8 Tips for Improving Your Reading Skills

Written on March 5, 2018 by Santiago Iñiguez in Literature

By Santiago Iñiguez de Onzoño, Executive President of IE University

1.How many books should we read per year? To a large degree, the answer depends on how quickly you read, your personal tastes, or how much effort you put into your reading. However, I’d say it’s a good idea to aim for a book per week, which is to say, around 50 each year. That said; when it comes to reading, quality is always more important than quantity. And, above all, you should enjoy the reading experience.

2.Should we finish every book we start? Traditionally, finishing a book has been seen as a duty, a task almost along Kantian lines, and in the case of literature courses, an academic obligation.

Furthermore, as experience often shows, persevering with a seemingly impenetrable book can have its rewards, as over time the author’s meaning and intentions begin to dawn on the reader. I will admit that I started and then dropped James Joyce’s Ulysses three times before mustering the required determination and time to finish it. And I must now say that my efforts have borne considerable fruit in the form of reflections and references to the book, ideas and associations that crop up in everyday life, as well as interesting ideas and topics to discuss with friends and colleagues.

That said, some people have argued that the best thing to do with a book we’re not enjoying is to stop reading it. British writer Tim Sparks suggests that life is too short for bad books and a few pages should be quite enough, for getting an impression of the author’s point and style.

On the other hand, I must say I believe that the endings of some of the most widely praised works in the literary canon are disappointing and could definitely be improved on.

3. Why do we drop books? It’s normally due to loss of interest or lack of time. A key question is whether our loss of interest is because we’re simply unable to concentrate. We live in an age of interruptions, when much of our time is taken with carrying out multiple tasks at the same time: checking emails, text messages, dealing with background noise, and the activities of those around us. The only way to enjoy reading and continue to cultivate yourself is to find premium time for reading, maybe over the weekend.

4.Is it recommendable to read several books in parallel? There are of course those enviable souls able to read several books at the same time. In my opinion, this is a practice dependent on how deep one wishes to delve into a book, as well as the level of our multi-tasking skills, and which requires the capacity to be able to shift attention from one undertaking to another without losing focus.

But the simple truth is that reading is one of those things that cannot be done in conjunction with another activity: it requires exclusive dedication if we are to fully enjoy and appreciate it; which is why so many people say they enjoy reading when traveling by plane, which is one of the few places where we are disconnected from the world and can enjoy our isolation.

5. Which is the ideal book format? Digital technology now expands our reading experience through e-books or audiobooks. I am a big fan of audiobooks, and listen to them while I travel or while I’m in the gym. And critics of audiobooks, who say the experience of listening cannot be compared to reading, should be reminded that in the many centuries prior to the invention of printing, and even for long afterwards, reading out aloud in groups was the norm.

Whether we read alone or are read to, as Mark Haddon, author of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night points out, reading is “primarily a symptom. Of a healthy imagination, of our interest in this and other worlds, of our ability to be still and quiet, of our ability to dream during daylight.”

6. How can we enhance the reading experience? By sharing the experience with other people. It’s always a good idea to discuss with friends and family the books we are reading or have just read. Conversations about how books have impacted on us are not only entertaining, but increase our critical faculties and ability to put forward an argument.

When starting a book, we should set ourselves a time limit, which can always be extended if we decide to take a more leisurely approach. Setting time frames also obliges us to think about whether to drop a book that we’re not enjoying.

7.What genre or type of book should we read? My suggestion is that you try to read as many genres as possible. Fiction stimulates the imagination and may provide you with insights into the world and the behavior of others; poetry may stimulate your sense of the lyrical and augment your sensitivity, biographies and history may help you relate to people from other periods, seeing commonalities over the centuries that help you understand the world around us today.

And while I’m a fan of the classics, I believe we should also pay attention to contemporary works that might help us better understand the world around us, particularly those by writers from other cultures that can help connect us with people from worlds different to our own. Opening ourselves up in this way can provide us with insight into diversity, perhaps making us more tolerant of alternative worldviews than our own. In so doing, we increase our cosmopolitan sensibilities and our ability to operate as global citizens

8.Should we follow book recommendations? Recommendations from friends and colleagues are always welcome, but it’s a good idea not to allow others to exercise too much influence over what we read, and that we choose books that reflect our own criteria and preferences. Regularly check the best-seller lists, as well as reading the book reviews in the leading international newspapers. But also make time to browse the bookshops or specialist websites. Equally, there is nothing wrong with judging a book by its cover: if somebody has taken the trouble to come up with an attractive, eye-catching design, it is probably because the book itself has some merit.


Employee or Freelancer? Learning from Mozart

Written on February 27, 2018 by Santiago Iñiguez in Arts & Cultures & Societies

By Santiago Iñiguez de Onzoño, Executive President of IE University

Many careers can be run on a freelance basis. In fact, analysts predict that in the near future freelancers will represent a major segment of the labor force, over 20% by 2020 in the US.

At many business schools, like mine , we emphasize the many advantages of being an entrepreneur, and we encourage our graduates to embrace the freelance track. Being self-employed has many advantages: being your own master, the freedom to choose one’s business vision, independency and room for creativity.

It has also serious drawbacks, such as precariousness at the beginnings and limitless working hours, which extend far beyond the standard working schedule of employed people. The spheres of professional and family lives of freelancers are mixed and their borders blurry.

Traditionally, freelancing has been common in many liberal professions such as architecture, but it has also extended to other jobs where companies outsource major parts of their services, like journalism or independent consultancy.

