Introduction to the third edition of the UAUCU Student Research Exchange Collected Papers
This volume presents academic papers and personal reflections written by the twelve participants of the UAUCU student research exchange project 2017. The texts in this volume reflect a wide diversity of academic disciplines and approaches, as well as the wide diversity in cultural background of this year’s participant cohort. The program, which offers students from the University of Aruba (UA), University College Utrecht (UCU) and University Utrecht (UU) the opportunity to conduct research in a multidisciplinary international student team, has already proven to be a successful formula: work presented in the 2015 and 2016 volumes led to international publications, and several program alumni received thesis awards. We anticipate similar achievements for contributors to the 2017 edition.
The academic works included here treat culture, language, psychology, policy, law, environmental sciences and sustainability. The scope of the research ranges from pilot projects, to theoretical explorations verified with respondent data, to in depth sociocultural and psychological studies that explore fundamental issues confronting society. The diverse papers show a common interest in sustainable societies, reflecting a strong sense of community awareness, and providing research findings that are meaningful for Aruban society. The papers further demonstrate how the student researchers’ collaboration in a multidisciplinary team has influenced their approach to their topics. The papers here are products of peer-to-peer learning: the program participants provided each other with feedback on content, method, style, language and structure. In general, the papers appear here as they were submitted by the student-researchers -- including the odd spelling mistake, grammatical error, raw opinion or hasty generalization. Some of the student-researchers are still working on the interpretation and presentation of their findings, and will later finalize project papers, or bachelor or master theses, based on results of fieldwork presented.
Our 2017 multidisciplinary team is also remarkably multicultural: it includes students with personal connections not only to Aruba, but to Belgium, Colombia, Curaçao, Holland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Myanmar, Russia, Rwanda, South Korea, Thailand, the United States and Venezuela. The cultural and ethnic diversity of the group has contributed to an extraordinarily rich social environment for this year’s participants. All of them have written individual pieces reflecting on their personal experiences. These reflective texts show how strong the collaboration and mutual support within this diverse group has been. The texts reveal much about the core of this project: it is not only about doing meaningful research as a student; it is also about the realization that we can achieve more in the world when we approach problems from several perspectives at the same time, and when we work together by building on each other’s complementary strengths. Here, too, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
This third year of the project has involved many people crucial to its success – it is impossible to name them all. But to all who have been part of this project as (guest) lecturer, supervisor, manager, initiator, facilitator, student, interviewee, respondent, guide, coach or mentor: thank you very much for your contribution to this greater whole.
Eric Mijts & Jocelyn Ballantyne Project coordinators UAUCU
Culture, language, media and psychology
Calypso and cultural commodification in Aruba
A correlation between cultural identity and juvenile delinquency in Aruba
Understanding the roots of parasuicide among the adolescence in Aruba: associated risks and protective factors
Volunteerism: an approach to encouraging more volunteering in Aruba
Adolescent perceptions on language and professional communication
Social media use on Aruba in the business perspective
Policy, law, environmental sciences and sustainability
Assessment of endemic fauna in key biodiversity areas
Environmental law: national and international perspectives
Community participation in solid waste management in Aruba
Entrepreneurial governance and sustainable development on Aruba: a cultural political economy approach
The synergy between academia and industry: success factors towards a healthy partnership
The importance of tax compliance among SME’s in Aruba for business continuity