Meagan's Geoograp...
Find tag "economic"
165 views | +0 today
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Als Return to Education!

China bypasses American ‘New Silk Road’ with two of its own

China bypasses American ‘New Silk Road’ with two of its own | Meagan's Geoography 400 |
China aims to secure energy supplies with large Central and Southeast Asian investments.

Via Al Picozzi
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Chinas president is trying to build a new silk road. This would secure Chinas energy supplies, boost trade and transport links and strengthen regional policy coordination from the Pacific to the Baltic Sea. 

Al Picozzi's curator insight, October 20, 2013 2:07 PM

Seems the Silk Road is making a comeback ni Central Asia.  China wants to make sure it has access to new gas and oil of the new Central Asian republics like Kazakhstan.  Once used as the major overland trade route to the west, the silk road is being reborn.  So is sea trade through the Strait of Malacca, whcih was huge in the 14th, 15th,16th and 17th centuries.  China is using its money and influence in the area to reopen these "silk roads."  Even Chinese President Xi Jinping talked about the travels of the Han dynasty envoy Zhang Qian to this area.  It seems that history does repeat itself.

Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

Puerto Rico's Battered Economy: The Greece Of The Caribbean?

Puerto Rico's Battered Economy: The Greece Of The Caribbean? | Meagan's Geoography 400 |
With the highest unemployment rate in the U.S. and a mountain of debt, the island is facing a declining population. But those who stay insist they're there for the long haul.

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

The economic stuggles of the Puerto Rican population are driving many of them to head to the states. Puerto Rico currently has the highest unemployment rate in the US at 14 percent and endless debt. There are however those that are there to stay for the long haul. 

Kristin Mandsager San Bento's curator insight, March 1, 10:18 PM

If this is the Greece of the Caribbean I wonder how long the US will hold on to PR?  I don't know many who want to hold onto a sinking ship.  I can remember when the unemployment rate in RI was about 13%.  That was scary and PR is up to 14%.  They need to find a way to manufacture or produce something they can sell instead of buying items to sell from the Mainland.  They need a self sustaining economy.  

Brian Wilk's curator insight, March 28, 9:52 AM

It's clear from the transcript and even more so from the comments that the root of economic woes in Puerto Rico is corruption. Corruption of the economy through the black market, kindly referred to as the "informal economy", pet projects such as the rail system that cost 2.2B dollars and serves only 12 miles, and the lack of education. Citizens of this island pseudo nation are leaving to pursue other opportunities not available to them in their native country. The US may want to infuse dollars into their economy to build a university and foster reading academies that teach young children to read. If they don't turn around the brain drain soon, this island paradise will not have a happy ending.Also, additional dollars could be allocated to the tourism industry to increase revenue for the island.

Kendra King's curator insight, April 27, 6:23 PM

I chose this article with the Somalia Refugee BBC pod cast on my mind. The pull factors for leaving a country are always obvious to me. Once again, there is a poor economy that isn't able to provide enough economic opportunity for its citizens. Also, there is an increase in crime that worries the population. Both of these reasons harm the future of citizens and as I mentioned in the Somalia article, leaving an area that provides little hope for a good future just makes sense.    


What I don't understand is why someone stays in an area when the pulls to leave are so strong. As I said in the Somalia article, I thought staying was because of a sense of duty. Yet, I am finding from the grandmother mentioned in this piece that pride is another factor. It seems like her pride isn't causing her to fix the problems rather the pride just makes her stay. It is almost like in gentrification where the new project will probably be better for the economy of the area (at least that is often the intent), but people are just too emotionally attached to want change. They really should given the cost benefits, but they don't. So I think I have issues grasping both of these reasons to stay because I have always analyzed a situation from a logical lens rather than an emotional one. 


Another aspect of the article that caught my attention was the comparison to Greece. As we learned about during the section on the EU, Greece's economy. The United States isn't entangled in PR's economy in quite the same manner as the EU is with Greece. However, the article did mention how their are American citizens with investments in this area. So if Puerto Rico's economy does fail, just how much of an impact would this have on the United States and the rest of the global economy? 

Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

What we can learn from Mexico

What we can learn from Mexico | Meagan's Geoography 400 |

Earlier this month, the president told a newspaper the solution to partisanship is politics and more politics.

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Most of what we hear coming out of Mexico is from the drug trafficking, violence and murders but behind the scenes Mexico has been quietly developing. We can see here how georaphy is playing a big part in Mexico's development, because they share a boarder with the US they are able to transport products much cheaper over the boarder. One of the most interesting facts in this piece is that Mexico has trade agreements with 44 countries.     

Kendra King's curator insight, February 2, 8:37 PM

The title of this article was what enticed me as I was hoping to find an actual answer. However, based on this article alone, I don’t actually think there is much the United States can learn from Mexico about politics or economics.


This author failed to mention that a difference in political systems could also attribute to the new Mexican leader’s ability to obtain “endorsements from across the spectrum.”  Mexico recently had an election. The new President this article is praising is part of a party that controlled the land for 70+ years until Nieto's predecessor. His predecessor messed up with the cartels so badly that Nieto was elected back into office. Given the amount of support Nieto had going into office, it doesn't seem so challenging to negotiate with opposing parties. Plus, I doubt the opposing parts are as unreasonable as some of the United States members of congress, like the Tea Party.   


I also see little to glean from the manufacturing route that Mexico is on at the moment. I will admit that the projected GDP growth of 4% mentioned in the article is impressive. However, thinking that the key to economic growth in the United States is through a similar “manufacturing boom” is just out of touch with the times. As stated in class our wages can’t keep up with the cheaper wages of developing countries (a point the author eluded to in the section discussing “the three main factors at play,” factor number three). Thus, doing what Mexico is doing doesn’t fit the American economy. What the United States might try doing is finding a manufacturing niche that no one has a market on in order to obtain more jobs. Maybe something higher end or medically related would be of benefit to the United States. Even these jobs would end up comprising a small part of the United States economy because the United States is more of a white collar economy. As such, more should be done to protect that sector of our economy from things like outsourcing given its relevance to our modern economy.


 Overall, I think the media’s quick comparisons of other countries falls under the bad category of globalization. A fair amount of people would just use this article to say things like, if Mexico’s leader can do X Y & Z then so should Obama. Yet, many of those people wouldn’t actually think about all the differences or reasons why Obama can’t compromise or revert the economy backwards. Am I saying Obama shouldn’t try more or that I am happy with the lack of compromise by all, no. However, I think it is dangerous for journalist to gloss over the situation since many people will take them as a credible source to cite. Mind you not all journalism is bad though. The Scoop.It article I read this week regarding Walmart is a great example of how investigative journalism can have positive consequences. The major difference being one actually did their homework that cited concrete specifics, while the other made a flimsy analogy.  

Mark Hathaway's curator insight, September 22, 7:44 AM

While our government is perpetually mired in gridlock, the Mexican government is making lasting reforms to their nation. News attention on Mexico is almost always negative. While the violence and the drug trade are serious issues,  not enough attention is being devoted to the rapid growth of the Mexican economy. Politicians in Mexico are coming together to create an environment for positive economic growth. The article describes three factors that are leading to the growth of the Mexican economy. The first factor is Mexico's geographic location. Being located right next door to the United States is an enormous advantage for Mexico. Industrial goods are easily and cheaply being transported across the border. The second factor is the ever controversial NAFTA. The agreement ratified during the Clinton Administration allows for Mexican goods to be sold at lower rates than their Asian counterparts. The final factor is wages. The cheap labor environment has made the nation a manufacturing hub. So what can the United States learn from Mexico? Many of their economic advantages are not applicable to our country. However, we can look to Mexico for an example of functioning government. It well past time that our political parties come together and actually try to govern our nation.

