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5 Ways Social Media Helps Us Serve You – Optometrist

5 Ways Social Media Helps Us Serve You – Optometrist | Asia | Scoop.it

Social media has become part of the fabric of our lives. But we’re not using social media because it’s a trend… We use it to help us best serve you!Social Media…1. Helps Us Be Accessible

Our in-office hours may be limited, but we’re always available via social media.

2. Helps Us Listen To Your Feedback

We appreciate it so much when you help us better serve you by providing us with insights and feedback on how we’re addressing your needs, cares, and concerns.

3. Strengthens Our Relationship With You

You’re so much more to us than a name or a number. Thank you for being our valued patient and friend. We also deeply appreciate when you share our practice with others.

4. Helps Protect Our Health

We carefully select, write and share information that helps empower us to make smart choices about our eye health, habits, and lifestyle.

5. Provides Opportunities To Share An Occasional Light Moment

Life’s too short to not take a moment and smile…

Thanks For Helping Us Best Serve You

When you participate with us via social media—through your comments, Likes, re-tweets, shares, and feedback it helps us be the best we can be. We’re a “social practice” with purpose. Thank you for being part of it.

- See more at: http://visionsource-joplin.com/2014/11/21/5-ways-social-media-helps-us-serve-you/#sthash.P5Q5EzeS.dpuf

 


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Does social media have a big impact on your daily life, and are those impacts positive negative or both?

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Australia: One hundred years of regional anxiety: how our leaders have talked about Asia | The Conversation

Australia: One hundred years of regional anxiety: how our leaders have talked about Asia | The Conversation | Asia | Scoop.it

It seems 2012 was all about Asia: from the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper, to the possible repercussions of the Obama administration’s “Pacific turn”, and the continued rise of China. These conversations will continue into next year’s federal election.

 

While the specific shape of recent discussions of Australia’s place in the world may be new, the underlying dynamics that frame the debate are not.

 

They are informed by an enduring sense of isolation and ambivalence in a nation torn between its traditional Western allegiances and the promise of economic prosperity signalled by China becoming its largest trading partner. This tension between history and geography has long characterised the language of Australia’s political leaders.

 

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Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
andrew desrochers's insight:

How and why does Australia's geography shape it's people, relations with other countries, and trade partners? Does it have a positive or negative affect on the country?

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Geodude's curator insight, October 4, 2013 11:19 AM

This article is about Area/Geo. It talks about how Australia is torn between its western allegiances and trading with China.

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Aboriginal art focus leaves Sotheby's Australia for London

Aboriginal art focus leaves Sotheby's Australia for London | Asia | Scoop.it
Sotheby’s London will stage its first Aboriginal Art auction in June, in the wake of Sotheby’s Australia’s closure of its Aboriginal department.

Via Andre Castaybert
andrew desrochers's insight:

How do you think this auction of native art will influence artists as well as art collectors, and will there be positive change?

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Cricket World Cup: 'How thirsty are you?' Social media reacts to Shane Warne's drinking questions and Australia's win

Cricket World Cup: 'How thirsty are you?' Social media reacts to Shane Warne's drinking questions and Australia's win | Asia | Scoop.it
Australia has won their fifth Cricket World Cup, but Shane Warne's interrogation of winning players about their post-match drinking plans has caused a stir and generated some laughs on social media.

Via ReGenUC
andrew desrochers's insight:

Compare the players of the cricket team in Australia to that of other countries, why is Australia's team superior?

 

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ReGenUC's curator insight, March 29, 2015 6:30 PM

Warne's commentary was only slightly more egregious than is usually the case in sports coverage. The fact that there has been this reaction is a good indication of how public attitudes are shifting and the increased awareness of the impacts of pervasive alcohol marketing.

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Amazon’s carbon uptake declines as trees die faster

Amazon’s carbon uptake declines as trees die faster | Asia | Scoop.it

The most extensive land-based study of the Amazon to date reveals it is losing its capacity to absorb carbon from the atmosphere.

The results of this monumental 30-year survey of the South American rainforest, which involved an international team of almost 100 researchers, are published in the journal Nature.


Over recent decades the Amazon forest has acted as a vast ‘carbon sink’ – absorbing more carbon from the atmosphere than it releases – helping to put a brake on the rate of climate change. But a new analysis of forest dynamics shows a huge surge in the rate of trees dying across the Amazon.


Lead author Dr Roel Brienen, from the School of Geography at the University of Leeds, said: “Tree mortality rates have increased by more than a third since the mid-1980s, and this is affecting the Amazon’s capacity to store carbon.”

 

Dr Ted Feldpausch, co-author and researcher in Geography at the University of Exeter, said, “We measured an increase in growth rates, with this increase representing a rise in the capacity of forests to accumulate carbon in trees. However, over time, the growth rate increases that we have observed for Amazonian forests over the last few decades have begun to level off. The results raise many questions about environmental drivers of this change.”


Initially, an increase in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere – a key ingredient for photosynthesis – led to a growth spurt for the Amazon’s trees, the researchers say. But the extra carbon appears to have had unexpected consequences.


Study co-author Professor Oliver Phillips, from the University of Leeds said: “With time, the growth stimulation feeds through the system, causing trees to live faster, and so die younger.” Recent droughts and unusually high temperatures in the Amazon may also be playing a role. Although the study finds that tree mortality increases began well before an intense drought in 2005, it also shows that drought has killed millions of additional trees. 


The Nature paper shows how the Amazon’s carbon sink has declined as tree death accelerated.  From a peak of two billion tonnes of carbon dioxide each year in the 1990s, the net uptake by the forest has weakened by a half, and is now, for the first time, being overtaken by fossil fuel emissions in Latin America.


Dr Brienen said: “Regardless of the causes behind the increase in tree mortality, this study shows that predictions of a continuing increase of carbon storage in tropical forests may be too optimistic.


“Climate change models that include vegetation responses assume that as long as carbon dioxide levels keep increasing, then the Amazon will continue to accumulate carbon. Our study shows that this may not be the case and that tree mortality processes are critical in this system.”


The study involved almost 100 scientists, many working for decades across eight countries in South America. The work was coordinated by RAINFOR, a unique research network dedicated to monitoring the Amazonian forests.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
andrew desrochers's insight:

due to the deforestation of the amazon forests,  carbon dioxide from factories and cars is accumulating. How can this overload of global warming causing co2 be stopped by the native peoples?

 

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The world’s languages, in 7 maps and charts

The world’s languages, in 7 maps and charts | Asia | Scoop.it
These seven maps and charts, visualized by The Washington Post, will help you understand how diverse other parts of the world are in terms of languages.

1. Some continents have more languages than others


Not all continents are equally diverse in the number of spoken languages. Whereas Asia leads the statistics with 2,301 languages, Africa follows closely with 2,138.

There are about 1,300 languages in the Pacific, and 1,064 in South and North America. Europe, despite its many nation-states, is at the bottom of the pack with just 286.

2. These are the languages with the most native speakers


Chinese has more native speakers than any other language, followed by Hindi and Urdu, which have the same linguistic origins in northern India. English comes next with 527 million native speakers. Arabic is used by nearly 100 million more native speakers than Spanish.

