AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO
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Pros and Cons of Cotton Production in Uzbekistan

Pros and Cons of Cotton Production in Uzbekistan | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it

"This case study considers the pros and cons of cotton production in Uzbekistan. Since the country's independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, revenues from cotton taxation have contributed substantially to developing the industrial sector, boosting the current account, achieving energy and food-grain self-sufficiency, and buffering domestic shocks in food and energy prices. Nonetheless, some argue that the state procurement system hampers the development of the agricultural sector. Often the payments for cotton hardly cover farmers' production costs, and the quasi mono-culture of cotton production has adversely affected environmental sustainability."


Via Seth Dixon
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, May 16, 2:26 PM

Uzbekistan is a top world producer and exporter of cotton. There are many sectors involved in managing the cotton commodity chain to partake in the production. Not only is it a source of income, but provides labor jobs and food consumption. However, the land where the cotton production takes place is suffering. This land faces many types of land degradation that has an impact on the cotton. In order to secure the land, there are possible solutions and policies to improve the agriculture and the cotton benefits. Once the world’s fourth largest lake, the Aral Sea, is located in Uzbekistan, and has had a major impact on the cotton industry. This production has given Uzbekistan a world-wide reputation in cotton production, but is also known for destroying one of the world’s largest lakes.  Just because it is your greatest economic competitive advantage, doesn't mean that it is environmentally sustainable.

 

Questions to Ponder: How much does the cotton production contribute to Uzbekistan economically? What are the solutions to address the demising Aral Sea? Who is impacted the most because of the land issues?

 

Tags:  agriculture, labor, Uzbekistan, physical, weather and climateland use, environmentAral Sea.

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Where Ships Go to Die, Workers Risk Everything

In Bangladesh, men desperate for work perform one of the world's most dangerous jobs. They demolish huge ships in grueling conditions, braving disease

Via Seth Dixon
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, April 28, 3:34 PM

What happens to massive cargo vessels after they are outdated?  There are tons of scrap metal on these ships, but they aren't designed to be taken apart.  The ship-breakers of South Asia (Bangladesh, India and Pakistan are 3 of the 4 global leaders in recycling ships) risk much to mine this resource.  This is an economic function that is a part of a globalized economy, but one than was never intended.  There are major health risks to the workers and pollutants to the local community that are endemic in this industry that manages to survive on the scraps of the global economy.

 

Tags: BangladeshNational Geographic, South Asia, poverty, development, economic, globalization, industry, labor.

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These cities will be very rich in 10 years

These cities will be very rich in 10 years | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it
Forget New York, London or Hong Kong. Here are seven cities that are racing up the rankings of the world's richest, and will be among the top 10 by 2025, according to researchers from McKinsey.

Via Seth Dixon, Dustin Fowler
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, April 29, 9:38 AM
  1. Doha, Qatar
  2. Bergen, Norway
  3. Trondheim, Norway
  4. Hwaseong, South Korea
  5. Asan, South Korea
  6. Rhine Ruhr, Germany
  7. Macau, China

Tagsurbandevelopment, economic, planninglaborglobalization, technology.   

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These cities will be very rich in 10 years

These cities will be very rich in 10 years | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it
Forget New York, London or Hong Kong. Here are seven cities that are racing up the rankings of the world's richest, and will be among the top 10 by 2025, according to researchers from McKinsey.

Via Seth Dixon
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, April 29, 9:38 AM
  1. Doha, Qatar
  2. Bergen, Norway
  3. Trondheim, Norway
  4. Hwaseong, South Korea
  5. Asan, South Korea
  6. Rhine Ruhr, Germany
  7. Macau, China

Tagsurbandevelopment, economic, planninglaborglobalization, technology.   

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Mexico's 'maquiladora' labor system keeps workers in poverty

Mexico's 'maquiladora' labor system keeps workers in poverty | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it

"Some four decades after welcoming foreign assembly plants and factories, known as maquiladoras, Mexico has seen only a trickle of its industrial and factory workers join the ranks of those who even slightly resemble a middle class." 

