You can't boil an egg in 60 seconds, but political experts at The University of Nottingham are proving you can define a political concept.
A popular new video series 'Politics in 60 Seconds' challenges experts from the School of Politics and International Relations to share their knowledge and expertise in less than a minute. Subjects covered range from war, utopia and the UK's relationship with the US; to social democracy and disaster politics.
Taking up a challenge like this is not without its pitfalls and the videos feature bloopers and out-takes. The video series is currently showcased as a featured album on iTunes U.
Professor Wyn Rees, said: “We have a vast range of expertise in the School, and we like to find new ways to engage with students, colleagues and anyone with even a passing interest in politics.”
Professor Rees, an expert on international security, features in the series: “It isn't easy to record videos like this, but I think that's part of the challenge and of course part of the appeal. We hope viewers will find them as informative as they find them entertaining.”
The videos follow on from the tremendous success of the School's Election 2010 blog which reached over 40 million people through the media over the election period. The blog's entries were read more than 90,000 times and offered accessible and incisive analysis, which generated interest in the blogosphere as well as the media, which includes The Wall Street Journal, The Telegraph, BBC and Sky News among others.
“The School has an excellent reputation for the standard of teaching and contact with students,” adds Professor Rees. “We see 'Politics in 60 Seconds' as an extension of that work.
“The videos will, we hope, not only help school pupils and university students but anyone with an interest in politics who would like to learn more about political ideas often used but not perhaps properly understood.”
The series, which is also available on YouTube EDU, will see new videos added weekly.
'Politics in 60 Seconds' also features music from Swound, a group made up of four University of Nottingham graduates, all brothers.
If you'd like to challenge the academics to take on a definition of your choosing email firstname.lastname@example.org
Politics in 60 Seconds is available on iTunes U and at YouTube EDU
Visit Swound at www.myspace.com/swound
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Notes to editors: The University of Nottingham is ranked in the UK's Top 10 and the World's Top 100 universities by the Shanghai Jiao Tong (SJTU) and Times Higher (THE) World University Rankings.
More than 90 per cent of research at The University of Nottingham is of international quality, according to RAE 2008, with almost 60 per cent of all research defined as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. Research Fortnight analysis of RAE 2008 ranks the University 7th in the UK by research power. In 27 subject areas, the University features in the UK Top Ten, with 14 of those in the Top Five.
The University provides innovative and top quality teaching, undertakes world-changing research, and attracts talented staff and students from 150 nations. Described by The Times as Britain's “only truly global university”, it has invested continuously in award-winning campuses in the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia. Twice since 2003 its research and teaching academics have won Nobel Prizes. The University has won the Queen's Award for Enterprise in both 2006 (International Trade) and 2007 (Innovation — School of Pharmacy), and was named ‘Entrepreneurial University of the Year’ at the Times Higher Education Awards 2008.
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