The numbers are fascinating because they reflect the fact that two-thirds of the world's population share only 12 native languages. Those numbers were recently published by the University of Düsseldorf's Ulrich Ammon, who conducted a 15-year-long study.

His numbers are surprising, compared with the ones featured in the CIA's Factbook. According to the CIA, Spanish is spoken by 4.85 percent of the world's population and its use is even more widespread than English, which is spoken by 4.83 percent. However, the CIA numbers include only first native languages. Many people are bilingual, and whereas Spanish might be their first native language, English could be their second one. Ammon counts both first and second native language speakers.

3. This map shows the countries with the most and least diversity of languages 



As our visualization of Greenberg's diversity index shows, the United States is not as linguistically diverse as many other nations.

If you randomly select two people in Cameroon, for instance, there is a 97 percent likelihood that they will have different mother tongues. In the United States, there is only a 33 percent likelihood that this is going to happen. You can click on the various countries shown in the map above to find out how the United States compares with other countries.


4. Many popular languages are spoken in more than just one country


The reason why English, French and Spanish are among the world's most widespread languages has its roots in the imperial past of the nations where they originate.

5. English is widely used as an official language



However, whether a country has English as its official language says little about how its citizens really communicate with one another. In some of the nations highlighted above, only a tiny minority learned English as a native language.

6. Nevertheless, most languages are spoken only by a handful of people. That's why about half of the world's languages will disappear by the end of the century


About 3 percent of the world's population accounts for 96 percent of all languages spoken today. Out of all languages in the world, 2,000 have fewer than 1,000 native speakers.

Hence, according to UNESCO estimates, which we visualized in the map above, about half of the world's spoken languages will disappear by the end of the century. You can click on the map to enlarge it.

Linguistic extinction will hit some countries and regions harder than others. In the United States, endangered languages are primarily located along the West coast, as well as in reservations of indigenous people in the Midwest.

Globally,the Amazon rain forest, sub-Saharan Africa, Oceania, Australia and Southeast Asia are about to lose the most languages.

7. This chart shows how many people learn a language all over the world


Whereas English lags behind in the number of native speakers, it is by far the world's most commonly studied language. Overall, more people learn English than French, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, German and Chinese combined.

Some languages have only recently gained attention: The number of U.S. colleges that teach Chinese has risen by 110 percent between 1990 and 2013, making the language more accessible. During the same time, the number of offered Russian college courses decreased by 30 percent.

Some language skills could be more rewarding than others. If you are able to speak German, Americans could earn $128,000 extra throughout their career, according to MIT scientist Albert Saiz. At least financially, German is worth twice as much as French and nearly three times as much as Spanish, for instance.

Related on WorldViews: 

30 fake maps that explain the world

These maps show world's least religious countries

How English soccer teams rule the world


Rick Noack writes about foreign affairs. He is an Arthur F. Burns Fellow at The Washington Post.

Lazaro Gamio makes interactive graphics for The Washington Post. Before coming to the Post, he worked for The Miami Herald, and interned for The Seattle Times and National Geographic.

Via Charles Tiayon
andrew desrochers's insight:

Do you think that Brazil deserves to be on this list of diversity due to its diverse art and culture? How does the culture in Latin America shape their daily lives?

 

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Latin Americans combat crime with smartphones and social media | TheGuardian.com

Latin Americans combat crime with smartphones and social media | TheGuardian.com | Asia | Scoop.it

In Latin America, where violent crime rates are six times higher than in any other region, and where most residents have reported distrust in the state's ability to fight crime, several communities have taken to social media to boost security, say analysts.

 

"Violent crime in Latin America undermines the social fabric of communities [and poses] a major human security threat to populations who live in slum areas," says Vanda Felbab-Brown, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, a US-based non-profit security policy group.

 

Violent crime has soared in the past decade with murder rates for South and central America four times the global average in 2011, at 29 per 100,000 people, according to a 2013 UN Development Programme (UNDP) report.

 

In parallel, internet access in Latin America has multiplied thirteenfold in the past decade, providing communities with an alternative way to report crimes in near anonymity, share information on violent hotspots, mobilise community policing and organise protests calling for greater security.

 

"The use of big data and social media can allow for the scale, speed and specificity that most traditional approaches [to fighting crime] lack," Igarapé Institute director Robert Muggah told IRIN from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where he manages security and development projects across the region.

 

While governments, such as those of Mexico, Brazil and Argentina, have made efforts in the past decade to improve police forces, continued mistrust in public institutions (alongside fear of drug gangs) has led to what the Igarapé Institute calls "horizontal citizen-to-citizen initiatives" – ordinary people banding together with smartphones and social media to protect themselves from crime.

 

But while social media is a potent tool to stem violence, it is merely reactive, and cannot replace economic development in crime-ridden neighbourhoods, or a long-term police presence to build community trust, say experts.

 

Click headline to read more--


Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
andrew desrochers's insight:

How do you think the police forces in Brazil and Latin America can handle this crime? Why do you think the crime is so high in these countries?

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Kiann and Kenneth's curator insight, December 2, 2013 12:25 PM

The crime rate in Latin America is very high and on growing.

 

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Understanding the Impact of Climate Change in Africa | The Hope Project

Understanding the Impact of Climate Change in Africa | The Hope Project | Asia | Scoop.it
The challenge of understanding the causal factors of increasing climate change in Africa is a major problem that affects the local African people, the AU (African Union) and the African governments.

Via Linda Hammon
andrew desrochers's insight:

The dry climate in Africa is causing thousands of crops to die, what different efforts can we do to to help their farms to be more prosperous?

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Richel's curator insight, April 8, 2015 1:21 PM

Geography 

this relates to geography because the article talks about how they rely on the land and the sun to grow crops but because their environment is changing their land is drying out and killing crops.

Miles and Reece's curator insight, April 9, 2015 9:53 PM

Africa's climate is always changing. With that the crops and animals are having a very hard time surfing. With all of this that means that people that need these crops or animals to survive and make money will lose their homes or die. 

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Science, Technology and Innovation in Africa—not always rosy, but it is about to be | Lee Mwiti | Mail & Guardian Africa

Science, Technology and Innovation in Africa—not always rosy, but it is about to be | Lee Mwiti | Mail & Guardian Africa | Asia | Scoop.it

In June 2014, global technology giant Microsoft launched its 4Afrika IP Hub, a portal that would, for free, protect young African developers’ intellectual property (IP) rights in exchange for publishing their inventions.

In tech-savvy Nairobi, one of the launch capitals, the young crowd of geeky and cool developers excitedly welcomed the possibility of being able to finally make money from their work. For years they have tended to operate in the informal economy, largely invisible to investors.

A two-year trial, Microsoft will then hand over a successful project to the Kenyan government, before rolling it out to other African capitals, according to Kunle Awosika, Microsoft’s country manager.

The multi-million dollar investment and its positive reception mirrors the concern that while the continent is home to many brilliant inventions, it has been difficult to invest them to scale, there being little information as to their value, and consequently, tap them for Africa’s growth.

