Joshua Anderson, Union College
Holistic Self-sufficiency: Exploring the Intersection of Community, Innovation, and Self
United Kingdom, Denmark, Belgium, Nepal, Tanzania
I will explore different self-sufficient communities that seek religious, agrarian, and renewable energy ideals. I am interested in how each of these communities function independently and empower the individual. As an introduction to each of these communities, I will focus on how they provide basic necessities like utilities, shelter, and farming from an engineering perspective. I will explore the methods employed by each community to achieve self-sufficiency while observing their interactions with available natural resources, local cultures and the world at large. I hope to emerge with a holistic understanding of self-sufficiency.
Sarah Aubrey, Bryn Mawr College
Rebuilding Home: Creative Resilience and the Meaning of Private and Public Space
Indonesia, Laos, Thailand, India, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Chile, Brazil
Wherever social, political and environmental tragedies cause destruction, there are human beings who respond with the resilience to create anew. These sorts of imaginative reconstructions happen in the most difficult circumstance - while living in a camp for displaced people, after immigrating or natural disaster. When you lose your home, you don't only lose a physical place. In many cases, you are also faced with having to reconstruct the idea of home in a new place, where your beliefs about private and public space have been turned upside down. How do people rebuild after such a disruption, and how do different understandings of private and public space come to play within that process? In my Watson year, I will visit places where people have built new and fulfilling homes for themselves despite the odds. My primary goal will be to learn how people rebuild-not just the physical buildings that once made up their homes, but rather, how they rebuild a sense of home within themselves.
Abdullah Awad, Williams College
The Politics of Exile and the Transformative Power of Art
Chile, India, Morocco, France
I will explore how those living within geopolitical, cultural, or religious exile - especially as the experience of exile bears upon kinship and desire - create new forms of artistic expression. To that end, I will seek local art collectives, grassroots initiatives, and independent artists. How does the art they create transform the condition of exile, as well as the conditions that make way for exile in the first place? Specifically, I will immerse myself in the communities of Arab immigrants in Latin America and Western Europe, and Muslims in North Africa and the Indian subcontinent.
Sarah Bacot, Rhodes College
Out of the Closets, Into the Streets: Exploring Queer Identity through Community Organizations and Pride Parades
Argentina, India, South Africa, Poland
During my Watson year, I will become involved with queer community organizations and participate in Pride celebrations in countries with very different social and legal approaches to queer identity. Many queer individuals find new families as a result of their struggles with families of origin and societal expectations. As someone profoundly impacted by my own experience of queerness, I am interested in exploring both the private and the public importance of these communities. Ultimately, I hope to learn more about what it means to be a member of a community that seeks to stretch across national, racial, religious, and class boundaries in order to create a new kind of family.
Loreal Bell, Berea College
Prisoner Of Words: A Look into Feminist Euro Hip Hop Artists
United Kingdom, Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, Spain, Italy
Hip Hop is an artistic expression which often emphasizes male dominance and female oppression, but that doesn't take the art form away from women. I want to learn from Hip Hop Artists with background in one or more of the four elements (emceeing, break dancing, graffiti art, and disc jockeying) who view themselves as masculine feminist, looking closely at those in the LGBT community in Europe, using interviews and documentary production as a tool for connecting with these people.
Charlie Bentley, Carleton College
Breaking the Sound Barrier: Exploring How Cultural Construction Affects Deaf Communities
South Africa, Togo, Ghana, Indonesia
For my Watson Fellowship year, I will use my skills in sign languages, and my experiences with cultures marginalized by language, to work with deaf communities. I will live with these global deaf communities to more deeply understand how cultural construction affects deafness, and, secondarily, how being part of a unique marginalized community affects knowledge and perception of the outside world and its struggles. In working with deaf cultures, service organizations, and struggling communities, I will uncover what it means to be deaf.
Lisa Bjerke, College of the Atlantic
It is A Waste to Call It Waste: Exploring the Culture of Compost
Germany, China, Bangladesh, Japan
Composting is the human facilitated decomposition of organic matter. This ancient technology incorporates nature's own methods of recycling carbon to replenish the nutrients we depend on to grow food. By traveling to regions where compost links the natural and human-made infrastructures, I will examine compost as a socially integrated technology. Within personal, structural, and cultural contexts I hope to learn more about how I can compost human attitudes as well as organic "waste" to become resources for sustainability.
