Sunrise in beverly , taken on a morning run with Moses Shumow, August 2020

“We are put a little space. That we may learn to bear the beams of love” — William Blake

Learning is a form of contestation. We are bound to challenge what we believe, assume and understand. Learning requires transgression. We are compelled to push against the structures and rules that normalize inequities and injustice. Learning necessitates struggle. We must devote intensely to the tasks that require our full devotion.

But learning also demands care. To be present with our cohort. It requires deep commitment. To each other and the journey of learning. Learning also embodies soulful engagement. We must give part of ourselves to be impacted by the journey.


In 2019, over 100 students, activists, educators, scholars, and practitioners convened in Salzburg, Austria to identify, design and deploy responses to the crisis of disbelief across the globe.

This group was motivated by a commitment to each other, and to combat the fracturing of societies and erosion of trust that is plaguing our civic societies. These faces represent beauty, diversity, and passion. They are the heart and sole of this project, and reflect the effort required to make meaningful interventions in the world. In the words of Margaret Mead at the Salzburg Global Seminar 72 years ago:

The Faces of [re]Build

Often big problems beg for big solutions. We have crises of confidence in our public institutions. Our societies are fracturing under the erosion of trust, and exploitation of fear by political leaders. These problems seem so large and intractable, that often we look for easily explained reasons. We blame media. We find solace in placing responsibility on others. We feel empowered to be individually responsible to make smarter choices about our own media habits, but lament the overall problem as a lack of education in others.

This specific time is marked by fear and hope. We see increasingly reductionist and…

We made it home…9 weeks, 3 countries and a million ice creams later, we’re back. Reflecting on the trip it seems like it went by fast and slow. We met some amazing people, made new close family friends, and were able to experience parts of the world we hadn’t thought we would before. Mae loved having friends most of all, and swimming in a hotel pool. Emma loved riding horses, and all the playgrounds that had seesaws. Will loved playgrounds and probably everything else.

Mom and dad loved eating nice food, cafes, and the feeling of being in a city…

Well, we left with a bang…for our last week in Argentina, we’ll just let the pictures do the talking, and follow up this post with one more of our final “day” and trip home, with a reflection for the family to remember this trip. In the meantime, in our final week we made it to Uruguay, an amazing street art tour in Buenos Aires, and some last time good bye stops. Parents are more emotional about it than the kids!

Uruguay — Colonia del Sacramento — We took a ferry to Colonia del Sacraemnto, a historic town in Uruguay that’s…

Re-Imagining local reporting through participatory design and creative data storytelling

By Adam Gamwell & Paul Mihailidis

In collaboration with independent and alternative news and information platforms Boston Institute for Nonprofit Journalism (BINJ) and MuckRock, I’m excited to announce the release of Make FOIA Work.

Make FOIA Work is a news literacy project that reimagines journalism through design-oriented, participatory and collaborative journalism pedagogies.

Working across classrooms, design studios, newsrooms and employing participatory design and data visualization tools, participants created collaborative data-driven and engagement-based stories that developed from successful FOIA requests. …

One week away from returning home, and another quiet week of school, work and hanging around Buenos Aires. We have two fun final week activities remaining, and this week was about hanging around the neighborhood. With Emma in school 8–5 every day, we have less weekday flexibility, which is nice. We take the subway to and from school. It’s fun to have the city school experience, and Emma and Mae are cool foreign students for a few weeks….pics are short this week. We’re sticking to Mae’s Birthday, and a few other highlights, mostly cute Will pics.

Mae Turns 6! —…

Project Mission — To explore the role of mobile phones in the lives of young people

Project Site

Description — Conducted in 2012, A TETHERED WORLD found that not only are students absolutely tethered to their phones, they are absolutely tethered to their friends on phones. In particular, mobile phones:

  • have a homogenizing effect on how students live around the world
  • created more sharing of information among peers than consuming of information
  • integrate so fully into the lives of students around the world, that they literally can’t put phones down
  • create such strong peer networks — that being…

Project Mission — To connect young media innovators across the world to design and facilitate mediated responses to pressing social problems.

Project SiteSalzburg Academy on Media & Global Change

Dates — 2007-Present

Description — Project Mission — To connect young media innovators across the world to design and facilitate mediated responses to pressing social problems.

Project SiteSalzburg Academy on Media & Global Change

Dates — 2007-Present

Description — The Salzburg Academy on Media and Global Change builds digital literacies and engagement around critical challenges for society. Its annual three-week program connects young media innovators across disciplines…

paul mihailidis

professor, researcher, teacher, activist. Emerson College & Salzburg Global Seminar. @pmihailidis

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