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For Migrants, New Land of Opportunity Is Mexico

For Migrants, New Land of Opportunity Is Mexico | Sinica Geography 400 | Scoop.it

"With Europe sputtering and China costly, the 'stars are aligning' for Mexico as broad changes in the global economy create new dynamics of migration."


Via Seth Dixon
Brett Sinica's insight:

Mexico could be on the rise to become one of the world's manufacturing powers.  The workforce is already there, now it's up to companies and people to build jobs for the citizens and immigrants moving in.  Amazingly, a country which had so much migration away from the country is now moving back, and with they're not doing it alone but with people from around the world.  "Build it and they will come".  That being said, Mexico not only has appealing labor rates compared to China and other areas of the world, but the proximity to the United States makes opportunity very appealing.  Being next to the U.S., a country which imports so much of its supplies, can be a gold mine for Mexico.  In the future it is possible for the tables to turn.  Where there was once Mexicans crossing the border for work, it could be Americans crossing the border into Mexico for work.  An extreme statement, but anything can happen in this day and age.

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Jason Schneider's curator insight, February 3, 1:01 AM

I just finished reading a scoop about how violence in Mexico is getting worse. Because of that, people choose to emigrate from Mexico. This is pretty accurate especially from Europe because most manufacturing experience come from Europe and the United States (at least the eat side). However, that doesn't stop a good amount of mexicans immigrating north to live a different economy.

Danielle Lip's curator insight, February 3, 12:25 PM

While reading this article I found it quite interesting to hear that Mexico is now where immigrants and others want to migrate towards. Prices are going up in China and other countries allowing for Mexico to become more competitive and attract more people towards it. Over the years migration has all been towards America but today the numbers are decreasing and more people are migrating towards Mexico because of the opportunities available there and the land that is emerging.

Aleena Reyes's curator insight, April 8, 9:21 PM

Even though this article is now three years old, it is refreshing to see that Mexico is really making their mark on the global market. The Global North seems to be coming to a stalemate while "up and coming countries" like Mexico are becoming the perfect place for people to begin their businesses and have a fresh start on life. I can understand though, how it was mentioned on the third page of the article, that some locals may feel that foreigners, European especially, may be receiving some type of special treatment due to past colonialism. However, these entrepreneurs are shaping the economy of Mexico. This is Mexico's chance to advance in the world and increase its GDP. Young, aspiring moguls all seems to feel the same way about their homelands, "Europe, dying; Mexico, coming to life. The United States, closed and materialistic; Mexico, open and creative" and Diego Quemada-Diez, a Spanish director, was quoted in the article, "Europe feels spiritually dead and so does the United States...[y]ou end up wanting something else".  And apparently, Mexico has that "something else".

 

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The world map of chocolate (made out of chocolate)

The world map of chocolate (made out of chocolate) | Sinica Geography 400 | Scoop.it
You may be focussing on chocolate over the weekend - but where does it come from? A global trade analysed. In chocolate (this is what maps are made for!

 

What is the geography of chocolate like?  There is a dark side (no pun intended) to the production of cocoa in many places such as West Africa. 


Via Seth Dixon
Brett Sinica's insight:

We all love chocolate.  We all love diamonds and jewels.  In western worlds, these items are easily come by in grocery stores and elsewhere, but what got them there was a challenge.  People in poorer tropical regions around the world worked to get the raw goods of these delicate items we all enjoy.  The payout difference is immense from cocoa to chocolate.  It is sometimes a very crooked market where if it wasn't for the hard working people who get the raw ingredients, chocolate as we know it wouldn't be the same.

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Crissy Borton's curator insight, December 11, 2012 9:53 PM

Very cool map. I have never really paid attention to where my chocolate came from before. 

ethne staniland's curator insight, May 16, 2013 11:33 AM

Interesting for our KS1 chocolate topic.

Edelin Espino's curator insight, December 5, 2014 11:06 AM

I hope the production keep growing up. We need more chocolate and specially in Africa. 

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Troubles on Russia's Lake Baikal

Troubles on Russia's Lake Baikal | Sinica Geography 400 | Scoop.it
Workers at an ailing paper mill in Siberia are clinging to their jobs in the face of financial pressure and criticism from environmentalists.

 

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.   

 

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


Via Seth Dixon
Brett Sinica's insight:

The story of this particular mono-town is very tough to "pick sides".  The factory undoubtedly pollutes the air and land like most other industrial areas, but being so close to Lake Baikal gives environmentalists a stronger reason to complain.  The lake is considered one of the purest and most unique in the world, yet the paper mill located on its banks raise controversy.  This is where the locals and workers are stuck between a rock and hard place.  Located in Siberia, such a vast and open region with little settlements compared to the western part of the country reminds the people living there that their resources are limited.  Closing down the factory would almost eliminate income and economy for the mono-town.  This is where the fine line is drawn; the workers surely aren't happy about the pollution and environmental hazards that go along with keeping the mill open, but at the same time the people could wither away if it wasn't up and running.

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Al Picozzi's curator insight, October 16, 2013 8:14 PM

We never heard about this during the Soviet Union as the news was controlled.  Also during the Soviet time I do not believe environmentalists would have gotton the chance to investigate the area.  With the fall of the USSR the world can now see some of the environmental effects that communism had on Russia.  These towns are built around the factory.  Much like the old steele towns in PA, like Allentown.  However Allentown chnaged with the times and is able to support, although it is difficult, the population that was focused on the steele industry.  Here is this remote area of Russia, there is nothing else in the area.  There is no service economy in the area, just the paper factory.  It has been kept open because of Putin who basically said to ignore all environmental laws and regulations and he made sure the environmental groups are not an issue anymore.  Not surprising from a former KGB Lt. Colonel and the Director of the FSB, the sucessor of the KGB.  To solve the issue in these monotowns I think there needs to be government intervention to transition the economies in theses areas.  To keep these factories running in the long run will just hurt all the people in the towns with no end in sight.  However, I do not think this will happen unless there is a change in the leadership of Russia, something I do not think will happen anytime soon.

Ashley Raposo's curator insight, December 19, 2013 1:42 AM

THough the Soviet Union has been gone since the early 90s, it's hold on Russia is still creating problems. The creations of monotowns were already flawed. But to have this one monotown on Lake Baikal has gained the attention of enviromentalists. All odds are against that monotown. Without it's paper factory they have no jobs and no need for the town. It is a fight between enviromental geography and human geography in this area of the world. These people are stuck in a time where even the Soviet Union looked a little better than the constant wondering of your finacial stability in an up and coming capitalist nation.

Paige Therien's curator insight, May 4, 2014 12:05 PM

The Soviet Union scattered "monotowns" around their territory; these monotowns consist of a job-creating industrial institutions like factories which then allow the formation of towns around them.  They are located all around the former Soviet Union and are very isolated.  After the collapse of the Soviet Union, these towns continued to run due to the privatization of the industrial center.  Today, Russia's Lake Baikal, which is the deepest lake in the world and contains 20 percent of the Earth's fresh water, is home to one of these monotowns.  This particular town's economy is based on their paper mill which uses and deposits tons of chemicals.  Environmentalists are very concerned for the future of the lake while the citizens are only concerned with feeding their families and this is creating social unrest.  Due to the isolation and distance from Moscow, people cannot just pick up and leave.  Also, working with "cleaner" alternatives is way out of this town's budget.  Today, many citizens in these monotowns miss the support that the Soviet Union offered and people are literally stuck in a place where their only income is dirty.

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Worker safety in China

This is an incredible video because of the shocking footage of blatant disregard for worker safety.  This can lead to an interesting discussion concerning how China has been able to have its economy grow.  What other ways has China (or Chinese companies) been "cutting corners?"  How does that give them a competitive edge on the global industrial market?     


Via Seth Dixon
Brett Sinica's insight:

This guy is crazy! This just happened to be captured on video but who knows the other stunts that workers go through in the country.  The demand and speed of the jobs to be completed don't always take in the safety of the workers.  The regulations that are set in place aren't enforced strongly, if at all, which is why you can see this guy dangling from a building.  Yet at the end of the day, the job has to be done, and surely this man will not be going home with a bonus check even though he risked his life to keep up with the demanding pace set for the demolition job.

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Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2014 5:23 PM

This video borders on difficult to watch. While it is definitely amazing to watch it really flies in the face of standard American job safety operations. These workers are perched on top of this building with no harnesses balancing in the shovel of a back hoe while sawing loose great slabs of concrete. Luckily no one was injured in this video but frankly this video does a great job of showing how China has been able to grow so rapidly. A lack of interest in individual workers safety and a sole goal of progress, at the possible cost of its citizens.

Jason Schneider's curator insight, April 2, 9:45 PM

China has one of the strongest economies in the world. However, I think sometimes, China takes that for granted. They think that just because they have a strong economy, they don't have to worry about safe working environments and they have nothing to lose if something happens to someone. As much as I'm sure China gives good paychecks to manufactured workers because of its wealth, there are some jobs, such as this one, that they think they don't have to pay enough. However at the same time, it's not China's fault. Sometimes, it's the workers faults for not using common sense while working, I'm a firm believer in "work smarter, not harder."

Kristin Mandsager San Bento's curator insight, May 1, 4:32 PM

Well nobody ever accused China of being a Union favoring country.  These people are risking their lives because its their job.  This is a country where you have very little leeway to argue for benefits.  If they want to do this, then come to the US.  Although I wonder why they don't just use dynamite?  Faster and few people are involved.