 

Click headline to read more--


Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
andrew desrochers's insight:

Why do you think that Africa chose these African developers to make new innovations? Would you consider a protection of their rights a fair trade for their new inventions?

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Anna and Avery's curator insight, April 8, 2015 5:07 PM

[INTELLECTUAL ARTS; AFRICA] People on Africa are getting the choice of a lifetime- they will have doors open wide to the intellectual advancenment they have been doing for years. Their research used to cost them huge savings, but with Microsoft! educators in Kenya will now get paid to work on specific projects. This will help them out of the informal economy and help me learn experience. 

Ashland and Kendall's curator insight, April 10, 2015 12:00 PM

Economy-

This article covers the topic of Science, Technology, and Innovation advancements in Africa. Microsoft launched software called 4Africa IP hub, a portal that in exchange for young African developers inventions would protect their IP rights. These developers are very excited for all of their hard work to finally start paying off and potentially get all of the recognition that they deserve.

Zach Owen's curator insight, April 13, 2015 10:52 PM

Do you believe all this technology should be invested in in Africa? Why or why not?

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The Air Shepherd Program: Drones as Tools of Positive Social Change in Saving African Wildlife

The Air Shepherd Program: Drones as Tools of Positive Social Change in Saving African Wildlife | Asia | Scoop.it

In this second installment of our occasional series entitled “Skynet is Coming, Skynet is Coming!” we look at a “Good Terminator” scenario: using drones to protect endangered species in Africa through the Air Shepherd program.[adrotate group=”6″]What happens when you mix superco... http://blog.planet5d.com/2015/03/the-air-shepherd-program-drones-as-tools-of-positive-social-change-in-saving-african-wildlife/


Via planetMitch
andrew desrochers's insight:

Do you think that the organization using drones to protect wildlife is a smart choice? What other things could they do?

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Jusvic Dublois & Cooper Baddley's curator insight, April 7, 2015 6:13 PM

This falls under Social Africa because people have actually been sending drones in Africa to help stop the poaching of animals. By sending these drones into the air, people have been able to spot people who are hunting/poaching animals like elephants. With this technology, people have been forced to change their habits of hunting animals and making money that way.

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Extremes concern as planet gets hotter and colder | Tim Radford | Climate News Network

Extremes concern as planet gets hotter and colder | Tim Radford | Climate News Network | Asia | Scoop.it

Global average temperatures continue to rise, but new research shows that the extremes of heat and cold are rising even faster.

Scientists report that heat waves have got hotter and cold snaps have got colder at a more extreme rate – and that continuing greenhouse gas emissions will mean that, in another two decades, Europe could experience once every two years the sort of lethal heat waves that occurred once in a thousand years.

Scott Robeson, professor of geography at Indiana University Bloomington in the US, and colleagues report in Geophysical Research Letters that they analysed a set of temperature records from 1881 to 2011 and graded them according to how near or far they were from the normal averages of any particular region of the globe.

 

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Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
andrew desrochers's insight:

do you think that these supposed heat waves are worth the panic? If you were in Europe at the time would you move, or would you try to make a difference in greenhouse gas emissions?

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Sam/Josh's curator insight, February 7, 2015 7:28 PM

How do you think that Europe's geography and structure attributes to their contribution to global warming? How are these patterns attributing to weather anomalies?

Anna and Avery's curator insight, February 11, 2015 5:21 PM

[ EUROPE; AREA/GEOGRAPHY ]

- Europe is facing dangers. Not from warring countries or a struggling economy, and nothing man made or superficial, but from the most natural thing on earth-- actual earth. Studies show and scientist confirm that temperatures are getting hotter and colder, the extremities rising. Lethal waves of heat that used to appear once in a millennium will be happening every other year and ruining the lives of many Europeans if things don't change. Some might jump to conclusions and wag their fingers to Global Warming. However, it isn't rising heat that is the problem, it is rising abnormalitys. Wicked snow storms and blizzards also cause threat to the European society as much as heat waves.

Emily and Kevria's curator insight, February 11, 2015 11:04 PM

Area/Geography: this article fits into the category area/geography because it talks about how the global average temperatures continue to rise. Scientwists say that the heat and cold weathers will be continuing rising even faster. Europe could experience heat waves once every two years that are normally once in a thousand years.  

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FL: How one woman launched the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, 50 years ago | Lennie Bennett | Tampa Bay Times

FL: How one woman launched the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, 50 years ago | Lennie Bennett | Tampa Bay Times | Asia | Scoop.it

“Why not have an art museum in St. Petersburg?"

 

So mused a wealthy woman to herself sometime in the late 1950s.

And so began the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, which opened its doors Feb. 7, 1965. It transformed the cultural landscape of the city, becoming an institution that was so much more than it had to be, committed from the beginning to the high standards of major museums. It rallied a broad demographic to embrace it as a source of pride and pleasure.

The museum is marking its 50th anniversary with "Monet to Matisse — On the French Coast," an exhibition loaded with marquee names that opens with free admission on Saturday, the same date as that first opening. Wine Weekend: Cheers to 50 Years, with more marquee names but from the wine world (both vintners and wine labels), will contribute collective toasts to the occasion at a tasting, auction and dinner on Saturday and brunch on Sunday.

Margaret Acheson Stuart would be delighted.

Her story, intertwined with the museum's founding, has become something of a legend with attendant truths often exaggerated for drama.

Mrs. Stuart (1896-1980) was no parvenue when she decided to pursue this idea. St. Petersburg had been her primary residence for about 10 years as it had for other family members. They began visiting the area when she was a child. Her father, Edward Goodrich Acheson, had become wealthy as an inventor and was a colleague and friend of Thomas Edison, who had invited him to visit Edison's winter home in Fort Myers.

Mrs. Stuart was a shy, cultivated woman. Her greatest love was art and she was familiar with all the major museums in New York and Europe.

She didn't need a museum in St. Petersburg; she had the means to travel anywhere, anytime to visit one. But her love of St. Petersburg was such that she wanted to add a cultural resource that would provide the joy that art had always given her.

St. Petersburg was beginning to grow into more than a winter haven for elderly snowbirds. The city continued to chafe at comparisons to Tampa across the bay, with its bigger banks and corporate headquarters downtown. A cultural focus, which Tampa lacked, could raise St. Petersburg's profile. The city would soon revive a long-studied proposal to build an arena and performing arts theater, which became the Bayfront Center on the downtown waterfront at First Street and Fourth Avenue S. It also opened in 1965.

In 1961, Mrs. Stuart, then in her 60s, approached city officials with her proposal, pledging $150,000 toward construction costs, a $1 million endowment and at least $10,000 as an annual contribution for operating costs. It would be named the Museum of Fine Arts. Her name would not be attached to it because she wanted the community to feel a sense of ownership. And it would be free.

She asked the city to convey a 4-acre parcel of land at Beach Drive and Second Avenue NE, overlooking the waterfront. An old building on the site would be demolished.

 

Click headline to read more and view pix gallery--


Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
andrew desrochers's insight:

If you had the money to set up some sort of public gallery in Europe, what sort of attraction would you set up? would it differ depending on where you are in Europe? Why do you think that way?