Kevin Nguyen's curator insight, October 7, 1:47 PM

Wow, what an interesting article about the direction Mexico is taking off on. Their GDP is increasing and the worker's wages are surprising better than Chinese workers. Both are huge exports of good and as a younger country than China, Mexico is on it's way to manufacture and economic boom. As neighbor country to Mexico, I am curious to see the actions U.S will take to learn and mirror Mexico's growth.

Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

Why leave the West for India?

Why leave the West for India? | Meagan's Geoography 400 |
Rising numbers of people of Indian origin born in the West are moving to the country their parents left decades ago in search of opportunity and a cultural connection, reports the BBC's Rajini Vaidyanathan.


Since 2005, the Indian government has been encouraging people of Indian descent and former Indian nationals to return to India.  For many Indians living in the UK, there are more and better economic opportunities for them within India.   Migrants have many reasons for moving (including cultural factors), but the primary pull factor is most certainly India's ascendant importance in the global economy and rising IT industries. 


Tags: India, South Asia, migration, immigration, Europe, colonialism, unit 2 population. 

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

There is a rising number of Indian origin born in the west that are moving back to India. One reason would be India's economy is growing faster then the US and England's. India has many more opportunities for new wealth and it is attracting the young entrepreneurs as well. Another reason they are moving back is for cultural connection that they are not recieving where they are now. Many have said that they are looked at as different and not accepted and that is why they want to go back to India, so that they feel that acceptance. 

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 23, 2014 1:43 PM

This article demonstrates the need to leave and create a better life for not only this family but for other families that feel as if their life and societial views are putting their future in jeapody. There is a rising number of people from India that are moving to the West; where their parents were born and restaring their lives there. They are in a sense coming home to what they had left behind.

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, November 1, 2014 9:37 PM

As the article says, India is encouraging more people of Indian descent to return to India because of the opportunities that have become increasingly available within the country due to its  westernization . Aside from the corruption and poverty that are in India, the country has not seen any signs of these opportunities stopping.

Amanda Morgan's curator insight, November 10, 2014 4:42 PM

With the rise in globalization and the IT industry, it is obvious that there is opportunity for success.  Many traveled to the US for economic opportunity, however many companies and IT departments are being outsourced to India, thus taking jobs away from the US.  

Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

Industrial geography and internal markets

China's reputation as a low-cost manufacturer hasn't translated into low-cost prices. Many goods, particularly luxury items, have higher price tags in China than abroad. One economist blames the transportation system and corruption.


Industrial geography in today's climate shows that China has clear economic advantages over most of the world to manufacture good cheaply.  Why would this not necessarily translate to cheap consumer goods for China's domestic market?  High taxes, steep internal shipping costs and a market flooded with knock-offs all contribute to this paradox. 

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Almost everyone knows that products are cheaper to produce in China which is why so many of our products are manufactured there today. BUt one may think that would mean it was cheap for Chinese consumers to purshase as well right? Surprisingly no, it actually costs more for them. This is because the country has a high transportation fee and the government is corrupt, CHina also has a very high tax on their products. But because of the major price differences much of the Chinese population purchases their products while traveling overseas.   

Matt Mallinson's comment, November 19, 2012 11:08 AM
To be honest I always thought items were made cheap in China due to all the items I see with the "Made in China" tag. This was interesting to me and definitely gave me knowledge on the topic.
Marissa Roy's curator insight, December 5, 2013 1:37 PM

Although the products we buy from China are cheap for us, it is not necessarily cheap for the ones making it. The tax on goods in China is very expensive. It is also because the government is plagued with corruption, and that is where the taxes come in. It is suprising that many cannot afford the goods they make.

Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

Natural resources and economic development

Natural resources and economic development | Meagan's Geoography 400 |
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.  

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, 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.  


Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

Changing Ethnic patterns in London

Changing Ethnic patterns in London | Meagan's Geoography 400 |
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
Meagan Harpin's insight:

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.   

