because of my family and friends.

The literature used in science, as well as for lectures, was limited, sometimes even prescribed. For example, you could use only Marxist literature, and some writers were proscribed, especially right-wing Croatian writers or authors who were convicted and prosecuted in the communist system. The only positive thing I saw in communism was the emergence of self-managing socialism [worker-managed workplaces] in the 1980s, when there were possibilities of broader choice and political influence, especially for the so-called labor class, which was heavily manipulated in earlier times. At that time workers’ unions had some sort of independence and that was positive, but with little or no chance to change the system.

Today we have the opportunity for free expression and freedom of choice. Croatia’s declaration of independence was the result of our freedom of national choice. I’m glad that in transition Croatia increasingly recognizes work and competence as the basic values of civic society. Also, I see a lot more interest in studying by young people than before. As a result, a wealthier life follows, in a material sense, but also in the sense of personal growth.

Still, I see an inability in people to cope with the changes in some areas, especially in economics. In communism when you got your job you were economically secure for life. If you weren’t politically prosecuted, you never had to fight for your daily bread. These days, the possibilities for employment are much wider, but it’s also a lot easier to lose your job. Back then the state was the employer, and now you have thousands of employers who autonomously make their decisions about your career destiny. But, consequently the material possibilities are much better.

Actually, for the first time since the seventh century we have our own state. We control our own destiny and rely on contributions from each citizen. That is why I can say that now, as I enter the 70th year of my life, I’m a happy man.


A historian at the National Center of Manuscripts and lecturer at various universities and colleges.

I graduated from the faculty of history in 1972 and of course we didn’t study real history then. Everything was under the pressure of the regime and history was written the way the communist government considered correct. Some of our lecturers told us about some details, if we asked, but not publicly. We were taught that the communist regime was the best in the world and the Soviet Union was the best country to live in. We didn’t study the history of Georgia then. We studied Soviet history in detail, but that of course was not a real history.

From the end of the 1970s, I started to give some lectures at different institutes. I taught them the same way I used to study. Sometimes I wanted to tell the truth and tell the students that most of these books were false, but I couldn’t. I taught them the history that didn’t say anything about the occupation of Georgia by Russian Bolsheviks. There was no word about the rebels and protests against Soviet Union; about resistance from Georgian people; about the tragic results of repressions in the 1930s that took the lives of the best intellectuals in Georgia. We only read in those books how good socialism was, how the Soviet Union helped people to break free from slavery and defend their rights and how bad it was to live in capitalist countries. We had to teach all this nonsense to new generations.

But after the Soviet Union collapsed, everything changed immediately. During last years of the regime, there was the rise of a national movement in Georgia and more and more people started to protest against the communist government and Russia. So when the system collapsed, the truth was unveiled very quickly. We all started to change our thinking and attitudes. History books were rewritten quickly. Most of the archives were opened, and since then we can teach history based on real facts. Then we started speaking about all the difficulties and tragedies Georgia went through during those 70 years. The repressions, occupation, dictatorship, and censorship – these topics were no longer taboo.

The generation that was raised in the 1990s studied the real history and our real past. We also had access to emigrants’ archives, where we found many interesting and unknown stories there. Teachers at school and at universities started to adapt to the new reality and deliver the knowledge in totally different ways. Now we had all the information that was hidden before and we could speak about it loudly. In 1991, Georgia started an absolutely new life with an absolutely new history.


A teacher of Romanian at the prestigious Mircea Eliade High School, Bolocan holds a doctorate in pedagogy. In 1999 she won a national Teacher of the Year award.

Until 1991 – closed borders, barbed wire. Immediately after, it was like it never happened. After this we had much more access to [literary] works of true value that we had not had access to before.

At first, we all enjoyed the freedom to say what we thought and not be afraid. We didn’t have to hide when asking for or reading a certain book. We could travel, discover things, not be shut up behind borders anymore.

During the totalitarian regime we were forced to follow an imposed curriculum, and some poets, writers, or works were not permitted. The curriculum was supposed to celebrate the society of that time, to praise that regime. Therefore, we weren’t familiar enough with contemporary Romanian literature. You had to travel to Cernauti, Ukraine, or St. Petersburg to buy some books. There were no bookstores and we borrowed from one another.

