View Full Version : Hello everybody`
15-04-2010, 09:55 PM
I'm new to this forum and I think I'll be back here regularly. I'd like to write down why exactly I'm interested in permaculture but it would be a bit of a long, abstract sounding story. Actually, I kind of use permaculture as a catch-all term for what I'm interested in doing, because it's not that easy to describe. Another thing I'm interested in is social-business (at least the way Muhammad Yunus uses the term in his book "Creating a World Without Poverty").
I really hope I can get to know some people from here! I guess I should start posting on some more specific subjects in the forum, then see what kind of conversation start from there. One thing I'm looking for is some advice on what kind of degree to get.. I'm thinking about getting a degree through distance learning and I've got some pretty specific ideas of what subjects might help with what I want to do in the future, but I'd like to discuss it with people that are more knowledgable than me or have different perspectives etc. Btw, for introducing myself: my name is Chris, I'm from the Netherlands and living in China now.
See you on the forum
15-04-2010, 10:13 PM
What would you want to do with your degree? Is there a reason that you can't just go out and learn what you need to learn, and do what you need to do?
16-04-2010, 01:09 PM
Hello Chris and welcome to the forums!
Do you know Bob? http://forums.permaculture.org.au/showthread.php?7078-Hello-from-Yunnan-Province-China He's posted a fascinating thread about his experiences in China ... and we'd like to hear about what you're up to in that vast country.
We're looking forward to hearing about your plans and ideas ... if you do a search, there have been a couple of discussions regarding formal education and degrees here.
20-04-2010, 06:10 PM
Thanks for your replies, they were both useful.
eco4560, that's a good question. I guess in a way I just feel like I should, I don't know exactly where that comes from. It seems people see it as proof you're at least able to commit to something and it shows you have some basic abilities, no matter what your degree is in. I hope I don't really need qualifications for a job, I don't see myself doing that kind of work, but I think it's still good to have more credibility. I'd also be happy myself to have completed something properly. Another thing is that I doubt I could put that much time in studying in such a short period, if I did it all on my own. There are some things I really want to study and understand thoroughly and it's hard to examine your own abilities. But I guess the main thing is I wouldn't know how to go about finding all the right books and organising my studies by myself.. when I go on the internet I get lost and forget where I was going.. it's pitiful really, ehh..
There wouldn't be any shortage of 'case studies' and field experience around here though. My girlfriend's parents have farmland and (unused) fish ponds in a beautiful pine forest (we're in the south of China here). There are many unused fields, so there would be a lot to experiment with. I also want to collect material in Chinese about sustainable ways of making more money for farmers here, maybe by contacting universities. It seems there's a lot of research in China about the vetiver grass system for example.
I haven't been here very long, still learning the language and more about the culture. I have a lot of ideas about things to do here. Now I'm trying to be more serious and proffessional in teaching English, to learn more about being my own boss of sorts and about getting things done here. It's also a good opportunity to communicate with a lot of people and introduce some topics that might broaden their perspectives a little.
One thing I want to look into is the market for organic fruit and vegetables. It's not available at all now, and people tell me nobody cares about organic or not. But with the growing middle-class here I think that might change. My Chinese is not good enough to know if people are talking or writing about this kind of thing, but yoga for example has already caught on and that seems to often go together in magazines and such. My thinking is if there's money in this, farmers might also start trying it, but first you have to understand the potential customers and see how to market it. But that's beyond my abilities and knowledge right now.
Another thing I would really like personally is to promote potted plants in the city, wherever there is space for them. In Thailand it's very common and it's one reason I like to be in Bangkok. There seem to be a lot more butterflies and birds there too. Green roofs are a bit more specialized but that would be even better. Being your own boss in a broad sense, is also quite easy here. I dabble in teaching English and it's really surprising how often people offer to "become partners" in opening an English training center or home school.. there's not much to it.
I think there are other parts of the forum to talk about things like this, I'll have a look around. Thanks for the welcome`
02-07-2010, 12:42 AM
I think i might have missed it but which part of china are you living in? which province? Iv just gotten married to my good Chinese lady. We're moving to yunnan soon. Im looking to start farming organically the permaculture way and build my own house etc out of natural materials. My blog is "CHINA-choosing my paradise to be. Permaculture in China. Asia".
03-07-2010, 09:57 AM
I really hope I can get to know some people from here! I guess I should start posting on some more specific subjects in the forum, then see what kind of conversation start from there.
One thing I'm looking for is some advice on what kind of degree to get.. I'm thinking about getting a degree through distance learning and I've got some pretty specific ideas of what subjects might help with what I want to do in the future, but I'd like to discuss it with people that are more knowledgable than me or have different perspectives etc. Btw, for introducing myself: my name is Chris, I'm from the Netherlands and living in China now.
Welcome, you sound like a thoughtful caring person.
It is hard these days to give advice on uni degrees, they are not as they were once where.
They originally developed around THE library (Bodelin=Cambridge).
So one went to the library and read all the books.
You read for a degree, you didn't cram facts to pass a multiple choice exam.
Now of course, we have Google and all the libraries in our own space, via the WWW.
Unis do give some credibility, among some. It is also good for your own ego.
(And if you get a PhD, you some times/unis get to wear a super-cool Tudor Bonnet and furry drag!!).
Perhaps at their best they can introduce you to new ideas, people, discussions and move "Stuff I don't know, I don't know" to "Stuff I know, I don't know" which may be helpful.
Most disciplines have their own language that helps you communicate with others with the same degree/language. this can also make it MORE difficult to communicate with others who do not share your language/discipline; but makes it faster, quicker and more precise to communicate with those that share the common language/world-view. Each discipline is a specialized way of seeing and thinking about the world, which can help; or in turn, blinker your mind/view. Sometimes exclusive clubs are formed, which actively keep out uninitiated, or iconoclastic new members.
The discipline of forcing you to write coherently to a deadline and to evaluate, organize and read research may also be valuable
I sometimes naughtily think that academic rivalry, super-egos, jealousy, competitiveness, arrogance and contempt also motivate some academics to great heights!
We do, sort of, run a Uni at this site too!?!?
Good luck with whatever you decide.
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