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Richel's curator insight, February 11, 2015 1:39 PM

In February 1965 the museum of fine arts was officially opened. It is home to many priceless paintings. It was built in petersburg for her love of Petersburg

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Shaping the Future of Digital Social Innovation in Europe | Nesta

Shaping the Future of Digital Social Innovation in Europe | Nesta | Asia | Scoop.it
Discussing how digital technologies and the internet are changing how social innovation happens

Via jean lievens
andrew desrochers's insight:

These leaps in technology must be surprising for some. being in the position of a citizen would you support or oppose this use of resources, and explain why.

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Jared & Israel's curator insight, February 12, 2015 1:04 AM

Social: This article expresses how emerging economies can change economies by social activities. It also can enable a more collaboritive economy. it also shows that many orginazations support social innovation. Even EU policy makers support this idea. 

Chandler and Zane's curator insight, February 17, 2015 12:04 AM

What's actually being represented in this article is that social privileges and social economy in Europe is changing drastically, something's that we do here aren't allowed o preferred in Europe. Social media, social conflict/ confrontation , etc..

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Monsanto Canada Embarks on Bold Plan to Bring New Crop Options to Western Canadian Farmers

Monsanto Canada Embarks on Bold Plan to Bring New Crop Options to Western Canadian Farmers | Asia | Scoop.it

 

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwired - June 24, 2013) - The western Canadian agricultural landscape could look markedly different in ten years as breeding and technology gains in corn give western Canadian farmers the option to plant a crop they haven't traditionally considered in their crop rotation plans.

Monsanto Canada today announced details of a long-range plan focused on breeding corn hybrids with earlier relative maturities (RM) that are adapted to the diverse geography and climatic conditions found across much of Western Canada.

Dubbed the Canada Corn Expansion Project, Monsanto will invest $100 million over the next ten years to produce corn hybrids that could be widely grown across a potential geography of 26 million acres in Western Canada. Taking into consideration crop rotations, this could result in an estimated annual western corn market of eight-to-ten million acres by 2025, up significantly from the current annual western Canadian corn acreage of around 300,000 to 500,000 acres - the large majority of which is confined to Southern Manitoba.

"Increasing our investment in Western Canada is consistent with our mission to help farmers produce more, conserve more and improve lives by continually and consistently delivering new, higher-value crop innovations that improve farm profitability," said Mike Nailor, corn and soybean lead for Canada. "We also see the potential for this work to bring significant economic growth to western Canadian agriculture."

Monsanto says the opportunity will be realized through a sustained breeding effort dedicated to the 70 to 85 RM corn market and involve extensive field testing; agronomic training for farmers and others within the agriculture industry; marketing and agronomic support; and partnerships with the channel.

"Farmers in Western Canada are some of the most sophisticated in the world but most haven't had the option to grow corn in the shorter-season climate that characterizes Western Canada. They produce great crops year-after-year in canola, wheat, barley and alfalfa, to name a few. But what if they could do better? That's the question we started to ask ourselves when we looked at the corn opportunity," said Nailor. "There will definitely be a learning curve but farmers are innovators and strong adopters of technology. I don't doubt for a second, that given the tools, they will drive corn acre expansion across the west if the yield and profitability potential in corn remains strong relative to other cropping options."

Nailor added that Monsanto's focus as it brings corn to western Canadian farmers will be on doing what is right for the farmer agronomically in the long-term and helping them minimize early-adoption risk as they add corn to their rotation.

The dedication of people and resources by Monsanto to the Canada Corn Expansion Project has been ongoing for months but actually dates back several years when Monsanto started carving out a portion of its corn breeding budget in London, Ontario to focus on breeding for earlier maturing corn hybrids. With incremental investment secured to support the early corn project, the company has recently been able to significantly expand its corn breeding efforts at several North American sites, including in Carman, MB where Monsanto has added a new corn breeding and testing station. The increased investment more than doubles the company's previous breeding and testing budget dedicated to 70 to 85 RM corn hybrids and should drive quicker introduction of corn hybrids for farmers in geographies across the northern U.S. and Western Canada.

Several new positions in Western Canada were also posted and filled this past spring, including the hiring of a new corn breeder and testing manager for the Carman site. An additional three new technology development roles were also added to provide the pre-commercial research support for corn in Western Canada.

andrew desrochers's insight:

compare canadian weather and geography to the u.s. Why would canada have to make harder decisions about which crops to grow?

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Zach Owen's curator insight, December 11, 2014 10:15 PM

What do you think will happen to the corn production? Why?

 

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Australian Government: Recognize The Fact That Islam Is Not A Religion But An Ideology

Australian Government: Recognize The Fact That Islam Is Not A Religion But An Ideology | Asia | Scoop.it
DWe urge the Australian Government to recognize the fact, that Islam is not a Religion but an Ideology. In support of this petition we point out that all Muslims are born under the Sharia law, an Islamic Ideology. Muslims who stray from the Islamic Ideology become Apostates or Infidels. The Islamic Ideology is contrary to the Australian way of life, its Beliefs and Culture. We the people of Australia find the Ideology of Islamic Beliefs to be a Credible Threat to Australia.
andrew desrochers's insight:

I you agree or disagree with Australia's view on Islam? Should it be considered a  religion, or an ideology or something else and why?

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Kristin Mandsager San Bento's curator insight, May 6, 2015 12:40 PM

     I agree that Islam is not just a religion, but is also an ideology.  "Islamists ideology and rhetoric has been used by parties and movements to further their political, economic, and social objectives in different and varied contexts." (Ayoob).  This is a way of life.  The Australian government should recognize this.  But I'm not sure if they should see it as a credible threat.  To understand a culture, is to know the culture.  So I hope they have done their due diligence.  

Chloekylie's curator insight, May 24, 2015 2:52 PM

Australia

RELIGION

EQ: What do you think the people of Australia thin about Islam being an ideology and not a religion? Do you think it really effects them?

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Farmers ready to invest again, says Rabobank Australia

Farmers ready to invest again, says Rabobank Australia | Asia | Scoop.it

AFTER years of paying down debt in the face of severe drought, Australian farmers are now ready to take advantage of low interest rates and invest in their businesses, Rabobank Australia and New Zealand chief executive Thos Gieskes says. 

The latest quarterly Reserve Bank of Australia figures show that total farm debt fell $1.26 billion to $60.9 billion, but Mr Gieskes said many farmers now had the ability and the confidence to borrow and expand. 

"Coming out of the drought period five years ago, it was necessary for farmers to be delivering and get some fat on their bones again," he said. "Farmers are building up the equity in their businesses again and are now moving into a zone where they are ready to invest in their businesses." 

Rabobank estimates its share of agribusiness lending at about 25 per cent of the market. The group has a $30 billion loan book across Australia and New Zealand, with the vast majority of those assets in rural loans. 

Any sign of increased investment intentions will be welcome news to RBA governor Glenn Stevens, who is trying to encourage businesses to borrow money and invest to get the sluggish economy growing again. At its May meeting, the RBA cut the official cash rate by one quarter of a percentage point to a record low 2 per cent. 