Haley Brown, Pitzer College
In the Moment: Expanding the Modes of Performing and Being Through Improvisation
Canada, India, Italy, Brazil
Improvisation is as ancient as storytelling itself, and its dimensions and possibilities for transformation are infinite. Though often credited to Viola Spolin in the United States, improv knows no boundaries, and in fact, it explodes them. During my Watson year, I will explore improvised theatre in many of its diverse contexts - from ancient to contemporary, grass-roots to institutionalized, highly spontaneous to heavily codified, practiced for its own sake or as a result of natural variation. Grounding my study in four major theatre styles that incorporate improvisation, my journey will take me to Canada for TheatreSports, India for Kathakali, Italy for Commedia Dell'arte, and Brazil for Theatre of the Oppressed, extending into the peripheries, offshoots, and overlaps of improvised theatre and its many vibrant communities.
Samuel Bruce, Bowdoin College
Vulnerability and Resilience: Depicting Coastal Cities in the Face of Environmental Disaster
Argentina, Netherlands, Thailand, India, New Zealand
How will megacities close to the sea prepare for and cope with disaster when populations are swelling, the sea level is rising and storms are putting so many assets at risk of catastrophic damage? I plan to investigate and better understand this issue through a series of sketches, paintings, and other creative works that will offer depictions of the challenges man faces in major coastal metropolises. My proposal takes me to seven cities in five different countries, both developed and developing. I hope to reveal the many ways these vulnerable cities and the people in them are learning to be resilient to great risks posed by climate change.
Lian Caspi, Whitman College
Lyrical Healing: Music Therapy Across Cultural Song Lines
United Kingdom, India, Nepal, South Africa, Colombia
Music is one of the oldest ways by which humans have communicated, bonded and healed. Recent scientific research confirms the power of music to heal people with mental or physical illnesses. Music therapy is now an international field of study, research and practice. I will expand my knowledge and practice of music therapy, exploring the ways in which culture informs the use of music as a resource for healing. To that end, I will work with distinct populations in England, India, Nepal, South Africa, and Colombia learning new and different methods of lyrical healing.
Wilmer Chavarria, Earlham College
No Budget Films: Exploring Local Independent Filmmaking in Europe and Latin America
Chile, El Salvador*, Costa Rica, United Kingdom, Netherlands
During my Watson year I will visit five different countries in Latin America and Europe where I will meet directors and artists working on independent films in their communities. From creating a movie about endangered turtles in El Salvador to making music videos in the Netherlands, this experience will afford me contact with not only stories, but also with storytellers themselves. By sharing and living the challenges that under-funded independent films face, I hope to discover the deeper reasons artists have for pursuing this passion and compare their experience with my own.
Alice Choe, Wellesley College
Complications in Domestic Violence: Exploring the Interrelationships Between Law, Religion, and Media
Jordan, India, East Timor, Thailand
The issue of domestic violence is often reduced to its simplest terms: violence or no violence. For my Watson year, I want to challenge this assumption by speaking both with advocates and with women who suffer from domestic abuse. Traveling to these four countries will expose me to all the complex relationships between legal systems, religious beliefs, and social norms that are heavily embedded in the issue, and help me understand what motivates women in different cultures to pursue different agencies as a means of escaping an abusive relationship.
Liam Cutler, Earlham College
Gayborhood Watch: An Inquiry Into Queer Localities
France, Greece, Turkey, Thailand, Argentina
Gay neighborhoods have historically represented a safe womb of community and place of honesty for queer individuals who are often viewed as deviant by mainstream society. These neighborhoods are truly unique, much like the diverse identities of their population, in that they transcend racial, socio-economic, religious, gender, sexual and educational lines. I seek to know, through experiential observation, participation, and conversation how and why the queer identity is continually established and nurtured in certain neighborhoods. I will ask questions to search for similarities between communities oceans apart, to dig deeper at the differences, to know them in a way attained only through interactive experience and to understand what problems threaten the sacredness, the queerness of these spaces.
Shilpa Darivemula, Union College
Of Medicine and Mudras: Exploring Healing Through Traditional Dance Cultures
Bolivia, Ghana, Indonesia, Cambodia
In Kuchipudi, a classical Indian dance style, the mudras, or hand gestures, narrate stories from the Hindu mythos. Interwoven in these stories and inherent in the structure of traditional dance is an ancient understanding of the human experience and perceptions of health and healing. Thanks to globalization, healing is now defined in accordance with occidental medicine, without regard to the body-mind-spirit complex extant in traditional dance. I will spend my year fusing medicine and mudras-studying four traditional dances, observing the healing inherent in their forms for individuals and communities, and understanding their roles in ever-evolving societies.
