Cultural versus universal skills

Here’s a thought that regularly came to me when talking with tax consultants, lawyers, gamers and teachers (with permission for one country’s school system), to name some.

There are two sorts of skills: those useful in a certain culture, and those universally useful. Of course that’s a rather rough model, as every skill has varying parts of both.

Acquiring cultural skills is to learn the rules man made up for navigating and operating in a certain society. To me, such haphazardly defined rules have no worth and no justification. It’s a waste of time to become an expert in them (while it’s surely necessary to learn the basic rules, as it’s an interface to ones current society).

Personally, I never had the motivation to acquire one of the above mentioned skills, and also not to learn a rare language, become an expert in doing my German income statement for the tax, learn to play a complex game and the like. Simply because these are not useful in a global context. That’s my personal globalization, so to speak. I’d rather want to become an expert in English, cross-cultural understanding, social skills, computing, technology, mechanical construction and the like, as these are globally relevant and will help me when traveling and living in different places of this world.







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