 

Despite making such consumer goods like BlackBerry smartphones, plasma TVs, appliances and cars that most people in the US, for instance, consider necessities, Mexican workers in these factories seldom get to enjoy these items because, as this article argues, the labor system keeps them in poverty.  Foreign investment in these businesses keep unions out and attracts workers from poorer areas, allowing low-cost labor to prevail.  Less than $8 a day is the going wage - great for the bottom line and consumer prices but very bleak for those who toil in this system.


Via Seth Dixon, FCHSAPGEO, Michael Miller
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Olga Varlamov's curator insight, November 23, 2013 8:26 PM

This article talks about how the maquiladora labor system dosen't provide enough money for it's workers. Many in Mexico are living in poverty and can't afford much more than dinner because of their low wages.

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:47 PM

The labor system keeps workers in Poverty. This is the argument that is transitioned by stating the fact that many factory workers are and will always remian in poverty if they have no oppurtunity to move up in the food chain and become educated in order to get themselves out of poverty. They need different skills in order to aquire a better job to create a better life.  

Edgar Manasseh Jr.'s curator insight, February 11, 2015 11:33 PM

Its a very sad situation reading this. Seeing people go through all this to just survive. Kids don't even get any education and follow their parents footsteps to work at a plant just to be able to pay for bills. 8 dollars a day, and you wonder why they try to run to united states. Its very unfortunate that a lot of people go through this and i hope it changes soon, because to see that this is going on makes me thankful for what i have around me. Foreign investors are not great as they set out to be take advantage of the poor and get rich out of it, i think its pretty ridiculous.

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Product of Mexico - Harsh Harvest

"Farm exports to the U.S. from Mexico have tripled to $7.6 billion in the last decade, enriching agribusinesses, distributors and retailers.
American consumers get all the salsa, squash and melons they can eat at affordable prices. And top U.S. brands — Wal-Mart, Whole Foods, Subway and Safeway, among many others — profit from produce they have come to depend on.These corporations say their Mexican suppliers have committed to decent treatment and living conditions for workers.  But a Los Angeles Times investigation found that for thousands of farm laborers south of the border, the export boom is a story of exploitation and extreme hardship."

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Todd Scalia's curator insight, December 14, 2014 1:12 AM

we work the fields for our families. 

Jake Red Dorman's curator insight, December 17, 2014 11:36 AM

It’s crazy to see how desperate some of these people are to get working and how much they do for such a little reward. These people are working longer and harder than probably all Americans and they are barely surviving. They work for survival. It’s hard for some of these people to stay healthy, especially in the harsh conditions and tight living spaces that these people have to deal with on an everyday basis. 

Brian Wilk's curator insight, March 22, 2015 2:10 PM

Corporations are always looking for the cheapest base product to import. Unfortunately for the laborers of Mexico, their country does not enforce globally accepted standards of labor. The US cannot police other countries' policies and procedures, but we can educate our own consumers about the working conditions behind the product they buy. The consumers then have a choice; do they want to pay 49 cents a pound for bananas or 99 cents. What is more important, the health and welfare of the employee who picked the produce or the financial well-being of the consumer who purchases it?

This obviously is big business for Mexico and the US should apply some pressure to motivate our friends south of the border to foster better working conditions for their employees. It would seem to me that Mexico could afford to pay their workers a little more and still be competitive given their proximity to the US. I think I will start buying my bananas from Ecuador....

 

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The Berlin Wall fell 25 years ago, but Germany is still divided

The Berlin Wall fell 25 years ago, but Germany is still divided | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it
Stunning satellite images and maps show how east and west differ from each other even today.

Via Seth Dixon, Clairelouise
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Peter Phillips's curator insight, November 6, 2014 11:43 AM

50 years of communist rule still affect opportunities in Germany today, as these maps show. What they don't show is the social mirror that each provides to the other and the rich discussions about social policy that result. Reunification has been an expensive exercise for Germany, however one that it is committed to.

Jacob Conklin's curator insight, February 12, 2015 6:20 PM

The Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, but its influence is still present in today's Germany. History plays a key role in the shaping of political boundaries and that history is clearly evident in Germany. The line where the Berlin wall once stood still divides the country economically. The western part of Germany is far more economically affluent than the east. The USSR may be gone, but its influence still remains. 

