Last week we interviewed Roxane Varza, director @StationF, who shared her learning habits.
Our second learning inspiration is with Elisabeth de Rothschild. Currently based in Singapore, Elisabeth is the founder and director of EGR Partners, her family office that invests in early-stage startups. Elisabeth studied architecture at the Ecole Spéciale d’Architecture of Paris and the Graduate School of University of California-Berkeley where she was one of the first female students. Elisabeth told us everything about her learning habits 💪
Who is your main source of inspiration 👩?
I have many sources of inspiration. In my life in general, I am super curious.
I look at the present solutions to certain problems and try to find new innovative ways to turn around the problem to solve those problems in another way. I ask the question from another angle and it helps inspire me to explore new techniques in all fields, be it architecture or cooking.
Innovation is what inspires me every day.
You asked “who inspires me” so let me answer that. In terms of people, today in the business world, they are women who are transforming the way we look at banking or investing like Cathie Wood of Ark Invest or Jackie Reses of Square Capital, or Jennifer Doudna of Crisper. Women are often at the forefront of the revolutions taking place in the fields that need disruption.
In philosophy we have Paul Preciado – who was born Beatrix Preciado- dare challenge our concept of “sexual difference”..
I find it super inspiring. This constant effort to question the established order is part of my quest to contribute to building a more equal society.
How do you keep learning on a daily basis?
I always dedicate one hour per day to learn something new with an online course. The funniest course I have done so far was about procrastination. It turned out to be really useful. It taught me a lot about time management.
I also read a lot and I listen to up to 2 hours of podcast per day when I exercise. Podcasts are super convenient to get me to walk more.
It is important to always ask questions, to question everything you read. We can learn from anybody. Back in time, only the elites had access to specific knowledge, could go to the best schools/universities and meet “important” people. Nowadays this paradigm has completely shifted. Knowledge is becoming super accessible. Anyone can become, what was used to be called an “elite”, thanks to the internet and everything becoming “free” to access. That has dramatically widened opportunities for all. That’s the beauty of the world we live in today!
What are your favorite books 📚?
I also really like books from Paul Preciado, about process of changing sex: Je suis un monstre qui vous parle 🇫🇷. This book asks the question of what happens when you look at things in a different way or when you try to challenge usual classifications. We are at a time when we can stop putting labels on people.
What is your favorite podcast 🎧?
I love so many podcasts.
- My favorite one is the American podcast : Fresh Air by NPR 🇬🇧 it covers a wide spectrum of subjects.
- I also like Soft power ( FR)
- 99%Invisible. ( US)
- Another one is Super Fail 🇫🇷:, I love to see what did not work out as planned.
- There is also Generation Do It Yourself 🇫🇷 to understand the process of creating a startup
- I listen to La Compagnie des oeuvres by Matthieu Garrigou -lagrange and find Concordances des temps 🇫🇷 by Jean-Noël Jeanneney really relevant, some of the episodes are more than 20 years old but are still relevant.
If you were to stay alone on an island and would only be allowed to bring one item, what would it be ?
Obviously, I would bring myself. No, I’m joking 😁.
It’s a tough decision. I think I would hesitate between a book on how to survive (is there one ?) and a knife to cut fruit.
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