short study tour!

Sorry this is late! I slept for upwards of 30 hours this weekend because I got very suddenly sick after tour, as did nearly everyone else. I’ll do a separate brief post on getting sick, but this post is reserved for study tour.

**a note! they told me to take lots of pictures but i definitely Did Not because i was too busy doing things and taking pictures during a presentation seems…uncouth? so # of pics =/= proportional to enjoyment or interest or time.

Actual Stuff

Study tour for Globalization Economics B basic itinerary:

  • Day 1
    • Flensburg (Denmark-Germany border): Fleggaard Group
  • Day 2
    • Aabenraa (like 30 km north of Flensburg): Sydbank
    • Åarhus (mid-east coast Denmark): ARoS museum
  • Day 3
    • Just outside Åarhus: Arla
    • Slightly more outside Åarhus: Moesgaard Museum (MOMU)

Holger Sandte is our professor for the course, and he’s a delight. Calm and collected (still interesting/engaging!) instructor and has super reasonable expectations of us. David Possen is sort of a secondary instructor just for the study tours. We don’t have him in class very often but during the tours at least, his engagement and sheer enthusiasm for whatever the presenter or guide was saying was infectious and mildly entertaining. That’s the first thing you can look forward to if you take GE-B at DIS: really competent and enjoyable “team leaders” (ugh what is this, summer camp? ((sort of))). But honestly, they made everything run so smoothly that I barely realized they were making the gears turn.

Company Visits

I had a great experience with the company visits. The people we met with were enthusiastic and you could tell just how much time and preparation they put into our visit. Some thematic commonalities:

  • Global trade war
  • Brexit
  • Trump
  • General state of the EU and world economy (inflation rates??)

I was going to add “merciful carafes of coffee” to this list to add levity, and also because it’s true, but the emphasis really belongs to the topics. All four of those things are not only interrelated but will have tangible and far reaching effects to firms, individuals, institutions, and communities. These companies are actively preparing for financial crisis and recession and a continuation of trade instability at the very least. Holger said it today, econ’s the dismal science.

Anyway, my favorite company visit was the first one at Fleggaard with their COO. Conglomerates are ever-prevalent but aren’t talked about too much in econ classes that I’ve taken at least up to now, so hearing first hand (with unexpected frankness) about the rationale and strategy wasn’t only interesting but helpful as well. On an environmental/emissions level I have some qualms (perhaps idealistic, but also valid?) with their business model (reliant on trucking goods from Denmark to the border, then having people from Denmark and Sweden drive up to 6 hours each way to their shops to buy in bulk) but it’s important to hear about the reasons for why that business plan is profitable for them and likely other companies like them before sustainable solutions can be effectively implemented.

I didn’t take many pictures like I said, but I did take one of Arla (4th largest dairy producer in the world) HQ. It sure is a building. I didn’t capture it well, but it’s massive and odd.

not pictured: grand piano, grass-like rugs, cow sculptures?

I also took a terrible picture of Fleggard’s hugely expensive and expansive headquarters/mansion? that was built deceptively recently. It’s for 19 people but has way more amenities than it really needs?

weird, man

Museums and ~cultural~

We got a guided tour of Flensburg, but I wish I could have heard our guide better! Pretty town though.

In Åarhus we got a lot of time at ARoS to explore, which was well worth it. It’s a gorgeous museum with a great mix of contemporary art, installations, and more traditional paintings and such. I really enjoyed it.

Moesgaard was EXCELLENT. I might be saying that because we got a cool guide and also minimal time to explore on our own (like 15 minutes, wack) but sign me up for a history museum that’s well stocked with artifacts and installations and all that. I wish I got a few pictures but on account of the 15 minute constraint (where I had a great time) I did not. Highlight: well preserved skeletons (I had a hard anthropology/paleontology phase as a kid but who didn’t?) and an exhibit filled with lifelike sculptures of vikings and you could hear little first-person narrative blurbs of their lives. Hell yeah.

the museum is new and the architecture is really cool as well. you can go up on the roof! (i did not have time to.)

Also, food: it was consistently good, although largely meat based. There were other options for sure but it might have been more difficult if you were vegan/vegetarian. The food at Moesgaard was a highlight, personally.

other

We did go out and explore the towns we visited ~at night~ . I do this thing where I take a small 1-2 second video a day and that is what I’m uploading here in lieu of pictures because that’s all I have. (note: my wifi at home is bad and the videos wont upload. they are crucial to the vibe but in the meantime i’ll sub in screenshots)

Bars in Flensburg largely only took cash, which was rough for everyone who 1) did not carry Euros 2) did not carry cash because who does in Copenhagen? Regardless, we found one that took card and also had karaoke. We embarrassed ourselves hard.

My birthday coincided with the night in Åarhus. We were planning to go out anyway but I had a more “treat yr self” attitude. This is a nail-block game (uncertain of the real name). I’m a fan, it’s a nice darts alternative.

and that was the short study tour! stay tuned for…

  • tips for illness
  • trips i’m planning and/or have booked
  • volunteering at TWO places– studenterhuset and cafe cadeau

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