I am introducing another handful of educational content in the form of video tutorials.
The video recorded on August 23rd, noon sharp, is the first in a separate path of teaching devoted to Political Systems. The link to You Tube is here: PolitSys 2020-08-23 11-16-44 (https://youtu.be/J_78zBEFFNE ). The video introduces two case studies: the constitution of Uganda (https://discoversocialsciences.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/Uganda-Constitution.pdf ) and the constitution of India (https://discoversocialsciences.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/Con-Of-India-updated-as-31072018.pdf ). In terms of theory, two articles are hinted at: Almond, G. A. (1956). Comparative Political Systems. The Journal of Politics, 18(3), 391-409 (https://www.jstor.org/stable/2127255?seq=1 ), and Easton, D. (1957). An approach to the analysis of political systems. World Politics: A Quarterly Journal of International Relations, 383-400 (https://www.jstor.org/stable/2008920?seq=1 ). General concepts which you will find developed in this video are:
>> Constitution as a double-function tool: the set of rules for the political game, and the foundation of the national legal system
>> Constitutional systems as paradoxes: rules of the very brutal political game put together, in the same document, with ambitious ethical principles for the entire nation.
>> The principle of national sovereignty
>> The method of studying constitutions by simulated removal and negation of rules
Material recorded on Monday, August 24th, 2020 (Econ Basics 1 2020-08-24 08-02-06 ; https://youtu.be/OTGjJGfpdoc ) contains the first, more or less formalized lecture in the fundamentals of economics. I use five essential readings – Netflix Annual Report 2019, Discovery Annual Report 2019, Adam Smith’s ‘Wealth of Nations’, David Ricardo’s ‘Principles of Political Economy and Taxation’, and Carl Menger’s ‘Principles of Economics’ – in order to show the basis axes of approach to economic sciences. Firstly, it is the special social tension between the diversity of skills and social roles, on the one hand, and the fact of them all summing up to one big body of labour (Smith). Secondly, I introduce the distinction between capital and labour, and the importance of capital resources (Ricardo, example Netflix). Thirdly, and finally, I present the concept of economic good (Carl Menger) and the importance of translating technology into products.
The video recorded slightly later on August 24th, 2020 (Renew BM 2 2020-08-24 09-35-20; https://youtu.be/VnwLLCDFXS8 ) is the second educational piece in the stream devoted to Business Models in the industry of Renewable Energies. I stay with the two business cases from the first video, i.e. First Solar Inc. and SMA Solar Technology AG, and I focus on connecting their capital accounts – their respective BALANCE SHEETS – to their business models. In terms of the capital base, First Solar is six times bigger than SMA. First Solar’s business model is based, capital-wise, on using retained earnings and additional paid-in capital to finance property, plant, equipment and a large reserve of cash. As regards SMA Solar, they mostly use retained earnings and long-term, complex contractual debt in order to finance factories and large inventories. What emerges as a common denominator between the two is the stream of capital from retained earnings to the financing of fixed productive assets.
In the second video focused on business models in the media industry (Media BM 2 2020-08-24 13-42-46; https://youtu.be/jZKvNfopShM ), I keep working with two business cases: Netflix, and Discovery Communications. This time, I focus on deconstructing a business model out of the capital account, i.e. from the balance sheet of a company. I present it in the form of a game, which I frequently practice in class with my students: I ask them to identify the biggest numbers (financial aggregates) on both the active and the passive side of the balance sheet. I demonstrate this exercise in this video and explain how you can use the balance sheet to guess the fundamental traits of a business model.
I am also putting online a second video in the educational path devoted to the philosophy of science (Phil Science 2 2020-08-24 14-17-58; https://youtu.be/sCI66lARqAI ). I am investigating the nature of truth, with three basic readings: Philosophical Essay on Probabilities’ by Pierre Simon, marquis de Laplace, ‘Truth and Method’ by Hans Georg Gadamer, and an article entitled ‘Conscious agent networks: Formal analysis and application to cognition’, by Chris Fields, Donald D. Hoffman, Chetan Prakash, and Manish Singh. I briefly discuss the limitations we, humans, encounter when trying to discover truth about reality.