Ok – why the blog? To act as a forum for the University of Urbino’s English Language and Culture for Business students. I teach the 1st and 2cnd year language listening in this course, and am always looking for new ways to provide services (cheap) for students. The classroom format has limits, so I thought I’d try this out.
As well, I try to apply a methodology of teaching the language based on experiential learning – so I encourage all students to get out there and try things. This seems like a good place for them to interact with me, and perhaps the outside world. My first year course focuses on relationships between cultural evolution, language learning and business cultures. As such, we start with an overview of how people learn, what constitutes memory, where language comes from and how it develops into institutions – both formal and informal. Then we focus on relationships between cultures and finally focus on economics and culture, and the role of culture in business processes such as marketing and managment.
About me. I got my B.A. and M.A. in European History at Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia, Canada in 1994 and 1995, respectively. In 1995 I spent 3 months in a social development programme in Bogotà, Colombia. I came to Italy in 1997 – to Urbino – to do my PhD on smuggling and tax-fraud in the Duchy of Urbino at the end of the sixteenth century. At that time, the project didn’t work out and I went back to Canada for a couple of years. I decided to move back in 2000 – bringing my new wife and her two boys with me. I finished the project as a PhD thesis at the University of Bari in the area of The Analysis and Historical Contextualization of the Processes of Production. Of course, being a native English speaker, the most natural job here was to teach English. I started out teaching in companies – which was really interesting. I began teaching in the Language and Culture for Business program in the Faculty of Foreign Languages in 2006. As a history student I had never been very interested in business, but the topics these students have to face for their exams are really interesting, and it’s simply a lot of fun to go through this with them. As a foreigner in Italy it’s really fantastic to feel that you can make a positive contribution. One thing though, as true here as it is in business – you’ve got to have a vision. After that, there is a lot of work to do.
I was born on Jan. 17 1972 in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. I’ve lived extensively in Canada, the United States and Italy, with a brief sojourn in Glasgow, Scotland.