Conor McCloskey's comment, April 30, 2013 10:25 AM
The British-white percentage of the population in London is dropping. While this says a lot about the demographics of London it also says a lot about global migratory patterns. London is a international city, culturally and ethnically, it has many pull factors for many different kinds of people from all over the globe, with all different cultural backgrounds. These pull factors have translated into one big push factor for British-whites, however, as they move out of the city.
There are many different things that could explain these patterns. Racism, economic shifts or better opportunities else where, however one thing is for sure, the world is become more multi-cultural. With the movements of cultures comes displacement and resistance, tension doesn’t run short in these types of situations. As so many people move away from their homelands through out the world it will be interesting to see what begins to happen with geopolitical boundaries, will situations like Hungary be more common as people move away?
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?

Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

What if Greece quits the euro?

What if Greece quits the euro? | Meagan's Geoography 400 |
A Greek exit from the euro has become a bomb fizzling at the heart of the eurozone. What could happen if it explodes?

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

So what if Greece leaves the euro? Heres some of what could happen. It could cause political backlash from Germany that could cause them to not provide the bailout needed by Italy and Spain. If Greece were to leave the Euro, Greek buisness would move to the new currency while all foreign buisness would remian in Euros ulitmately leading them into bankruptcuies. This change would also lead to a massive recession felt all throught Greece. 

Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, February 27, 2014 5:05 PM

Money controls everything. Because parliament has to make some budget cuts, money must be spent elsewhere. Because of this, Greece leaving the euro could lead to a downward spiral including a sovereign debt crisis, a recession and political backlash. Should Greece keep the euro?

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, March 17, 2014 8:02 AM

This article explains eight possible outcomes of Greece leaving the Euro Zone. None of them favorable for Europe, except maybe the UK which could possibly borrow more cheaply. For the rest of Europe, the results are either increased burdens for the more economically strong EZ nations like Germany, or a domino effect which accelerates the decline of the struggling economies of countries like Italy and Spain.

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, November 2, 2014 8:09 PM

If Greek were to quit/ be forced out of the Euro, according to this article, would not bode well for the country. As the graph suggests, Greece would experience multiple consequences if their vote fail then Greece will possibly suffer a government shutdown due to the debt they find themselves in.

Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

How Wal-Mart Used Payoffs to Get Its Way in Mexico

How Wal-Mart Used Payoffs to Get Its Way in Mexico | Meagan's Geoography 400 |
Wal-Mart de Mexico was an aggressive and creative corrupter, offering large payoffs to get what the law otherwise prohibited, an examination by The New York Times found.

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Walmart bribed Mexico officals $52,000 to have the zoning maps redrawn before it was published in the newspapers. So when it was published it showed the allowed area drawen in for the building of the new walmart. The building created uproar from the people. They were upset from the congested traffic and created months of hunger strikes and sit ins that made Mexican media. 


James Hobson's curator insight, September 23, 2014 1:17 PM

(Mexico topic 9)

It is troubling to discover how bribery still continues to promote special interests at the expense of others and their own interests. Though other articles I have commented on discuss the improving economy and politics of Mexico, this one clearly shows an area that needs much more attention.

   Despite this, all of the fuss (though justifiable) may be slightly over-exaggerated in my opinion. Just look at the photo above: the WalMart is at least somewhat set back from the pyramids, BUT the smoke and smog from other industries fills the air right up to and all around the pyramids themselves. I think this is just as much, if not more, of an injustice to the cultural site. While one can choose whether or not to enter a store, it is impossible not to breathe in the polluted air and have one's view limited while visiting such a place.

   Lastly, although bribery is certainly something I deeply frown upon, perhaps it is slightly less "wrong" than it would be in other countries like the US. Since Mexico's government and its departments have a reputation (at least from what I've heard) of being corrupted, perhaps the only way to build a store is to offer a bribe. It would be interesting to see if this was the case with other store locations throughout Mexico.