Mr Gieskes said that rocketing beef prices and a solid crop in Western Australia's wheat belt had buoyed investment intentions, while dairy farmers were becoming more optimistic about medium-term prices as Australian dairy shifted increasingly towards an export focus. 

Parts of the country, such as Longreach in Queensland and Walgett in NSW, are still beset by intense drought. 

In the past two weeks, federal Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce has extended application cut-off dates for the government's $420 million Farm Finance Concessional Loans Scheme. 

The scheme allows struggling farmers across much of the country to refinance at a cheaper interest rate. 

But Mr Gieskes thinks the money would be better spent on rural research and development.

andrew desrochers's insight:

do you think that Australia's farmers should take advantage of these low interests, or risk bankruptcy in the future?

 

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Anger Mounts After Australian PM Calls Climate Concerns ‘Clutter,’ Refuses To Mention Them | ThinkProgress.org

Anger Mounts After Australian PM Calls Climate Concerns ‘Clutter,’ Refuses To Mention Them | ThinkProgress.org | Asia | Scoop.it

In December, Australia took over leadership of the G20. In normal times, this would’ve been welcome news for the global community deeply concerned with the impacts of climate change. But these are not normal times in Australia, politically or environmentally.

 

Before Tony Abbott was elected Prime Minister of Australia last September, the country was known for passing a national carbon tax, striving for ambitious greenhouse gas reductions targets, investing heavily in renewable energy, and valuing the input of leading climate scientists.

 

Since then, however, Abbott and his Liberal Party coalition in power have rolled back any initiative on climate and environment as much as possible, and pivoted to a focus on growing the economy through doubling-down on Australia’s powerful fossil fuel industry.

 

Abbott has not been hesitant to push his agenda globally either, if he thinks it will benefit him at home. In October, he engaged U.N. Climate Chief Christiana Figueres in a debate over the link between climate change and bushfires in Australia, saying that Figueres was “talking through her hat” in regards to climate change’s role in the fires. Then in the lead up to the G20 meeting in Sydney in February, Abbott said he didn’t want to “clutter up the G20 agenda with every worthy and important cause, because if we do, we will squander the opportunity to make a difference in the vital area of economic growth.”

 

 

His remarks, made at the World Economic Forum in Switzerland in Jan­uary, were clearly targeted at those who want climate change to play a leading role on the G20 agenda, including Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, who told Australian television that the issue of climate change “must be dealt with.”

 

On Wednesday, Lord Nicholas Stern, professor of Economics and Government at London School of Economics and president of the British Academy, weighed in on the subject with an op-ed in Australia’s The Age newspaper.

 

“How Australia tackles the threat of climate change is of global importance as developing countries look to rich countries to set an example because of their better technologies and history of high emissions of greenhouse gases,” he wrote. “The international community is now gearing up for new agreement on climate change to be signed in Paris in 2015, after all countries, including Australia, agreed in 2010 that global emissions of greenhouse gases need to be cut sharply by 2050 in order to avoid the huge risks that would be associated with a rise in global average temperature of more than 2 C.”

 

Click headline to read more--

 


Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
andrew desrochers's insight:

Do you think that this new leader in the oil economy will benefit the econonly throughout the world, or will it damage the trust between countries?

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Chloekylie's curator insight, May 24, 2015 2:47 PM

Australia

POLITICAL

EQ: Do you think Abbott's words were uncalled for? Why or why not?

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Arts & Sciences grants support classroom innovation | Newsroom | Washington University in St. Louis

Arts & Sciences grants support classroom innovation | Newsroom | Washington University in St. Louis | Asia | Scoop.it
Translation is never a neutral act.

In “World-Wide Translation: Language, Culture, Technology,” Ignacio Infante, PhD, helps students critically examine the historical, cultural and ethical use of translation, as well as how new technologies and digital media are reshaping the field.

But Infante, assistant professor of comparative literature and of Spanish in Arts & Sciences, wanted to add a practical, community-based component. Last spring, with assistance from the Gephardt Institute for Public Service, he formed a partnership with the World Pediatric Project, a nonprofit organization that brings critically ill children from developing countries to St. Louis for medical treatment.

“Most of the kids are from Central and South America,” Infante said. Between waiting for, and recovering from, pediatric surgery, “they can be here for a week or up to three months.

“The role of our students is to design experiences that help them feel at home in a new cultural space,” he said. “They take them to dinner, they arrange birthday parties, they organize trips to the zoo … Anything that engages a linguistic or social need.”

At the same time, participating students “become translators in a very real way,” Infante said. “They are embedded in this translation event. They experience just how different their own cultures are from those of the kids and their families — and how much fun it is to connect.”

Classroom innovation

Now, “World-Wide Translation” is one of 15 innovative classes receiving grants of up to $5,000 from Arts & Sciences. Intended to support engaging and transformative classroom experiences, the funding may be used to purchase course materials, defray related expenses, and underwrite additional training or other instructional needs.

“Traditional lectures can certainly be effective, but the classroom also can be a place where students learn through actively connecting — to their peers, to the professors and to the community,” said Jennifer R. Smith, PhD, dean of the College of Arts & Sciences.

“We know student learning and engagement can be enhanced by incorporating high-impact practices, like active learning and original research,” Smith said. “Our faculty are creative and curious, and we want to encourage them to fully indulge those traits in the classroom.

“Their experimentation can then provide ideas and guidance for other faculty who are interested in trying new ways of teaching.”

New courses, digital research and small group investigations

The 15 recipients represent a cross-section of the natural sciences, social sciences and humanities in Arts & Sciences.

In addition to Infante, they include Jimin Ding, PhD, associate professor of mathematics, who will incorporate real world statistical consulting into “Advanced Linear Modeling,” and Nancy E. Berg, PhD, professor of Hebrew language and literature, who will integrate small group investigations of current issues into “Israeli Culture and Society.”

Peter J. Kastor, PhD, professor and chair of the Department of History and of American culture studies, will add a digital research component to “The Founding Fathers’ Government in an Electronic Age.” Heather J. Rice, PhD, lecturer in psychology, will develop a new sophomore seminar on the “Psychology of Eastern Religions.”

Stanton H. Braude, PhD, professor of practice in biology, and Madeline Keleher, a graduate student in biology, will collaborate to add a “real data” scientific and quantitative reasoning component to the non-majors course “Human Biology.”

Other recipients include:

William G. Acree Jr., PhD, assistant professor of Spanish;
Marisa Bass, PhD, assistant professor of art history;
Paul Legault, writer in residence in the Department of English;
Amber Musser, PhD, assistant professor of women, gender and sexuality studies;
Elizabeth Ann Quinn, PhD, assistant professor of physical anthropology;
Betsy Sinclair, PhD, associate professor of political science;
Glenn D. Stone, PhD, professor of sociocultural anthropology and of environmental studies;
Ari Stern, PhD, assistant professor of mathematics; and
Lori Watt, PhD, associate professor of history and of international and area studies.

Via Charles Tiayon
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How do you think the  college students will react to learning all about the diverse arts and culture of Latin America? do you think any of their culture will rub off on them?