DeAndre Espree-Conaway, Sewanee: University of the South
Taking Down Tongues: The Culture of Language Documentation
French Polynesia, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Indonesia, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Solomon Islands, Bangladesh, Australia
Does language documentation really help people? Over the next year, I will observe the role that language documentation plays in the world's indigenous cultures and societies. The eight places that I have chosen will provide different contexts within which to understand language documentation's place in minority language speakers' social and cultural lives. Through interviews with language conservation authorities and by living in settings where language documentation projects are underway, I will gain an understanding of language conservation as an institutional culture, the ethical dimensions of this and its everyday role in indigenous life.
Hannah Groshong, Harvey Mudd College
A New Routine: Exploring the Transition into Adulthood for Individuals with Special Needs
Japan, China, Jordan, Netherlands, Denmark, Germany
Having a younger sister with Down Syndrome causes me to recognize the importance of providing meaningful opportunities for individuals with disabilities to be included in society. During my Watson year, I will delve into various special needs communities and explore the ways in which different societies support these individuals. I will also focus on the connection between disability policy and advocacy. By seeking out creative programs, engaged people, and innovative policies, I will gain unique insight into how these countries include special needs individuals in meaningful ways.
Srikar Gullapalli, Colgate University
Government for the People: Local Accountability Structures and Political Dialogue
Australia, Venezuela, United Kingdom, Egypt, Russia
I wish to understand local political accountability structures and local citizen-government relationships at the city and community level in drastically different governance contexts. The local level is most important for public welfare and where most corruption & inefficiency occurs. This is the level that citizens can hold accountable and have the most impact on through political dialogue and innovations in social activism. I will conduct interviews of citizens, NGOs, media, local officials and politicians. I will be a part of town halls and protest rallies, and will engage with students.
Priscilla Gutto Bassett, Scripps College
Witnessed by Weaving: Lives and Eco-Stories Told by Hand
Panama, Peru, Botswana, Finland, South Korea
Although the experiences of women, particularly from indigenous communities, are seldom written or published in books, weavers are story-tellers: recounting histories, envisioning futures, and beautifully expressing personal and community identity. I plan to read basket, band, loom, paper and sedge woven arts as reflections of the weaver's ancestrally-informed knowledge about land, environment and community. I believe that weaving communities' experiential and tensile knowledge offer unique insight into addressing current issues of social and environmental well-being.
Lauren Howe, Hamilton College
The Future of Food: Modern Technology and Traditional Agriculture Systems
India, Bolivia, Tanzania, Iceland
Global population has just reached seven billion. So in feeding the world, can we solely rely on a mechanized food and agriculture system? Can small-scale traditional farming prevail? Is there a need for both? I will explore the influence of technology in food systems to understand how this multifaceted, controversial, and relatively contemporary concept manifests itself across a range of cultures. I seek a balanced awareness of the issues surrounding food security and cultural continuity in a changing world where some would argue that technology is apotheosized, tradition is threatened, and the welfare of the natural environment is overlooked.
Efe Kabba, Pomona College
Musical Swings and Other Digital Landscapes and Experiences
Canada, Denmark, Japan, Germany, Singapore
In the past, our relationship with interactive digital technology has been confined to certain objects like computers and mobile phones. This limitation made the distinction between the actual/physical and virtual/digital very clear. But what happens when the screen is no longer necessary and the distinction begins to blur? We are progressing towards a time when interactive technologies will be actively integrated into our physical surroundings. It's already happening. I want to find out how these digital technologies are transforming the physical spaces we live in, and how that transformation is changing how we perceive ourselves, our relationship to the world and other human beings.
Keri Lambert, Amherst College
A Trail of Tales: Unearthing Local Identities in a Globalizing World
Ghana, Tanzania, Malaysia
Throughout history, trade, travel, and technologies have connected people in increasingly dynamic ways. Lofty terminologies like "externality," "income inequality," "homogenization" describe the impacts of globalization, but they refine the gritty details. Rarely do consumers know the origin of the products available in the United States that come from all corners of the world. As a Watson Fellow, I seek to close the gap between production and consumption in order to uncover the sociocultural repercussions of masked consumerism. For one year, I will listen to the stories of farmers, fishermen, and factory workers in Ghana, Tanzania, and Malaysia to realize the ways in which their lives are shaped by economic, environmental, and social forces, both local and global. During my year abroad, I hope to realize how I should direct my passion for the environment, for exploration, and for discovery, and use my voice to promote equality and sustainability in today's globalizing world.
