The PEOPLE project: a learning experiment that helps redefine roles within academia and industry. Discovering new perspectives on how to embrace the world of anthropology The Human Show Podcast 70




PEOPLE (People-Centred Development in Practical and Learning Environments) is an international 3-year EU program aiming to enhance university-business cooperation. The project focuses on the mismatch between qualifications gained by humanities and social science students and skills expected from graduates by employers in industry, particularly in the fields of anthropology, psychology, sociology, and related disciplines. PEOPLE Project team examine and explore real life industry and society challenges, aim to discover unmet needs of people, apply and test different people-centered development and design approaches, and convey industry relevant recommendations. At the core of the project is the idea that understanding people should become an indispensable part of industrial development processes.

Today we are talking to Sara, Maria, Nora and Gregor – all actively engaged in the PEOPLE project and working towards a better and more efficient cooperation between higher education institutions and business. The speakers emphasize that the PEOPLE project is a problem-based and project-based learning experiment and share stories from their own experience of how this experiment evolved in practice. This approach allowed them to see the world of anthropology from a new perspective and are curious to see if – in the future – the project helps change roles within academia as well as the expectations of industry partners towards anthropology.  Lastly we ask  them for advice for both students interested in a more practical path and professionals who aspire to continuously learn.

Listen & Subscribe to the Podcast here:


Podcast participants:

Gregor Cerinšek is the project manager of the PEOPLE project. He holds an MA in Human Resource Management from the Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Ljubljana. His work is oriented towards development and evaluation of different education and training concepts, models and programmes addressing real-life needs of industry and based on close collaboration between industrial and higher education environment.

Maria Salaru PhD, Teaching Fellow in Anthropology and Material Culture at University College London and Former Postdoctoral Research Associate at Durham University

Sara Arko, PhD is an anthropologist and a researcher in industry. In her PhD thesis, she explored the role of anthropology in international development cooperation, specifically in the context of intergovernmental and government organizations. She is a member of Metronik’s research group on Sustainable Development.

Nora Steenhuis, student of Student Culture, Organization and Management (Msc) International Business and Languages at VU Amsterdam

Mentioned in Podcast:

The People Project,

WWNA, Why the World Needs Anthropologists,

Erasmus+, funding scheme to support activities in the fields of Education, Training, Youth and Sport,

Interbuilding Applied Anthropology Meetup,

Metronik, Company for Automation, Process Control and Digitalization in Industry and Buildings,


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