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Indigenous groups in the U.S. struggle to retain, and relearn, dying languages

Indigenous groups in the U.S. struggle to retain, and relearn, dying languages | Asia | Scoop.it
Growing up in Oaxaca, a city located about 300 miles south of Mexico City, Arcenio and Noe Lopez’s parents tried to steer them away from using the indigenous Mixtec language. They wanted to spare them the sense of inferiority that traditionally came with being a Oaxacan.

But it wasn’t until the family moved to the U.S. that the brothers experienced outright discrimination from fellow Mexicans, which eventually motivated them to explore their roots.  

“I was called Oaxacito,” Arcenio said, recalling a term that means “little Oaxacan,” a reference to the smaller stature and darker complexion of the indigenous population, which along with other overtures inspired him to research his heritage. “Eventually I came to [realize] my language gives me my unique identity as an indigenous person,” he told Fox News Latino.

Now living in California and Texas, the Lopezes devote their time and energy to reversing a course of action played out for generations that has pushed languages like theirs close to extinction.

Noe and Arcenio represent a growing number of Latinos in the U.S. who are trying to retain their indigenous language even though it has forced them, they say, to endure discrimination.

“There’s this risk that many in the younger generations will lose their language because of racism,” Noe said, adding that indigenous speakers often feel their language limits their economic and social advancement. “It will cause them to speak it less because it makes them feel inferior.”

There are roughly 6,000 to 7,000 languages spoken in the world today, according to UNESCO. As globalization moves forward, half of them are predicted to vanish within a century, UNESCO says. Adults will continue picking up the most used language around the globe and children at school will transition away from the lesser used indigenous languages.

In the U.S., the National Science Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities give federal dollars to support documenting endangered languages – a total of about $4 million a year to research and capture languages that are dying out.  

The Archive of the Indigenous Languages of Latin America (AILLA) is an online project at the University of Texas at Austin, the school where Noe is finishing his doctorate degree. It includes materials on 24 endangered languages spoken in Colombia, Guatemala, Mexico, and Venezuela.

One of those languages is Tucano, considered severely endangered because it is spoken by fewer than 5,000 people who live in the Amazon regions of Brazil and Colombia.

Another NSF and NEH project documents Ayook, a language thought to have ties to one of the earliest dominating cultures of Latin America. There are 5,000 people who speak it around the town of Totontepec in southern Mexico, where indigenous leaders have been trained to record their language on both video and audio. Others in the Totontepec community have been trained in transcription, translation and analysis so they can work on preserving and reviving their language.

“They are recovering the oral history of native people to their natural landscape,” said Mary Downs, who oversees the NEH grant program. “It’s the language that is recording significance of the place.”

New York City, which has experienced a large growth in the number of Mexicans from Oaxaca and Guerrero is home to about 800 highly endangered languages from all over the world. According to the Endangered Language Alliance, about one out of three Mexican-born immigrants in the Big Apple speak an indigenous language.

“Anybody who comes from south of the border is classified as Latino; Latino means Spanish,” said Juan Aguirre, executive director of community organization Mano a Mano, which works in partnership with the Alliance. “Those assumptions can create problems with populations that don’t speak Spanish; a lot of these speakers may be bilingual but not fully,” he told FNL. 

The most often encountered language in New York City is a dialect of Mixtec – there are about 50 language varieties of Mixtec, Aguirre said, and about a dozen of them are endangered.  

The Endangered Language Alliance is documenting and creating awareness of the rarity of these languages but its main charge has been creating workshops to give speakers a chance to interact with others and a framework to further their own knowledge of their language.

 It has also helped get interpreters to facilitate with healthcare providers and schools.

“There is a lot of pressure to give [these languages] up, but many are adamant to preserve them as well,” said Steve Zeitlin, executive director of City Lore, a cultural center that recently ran a four-month exhibit showcasing a variety of dialects and languages, including Totonac, which is spoken in Veracruz and Puebla.

“It’s not easy to do; we’re talking about generations so it also relies on children teaching their children,” Zeitlin said. 

The Lopezes are doing their best. Arcenio is the executive director of the Mixteco/Indigena Community Organizing Project, based in Oxnard, where there is a large farming community. Many of those workers are Mixteco, and Arcenio says the language barrier makes them vulnerable to poorer working conditions and pay than their Spanish-speaking counterparts.

 The organization also helps bring Mixteco interpreters into schools and is also planning to create a radio station that will air programming in Mixteco and Zapotec.

Arcenio said music and informative shows will be a big part of their programming, but his greatest hope is that the station – set to launch in July – also teaches to write and speak the convalescent languages. 

“Our fight has not been [focused on] building pride,” Arcenio said. “Our fight has been to [respond] to the larger communities telling us: ‘You must forget your cultural beliefs, you must assimilate this other language.”


Soni Sangha is a freelance writer based in New York City.

Via Charles Tiayon
andrew desrochers's insight:

do you think that these coaxacan people are doing the right thing by fighting against the economy in order to keep their language? Should they pay their bills and become citizens, or continue their culture?

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Aliah Therese's curator insight, April 3, 2016 9:56 AM
I
Its a struggle to re-learn but needs and can be done.
 
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Strong Dollar Threatens U.S. Ethanol Exporter Gains Over Brazil

Strong Dollar Threatens U.S. Ethanol Exporter Gains Over Brazil | Asia | Scoop.it

Over the last four years, the title of world’s top ethanol exporter has changed hands three times: The U.S. took it from Brazil in 2011, lost it back a year later and retook it again in 2014.

 

 

The fourth title change -- back over to Brazil -- may be taking place already.

The soaring dollar is making U.S. ethanol more expensive in overseas markets while a tumble in Brazil’s currency, the real, is giving a lift to exporters there. The South Americans are winning sales in the Middle East and Asia, two growing markets. The greenback has jumped as much as 24 percent against the real in 2015 to a 12-year high, and is currently up 16 percent at 3.0864 reais.

“The dollar and the weakness in the real could wash out some of the exports from America,” Jordan Fife, a trader at Biourja Trading LLC in Houston, said in a telephone interview. “The Arabian Gulf is the biggest swing” market, he said.

Americans captured the export crown last year as the Brazilians, hobbled by a severe drought that hurt output, saw sales drop by more than 50 percent. Shipments abroad are key to U.S. producers even though they made up only 5.9 percent of total sales in 2014 because domestic demand is stagnant.

U.S. ethanol capacity has grown almost threefold in the last decade on the back of a 2005 law championed by then- President George W. Bush to use the fuel as a way to reduce dependence on foreign oil. The Renewable Fuels Standard has required refiners to blend increasing amounts of gasoline with ethanol.

Dollar’s Rise

 

Denatured ethanol for May delivery added 1.3 cents to close at $1.563 a gallon Tuesday on the Chicago Board of Trade.

 

Brazil, which uses sugarcane to make ethanol, increased exports 16 percent in January from December, while the U.S., which uses corn, saw sales decline 9 percent, according to government data.