Melissa Margolis, Scripps College
Alienating or Empowering? Exploring Community Responses to HIV/AIDS Edutainment
Botswana, Lesotho, Netherlands, Thailand
HIV entertainment education (EE) is a media tool used to enact behavioral change, yet with its mainstream audience it can be alienating to minority groups. I will be exploring how non-mainstream groups experience EE, their activism through empowering grassroots alternative art movements, and the ways in which it differs from mainstream EE. I will be structuring my time in the Netherlands, Thailand, Lesotho and Botswana through three foci in each country. First, I will learn about how national mass media functions, secondly hear how minority individuals perceive the EE media, and lastly, I will be joining community art projects to see how mainstream EE is decoded.
Daniel Miller, Lawrence University
Experiencing Nature through Computer Music
Japan, Australia, Ecuador, Iceland
Computer music - which I define broadly as music which exploits computers for sound synthesis, processing, or transmission - is often inseparably connected to the time, place, and culture where it is created. By recording and processing the sounds of their environment, composers both document an experience and transcend that record by overlaying it with their own original artistic interpretations. My Watson year will explore how the human experience of nature is expressed in high-tech music.
Noah Most, Grinnell College
Do-It-Yourself Biology: Innovation, Social Implications, and the Inversion of Research Paradigms
United Kingdom, Canada, India, Singapore
Synthetic biology is a radical new field that creates novel biological systems not found in nature, like goats that produce spider silk in their milk. Do-it-yourself biologists, practicing this groundbreaking science, seek to invert research paradigms by making the exploration of entrepreneurial ideas low-cost and accessible. I want to work alongside these change-makers in community bio-garages in the United Kingdom, Canada, India and Singapore. I will tinker with the science, help build the bio-hacker community, explore the social and ethical considerations of "playing God," and learn to communicate with both the scientific community and wider society.
Minh-Duyen Nguyen, Swarthmore College
Beyond Generalizations: The Personal Narrative Histories of Sex Workers
South Africa, India, Japan, New Zealand
Prostitution has been historically understood through the lens of degradation and exploitation. However, the sex worker defies socio-economic, cultural and temporal boundaries. The stories people tell allow them to situate their internal identities within their external environment and reveal their desires, beliefs and needs. Through listening to narratives, I seek to explore how sex workers conceptualize their work and structure their identity within the contexts of their personal histories, communities, and future goals. During my Watson year, I will search for and record the personal narratives of sex workers in Japan, India, South Africa and New Zealand.
Ingrid Norrmen-Smith, Bates College
Examining Perceptions of Stroke
Morocco, Madagascar, Cambodia
Stroke is a leading cause of death worldwide. In order to decrease the incidence of stroke and its resulting death or disability, it is necessary to understand how stroke is perceived in given populations; such an understanding of cultural differences will lay a strong foundation for prevention programs. My project seeks to delineate what factors shape the cultural understanding of stroke in Morocco, Cambodia and Madagascar. I plan to examine stroke conceptualizations in the lay population through a questionnaire, in addition to conducting in-depth conversational interviews with individuals who have either experienced a stroke or are close to someone who has.
Barbara Ofosu-Somuah, Middlebury College
The Choreography of Black Hair: A Framework for Cultural Inquiry
Suriname, Brazil, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, South Africa
The conceptualization of Black beauty has long been a subject of discourse by many scholars. Yet somehow hair is often ignored despite being deeply relevant to Black, Latina and Multiracial women and their own concepts of beauty. In my Watson year, I will focus on engaging in conversations with women of African and African-influenced cultures to understand how hair is not simply a physical feature, but can hold strong cultural connections tied to traditions and beliefs. I recognize that hair, just as race and gender, is a point of cultural inquiry.