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 8:14 AM

These two maps (unemployment on the left and disposable income on the right) are but two examples in this article that highlights the lingering distinctions between the two parts of Germany that were reunited 25 years ago.  The social geographies imposed by the Iron Curtain and the Berlin  Wall are still being felt from this relic border and will for years to come. 


Tags: Germany, industry, labor, economic, historical, political, borders.

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First taste of chocolate

"To be honest I do not know what they make of my beans," says farmer N'Da Alphonse. "I've heard they're used as flavoring in cooking, but I've never seen it. I do not even know if it's true." Watch how the Dutch respond to a cocoa bean in return or you can watch our entire episode on chocolate here.


Via Seth Dixon
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Benjamin Jackson's curator insight, December 13, 2015 6:02 PM

this is an interesting demonstration of the disconnect between the consumer and the producer. we would consider chocolate to be the product these guys are producing, yet we forget that they only deal with it at the rawest level. something we see everyday is something as rare as gold to these guys.

Martin Kemp's curator insight, December 17, 2015 3:12 PM

how do these people not know what the crop they are producing is or tastes like? that is amazing to me how you can be so oblivious to what you are doing. and how the place that produces cocoa does not actually have access to it.

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 8:15 AM

What is the geography of chocolate like?  This video was produced in the Netherlands, the global center of the cocoa trade, but the world's leading producer of cocoa is Côte d'Ivoire.  There is a dark side to chocolate production; the dirty secret is that slavery is commonplace on cocoa plantations in West Africa.  Although the worst of the situation is glossed over in this video, it still hints at the vast economic inequalities that are part and parcel of the global chocolate trade and the plantation roots of the production.  What are some of your reactions to this video?  


Tags: chocolate, Ivory Coast, Africa, poverty, development, economic, globalization, industry, labor.

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The Ship-Breakers

The Ship-Breakers | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it
In Bangladesh men desperate for work perform one of the world’s most dangerous jobs.

Via Seth Dixon, Leigha Tew
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Sarah Cannon's curator insight, December 14, 2015 9:58 AM

Besides that scrap metal pollutes water and rivers, this is a health risk for humans too. I also know someone who worked at Electric Boat at the Air Base in North Kingstown who's health was also affected due to metal scraps and particles in the air. Years later after working at EB he developed lung cancer. Metal erodes away as well, especially when left sitting in salt water. 

Benjamin Jackson's curator insight, December 14, 2015 11:54 AM

this is both amazing and horrifying in what these people do on a daily basis. i cannot imagine doing what these guys do everyday, and i never imagined how taking apart one of these ships would work.

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 8:16 AM

What happens to massive cargo vessels after they are outdated?  There are tons of scrap metal, but they aren't

designed to be taken apart.  The ship-breakers of South Asia (Bangladesh, India and Pakistan are 3 of the 4 global leaders in recycling ships) risk much to mine this resource.  This is an economic function that is a part of a globalized economy, but one than was never intended.  There are major health risks to the workers and pollutants to the local community that are endemic in this industry that manages to survive on the scraps of the global economy.


Tags: Bangladesh,  South Asia, poverty, development, economic, globalization, industry, labor.

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Globalization and the Textile Industry

"On the 100th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire, little has changed in the global sweatshop economy. Workers are again trapped and burned to death behind locked exit gates."


Via Seth Dixon, Mary Rack
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Danielle Bellefeuille's curator insight, May 10, 2014 6:16 PM

The sad reality of the new division of labor, we are moving backwards instead of forwards with labor policies and widening the gap between core and periphery countries. We need to stand up and advocate for fair trade. These countries rely on us for sources of unemployment, and we need to give them better wages, safer working conditions, and help them push pass this dependency, and grow into more economically and socially strong countries.

