To be a good teacher, be a student.
Here’s a paradox in learning that I have come to understand, at a deeper level: to be an effective teacher, one must be a student. What does it mean? It means that learning never stops and to effectively embody what it means to teach, one must continuously humble oneself, keep an open mind and challenge […]
How the US Congress can make friends and help people
What is the role of US Aid in developing contexts?
Should you give ‘Directly,’ for impact? Lessons from my mom’s charitable experiments
What is the best way to help people? Is it to let the market forces determine who should survive and who should sink, or should there be intervention from the state or other players? How should philanthropy be directed towards individuals and communities? These questions have neither clear-cut answers, nor a good way of being […]
How to write about Islam?
Amidst all the noise about the end of the world scenarios being portrayed as a result of ISIS conquest of parts of Iraq and Syria and equally banal assertions that Islam is somehow inherently violent, and needs ‘reformation’, the common man out there is left confused. As someone studying Islam in America, I am at […]
Two models of Community Engagement – Co-optation or Exclusion?
Hamza Yusuf is arguably the most well-known American Muslim (after Muhammad Ali- the former heavyweight boxing champion) alive. As a spiritual leader, his influence goes beyond the Muslim community to the White House, and the Obama administration. He enjoys wide influence (and receives some criticism) but overall, he is a respected man, who is seen […]
What is ‘Big data’ and does it tell us anything?
Consider this: almost every important story these days is accompanied by a chart, an info graphic or a detailed econometric analysis that even the creators of the graphic don’t fully understand. It is filled with ‘Big data’, the buzz word these days. So, what is ‘Big data’ and why are we so obsessed with […]