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Harvard prof organizing global poker society
On the surface, poker and legal studies may not have much in common, but Harvard Law School professor Charles Nesson is betting the strategic thinking needed for both will make poker a good educational tool.
As such, he plans to announce the formation of the Global Poker Strategic Thinking Society (GPSTS) during State of Play in Singapore on Aug. 19. GPSTS will be an organization of poker strategic thinking societies at universities and secondary schools around the world.
"Poker is one of the best metaphors for teaching life skills across a variety of disciplines," Nesson said.
The first branch of the society will start right on his home turf at Harvard, where he founded Harvard's Berman Center on Internet Law. From there it will spread to universities across the globe.
The GPSTS views poker as a game of skill that can be used as a teaching tool at all levels of academia and in secondary education.
According to a press release, the idea is to use poker to teach basic life skills, strategic thinking, geopolitical analysis, risk assessment and money management. The organization will offer poker workshops to secondary schools and community centers, particularly in underprivileged neighborhoods.
The organization will also sponsor team poker matches between law, business and other graduate-level programs and conduct seminars and conferences exploring poker as a means to teach strategic thinking and related public policy issues.
Another goal of the GPSTS is to organize team poker championships for American universities, similar to how the NCAA organizes championships.
Not only will the organization promote the use of poker as a learning tool, it will bring together the brightest minds, both within and outside of the conventional university setting, to promote open education and Internet democracy, claims the organization in a press release.
The GPSTS will begin sharing its philosophy with a workshop at Aug. 22 at the State of Play convention. The conference, taking place Aug. 19-22, brings together experts from across disciplines to discuss the future of cyberspace and the impact of immersive online social environments on education, law, politics and society.
The GPSTS-hosted workshop, "Online Poker - Internet Freed - Open Education," will talk about using skill games, specifically poker, as an educational tool to help teach other topics, both in real and virtual settings.
More information about the GPSTS will be available on the organization's Web site, www.GPSTS.com, when the site goes live Aug. 19.