Columns in Observant, Maastricht University newspaper

Columns in Observant, Maastricht University newspaper

Since the beginning of the 2017-18 academic year, I’ve been writing the occasional column for Observant, the independent newspaper of Maastricht University. It’s fun, reaching out to a different kind of audience – academic, but not necessarily research focused. Sticking to 400 words, and not including copious references and nuanced explanation is a challenge. My first column appeared in the first week of teaching so I focused on academic new year resolutions, for staff and students. The second was my (necessarily) short contribution to the ongoing discussions about sexual harassment (or – the more apt Dutch phrase – ‘unwanted intimacies’) in universities. The third was about the role of humour in an international classroom, and the fourth celebrated books.

The columns are in English, and can be found here. The editor also interviewed me early in the year (in my best Dutch – which certainly got better in the transcription).

I have been invited to continue for the 2018-19 academic year. The first column is about the limits of autonomous robots, prompted by observing an autonomous lawnmower while on holiday. Suggestions for later columns are certainly welcome.