absolutely intercultural 18 +++ The BOBs +++ UK & NATO +++ schooling & worklife balance +++

You will hear about The BOBs, the GO OUT campaign and what British schools and the army have in common.

Absolutely Fantastic: The support you gave us for The BOBs was absolutely fantastic and thank you to everybody who voted, commented and listened. We came third in the user prize category and that is solely down to your votes. Add your comments here or send us a mail or audio message to let us know how we can be number one next year.

Absolutely Mobile: Laurent and Karsten from the Fachhochschule Koblenz, Germany, give you some background information on the “GO OUT” campaign initiated by the German Academic Exchange Service, DAAD. During this week students can prepare themselves for a semester abroad, both, at a partner university or in a company.

Absolutely Personal: The show concentrates on two individuals who both went to work for a period in the UK.

First we hear from Dane, Tommy Søholm, who went for three years working for NATO in the UK. Life was not as regimented as you might think for Tommy the soldier, but on the other hand even his youngest child was drafted into the disciplined ranks of the British schooling system much to everybody’s surprise in the family.

Then we hear from Yogesh Bang, a software engineer based in India who has been posted abroad for short periods on assignment several times now. Hear what he has to say about the work life balance and the concern shown to him by his landlady in the UK as he went off for a weekend in Chester.

The next show will be coming to you from Germany on the 1st of December.

Until then…stay tuned!
The Host of this show is: Anne Fox

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absolutely intercultural 17 +++ The BOBs +++ Borrowed Identities +++ European Students +++

Borrowed Identities – European Student Now!

Borrowed Identities Have you ever thought about your own identity? Or about borrowing another identity to see what it is like to live the life of somebody else? Have you ever marveled about how your life would have been if you grew up in another country? Or if you were a homeless person?

Well, in this episode we try to answer those questions as we talk about a European project which we’ve started recently together with students in Sweden, Spain, England and Hungary.

The title of the project is “Borrowed Identities”, and to cast a little light on this we have interviewed Vy, Lili, Jessica and Ross from the School of Languages at the University in Brighton and Pat Shrimpton from the University of Umea in the north of Sweden.
And please also have a look at the “Achill 2006” website, which documents a very similar previous project.

And, of course, we say hello to our listeners TT and Veronique from the USA, and Halla in Saudi Arabia who have put their pins on our frappr map. We talk about the feedback we’ve received from you, and about the nomination of ‘absolutely intercultural!’ as one of the 10 best podcasts for The BOBs award.

Well, we hope you will enjoy the show and are looking forward to your comments.

The next show will be coming to you on the 17th of November from Anne Fox in Denmark.

Until then…stay tuned!

The Host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Edited by: Karsten Kneese

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absolutely intercultural 16 +++ Moët et Chandon +++ Internships in France +++ Bilingualism +++ Intercultural faux pas +++


Using cultural informants from your own personal network.

Absolutely interactive highlights the Crossing Borders forum which aims to foster intercultural dialogue.

In Absolutely Personal we talk to Greg Houfe who had two French internships almost twenty years ago as part of his degree in European Business Administration.
Looking back did he think working at Moët et Chandon benefited him? Would he now employ a former intern preferentially over someone who had not had this type of experience?

In Absolutely Linguistic I talked with Gwen and Mia, 12 and 9, who are bilingual in Danish and English. Does this affect their identity? Do they mix the languages up?

And finally in Absolutely Confidential I talked to Tony Fox who was caught out in a conference in Germany recently.
The Host of this show is: Anne Fox

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absolutely intercultural 15 +++ Practical training, internships and studies abroad +++ Culture as the software of the mind +++

Go abroad! And why not to Germany?
You will hear reports, stories and even some advice of people who went abroad to do an internship or to study at a foreign university.

Marie from Sweden for example has done both. First she did an internship in Germany and then, because she liked it so much, she came back about a year later to study here at the RheinAhrCampus for a whole semester.
Karsten tells us a little about what he experienced during his time in Sweden, where he did both, work and study at the University of Umea at the same time.
Alessandro La Blunda gives us some insights into his six months internship in Shanghai, which he just recently finished.
And Professor Mert Cubukcu from the University of Izmir, Turkey, tells us why he recommendes studying in Germany to all of his students.

Right after that we return to one of our regular columns: “Culture as the software of the mind”. Inspired by one of your comments we take a look at the question: “Where do we get our software from, how does it get installed in our minds- and how can we eventually de-install it if we need to”. We had a little round table talk with Jean Lennox, an Irish-English friend of ours.

And in the end we once again try to answer the question: “What is culture?” And this time the answer comes from Roxanna and Nils, two students from the USA and Germany, who took part in the Hessen Global Summer Internship Program organized by the institute inter.research and the Universities of Hessen/Germany.
The Host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Edited by: Karsten Kneese

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‘absolutely intercultural!’ – Show #3

This week the Chinese president travelled West to the United States to meet George Bush. Our virtual journey will take us in the opposite direction. We will take a closer look at one of the most fascinating and diverse but also controversial, countries in the world…China!

We have interviewed Professor Stefan Kammhuber, who has both, a scientific interest in the country, but he also fell in love with its people and its beauty.
And we’ll hear why Ching, a Chinese girl who studies in Europe, was very impressed by a little Belgian statue.

After that we’ll be ‘absolutely indiscrete’ again. This time we talk about the cultural implications of Google’s new Chinese name…and why what was called the “old hound” now likes to be addressed as the “harvest song”.

In the end we have a little Chinese lesson for you. Jenny and Ken from the ChinesePod-Podcast talk about politeness in China.

The Host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Karsten Kneese (the pod-Karsten)

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‘absolutely intercultural!’ – Show #2


Thanks to all of you for your numerous comments after the first show – we were overwhelmed by your response! In our second show we ask ourselves: Can intercultural awareness be taught in a classroom? Can it be taught in online courses?

We start by giving you some quotations from the 17 comments of feed-back on the first show. Fernando, a Spanish student who is doing his internship in Germany explains how surprised he was to hear Germans discuss different olive oils as if they were wines. Alexandra gives examples of how you can teach intercultural communication by facilitating intercultural experiences between participants of different countries. Ana shares her experience of an intercultural business simulation between her university and universities in Sweden and Lithuania.

And then we ask you, the listeners: Have you got any experience with intercultural classes? Perhaps even online? How can we gain intercultural awareness? In our gossip column Tommy from Denmark tells us how the Mohamed-cartoons crossed his holiday plans in Egypt and in our look at our favourite podcasts with cultural contents we hear about solar radio for coffee traders in Ruanda.

The Hosts of the show are: Anne Fox and Dr. Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Karsten Kneese (the pod-Karsten)

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‘absolutely intercultural!’ – Show #1


In our first show we take you along to Leon in the North of Spain. Some guest in a tapas bar tell us about the social aspects of the tapas culture. Dot from Sweden wonders when Spanish people ever get their sleep and Indre from Lithuania tells us the heart-breaking story of a Lithuanian basket-baller and his Israeli girlfriend who have different religions and whose wedding plans are overshadowed by gossip in their respective countries.

The Hosts of the show are: Anne Fox and Dr. Elmar-Laurent Borgmann

Chief Editor: Karsten Kneese (the pod-Karsten)

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