Kendra King's curator insight, February 2, 8:50 PM

Clearly it is horrible what Walmart did, but what about everyone else in this scenario? Walmart was able to damage public history and jeopardize the traffic safety of Mexico because they figured out the going price for those concepts was: a couple mayors, some INAH official, and an Urban Operations official (see article for in-depth explanations of how each was bought off). All of whom bypassed their duty to the public. See I am not surprised by the corporation’s actions. The corporation is acting for its own self-interest like many corporations have historically done. In fact, compared to the East India Company of 1800 (which had its own standing army) this is tame (see below article). I would prefer companies not to operate as such, however a company will act in such a manner so long as it is permitted. Deterring such actions falls on the fault of the officials who were so easily bought off.


Yet, whose job is it to police a corporation? At one point, the article mentioned that when the Mexican investigation found nothing wrong with Walmart they, “chided protesters for failing to present any specific proof.” I’m sorry, but it isn’t the protesters job to go out and find proof. That is the job of an investigator, whom I might add didn’t do a good job given the evidence the New York Times was able to amass. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) for Mexico, they probably aren’t that apt at forensic banking because they are a largely agrarian society who only relatively recently is being introduced to the corporate world. Looks like there is a whole new specialty that Mexico will need to learn soon due to globalization. I say Mexico needs to learn this also because it is mainly their job to monitor their people. I understand that this is an American company so on some level they will have to monitor their people. However, majority of the people involved in this were in Mexico. Thus, Mexico will need to deal with their side of justice and also start developing environmentally usefully laws under the new corporate rule (i.e. ones that protect historical artifacts even when the “proper” licenses have been secured.)


I am not looking to just pick on Mexico’s corporation problems either because we all know the United States has their fair share of corporate issues. In fact, I think it is safe to say that Walmart could have bought off people in the United States too. Think of all the tainted deals that occurred in the subprime mortgage crisis. We aren’t even sure because no one actually went after them! At least in the case of Walmart there is an investigation going on again. It will be interesting to see what the end result is though. Most times, it isn’t near what a company should get. In the United States some are literally able to get away with murder. Just look at GM's latest court dealings. I hope Mexico can do a better job than the United States when it comes to handling corporate investigations in the future.  



Bob Beaven's curator insight, February 5, 2:32 PM

This article shows the "forced globalization" of Mexico.  I thought it was interesting how Walmart de Mexico would use such cutthroat means to build a "intermediate sized store".  Yet the Walmart officials in Mexico realized that being not too far from a major tourist attraction would help business.  There were many groups who tried to stop it from happening, but they could not stop the store from being built.  This article shows how corporate Globalization is ruthless, and it doesn't care about disobeying laws.  This article also shows that if a company is big enough, it can, in effect do whatever it pleases.  In the United States on the other hand, this type of bribery could never have happened. 

Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

Tunneling through Andes to speed global trade

Tunneling through Andes to speed global trade | Meagan's Geoography 400 |
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.     

Joshua Mason's curator insight, February 19, 1:06 PM

Rail proves to be a very effective way of transporting a large amount of goods cheaply overland as my freight conductor friend likes to remind me as I ask him why hasn't trucking phased out your job yet. Except he reminds me in more colourful language. Building a tunnel that drops shipping costs from $210 to $177 is a huge boost in savings. What always interests me is the private interest taken in South America and this tunnel is no exception. It's proposed with no help from the government or funding. Fees to use the tunnel would pay for it. Too much privatization or too much government ownership always a red flag for most people. If cheaper prices for imports from Asia and Chile outweigh the concerns for the Argentine, then this project just may be worth the initial 3.9 billion dollar price tag for that long hole in the Andes.

Rachel Phillips's curator insight, May 7, 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, 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.

Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

Philippines Overtakes India as Hub of Call Centers

Philippines Overtakes India as Hub of Call Centers | Meagan's Geoography 400 |
Many companies have moved their customer service lines to Manila to take advantage of workers who speak lightly accented English and are familiar with American culture.


The geography of globalization is epitomized by relentless change and marked by continual turnover.  Cultural and economic factors play significant roles in creating potential advantages for receiving outsourced jobs (whether that is beneficially long-term is another discussion). 

Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Companies have moved their customer service lines to Manila because there the workers speak a lightly accented English and are more familiar with American culture then they are over in India. This shows the maturation of the outsourcing buisness and shows the preference for American English.  

Brian Nicoll's curator insight, December 12, 2012 1:40 AM

I liked this article simply because I could relate it to my own personal experiences speaking with someone at a call center.  I guess it is kind of interesting that the Phillippines has overtaken India in terms of number of call centers.  What was reallly interesting though was how familiar those at the call centers were of Americans. 

Cam E's curator insight, April 8, 2014 12:41 PM

The fact that so many Filipinos speak English is an important one to understand. This brings jobs to the Philippines, but at the expense of local culture. High income and social standing in the Philippines is often correlated with English, as many of the high-ranking citizens attend universities in the United States and return with degrees, and in turn teach their children English. This marginalizes their own language in a way, and is something to keep aware of, as it's one thing that the United States does not face in many areas, that most other countries around the world do.  


Kendra King's curator insight, April 13, 9:16 PM

I was most shocked by how Americanized these individual were. I understand that the Philippines were under American control for a fair period of time, but the country obtained its sovereign independence of the US sometime in the mid-40s. They have had close to 80 years to develop their own history, yet the author mentioned the citizens were still watching shows like “Friends” and speaking American English better than other foreign English speakers. It just goes to show how a colony is permanently marked by their past. I am not entirely sure this is a good thing, but at least one positive that came out of the US’s impact is that in speaking more American English there are more call center jobs. As the article mentioned, the jobs helped their sluggish economy. Still, the only reason these jobs are being offered is due to the amount companies save. Not only do the companies avoid paying American workers, whose salary is much higher, the companies are also in an area with better infrastructure. So even though the article claims the companies paid more because the Philippine workers cost $50 more than those from India, they save money on overhead and have better satisfied customers! Looking at call centers from the company’s perspective shows that this former colony is just a pawn once again. Therefore, when we look at intent, globalization just becomes negative again.   

Rescooped by Meagan Harpin from Geography Education!

Putin calls for 'Eurasian Union'

Putin calls for 'Eurasian Union' | Meagan's Geoography 400 |
Russian PM Vladimir Putin calls for the formation of a "Eurasian Union" of former Soviet republics, but says it will not be like the defunct USSR.


Russia's cultural influence over former Soviet Republics is strong, but the desire to strengthen these old ties is deeply embedded into the cultural ethos of Russia.  It is also a key part of Russia's geopolitical strategy for greater international influence and economic strength.


Via Seth Dixon
Meagan Harpin's insight:

Putin is calling for a Eurasian Union. He said it would change the political and economical configuration of the continent and have positve global effects. Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan have already formed an ecomonical allicance and it removes customs barriers. Putin has however denied that he is propsing for the recreation of the Soviet Union.  

Derek Ethier's comment, October 18, 2012 1:20 AM
Russia's will to start a Eurasian Union seems to be a ploy to recreate a neo-Soviet administration obviously dominated by Russia. Millions of Russians live in these satellite nations so it will be more than easy for Russia to spread its influence and dominate this union. It would also be a bad decision for some of these nations to join in a union with Russia. Some nations, such as Azerbaijan, are rich in oil reserves, and a union with Russia could be detrimental to their development.
Al Picozzi's curator insight, October 13, 2013 10:16 AM

So is this just to compete with NAFTA and the EU on an economic level?  Or is this to compete with the EU on economic, political and military level, much like the EU's EuroCorps?  Putin states thie is not a return to the USSR, but Russia has always been weary with the growing of NATO and the EU on its borders.  How about if Turkey gets int the EU right on the Russian border?  This action might move thie bloc creation even more forward and Putin might become more forceful to its creation.  No that former KGB member Putin is foreful.

Paige McClatchy's curator insight, October 17, 2013 8:26 PM

It is more than understandable that former Soviet satelite states are weary of any kind of union with Russia. However, some sort of treaty could benefit the block, particularly an arangement like the one already held between Russia, Belarus, and Kahzakstan. An agreement that would ease travel between the two countries appears to have little downside.