Profile: Lucian M. Ashworth - Professor

Lucian M. Ashworth - Professor

Political Science Professor. Memorial University of Newfoundland. Canada


Lucian M. Ashworth's COVID-19 Diary

16 Aug 2020 : Unprecedented

  I have just been reading Shoshana Zuboff’s The Age of Surveillance Capitalism. At one point she points out how an unprecedented phenomenon is difficult to deal with because we misrepresent it by trying to find a precedent in our existing knowledge. Or, as she puts it: “The unprecedented is necessarily unrecognizable. When we encounter ...  Read this >>

Lucian M. Ashworth, Professor

19 Jun 2020 : The Einstellung Effect

In a recent online article a colleague of mine discussed the oft-used aphorism that when all you have is a hammer all problems look like a nail (available here). I believe that in psychology this is related to the Einstellung Effect: how our previous experiences negatively effect our ability to solve problems. I was reminded of this with two recent publi...  Read this >>

Lucian M. Ashworth, Professor

28 May 2020 : Pandemic Rereads: a lockdown project

One effect of the pandemic lockdown is that I am spending a lot longer in my study at home than I used to. With my office at work now out of bounds (and having only been able to snatch about 20 monographs and two piles of papers before the building was closed), I began to take more notice of the many books on my study shelves that I had not read in (gulp!...  Read this >>

Lucian M. Ashworth, Professor

21 May 2020 : A Quick Note on Predictions

Today I have been thinking about predictions, or more precisely why we are so bad at them. Coming to terms with how the pandemic may or may not change the world around us requires us to extrapolate and predict, even when events are moving so rapidly that their direction is almost impossible to gauge from our limited point in time and space. The reason I ...  Read this >>

Lucian M. Ashworth, Professor

20 May 2020 : "I hope you are keeping well"

It seems every work related email begins with a single line asking how I am doing, and if I am well. I always reply with a variant of 'fine, and you?' It almost seems rude now to write an email without adding the 'hope you are doing well under these difficult circumstances' salutation. ... but how am I doing? Although I am asked this question on a regula...  Read this >>

Lucian M. Ashworth, Professor

19 May 2020 : COVID-19 & Oil in Newfoundland & Labrador

Yesterday the oil and gas lobby and its supporting accounts lit up Newfoundland and Labrador Twitter with excited optimism. Despite International Energy Agency (IEA) pessimism in its May report on oil, a series of reports in Reuters and Bloomberg seemed to be saying that global oil demand (especially in China and India) was returning to old levels of cons...  Read this >>

Lucian M. Ashworth, Professor

18 May 2020 : A Goldilocks Crisis? A prologue to my diary

Last month I wrote a short piece for a local online news site on COVID-19 as a tutorial level for the various global threats we face. I followed this up with an extended blog version. Both of these pieces were inspired by a course I teach - The Global Politics of the End of the World - where I explore the material threats we face. The question that haunte...  Read this >>

Lucian M. Ashworth, Professor

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