The digitalization of the economy, along with the profusion of professional services platforms on the web, also bring many opportunities for would-be freelancers. This open trade of freelance services will grow on a global scale, although we are also in need of mechanisms that assess their quality and reliability, a common weakness of many platform based businesses.

When freelancers leave their independent status to become employees their returns often decrease. A good example of this is W.A. Mozart (1756-91), the great precocious Austrian musician, who worked basically as a freelance composer, as did many of his colleagues at the time, a fact that forced him to accept almost any order received from friends or strangers. Read more…


From the Renaissance until late 20th century, the Art Trade was reserved to an elite of few collectors and taste makers. However, Art trade has profoundly changed in this century and still evolving. 

Now a new Art market is emerging:

• In 2017 there are over 226.000 people considered ultra-high-net-worth-individual (UHWI).
• The Online Art Market is growing year over year getting close to 4 billion $ revenue. The new market is very fragmented market with Online Galleries, Art Online Marketplaces, Brick and Clicks.
• There is a democratization of art: the high top of the market is still reserved for the UHWI but there are galleries and auction houses operating on the mid-tier- low tier of market with affordable prices.
• Online sales tickets are around 1.000€-5000€ so new buyers are collecting art. Especially millennials are used to buying online.

In the lecture, we will follow up the current changes in the Art Market and get to know how to tap into business opportunities in this booming market.

Speaker: Juan A. Rodríguez Gamero
Juan Antonio Rodríguez Gamerore established the first marketing agency specializing in companies in the art sector (auction houses, galleries, and online auctions): the agency offers international marketing services to improve the reception of offers from international markets, implementation of “real time” bids through live-bidding, business audits and web strategy. The company holds yearly conference (Art Market) for the industry in Spain. His company also produces art news, exhibition reviews and industry reports in its own online platform. https://theartmarket.es/en/ 

For more info, check our Facebook page: IE Arts and Business Club

The conference will take place on Thursday, 01 Mar 2018, 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM, at MM202, Calle de María de Molina, 31. 


Arte para conectar culturas

Written on February 19, 2018 by Administrador de IE Blogs in IE University

IE University trae a Segovia la muestra internacional ‘Connecting Cultures’ que agrupa obras de veinte artistas de todo el mundo sobre los objetivos de desarrollo sostenible de la ONU

El edificio cultural de la Casa de la Moneda de Segovia acoge la exposición internacional “Connecting Cultures” (Conectar Culturas), que agrupa la obra de veinte artistas de diferentes partes del mundo, promovida por la Asociación de Estudiantes de las Naciones Unidas (UNSA) en España, recientemente galardonada con el premio Here for Good de la prestigiosa red de universidades Laureate Universities.

La muestra, que se puede contemplar hasta el 9 de marzo, forma parte del proyecto ‘Arts2030’ de artistas que promueven los objetivos de desarrollo sostenible de la ONU. Su objetivo es recaudar fondos para los refugiados y despertar la conciencia sobre la inmigración en la UE.

“Connecting Cultures” llega a Segovia de la mano de IE University, a través de IEU Arts Society e IE Campus Life, tras recorrer otros lugares de la geografía nacional. La exposición fue presentada hoy por la Presidenta UNSA Spain Carlota Corzo, la artista portuguesa Linda de Sousa, el coordinador del Centro de Creatividad de la Casa de la Moneda, Juan Carlos Redondo y la estudiante Angela Selzer, en representación de los alumnos de IE University, que han colaborado en la instalación y difusión de la iniciativa dentro de los campus de Segovia y Madrid.

La exposición agrupa las miradas de veinte artistas internacionales; cada uno de ellos aporta una obra en representación de su país, bajo la filosofía de que “no hay fronteras entre los seres humanos más allá de las autoimpuestas ya que todas las culturas deben de tenderse la mano, (conectarse), ofrecer cada una lo mejor de sí al mundo”, indicó Carlota Corzo, presidenta de UNSA Spain.

Entre los países que participan en el proyecto figuran Portugal, Grecia, Rumanía, Italia, Taiwan, Brasil, Bolivia, México, Argentina, Suecia, Venezuela, Estados Unidos, Alemania, Corea del Sur, Reino Unido, Rusia, Cuba, Colombia, Marruecos, Japón, Chile, Canadá y España.

sin barreras Corzo, comisaria de la exposición, que también expone una pieza artística en representación de España, señaló que “Connecting Cultures” muestra que “la diversidad no es una barrera entre países, sino un potencial que tenemos aprovechar para ayudar a la gente que más lo necesita”.

En este sentido, recordó que los fondos recaudados se destinarán a la ayuda a los refugiados mediante tres formas: compra de obras, compra de reproducciones y donaciones directas.

La exhibición actualmente cuenta con el apoyo del IE University Student Government, de Lions Club, European Hub de Bruselas, Mailbor, SEIMUN, Sale Logistics así como de la Comisión de Ayuda al Refugiado de España (CEAR) y se encuentra realizando su recorrido nacional. Posteriormente irá a diferentes países de España, Europa y del mundo.

La iniciativa nace en el marco del South European International Model of United Nations (SEIMUN) en mayo de 2017 en Granada, una de las simulaciones de Naciones Unidas más importantes del país, donde se inaugura la exposición que lleva el nombre del lema de dicha edición.

Publicado en El Adelantado (16/II/2018)


Private Art Tour – Exhibition “Lo que es dentro es fuera”

Written on February 16, 2018 by Administrador de IE Blogs in Arts & Cultures & Societies

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