Blogging from Baku
8 January 2013
I’ve never been to Azerbaijan, so it isn’t fair to say that I am blogging from Baku – however the alliteration was too tempting and, as I write Baku is 35,000 feet below me. As some may know, I’m on my way to Delhi to speak at a British Council international conference and I know that, having never previously been to India, if I don’t blog now, my impressions of ASE’s Conference 2013 will fade, compared with that cultural maelstrom.
So, how did it go? My view is of course peculiar – my experience of the conference is not like anyone else’s. I found it a true January event, in the Roman sense of the word. Janus, the Roman god who gave January its name is depicted as having two faces, one looking back and the other looking forward. So, while the Chair of the Association was looking for examples of longevity within ASE for her excellent dinner speech #ASEconf was trending on Twitter. A science teacher in training (aged 24) cut the Anniversary cake and the commemorative book was duly launched.
There were many wonderful and exciting experiences and the laying of some serious foundations for the next pieces of work – ASE Annual Conference 2013 was definitely the place to be.
Ah but, wise heads will be saying – what of the Association in 2013? Can the Conference stay as it is? Can it improve? Will ASE be around for another fifty years?
I may have mentioned previously that CEOs are by nature optimists, but that doesn’t mean that we ignore harsh reality. Times are tough and we’ll have to screw everything down in the next twelve months. The evaluation of ASE2013 will feed in to the Summer Celebration Conference - and there is huge interest in this based on the buzz at the Annual Conference. We now have a truly committed and knowledgeable Council working with me and the dedicated staff and volunteers towards success. #ASEconf and the associated tweetups enhanced the professional outlook of those who attended in person and those who caught up through the website and Twitter and gave great morale boosting professional development, not to mention excellent free resources. Personally, I was thrilled to meet Martin Rees, Steve Jones, Kevin Brennan, Peter Gabriel, Michael Rosen and many more – including Miss Molecule.
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