Javier Perez, Swarthmore College
Echoes from the Cradle-to-Prison Pipeline: A Poetic Immersion into the Criminalization of Youth
El Salvador*, Brazil, South Africa
There are now over ten million people in prisons worldwide, most of whom come from marginalized communities that lack adequate educational opportunities and economic resources. Many underserved youths, in particular, funnel through education inequities and a lack of safety nets into prisons without ever having their narratives heard. During my Watson, I will journey through El Salvador, Brazil, and South Africa, chronicling youths' stories through spoken word and written poetry so as to echo the muffled voices of these silenced populations.
Collin Perkinson, Reed College
Music Without Borders: Learning Traditional African Music Through Sharing and Performance
Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique, South Africa, Ghana
Music is a common language that brings people together. Music has the power to heal, to move, to enliven, and to energize. Music plays an especially important role in Africa, where it is used everywhere from spiritual ceremonies to weddings, and for every reason from expressing joy to overcoming suffering. In my Watson project, I will travel and perform with musicians and groups across Africa. I will learn several different styles of traditional music, and I will then examine how those styles are reflected in popular African music. In the process, I hope to develop my musical talents as a performer, connect with talented musicians, and share the joy of music with the world.
Graham Reeder, College of the Atlantic
for a Changing Climate: Community Based Adaptation Strategies
Malawi, Burkina Faso, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Maldives
While politicians and activists argue over technical details and abstract concepts in order to combat climate change, frontline communities are faced with a pressing challenge: to respond to their changing environment in ways that work for them. This project focuses on the diversity of strategies being used to adapt to climate change locally, learning about successes and strategies that can be shared at all levels to give a human face to this pressing environmental and social justice issue.
Jose Sanchez, Bard College
Sounds of Immortality
China, Vietnam, India
As a composer, I struggle every time I sit at the piano: how to express feelings from the reality I am living, how to connect an audience to emotions that words cannot achieve. I strive for the sound of immortality, when a composer is able to capture in his/her music a new idea that can engage different people, different cultures, and in different times. I will travel through two musically different parts of Asia, learning more about the culture and exploring the richness of the sound of the folk instruments. My approach will be to use conservatories or music schools as bases, where I will find people that can guide my exploration. The two parts of Asia are China/Taiwan, where there is a strong tradition of string and wind instruments, and Vietnam/India, an immense world of percussive instruments. My music has its roots in strong percussive Latin rhythms and sound, foundations that forge my work with a distinctive voice. The deepened understanding of percussion and rhythms will help me to understand a world of new possibilities.
Gail Schwieterman, Oberlin College
From Sea to Spoon: A Dive into the Shark Industry
Costa Rica, South Africa, China
Using sharks as a proxy for all commercially fished species, I will investigate how different local practices and values promote or detract from a global movement towards sustainability. To achieve this goal, I will volunteer in the three businesses that are most closely associated with marine life: the fishing industry, the tourism industry, and the food industry. By dividing my year equally between Costa Rica, South Africa, and Hong Kong, I will be able to completely immerse myself in the communities that will suffer most from overharvesting. This will enable me to gain a thorough understanding of the global nuances that frame this issue while also seeing how specific communities respond to the effects of species depletion.
Lindsay Stern, Amherst College
From Loss to Language
Bangladesh, Nepal, South Africa, Panama, Guatemala
For my Watson year, I will explore the reparative capacity of language both in solitude and in the company of children. To that end, I will bring a creative arts program I have developed to five orphanages in South Asia, South Africa, and Central America. In between my orphanage visits, I will live and write in neighboring cities. I hope to return with both a new novel and an anthology of my students' work.
Siri Undlin, Colorado College
The Music in Our Stories
Ireland, Iceland, United Kingdom, Norway, Faroe Islands
In Northern Europe, soaring melodies and fantastical tales capture the intensity of our human experience and simultaneously transcend it. I will travel to Ireland, Iceland, Scotland, Norway and the Faroe Islands to explore the way in which people have, and continue to use, music to share their stories in the midst of geographical isolation, harsh weather, political strife and ever-growing global interconnection. As I travel, I will pay close attention to common threads and reoccurring themes within the stories and songs and compare the Nordic and Celtic traditions of storytelling through music. By learning to listen, tell, sing and play the songs and stories from this part of the world, I will catch glimpses of magic within these cultures and landscapes and better understand how these stories and songs inspire a resilient ability to survive.
