1 Jun 2009


I read a very interesting article in the Economist (www.economist.com) which by the way is one of the best journals there are.
According to a recent study, students who are either living abroad or had spent some time doing so are more creative and have better negotiating skills.
Apparently, there is a strong correlation between people living abroad and creativity., indicating that that, I quote, "it is something from the experience of living in foreign parts that helps foster creativity".
Expats in Portugal: what do you think?


  1. I am inclined to think that all abstract activities opens up space for creativity which allows for and includes the skill of negotiation. It seems to me to be a matter of stretching brain capacity, expanding it and strengthening it through regular exercise and stimulation. That stimulation could be in another culture, learning new customs and languages. Language being symbolic means that what is learned is a new/different 'symbolic language', giving everything a 'new/different' meaning, or it could be done through sitting at home and reading philosophy or mathematical exercises. However, thats not as fun and adventurous as living abroad!
    What do you think?

  2. Very interesting observations. However, if this were to be true, wouldnt it also be true that international relationships would be more successful over intracultural relationships??? Relationships, in the end, are all about compromise and negotiation.

  3. Janice,

    Yes, I agree with you. Relationships, in the end, do come down to compromise and negotiation. However, although abstract thinking and creativity are subjacent to both of those skills which are in fact very useful for application in many rational areas on a broad scale, it does not necessarily mean that it automatically creates a link between rationality and emotionality. That link is created by way of Learning from Experience. Although it is sometimes desired, relationships are not mathematical.

  4. I can see the discussion is quite lively. Adventure, knowing different people, another culture... All this is certainly very stimulating and apparently those who go abroad do better than those who stay forever in their countries. About relationships, however, I'm not so sure. Let's say a Portuguese girl goes to study and work in London and meets a nice British lad. If they find a job in the same city or even country the relationship may keep going on. I don't think it will last, however, if they have to live in different countries for long. But this is just my opinion, I'd like to know more about it, specially now that young educated Portuguese are seeking jobs abroad, this being such a small and poor country.



Our favourite blogs: psychology, new technologies, politics, economics, literature, poetry, photos,