Brazilians sent ethanol to the United Arab Emirates, the U.S.’s third-largest market in 2014, and their exports to South Korea were triple the amount of U.S. shipments to that country. Last year, the U.S. exported 847.4 million gallons of the fuel additive, while the Brazilians shipped just 369 million.

Government estimates show the challenge facing U.S. distillers. They’ll produce 14.4 billion gallons of ethanol this year and next. Projected gasoline demand will be 139 billion gallons in 2015 and 137.9 billion in 2016. That means when ethanol is blended at the 10 percent ratio to gasoline required by federal law, there will be at least 500 million gallons of the additive left over each year.

Averting Glut

 

The only way to avert a glut or to keep plants from shutting is for exports to make up the difference, Ann Duignan, an analyst at JPMorgan Chase & Co., wrote in a March report.

 

With 860 million gallons of ethanol in storage, U.S. inventories are about 25 percent higher than a year ago.

Now the strength in the dollar is making it harder to reduce the excess supply, said Will Babler, a broker at Atten Babler Risk Management in Galena, Illinois. Meanwhile, Brazil’s economic woes are creating the conditions that will help its ethanol producers ramp up exports.

With Brazilian growth sputtering and a political scandal deepening, the currency is likely to remain weak, making the country’s ethanol competitive for the foreseeable future, Christoph Berg, managing director at F.O. Licht GmbH, in Ratzeburg, Germany, said in a March telephone interview.

Brazilian Fuel

 

Ethanol in Sao Paulo has fallen 19 percent in dollar terms this year, making it cheaper than in two of four key U.S. regions, data compiled by Bloomberg show. The fuel cost $1.63 a gallon last week in Sao Paulo, 6 cents cheaper than ethanol on the U.S. West Coast. Brazilian prices in March touched $1.58 a gallon, the lowest since July 2009.

 

America may still benefit from Brazil’s decision this year to boost the level of ethanol in its gasoline to 27 percent from 25 percent because more of it will be needed domestically, Marcus Ludtke, vice president of Commodity Marketing Company Inc., an Albert Lea, Minnesota-based brokerage, said in an April 9 telephone interview.

The impact of the stronger dollar will be “minimal” in the export market because of Brazil’s increased domestic consumption and America’s cheaper cost of production, Bob Dinneen, president of the Washington-based Renewable Fuels Association, which represents U.S. ethanol-producing companies, said in a telephone interview April 13.

U.S. ethanol export data for February and March aren’t yet available from the Energy Department. Brazilian figures show its shipments for February and March were 9 percent and 43 percent higher than a year ago, respectively.

Brazil may be poised to snatch the export lead back, Jim Damask, a trader at StarFuels Inc. in Jupiter, Florida, said.

“Some of these guys in Brazil may be picking up the phone and saying, ‘Hey, we have some stuff sitting around, what price would you want to take it?’,” Damask said.

andrew desrochers's insight:

Between the changing control of political power in the ethenol business, which side do you think has the better power or reason to control it? Compare the differences between US and Brazzillian control.

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Fred Issa's curator insight, October 5, 2015 4:54 PM

Strong dollar threatens the ethanol business in Brazil, may have lasting implications for both nations and others. Fred Issa,

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Vol 6 (2015) Journal of Philosophy, Culture and Religion

Vol 6 (2015) Table of Contents Articles Journal Cover Page PDF Journal Editor The Beginnings and Development of Islam and Quranic Schools in East Africa PDF Stanslaus Clemence Komba 1-6 How Research and Theories of Learning Inform Government on the Issues Related to the Use... http://www.iiste.org/vol-6-2015-journal-of-philosophy-culture-and-religion/


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andrew desrochers's insight:

This wave of schooling and education is sweeping Africa, how will the children of Africa feel, and what are the intentions of the teachings. Do you think they are teaching false information?

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Jusvic Dublois & Cooper Baddley's curator insight, April 7, 2015 6:05 PM

This falls under Religious Africa because ideas/beliefs from the Islamic religion is spreading throughout East Africa. Islamic and Quranic schools are actually being established in East Africa, allowing people in Africa to have the opportunity to learn about these different religions. Many people in Africa have actually been working on creating more Islamic and Quranic schools in Africa and are aiming to help the population of East Africa learn more about the Islamic religion.   

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South Africa: platinum, labour politics and an ugly strike | beyondbrics

South Africa: platinum, labour politics and an ugly strike | beyondbrics | Asia | Scoop.it
beyondbrics, from the Financial Times, brings news and comment from more than 40 emerging economies, headed by China, India, Brazil, Russia, Mexico, Indonesia and South Africa. We cover politics and economics, ...

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andrew desrochers's insight:

Looking at the graph of platinum and other metal production, why do you thinK this strike happened, and how Do you think it will affect the economy?

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Oxford Africa Conference 2015. A Continent on the Move: People, Politics and Business across Borders

OXFORD, April 1, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- via PRWEB - Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd May 2015

Venue: The Oxford Union and Said Business School, University of Oxford

For Africa to establish truly sustainable growth and succeed as a world leading continent, integration and cross-border coordination between countries is vital. The benefits of uniting the continent, while still appreciating its diversity, are not solely related to economic growth but will also allow healthcare challenges to be tackled effectively, encourage responsible leadership and governance across regions, and support migration within the continent.

The 6th annual Oxford Africa Conference on 22nd and 23rd May aims to explore the current stage of integration and collaboration across Africa to understand how it is affecting culture, society, business, and the economy. The theme of this year's conference, 'A Continent on the Move: People, Politics and Business across Borders', investigates new thinking and perspectives about Africa across all disciplines, including politics, business, arts, technology and academia. The conference allows speakers and delegates to gain a deep understanding and awareness of the power and potential of an interconnected African continent. From focused discussions on how the economic power of South Africa and Nigeria could create 'growth pull' for other countries, to exploring how to successfully scale businesses across regions, the conference will provide a vibrant platform for thinking about Africa's future.

You are invited to join the conference.

The Conference also seeks to inform the way that Africa interacts with the global community and vice versa, by highlighting the continent's international nature and the influence digital technology is already having in fostering cross-border opportunities. Panel discussions will explore the impact of international initiatives in Africa, including the effects of international aid and private equity investments on the continent.

Prominent political, cultural and business figures that are confirmed as speakers include:

H.E John Dramani Mahama, President of the Republic of Ghana
Tony Elumelu, Chairman of Heirs Holdings
Vera Songwe, Country Director for the World Bank
Keorapetse Kogsitsile, National Poet Laureate of the Republic of South Africa
Acha Leke, Director of McKinsey & Company
Ashish Thakkar, CEO of Mara Group
The full list of speakers is available here: http://www.oxfordafricanetwork.org/speaker-list/

The event is one of the largest and most globally recognised African conferences of its type organised by students of the long-established Oxford Africa Society and the Oxford Africa Business network of Saïd Business School.