 

http://www.laborrights.org

Michael Mazo's curator insight, December 10, 2014 8:03 PM

The triangle shirtwaist factory in New York was a revolutionary turning point in labor regulations. Following this unfortunate event there had been many rules and laws that took effect in order to help the working people in factories and other harmful work places. The textile industry had been such an impact on globalization because this product had been so greatly treasured that countries all around the world were getting their fair share of producing a good that was in such high demand and through the use of globalization transport created an higher demand for textiles. Although, the boom of the textile industry came with the sacrifice of innocent civilians who worked endlessly just to feed their family. Regulations and legislation have to be put into effect to protect our people and our economy. 

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 8:17 AM

One of the first industries to be impacted by what is today called globalization was the textile industry and the successive waves of globalization continue to alter the geography of the textile industry.  This video shows how historical problems in the U.S. textile industry are seen today in countries such as Bangladesh, as does this interactive feature.  The following paragraph is from a Geography News Network podcast / article that Julie Dixon and I co-authored for Maps101 about the Bangladeshi garment industry:     


Many developing countries with the majority of their laborers working in agriculture welcome outsourced labor from the West. This is seen as a way to nurture industrialization, even if it is on the terms of trans-national corporations. Countless workers seek employment in textile factories simply because low pay is still an entry into the cash economy and it is one of the few jobs rural migrants can find when they first enter the big city. In such locations, Western labor, construction, and environmental standards are not priorities because the population’s basic needs haven’t been met, so the responsibility falls to the global companies—but their aim is to cut costs as much as possible to remain competitive.  From its emergence in textiles back in the late 1970’s, Bangladesh in 2013 made $19 billion in the export-oriented, ready-made garment industry, employing 4 million workers, most of whom are women. 


Listen to more of this Geography News Network podcast or read it here. 


Tags: Bangladesh, poverty, development, economic, globalization, industry, labor.

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A Wave of Sewing Jobs as Orders Pile Up at U.S. Factories

A Wave of Sewing Jobs as Orders Pile Up at U.S. Factories | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it
Factories are finding that years of doing business overseas has withered what once was a thriving textile and apparel work force in the United States.

 


Via Seth Dixon
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Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, January 29, 2014 9:33 AM

This article highlights the biggest problem in the American job market today, the skill gap.  People have been told for years that the only way to a good job is to go to college.  This is not always true and this article highlights this.  There are skilled trades out there but no one skilled to do them.  This problem needs to be addressed so that the unemployed work force can be trained to do these types of jobs.  Young people today seem to feel that the only way is a college degree but this article highlights the other paths to work which are through skilled trade labor.  People complain that nothing is made here but there are reasons for that and when companies try to bring industry back to America they encounter the skill gap. 

Paige Therien's curator insight, February 3, 2014 4:06 PM

Manufacturing companies have to weigh the pros and cons of outsourcing or staying domestic.  Many companies have chosen profits over quality and safety by outsourcing jobs over the past couple decades.  Outsourcing of jobs is a product of globalization.  However, the internet and other informational resources are also a large part of globalization which have allowed citizens of the United States to be exposed to what is actually happening in these outsourced manufacturing factories (similar to the role photography played in exposing behind-the-scenes truths of the United State's domestic manufacturing during the Industrial Revolution).  The demand for domestic-made products is increasing, and companies are listening.  However, the years that these jobs have been overseas have allowed not only the specialized skills of domestic workers to disappear, but also the creation of stigmas towards these jobs.

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, September 10, 2014 3:16 PM

This article is quite interesting.  Everyone seems to complain that more product needs to be made in the USA instead of elsewhere in poorer countries.  This company in Minnesota is doing just that.  After receiving complaints about not enough product being made here they decided to leave countries where safety is not such an issue and bring it home.  Now the problem lies with finding skilled workers here.  Being a 'sewer' isn't very glamourous and not appealing to the youth of America.  This being said, it is going to be very difficult to bring jobs back to America when no one here is interested in putting the energy forth to gain the skills needed to hold these positions. 

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Hot Commodities

Hot Commodities | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it

"77 Photos of the mass production of the Earth's natural resources.  In the picture above, a Tibetan villager works in a salt field. Salt has been the most common food preservative, especially for meat, for thousands of years." 

Tags: consumption, agriculture, resources, labor, industry, economic, unit 6 industry.


Via Seth Dixon
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, February 24, 2013 6:55 PM

Coal, steel, gold, iron, copper, aluminum and oil are all incredibly important commodities.  Agricultural products such as rice, cotton, corn, wheat and coffee all travel far beyond their area of origin.   Where do these resources come from?  How are they produced?  This gallery of 77 pictures is a fantastic tour of the resources that are key cogs in the global economy.  

Lauren Jacquez's curator insight, February 24, 2013 10:55 PM

Just in time for Industry!

Adrian Bahan (MNPS)'s curator insight, March 7, 2013 8:52 PM

intensive or extensive agriculture? Why?

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Changing Ethnic patterns in London

Changing Ethnic patterns in London | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it
Of all the changes announced by the 2011 census, one of the most startling is the rapid change in the ethnic composition of London's population.

Via Seth Dixon
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Meagan Harpin's curator insight, September 28, 2013 3:39 PM

The most surprising piece of information in this article is that white Britons are leaving London because of the minorities that are moving in. As of 2013 only 59.9% of London was white, meaning that the miniorities are taking over Ethnic part of London much faster then first anticipated.   

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, March 29, 2014 5:43 PM

Since immigrants have flocked into London, it appears some of the White population has left the city because of it. The ethnic change is happening very quickly in London and White British population is no longer the majority. As large numbers of immigrants enter London, large numbers of White people leave the city. London is becoming a melting pot rather quickly. 

 
Wilmine Merlain's curator insight, December 18, 2014 2:40 PM

If white flight is happening in Europe, where are all of its native migrating to? I know for years, there has been a large migrant population from the continent of Africa migrating to Europe, more specifically London, but where in the world could Britain's native be migrating to? Its common to hear of people migrating from rural areas to better neighborhoods, but with the influx of people looking for a better livelihood resemble that of the people living in countries such as India, China and Japan?

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Cutting Haiti's Forests

The major environmental problem facing Haiti's biodiversity is explained, including video of tree-cutting within a national park.

Via Seth Dixon
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, May 24, 3:50 PM

Deforestation does not happen in a vacuum--it occurs in an economic, political, and historical context.  Having successfully staged a slave revolution against France in 1806, they were ostracized from the global community (since the powers that be did not want to see slave rebellions or colonial uprising elsewhere) and were forced to look within for their own energy resources.  The nation's forests were (and still are) converted into charcoal, leading to long-term environmental problems such as soil erosion, flooding, and habitat destruction for many species.  All of this increased  increased Haiti's disaster vulnerability in the earthquake of 2010.     

 

Tags: Haiti, biogeography, environmentecology, video, poverty, development, economic, labor.

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Closing the gap between men and women in agriculture

http://www.fao.org/sofa/gender "The world cannot eliminate hunger without closing the gap between men and women in agriculture. With equal access to productive resources and services, such as land, water and credit, women farmers can produce 20 to 30 percent more food, enough to lift 150 million people out of hunger."


Via Seth Dixon
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Rebecca Geevarghese's curator insight, May 11, 1:35 AM
A great resource to show geography students! 
Linda White's curator insight, May 13, 10:40 PM
A reason why we need to review all the women that are incarcerated in our society.  The society is loosing so much.
Pascal Corbé's curator insight, May 26, 8:53 AM
While closing the gender gap is both righteous as economically advantageous, I find the claim that the world could not be fed without it totally unfounded and not true. Even the worst dictator could just redistribute the produce currently wasted and the issue would be solved with gender issues left touched. The intention of this message is great but I think from a communications point of view these kinds of exaggerated messages undermine the basis of campaigns and ultimately wear off the attention of your target groups.
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These cities will be very rich in 10 years

These cities will be very rich in 10 years | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it
Forget New York, London or Hong Kong. Here are seven cities that are racing up the rankings of the world's richest, and will be among the top 10 by 2025, according to researchers from McKinsey.

Via Seth Dixon
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, April 29, 9:38 AM
  1. Doha, Qatar
  2. Bergen, Norway
  3. Trondheim, Norway
  4. Hwaseong, South Korea
  5. Asan, South Korea
  6. Rhine Ruhr, Germany
  7. Macau, China

Tagsurbandevelopment, economic, planninglaborglobalization, technology.   

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Why the side-hustle is key to Nigeria's economy

Nkem Ifejika meets with Nigerian entrepreneurs who show how the nation's economy is finding lubricants other than oil.

Via Seth Dixon, Dean Haakenson
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Rowena Spence Cortina's curator insight, March 10, 2015 10:37 AM
Seth Dixon's insight:

The shadow economy, the black market or the side-hustle; these are all names for the informal sector of the economy.  In many countries such as Nigeria, this is a way of making money outside their normal jobs to boost their income and try to rise above just getting by.  "It was my grandmother who taught my mum that if you were lucky enough to have a salaried job, that was just pocket money. The real money came from your five to nine."  If working 9-to-5 represents the formal economy, this BBC podcast (and accompanying article) are all about the 5-to-9 economy

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, March 14, 2015 9:11 AM

unit 6

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 8:12 AM

The shadow economy, the black market or the side-hustle; these are all names for the informal sector of the economy.  In many countries such as Nigeria, this is a way of making money outside their normal jobs to boost their income and try to rise above just getting by.  "It was my grandmother who taught my mum that if you were lucky enough to have a salaried job, that was just pocket money. The real money came from your five to nine."  If working 9-to-5 represents the formal economy, this BBC podcast (and accompanying article) are all about the 5-to-9 economy. 


Tags: economic, labor, Nigeria, podcast, 

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Women & Agriculture

"In this Feed the Future video, narrator Matt Damon discusses the importance of increasing food production around the world and notes the importance of equipping women with the right tools, training, and  technology to see as much as a 30 percent increase in food production. To feed our growing population we need to increase food production by 70 percent before 2050. Women make up the majority of the agricultural workforce in many areas of the world."


Via Seth Dixon, Clairelouise
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, December 17, 2014 1:03 PM

A colleague mine thought that the ideas in this video were so obvious and non-controversial, he said, "Why does this even need to be stated? Why would we exclude women from agriculture?"  The simple answer is that it wouldn't need to be stated if women around the world did have equal access to resources.  For many of the world's poor, this is where the rubber meets the road. 


Tags: developmentgender, agriculture, food production, labor.

AckerbauHalle's curator insight, December 23, 2014 12:37 AM

Für die zukünftige Ernährung der Welt gibt es einen oft übersehenen Faktor: Gleichberechtigung von Frauen. Frauen sind in vielen Ländern für die Arbeit auf den Feldern verantwortlich. Gleichzeitig haben sie keine Rechte am Land und sind schlecht ausgebildet und - wenn überhaupt - schlecht bezahlt. 

Lauren Quincy's curator insight, March 19, 2015 4:50 PM

Unit 5: Agriculture, Food Production and Rural Land Use 

 

This video is about how women make up the majority of the agricultural workforce and that giving them access to land, water, markets, and technology could increase food production by 30%. This in return would help boost the economy. Places such as Kenya have given women the same resources as men and have seen a 22% increase in crop production. In Brazil, programs targeting women in agriculture have helped cut the population in extreme poverty by half and malnutrition by 73%. This video encourages people around the world to help give women the resources they need in order to increase the food production and economy. 

 

This relates to unit 5 because it deals with agriculture and particularly women's roles in agriculture. This video explains how increased resources can help end world hunger. Women are not given as much opportunity as men and this video expresses need to invest in women's rights. 

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The surprising math of cities and corporations

"Physicist Geoffrey West has found that simple, mathematical laws govern the properties of cities — that wealth, crime rate, walking speed and many other aspects of a city can be deduced from a single number: the city's population. In this mind-bending talk from TEDGlobal he shows how it works and how similar laws hold for organisms and corporations."


Via Seth Dixon
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Built 4 Betterness Ed van den Berg's curator insight, December 14, 2014 3:17 PM

Not surprisingly the DNA of cities is a follow-up of human DNA and understanding this will explain and predict how the body of a city will develop!

SRA's curator insight, April 16, 2015 2:10 AM

The idea that cities are just organisms that are satisfying the laws of biology is interesting. Especially because Physicist Geoffrey West brings the idea of Scalability which by definition is, the ability of a system, network, or process to handle a growing amount of work in a capable manner or its ability to be enlarged to accommodate that growth. What’s mind blowing to me is that the system that is referred to here is human interaction.  We create these cities through our interaction and experience. With a growth rate of 1,000,000 people every year the math adds up to an agreeable 15% rise in income levels, patents, and super creative people every year which is undoubted a win for civilization and society. But with that we must keep in mind also this means a 15% increase in things like deadly disease, crime, poverty, and ecological issues leading to further degradation of our planet. This unbounded growth means the system is destined to collapse. The math behind cities doesn't lie if we don’t prepare cities have a fate to die like every other organism in Biology. So it is up to us to create and innovate to sustain this growth and avoid the collapse. But we must do so at a forever increasing pace. Which subsequently is also part of another system predetermined to collapse. What I mean is what happens when we cannot innovate fast enough to sustain this growth?


- Caleb Beckett

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 8:14 AM

While corporations rise and fall, it is quite rare for a city to entirely fail as an economic system.  Huge cities have some negative consequences, but the networks that operate in the city function more efficiently on economies of scale in a way that offsets the negatives.  Increasing a city's population will continue to improve the economies of scale (larger cities have higher wages per capita, more creative employment per capita, etc.).  However, this growth requires major technological innovations to sustain long-term growth.  

 

Tags: urban, planning, megacities, industry, economic, scale, TED, video.

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Troubles on Russia's Lake Baikal

"Workers at an ailing paper mill in Siberia are clinging to their jobs in the face of financial pressure and criticism from environmentalists.
Related Article: http://nyti.ms/gSvOkM"


Via Seth Dixon, Malmci@Spatialzone
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Gene Gagne's curator insight, November 29, 2015 7:16 PM

I can relate to this article seeing my research article is about Lake Baikal. You are right it is a bit outdated but most of the 2000 people who have lost their jobs are receiving help from the state even if it is short term. The people who have important skills are being relocated while others are given some other form of training. Others are waiting  for something to open up while in the meantime they are raising chickens and farming. There could be a bright side in the future economically as there has been talk about building a Russian type Disneyland which could produce income and jobs for people. The problem is there is a lot of environmental liquid waste to clean up which is cost effective. But it could attract investors in the future.

Martin Kemp's curator insight, December 17, 2015 1:34 PM

i feel like the problem of choosing between economic problems and environmental problem, deciding which is more important, happens all over the world. especially in this case where the people of baikal where there actually are no other jobs. in situations like this you have to decide if keeping those people alive now is more important than worrying about the environment in the future.

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 8:15 AM

The environment, industry and politics play key roles in this story of an old style Soviet mono-town on Lake Baikal.  Monotowns had planned economies that revolved around one industry and today many of these are struggling in the post-Soviet era.  While the particulars of the political situation are a bit dated, the overall issue is still quite relevant to understanding Russia today. 

2013 update: The paper plant is now officially closed.   

 

Tags: Russia, industry, labor, environment, economic, water, pollution, environment modify, unit 6 industry.

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The Rise of Innovative Districts

"Today, innovation is taking place where people can come together, not in isolated spaces. Innovation districts are this century's productive geography, they are both competitive places and 'cool spaces' and they will transform your city and metropolis."


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, June 20, 2014 2:19 PM

As described by the Brookings Institution in their exploration regarding innovation districts, they are geographic areas where leading-edge companies, research institutions, start-ups, and business incubators are located in dense proximity. These districts are created to facilitate new connections and ideas, speed up the commercialization of those ideas, and support urban economies by growing jobs in ways that leverage their distinct economic position.


Tags: density, sustainability, housing, urban, planning, unit 7 cities, labor.

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Where the extremely poor live

Where the extremely poor live | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it

Via Seth Dixon, Emily Ross Cook
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dilaycock's curator insight, May 5, 2014 8:52 PM

This information is taken from the World Bank's 2014 report "Prosperity for All." The report looks at "progress to date in reducing global poverty and discusses some of the challenges of reaching the interim target of reducing global poverty to 9 percent by 2020.... . It also reports on the goal of promoting shared prosperity, with a particular focus on describing various characteristics of the bottom 40 percent."

Sid McIntyre-DeLaMelena's curator insight, May 29, 2014 12:48 PM

This graphic reveals the poorest populations and where they live and even though India and China are economic competitors on the global stage they still have the poorest communities. 

IN poor communities, the human place is changed by using less structurally sound architecture and disregarding cultural presence for functionality though holding true to cultural presence in individual lives.

Amanda Morgan's curator insight, September 18, 2014 11:49 AM

I agree with this article from the Guardian that development should be measured in human rights gains more than economic advancements.  While globalization is taking place and allowing countries to trade and maximize profits, a large percent of people in the world are deprived basic human rights and are entirely forgotten about and not valued.

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Muslims masquerade as Hindus for India jobs

Muslims masquerade as Hindus for India jobs | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it
Facing religious discrimination in the Hindu-dominated job market, many are forced to assume fake identities.

Via Seth Dixon
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Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 9:11 PM

In the marketplace, one of a different religion has to mask her true identity to be able to sell the food there. Not only is this woman facing pure discrimination she is facing it because of what she believes in. Nothing is more horrible than being stripped away from something you believe in. In order for her to sell food in this marketplace, she must do so to survive.

Jackson and Marduk's curator insight, October 27, 2014 4:03 PM

Religion: The main religion in India is Hindu. Since this is so widely practiced in India, other religions are discriminated. This article explains how some people have to act like they practice Hindu just to get a job.

Bob Beaven's curator insight, April 2, 2015 3:39 PM

Having to masquerade as a different religion in order to get a job is not a concept that most Americans are familiar with, as we live in a highly secular society.  India, which too is supposed to be a secular society, is failing at this as the article shows.  Muslim women have to pretend to be Hindus in order to get a job, as many Hindus (who are dominant in India) will refuse to higher people who follow Islam.  There are historical reasons for this, as the Hindus of the country were dominated by the Muslims for years under the Mughal Empire.  However, it is a sad fact that the secular country of India which is striving towards becoming a superpower would treat citizens of a different faith in such a poor manner.  This is very interesting for Americans to think about, and it even parallels our history.  In the 19th Century and even the earlier 20th century we were much more aware of religions and ethnicity and these groups stuck together, however by the time of the 1960s and 70s this landscape was rapidly disappearing.  India should itself move on from this practice, yet I believe it will be difficult given the nature of the situation, and the baggage carried by the groups.

 

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The No Good, Very Bad Outlook for the Working-Class American Man

The No Good, Very Bad Outlook for the Working-Class American Man | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it

The U.S. economy once worked like a finely meshed machine. That is not true anymore. The U.S. economy is still a powerful engine, but workers aren’t seeing the benefits, less-educated men are struggling, and the rich have disconnected from everyone else.


Via Seth Dixon, Karen Moles Rose
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, December 16, 2012 3:39 PM

The problems with the economy are not universally spread throughout society.  Certain segments are impacted more than others by the current struggles, especially when with look at axes of identity, such as class, gender and ethnicity.  While planning on a blue-collar job in the 1950s could have been a solid career plan for a young man in the United States, not so in the 21st century.     


Tags: labor, gender, class, industry, education.

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If Economists Controlled The Borders

If Economists Controlled The Borders | AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY DIGITAL  STUDY: MIKE BUSARELLO | Scoop.it
What would the perfect immigration system look like? We asked three economists to dream big.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, February 19, 2013 2:30 PM

This is an intriguing podcast focused on how to best manage national borders if the only goal were to strengthen the economy (they center the conversation the United States).  These economists envision plans with more incentives to attract a labor force that is more highly-skilled is crucial to having a rational migration policy.  How how you manage the borders if you were in charge?  How would your plan strengthen the country?