At that time, a student was bringing me books from her father’s library. He had bought them in 1957 or 1958, when a bookstore called Friendship was still open in Chisinau. All the books were wrapped in white paper, so that if anyone came to visit, they couldn’t see them.

Even then Romanian [literature] was taken very seriously, but the possibilities are much greater now. Professional development is widely available and teachers have lots of trainings, including in Romania.

I didn’t suffer in the Soviet period. I didn’t feel the dictatorship or maybe we knew how to defend, to protect, ourselves. We knew what could be said and what couldn’t. I think everyone knew it was a fraud.

However, teaching methods were quite effective at that time too. Of course we have now access to teaching literature from around the world, but even back then we had the freedom to choose the best teaching methodology, because quality education was valued.

In that time the emphasis was on repetition, whereas now the stress is on collaboration, creativity, and communication. The pupil-teacher distance isn’t so great anymore. Pupils are now the center of education. They’ve been set free, they don’t hide their curiosity, they’ve started to question and learn more. It’s a visible change. And fortunately there’s no more need to learn certain slogans by heart.  

Nevertheless there’s still too much emphasis on information. Some teachers still focus on acquisition of information by default and that doesn’t work very well. You have to stimulate the pupil to search and communicate. I really appreciate team work and the pupils like it, because many beautiful things happen there. 

In the past 20 years, we realized all over again that by offering pupils the chance to think freely, we gain a lot.


A history and law teacher at a Kyiv high school, Chervinskaya has been an educator for 34 years.

There were good things and bad things about the teaching profession during the Soviet era. The methodical preparation of teachers in institutions was very sound. A young teacher could soon build a lesson correctly, using all kinds of teaching methods. Unfortunately, now the methodological training of teachers is poor. The teacher in the Soviet Union had status; it was a prestigious and highly paid profession. Whatever else you might say, now the teacher is a man with a low salary, and it’s an unpopular profession.

Of course, there were many more negative aspects of the work than positive. History was very politicized. The system of teaching history was built on ideology. Everything was recorded, programmed, and painted. All of history was built around the leader, Stalin. … It was simple and comfortable for the teachers who didn’t want to think, but not for me. Thoughtful people saw the gaps in these invented tales that we were taught. Teachers couldn’t work with documents and know what the story was fact. For example, topics such as dissidents, the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, were just missing. We taught children an ideology, not history. Children were taught about Brezhnev and Lenin.

1991, the time of the collapse of the Soviet Union, was very difficult. After all, everything crashed: the ideology and the history that we taught. People who had worked in the Soviet system for a long time couldn’t readjust and accept the changes. Many teachers simply didn’t have their own point of view. And they couldn’t fit into the new framework, to find that view. These people have left the profession. Others left because wages dropped, and others just couldn’t handle the massive amount of new information that became available.

We have learned that much was hushed up, and, on the other hand, that some facts were invented by the Communist Party. And that much of what we were taught was not true. In the 1990s schools were facing difficult times: there were no [suitable] elementary textbooks and literature.

Now teachers are confident in the knowledge they impart to their students. I work with primary sources, documents, and I can draw conclusions. I think that teaching a subject simply by the textbook is unprofessional, it’s nonsense. There are different classes, different children who have different perceptions of the information. The teacher should know how to inspire students. ... Now I’m developing as a teacher, exploring new possibilities. For example, I attended a program where I learned how to work with databases and documents. Now so many sources of information are open! It should give impetus to the reinterpretation of history teaching in the Ukraine.

Students haven’t become more industrious. Children are the same. But now, to learn something, to acquire knowledge, you have to work twice as hard. However, there is now the issue of morality. Children are less ethical, less well brought up. The basis of the relationships among children is often financial. It’s more important than what you know. If in the Soviet Union all kids were equal, now the social divide is huge. Now teachers are often treated like servants to the students. A gap between the material situation of students (who are rich) and teachers (who receive a modest salary) feeds this attitude.

