Jeremy Bentham is the social reformer I admire the most, for being the pioneer of utilitarianism and for his hedonist theories. Adam Smith is the economist I admire the most, for being the founder of the classical economic thought and for his impact on modern Capitalism.
Both were lifetime learners and spent their entire lives improving their theories, in order to improve the society and environment they lived in.
I graduated a few years ago, but words can’t describe how I miss Uni life and how I want to keep learning my entire life. I have to admit I am a bit envious of current College students and the future ones. We are at the verge of a new era, an era that promises to be fully tech-oriented and there are so many researches and improvements that are achieved every day in engineering and sciences. Students who are currently going and those who will go to College soon are extremely lucky to be part of the movement and of the incredible projects they will experiment on campus.
When I was in junior high school, computer science was regarded as a very advanced science. When I graduated as a GIS engineer a few years ago, the only opportunities I could get work wise were related to geospatial analysis, to NASA and to Spatial Agencies. Today, Computer Science is considered a very general topic that includes many specialities and fields. GIS is used in all sorts of industries including retail and agriculture. It took only a few years to change the reality of a science and the factor that played a major role in it is technology. Universities are creating new departments related to Cryptocurrencies mainly because they realized they have to cope with the change. Everything will be fast-paced.
When Adam Smith wrote “The Wealth of Nations”, the 18th Century’s Europe was living the revolution of machinery. Humans were experimenting machines and trying to incorporate them into their daily work activities. Adam Smith’s random visit to a pin factory made him intuitively realize how important specialization is for the industry, and how dividing tasks according to the workers’ abilities could make the factory’s productivity increase. Intelligence is the ability to adapt one’s mind to change and to improvement. And with the current development the world is going to, it would be wise and smart to keep investing in one’s knowledge.
Knowledge is, nowadays, a commodity which use value and exchange value are both extremely powerful and high. The Water/Diamond paradox is the example given by the majority of economists regarding use/exhange value: water has a high use value because one can’t live without it. However, water has a very low exchange value because nothing can be traded or bought with water. On the other hand, diamond has a low use value because it is not used for vital purposes. It has, however, a very high exchange value because when traded, diamond is expensive. Knowledge, good and suistanable knowledge, has the ability of having an extremely high use and exchange value and there is nothing smarter than investing in knowledge.
Adam Smith’s “Wealth of Nations” needs an update but also needs to be renamed “The Wealth of Capitals”, or “The Wealth of Minds”, and the creation of any wealth starts with a proper mindset, a rasor sense of focus and continuous learning. Learning makes us smarter, more open-minded and hopeful.