On 18th July the New Generation Thinkers visited Parliament for a reception hosted by Ed Vaizey MP. We each had 60 seconds to speak about the importance of expert voices.
This was my pitch:
"Aristotle thought that experts possessed three qualities: - episteme – knowledge about something - techne – the craft, how to do something - empeiria – experience
The first two of these can be taught, but empeiria can only be gained through practice.
Even our word ‘expert’ comes from Latin expertus, meaning proven, tested and experienced.
So you can’t be an expert without experience – but what about experts in the arts and humanities? What is our empeiria, what experience do we have?
Here’s one suggestion: many of us spend our time trying to understand cultures which couldn’t be more different from our own. The arts and humanities encourage you to take other views seriously; to attempt to understand people’s actions and beliefs, even when you profoundly disagree with them. In the current climate, the kind of experience in empathy which arts and humanities disciplines provide is more important than ever."
AHRC Tweet about the event: