Meagan's Geoography 400
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In Kenya, Using Tech To Put An 'Invisible' Slum On The Map

In Kenya, Using Tech To Put An 'Invisible' Slum On The Map | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it
A billion people worldwide live in slums, largely invisible to city services and governments — but not to satellites.

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

The slum-mapping movement began in India almost a decade ago and migrated to africa, the idea of this is to make slums a reality to people who have never set foot in one before. The maps can be used in court to stop evictions or simply to raise awarance. I think this idea is on the right track of what needs to be done. These people need help and so many people incuding the governement pretend they arent their but with these maps as proof they can no longer do that.    

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Lauren Jacquez's curator insight, July 25, 2013 7:47 PM

Slums also known as favelas, squatter settlements

John Blunnie's curator insight, July 28, 2013 1:11 PM

Great how tech and globalization can help represed people in other countries.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, March 19, 2014 10:24 AM

Slums and squatter settlements are a problem that a lot of the developing world has to deal with.  The unsafe and unsanitary buildings cause headaches and problems for the leaders of the cities they surround.  This story is hopeful in that the city did manage to bring a water line out to get clean water to the people living in this area.  Perhaps this will lead to a better quality of life of the inhabitants of this particular slum.  Also the project of mapping such areas can be a useful tool for city planners to better regulate these areas and help the people that live there.,

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A Life Revealed

A Life Revealed | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it
Seventeen years after she stared out from the cover of National Geographic, a former Afghan refugee comes face-to-face with the world once more.

 

The original cover is one of the more famous National Geographic photos of all time, and yet the woman in the photograph has not lived a life as though millions of people could recognize her eyes.  This is her story. 


Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

For 17 years she was known as nothing more than the Afgan girl today we now her name, Sharbat Gula. Sharbat is part of one of the most Afghan warlike tribes known as Pashtun. It is said that the Pashtun are only at peace when they are at war. She was just a child when the fighting began, and six when her parents were killed by a bombing. Her brother said they left Afghanistan because of the fighting and with their grandmother they walked for a week to Pakistan. Today she is married and takes care of her three daughters her brother says she has never known a happy day in her life. The girl known for 17 years as the Afghan girl has lied a lived of hard ship and tragedy.     

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Jacob Crowell's curator insight, November 3, 2014 1:58 PM

You can see in this woman's face that the years have been hard for her living as refugee. Although this seems like National Geographic giving themselves a pat on the back it is important to remember that this women became a national symbol for refugees and yet her life did not improve and furthermore she had no idea that her picture was so well known.

David Lizotte's curator insight, February 27, 2015 6:36 PM

I never would have imagined the "Afghan girl" being alive. It's amazing how National Geographic was able to catch up and speak with her and photograph her. This demonstrates the pure professionalism and global outreach national geographic has. 

One of the things I am most thankful about is that I do not live in a war torn society. Being separated from my family, forced to flee and become a refugee is a horrid way of life that I know I would struggle to endure. Some Afghanistan people have been doing this for over twenty years. 

One time I was having a discussion with my friend. We talking about America and the westernized part of the world. He and I agreed how lucky we were to be born in America. We were born white males in the United States of America. We could have been born a woman living in Iran or Iraq, or even as a little rural Afghan boy whom would eventually be taken and abused by theTaliban. We kept going on with different scenarios and different countries. 

Want I want for people to realize is how advanced the United States of America is. Yes, we have our problems... but non comparable to other nations. Look at nations such as Afghanistan, Iraq, The Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Uganda. These are first world nations which have war torn regions occupied by terrorists of all sorts. They also have little to no functioning government, although Afghanistan is improving. Even second world nations, although developing at a steady pace are plagued with an exponential amount of violent crimes and corruption. South Africa would be a prime example. 

Its amazing to read about the "Afghan girl"(s) or better yet Sharbat Gula. After all she has gone through she still has hope for her younger children. After enduring such a life of foul experiences she is still able to place all her faith into Allah and hope for the best for her children. It is also neat to see her place such a high level of importance on education. Education is the foundation for all development. 

Mark Hathaway's curator insight, October 20, 2015 6:58 AM

These two images are rather striking. They depict seventeen years in the life a young female Afghani refuge. They depict seventeen years of hell. The woman in this photograph has lived a hard life. Seventeen years probably feels like fifty years to her. On her face, you see the effects of living a life as a refugee. A life of not having a true home or place that you can count on. A life of living in deplorable refugee camps. It is the shame of the world, that people are forced to live like this. Unfortunately this women's story is an all to common occurrence in Afghanistan. Thousands have suffered similar fates in refugee camps. We must never forget the suffering of these people.

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'Sharp drop' in India poverty

'Sharp drop' in India poverty | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it
Poverty in India has dropped sharply thanks to increased spending on rural welfare programmes, the country's Planning Commission says.

 

KV: Government intervention has decrease poverty in rural India. More people are getting out of poverty in rural areas than urban areas. Programs funded by the government to help the poor has significantly changed many lives. People are given education, welfare, and proper sanitation. Once assistance is provided to the poor, the welfare and well being drastically changes for the better. As the Indian government prospers because of new business ventures, some of the increased revenue should be set aside to help many regions that are affected by poverty.

 

SD: For more resources on population, see this scoopit topic on the environment and society by KV.


Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Poverty in rural India has declined drastically, and much faster then in urban India. The decline is due to increased spending on rural welfare programmes, and rural poverty fell by 8% while urban poverty fell by 4.8%. I think this is great that the government is finally taking action and helping their people, instead of just 'sweeping them under the rug' in a way and pretending the issue isnt there.

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Bryan Tan's curator insight, February 2, 2013 10:54 AM

After reading this article, I am convinced that the gorverment in India know and want to do something about their currebt situation of being one of the poorest state in the world. Poepla are treated better given benefits, edeucation,welfare of the citizens and hygiene are all being taken care of by the gorverment. The gorvement starts improving their ties with other countries in the world helping it to gain more advantage. This helps to decrease the rate of poverty in India.

luisvivas64@hotmail.'s comment, February 3, 2013 10:19 AM
La pobreza es el càncer de la sociedad humana, ojalà sea posible reducirla, aunque soy escèptico, el dinero es muy sabroso y los pocos que lo tienen no lo sueltan, de allì las revoluciones, guerras ect.
Mark Hathaway's curator insight, November 11, 2015 11:26 AM

This is yet another sign that India is developing into a great world power. The government has sought to curb the rates of rural poverty by instituting social welfare programs.  The programs are designed to provide those living in the rural areas of the nation, with education and proper sanitation. These programs appear to be succeeding, as a sharp drop has occurred in rural poverty. The governments recognition of the poverty issue is a major step towards tackling the major inequities in Indian society. Largely a legacy of the caste system, Indian society is still terribly divided along socio-economic lines. In order for Indian to achieve the status of a developed nation, the government must take action to bridge this inequities. An new  society based on equality may be on the horizon in India.

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Azerbaijan Is Rich. Now It Wants to Be Famous.

Azerbaijan Is Rich. Now It Wants to Be Famous. | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it
Oil-rich, velvet-rope-poor Azerbaijan, a country about the size of South Carolina on the Caspian Sea, would very much like to be the world’s next party capital.

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Azerbaijan is tiny about the size of South Carolina, home to 9.2 million people, it produces nothing the world wants and has no major unviversities. So why is it such a big deal? It has Oil. Back in 2006 they began pumping oil from the caspian sea and with the help of BP they now pump one million barrels of oil daily. If the proposed pipeline running from turkey to Austria is built it could bring in billions of dollars a year. Azerbijan is overwhelmingly Muslim and buys advanced weapons systems from Israel in exchange for oil, they are a new member of the UN and sided with the US against Russia on the issue of Syria. Azerbaijan is making a rise in the world all thanks to their oil goldmine  

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Bob Beaven's curator insight, March 19, 2015 1:06 PM

Oil is a prime element in making a country very rich, almost like gold was back in the Age of Exploration.  The fact that a country that not many have heard of (including myself) one day hopes to be the new Dubai is completely believable.  Dubai itself, at one time, was another country that no one had heard of before and yet today it is the playground of the mega-rich.  Ibrahimov certainly has a dream for the city of Baku which he wants to build as the "Dubai of Central Asia".  I think that when it is all finished, the city should be impressive.  Yet, Ibrahimov always tried to avoid political questions, however this is very wise of him, because in this part of the world politics can be a very dangerous affair.  Ibrahimov himself, is very very wealthy.  I am not surprised that he said people with political pull believe in what he is doing.  The only thing that worries me about these oil rich countries is once the oil eventually runs out, then what will they do?  Also, it is interesting to see how Russia will react as the country of Azerbaijan increases its international presence in the coming years and becomes (in its hope) a rich nation.  I believe that will be very interesting to see, especially if the nation attempts to send oil directly to Europe, thus weakening an advantage Russia holds over the Western Europeans.

Matt Ramsdell's curator insight, November 25, 2015 2:52 PM

Azerbijan a country on the west coast of the Caspian sea is a very well equipped area with oil. This country also has the waterway in and out of the Caspian. Because of the oil and minerals that this country has they are becoming increasingly rich and gaining strength in the middle east. 

Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 14, 2015 3:13 PM

By the looks of it, a tiny nation about the size of South Carolina, Azerbaijan wants to be exactly like Dubai. They want to be famous for what they have. It appears as if they will use their crude oil resources as their help to the top of the world. They will be quite the impressive country if they come out to be what they want. With help from the petroleum country BP, they are pumping oil out of the Caspian Sea. 

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Tunneling through Andes to speed global trade

Tunneling through Andes to speed global trade | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it
Bolivian and Peruvian farmers sell entire crop to meet rising western demand, sparking fears of malnutrition

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

In Argentina there is a proposed plan to build a tunnel that would be the longest tunnel in the Americas through the mountains. It would make billions of dollars worth of Chinese electronics, Chilean wine, Argentine food and Brazilian Cars cheaper and more competitive. It would save millions on shipping and safe time on shipping as well. The only pass through the Andes at the moment is in the south and gets buried in snow in the winter stranding shipments. If this is put into place many people believe that it cut travel time by a third.     

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Rachel Phillips's curator insight, May 7, 2015 12:54 PM

This is a great idea for a region that has the need to travel so much through such a tough area. Even if it will cost a lot of money to accomplish, in the long run it will save more than it costs to build.  This could change so much, and really boost their economies. Not only would it speed up shipping time and lower shipping costs, but it would allow more shipping to be done which means more business throughout the entire year as opposed to the situation now with snow getting in the way. Not only would it effect that aspect of the economy but it would also produce jobs for the time of the work being done, which is never a bad thing.

Mark Hathaway's curator insight, October 1, 2015 8:19 AM

If this project can be accomplished, it would truly be one of the greatest engineering feats in human history. To build a railroad tunnel through the Andes mountains seems impossible, but in all likelihood with the right amount of funding, it can be done. The tunnel would have great economic benefits for both Brazil and Argentina. Goods from both countries could be shipped in both directions with out any issues. The larger world would also benefit from the train tunnel. It is estimated that the tunnel would lower the shipping costs from East Asia to the Southern Atlantic. The entire global trading market would benefit from this development.

Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 7, 2015 12:44 PM
Doing something such as this is a brilliant move in engineering. Making a tunnel through the Andes will connect countries together, make shipping much easier and doing so may cut the cost of goods being shipped and received. Just like the Panama Canal increased the cargo freight lining industry for shipping, this will also increase an industry for railways,.
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Natural resources and economic development

Natural resources and economic development | Meagan's Geoography 400 | Scoop.it
When will Sierra Leoneans be able to benefit from their own natural resources, instead of being cursed by them?

 

Sierra Leone is a country that has been 'blessed' with excellent natural resources, and remains in political chaos with one of the lowest HDI scores.  For a national economy, having abundant natural resources does not guarantee economic prosperity.  This is baffling to many that don't see the political and geographic context that shapes various economic sectors.  This is good a way to demonstrate that context.       


Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Even though thousands are fleeing the country in search of something better big buisness see the country as a land of opportunity, but to those that live there Sierra Leone’s natural resources have been a curse. A decade ago diamonds put the country into an 11 year civil war and it is about to happen again over a unique wood found deep in the forests. We tend to forget that the wars that tear countires apart arent always started by political issues but also by natural rescources.  

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Irini Kassidis's curator insight, August 25, 2013 5:46 AM

This article is discussing the issue of natural resources that is having a negative effect on Sierra Leone. Several years ago, business people were going there for the diamonds but now they are going there for the timber. The country's forest are at risk of being completely wiped out.

it is very sad the situation that Sierra Leone are facing in regards to their natural resources. 

Marissa Roy's curator insight, November 26, 2013 4:52 PM

Thousands of Sierra Leoneans are fleeing the country in search of a better life. Corporations see the country as a land of opportunity, because of the rich resources. Diamonds put the country into a civil war. Now, wood is threatening to do the same thing. Natural resources can be more precious than anything else to some people. They are seen as worth fighting for.

Sierra_Mcswagger's curator insight, January 12, 2015 10:18 AM

This article it gives good insight on how much natural resources come into play when deciding a countries Human Development Index (HDI). Sierra Leone has a surplus amount of natural resources yet they still have one of the lowest HDI scores. The economy in Sierra Leone is definitely in bad shape. Because of the treacherous economy, the amount of natural resources is not very beneficial to their HDI.  

                                                                                                          S.S.