Rebekah Ward, Colgate University
Unraveling Bias and Conviction: Roma Cultural Communication and Activism
United Kingdom, France, Spain, Germany, Italy, Hungary, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Romania, Brazil
Roma ("Gypsies") are one of the most widespread minorities in the world. They have no nation or homeland, and have a history of marginalization across the globe. Since childhood, the Roma story has guided my passion for social justice. I will travel across Europe and then to Brazil, where a recent wave of Roma have settled, attempting to understand how Roma groups communicate their culture and how the tensions and challenges of this endeavor vary depending on state laws and rhetoric. I will also meet with Roma activists globally to learn what drives their dedication.
Jenny Wen, Rice University
Searching for Half the Sky: How Female Survivors of Sexual Assault Regain Empowerment
Sweden, Turkey, South Africa, Indonesia, Japan, Peru
Around the world, one in every three women has been a victim of sexual or physical violence. I intend to investigate how female survivors of sexual assault in vastly different cultural, historical, and social contexts navigate each regions' legal systems, cultural norms, and healthcare resources to regain empowerment. Through interviews with survivors and participation and observation of these sectors, I hope to learn about strategies that help survivors reclaim empowerment, and the major obstacles they encounter along the way.
Emmanuel Whyte, Williams College
Engaging the Gaze: Exploring Race, Identity, and Masculinity through an Artistic Lens
France, Ghana, Japan
My studies and my practice of visual art have opened up new ways to reflect on my life and the extraordinary circumstances that have allowed me to grow into the artist that I am today. To fully develop my artistic self, however, I want to broaden my horizons by interacting with artists in culturally unfamiliar contexts, honing my artistic abilities, and exploring questions pertaining to me as a black male. By visiting France, Ghana, and Japan, I aim to explore representations of blackness and black culture, maleness and masculinity. By creating visual commentaries through my artwork, I hope to discover answers to my questions.
Robin Wonsley, Carleton College
Life Beyond Bars: Rehabilitative and Reintegration Organizations and Penal Systems
Ireland, Norway, Canada, Ghana
To halt rising imprisonment and recidivist rates, Norway, Ireland, Canada and Zimbabwe have all reformed their penal systems by creating and supporting existing reintegration and transitional programs. With my Watson, I will work with the staff of reintegration organizations that provide anti-recidivism programs. By exploring these reintegration programs, I will not only be able to talk with staff members, but also to connect with women who are incarcerated and those who have been released. I will also gain their perspectives on the effectiveness of reintegration programs and what needs to be changed or improved in order to keep these women out of prison.
Maia Yang, Hendrix College
Sharing in their Stories: Microfinance from the Female Perspective
Bangladesh, Vietnam, Rwanda, Peru
Nobel Peace prize winner, Muhammad Yunus, began Grameen Bank in Bangladesh by loaning a small amount of money to a woman whom he trusted to repay him. Since its inception, microfinance has spread all over the world claiming success towards empowering women and alleviating issues of poverty. However, a 2012 systematic review of all literature pertaining to the effectiveness of microfinance was published with the critique that microfinance has thus far not proven to accomplish the goals it has set out to achieve. As a result, I hope to seek answers to this ineffectiveness by listening directly to the women involved with these institutions and by studying how each institution interacts with the local culture it has settled down in. During my Watson year, I hope to study two lines of thought as I travel through Bangladesh, Vietnam, Rwanda, and Peru. First, I will see how women involved with microfinance institutions view this capitalist financial model. I want to listen to their stories and learn about their cultures, trials, and triumphs. Secondly, I wish to seek a possible answer for microfinance's statistically researched ineffectiveness by studying the interconnected nature of culture with these institutions. My year will be spent connecting with women while attempting to understand the complicated nature of progressing towards equality for women and poverty alleviation.
Dustin Zubke, Harvey Mudd College
Chasing the Sun: Solar Power Across Cultures
Germany, Spain, Australia, China, India
Every day more greenhouse gases are released into the atmosphere as people try to attain a higher standard of living. As the fastest growing renewable energy, solar power can support growth without causing further global warming. However, unless solar power can produce electricity as cheaply as fossil fuels, it will not be adopted by the general public. Around the globe, dedicated politicians and businessmen strive to bring affordable solar power to their nation's citizens. Through interaction with governments, businesses, and customers, I will investigate the challenges inhibiting the growth of solar power and how to overcome them. By synthesizing knowledge garnered across nations, I will see the big picture on both a business and personal level. Learning from everyone from government officials to rural villagers will ground my understanding of what solar power means to people across cultures.
*Travel to this country is permitted only if the U. S. State Department lifts its travel warning.