At the same time this generation has become more practical. They want a good career, they think about the future and understand that knowledge - real, not on paper - is very important.
Irena Jurjevic is a journalist in Zadar. Nino Chimakadze is a reporter for Liberali magazine in Tbilisi. Grigore Brinza is a journalist in Chisinau. Ksenia Korzun is a journalist in Kyiv. Homepage image: Detail from The Russian Schoolroom by Norman Rockwell.
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Thursday, 25 August 2011

29th August - Craft market and live entertainment at Port Solent

Summer Bank Holiday fun at Port Solent...
Come along to Port Solent on Monday 29th August for another one of our specialist unique craft markets, from 11am until 5pm. 
And forget Pirates of the Caribbean, we’ve got the pirates of Port Solent back by popular demand, from 11am to 4pm. The real-life Captain Jack Sparrow and his motley crew will be performing some breathtaking displays of action live on The Boardwalk, along with some pirate-themed storytelling. Show's will be performed at 12.00, 13.30 and 15.00hrs, although the pirates will be around between 11am and 4pm.
Other  events at Port Solent:


When? 11am-4pm
Where? Southsea Common, Clarence Esplanade, Southsea, PO5 3PB

There is no better way to spend a day in the fresh air having fun than enjoying and taking part in the Portsmouth Kite Festival. Taking place for the 20th time it promises to be bigger and better than ever.

Kite flying displays Saturday and Sunday. Dog show on Monday. Children's kitemaking workshops, stalls, and children's rides every day. 

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Digital Journalism (Central Asia, Moldova & Georgia scholarships )

Dates: October 9 - 14, 2011
Location: Prague, Czech Republic
Do you qualify for a scholarship?Central Asia (three scholarships) - Applicants should have a journalism or citizen journalism (blogging) background.
Moldova (two scholarships) - Applicants should have a journalism, citizen journalism (blogging), or NGO background, but preference will be given to civil society representatives interested in using new media to further their organizations' missions.
Georgia (one scholarship) - Applicants should have a journalism or citizen journalism (blogging) background.

About the course
Modern digital journalism requires both a strong website and a strong presence on social networking platforms. By the end of this course for both editors and reporters you will have learned the latest methods in digital journalism, including digital research skills. You will also learn different digital storytelling techniques – multimedia, social media, data journalism, and crowdsourcing – and how to choose the right techniques for your projects. You'll learn how to make sure that social media work supports your main website, and how to manage output on these multiple platforms.

TrainersThe course was developed and will be led by Kevin Anderson. Kevin was the first overseas online journalist for the BBC, working in their flagship bureau in Washington DC. In 2006, Kevin became The Guardian's first blogs editor. He will be joined by Suw Charman-Anderson, a British blogging and social media pioneer. The husband-wife team run a global media consultancy with clients in Europe, the US, the Middle East and Asia.

What will you learn?
  • Different digital journalism techniques involving blogs, social media, and multimedia.
  • How to plan and use these techniques in effective digital journalism packages.
  • Tools for real-time reporting including live blogging and live multimedia.
  • The best platforms for digital journalism, including an overview of content management systems, blogging platforms, and how to integrate Twitter, Facebook, and other social networks into your site.
  • Simple multimedia tools for audio, video, and photos.
  • Common multimedia mistakes and how to avoid them.
  • How to engage your audience using social networks.
  • How to find and verify sources using social media.
  • How to manage interaction between your editors, journalists, and audiences.
  • Mobile reporting tools and services.
  • How to integrate mobile multimedia into your journalism.
  • How to interact with your audience while you’re in the field.
  • And much more!

Practical exercisesIn addition to learning best practices, you will engage in hands-on exercises learning how to use new media production tools, social networking tools, and mobile multimedia tools. We'll teach you how to plan digital journalism projects and packages and provide feedback to help make sure that you have the confidence to put the training into practice.

Click here to register or contact Alaksiej Lavoncyk (Central Asia), Cristian Ziliberberg (Moldova) or Elza Ketsbaia (Georgia) if you have any questions.

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