Blog

Kathleen Miller is a Fellow of Virginia Tech's Center for Leadership in Global Sustainability
Meaningful Work
December 28, 2017 — Kathleen Miller Perkins

We are a pessimistic society these days. We are concerned and anxious about the future in a world filled with terrorism, vast political divides, income inequality, and climate change. Many if not most of us want to do our part to find solutions to the many problems that plague our world. According to a recent study carried out by Deloitte, a financial and risk management firm, millennials believe that the workplace offers them the greatest opportunity for making an impact… Read More
Giving a Dam for Water Security (IV)
December 26, 2017 — Mark Kessel

[In Part I , Part II , and Part III of this four-part series, XMNR student Mark Kessel discussed the early stages of the Thumbo ka Golia (Jalore, India) community's attempts to address the lack of potable water, partnering with Jal Bhagirathi Foundation (JBF) and Excellent Development (ED) to build a sand dam and provide greater water security for the village. In Part IV, Kessel completes the story with a discussion of the sand dam's impact on Thumbo ka Golia residents.] As early… Read More
Expanding the Tribe Through Storytelling (II)
December 21, 2017 — Patricia Raun

[In Part I of this two-part series, Patricia Raun discussed the work of Dan Kahan, founder of the Cultural Cognition Project, and his efforts to understand why it is difficult to connect across differences, the gaps between knowledge and belief, and the role of cultural identity in those gaps.] Let me tell you a story about my early cultural identity. I was born into a family of proud Midwesterners. My father, a natural scientist and educator, identified deeply with farmers… Read More
Giving a Dam for Water Security (III)
December 18, 2017 — Mark Kessel

[In Part I  and Part II of this four-part series, XMNR student Mark Kessel discussed the early stages of the Thumbo ka Golia (Jalore, India) community's attempts to address the lack of potable water, partnering with Jal Bhagirathi Foundation (JBF) and Excellent Development (ED). In Part III, Kessel continues the story of how a sand dam was funded and built, and the impact on Thumbo ka Golia residents.] In March 2012, the Executive Director of the JBF, Kanupriya Harish, met… Read More
Expanding the Tribe Through Storytelling (I)
December 14, 2017 — Patricia Raun

Can you connect across differences? Or do you feel flustered when encountering someone whose perspective is different than yours (on climate change, stem cell research, artificial intelligence, or whatever)? Or worse, just want to give up and retreat to the safety of a like-minded tribe? Communicating with folks whose values and cultural identity are different from our own is incredibly challenging, sometimes frustrating, and increasingly needed. It requires authentic connection, ­without which all the information and education in the world… Read More