The Oxford Muse is designed to be the Next Step, beyond the university, beyond the network, beyond self-development and beyond the health club.
1. Beyond the University. Universities can be brilliant at producing specialists in different branches of knowledge. But they do not integrate these branches and can leave individuals marooned on little islands of expertise. The Muse is designed to complete that education in a way that graduate, business or law schools do not. It gives you opportunities to look at the whole panorama of human activities, and to broaden your experiences and talents.
It prepares those already working to be a new style of intermediary or leader with a global vision, able to create synergies between people from different disciplines or cultures. For those entering the world of work, or college, it helps each one to develop their own broader models of what work can do for them and what kind of human beings they want to be.
2. Beyond the Network. The Muse aims to become an international meeting place where people can get to know one another less superficially or randomly. It plans to provide individualized access to other civilisations, so that each member becomes an ambassador between cultures, raising tourism to a new level. It wants to create a new dialogue between the generations, and between the sexes, and new alliances in the world of work.
3. Beyond self-development. The Muse is based on the realisation that two people can achieve more together than each individually, and that new ideas are born from the marriage of disparate thoughts. Bringing together people who would not normally see each other as potential collaborators, it develops the sensitivities needed to make different kinds of collaboration fruitful. It investigates the effect that work has on personality, seeking ways of inventing new kinds of work which positively enhance life instead of narrowing or damaging it: it treats that as an essential part of the process of improving ourselves.
4. Beyond the health club. The Muse aims to introduce a new element into preventive medicine. In the 20th century sport enormously expanded our ideas of bodily fitness, enabling us to run faster and jump higher. Now it is time to make our minds fitter also, to increase systematically the mental stimulation needed for the full development of our faculties, and to evolve compensatory strategies to counter the degeneration of the brain that occurs with advancing years.