To register to attend, or for further information please contact the press office:

Kate Richards, Press Officer
Mobile: +44 (0) 7711000521; Tel: +44 (0) 1865 288879
Email: kate.richards(at)sbs.ox.ac(dot)uk

Yurie Fukuda, Communications Officer, Oxford Africa Conference Committee
Mobile: +44 (0) 7517 618286
Email: Media(at)oxfordafricaconference(dot)com

Notes to Editors

About Oxford University Africa Society

For over fifty years, this African student-run organization has served as the hub for debate and discussion regarding Africa at the University of Oxford. It has become one of the most vibrant and influential societies at the University. We foster a sense of community among our members and provide a united voice on issues pertaining to Africa at the University and beyond. OUAS seeks to set the agenda for the future of the continent by providing a platform for African students and others to engage with opportunities and developments in Africa. Above all, it is a community of change agents passionate about Africa.

The Oxford University Africa Society is unique for its diversity and its capacity to influence change. Our members hail from every corner of the continent, and indeed the world. Our members include both graduate and undergraduate students from a wide variety of disciplines. The Society's many events focus on celebrating Africa, considering the future of the continent and helping students find their place in it.

The Oxford Business Network for Africa

The Oxford Business Network for Africa is a student led group created to organize and channel the substantial interest in business in Africa amongst Oxford students, alumni and faculty. The group is run by current MBA students at Saïd Business School (SBS), University of Oxford. Every year, a number of engagements are organized including speaker events, an Africa trek and Strategic Consulting Projects. These projects can be located anywhere in Africa and usually take place over eight weeks during July and August. Projects focus on issues of major importance to the future strategic direction of organisations and benefit from the combined multi-functional skills a truly global MBA class can offer.

About Saïd Business School

Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford blends the best of new and old. We are a vibrant and innovative business school, but yet deeply embedded in an 800 year old world-class university. We create programmes and ideas that have global impact. We educate people for successful business careers, and as a community seek to tackle world-scale problems. We deliver cutting-edge programmes and ground-breaking research that transform individuals, organisations, business practice, and society. We seek to be a world-class business school community, embedded in a world-class University, tackling world-scale problems.

About The Oxford Union

The Union is the world's most prestigious debating society, with an unparalleled reputation for bringing international guests and speakers to Oxford. It has been established for 189 years, aiming to promote debate and discussion not just in Oxford University, but across the globe. The Union is steeped in history. It was founded in 1823 as a forum for discussion and debate, at a time when the free exchange of ideas was a notion foreign to the restrictive University authorities. It soon became the only place for students to discuss political topics whilst at Oxford. Distinguished individuals who have spoken at the Oxford Union include Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher, Mother Teresa, Malcolm X, the Dalia Lama and Henry Kissinger.

This article was originally distributed on PRWeb. For the original version including any supplementary images or video, visit http://uk.prweb.com/releases/2015/04/prweb12621408.htm

University of Oxford
Josie Powell

+44 1865288403

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andrew desrochers's insight:

Is the university of Oxford doing the right thing in suggesting that African countries mingle between borders? Or should Africa's countries remain solo?

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Blake Kyle's curator insight, April 9, 2015 2:45 PM

How do you think African economies compare to Americas 

Anna and Avery's curator insight, April 10, 2015 3:39 PM

[ ECONOMY; AFRICA ] A conference is being held in Africa to discuss the benefits of having open borders. Arguments are being made that by opening the borders and having a united continent, business opportunities will rise up and the industry will become more efficient. A united continent with no immigration laws will help this dream become a reality. At the conference, topics covering ¨People, politics, and business across borders¨ will have influential aspects to all companies seeking people from other countries. With a better business and industry, more money can be made for effectively.

Fred Issa's curator insight, October 28, 2015 1:13 PM

Oxford Africa Conference, 2015, A Continent on the move, Fred Issa

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Liberty and Blasphemy: The Lessons of an 18th Century Execution in France | RealClearPolitics

Liberty and Blasphemy: The Lessons of an 18th Century Execution in France | RealClearPolitics | Asia | Scoop.it
A tragedy in France, involving savage retaliation for mockery of religion, shocks public opinion and pits medieval barbarism against liberal Enlightenment values. Recent headlines? No, an eighteenth-century drama that unfolded in the Age of Enlightenment itself and culminated in the judicial murder of a young man named François-Jean de la Barre, who became the last person executed for blasphemy in Europe.

As it happens, this year marks the 250th anniversary of l’affaire de la Barre. For a long time, this tragic tale was a distant chapter in the story of Western civilization’s road to a secular, pluralistic society; the issues it raised had long been settled in favor of freedom of speech. In a 1998 essay on the de la Barre case, French historian Elisabeth Claverie wrote that these questions had ben infused with “a renewed vigor” by the fatwa against Salman Rushdie for his novel, “The Satanic Verses.” Claverie could hardly have guessed that in less than two decades, twelve people—artists and journalists from the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo—would be killed in the heart of Paris for perceived blasphemy against Islam

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do you think the people who were writing this magazine acted correctly? What would push someone to act in such a barbaric manner?

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French-News-Online.com's curator insight, January 23, 2015 5:46 PM

Seven Million Copies of Post-Massacre Charlie Hebdo Sold Worldwide

Read more: http://www.french-news-online.com/wordpress/?p=39602#ixzz3PggxHoDV 
Follow us: @frenchnewsonlin on Twitter

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France offers support for Greece amid bailout tensions

France offers support for Greece amid bailout tensions | Asia | Scoop.it

PARIS (AP) — France's Socialist government offered support Sunday for Greece's efforts to renegotiate debt for its huge bailout plan, amid renewed fears about Europe's economic stability.


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andrew desrochers's insight:

considering that Greece had basically lied about its bankruptcy, what would be the pro's and con's of removing it from the union? 

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Dozens Of European Parliamentarians Call For End To EU-Israel Treaty

Dozens Of European Parliamentarians Call For End To EU-Israel Treaty | Asia | Scoop.it
A group of 63 members of the European Parliament (MEPs) from across the five biggest political blocs in the parliament have called on European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini to suspend the EU-Israel “association agreement.”

The association agreement facilitates largely unrestricted trade between the EU and Israel, allowing Israel to participate in a wide range of the EU’s programs. It also permits Israeli arms companies to receive EU funding.  

The MEPs argue that allowing the agreement to stay in place despite Israel’s recent massacre of Palestinians in Gaza “sends Israel the message that its violations of basic principles of human rights will be tolerated.”

This appeal for tough action against Israel is one of the most widely-supported initiatives from European parliamentarians in recent years. It follows the publication in December of a statement calling for the suspension of the association agreement that was signed by more than 300 groups across Europe, including some of the continent’s biggest trade unions, political parties and non-governmental organizations. 

Also in December, the European Coordination of Committees and Associations for Palestine, an umbrella group of European solidarity campaigns, set up a website to make it easy for people to lobby their MEPs on the issue of EU-Israel ties. 

Via Warren David
andrew desrochers's insight:

If you were in the position of one of these representatives, what would you say about the treaty and why?

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Zach Owen's curator insight, February 9, 2015 10:34 PM

How do you think the concept of the EU has an effect on this topic?

Bailey & Xavier's curator insight, February 11, 2015 1:34 PM

People from the European Union are planning to suspend the EU's agreement with Israel. The agreement lets Israel participate in EU programs.

Matthew Carrigg's curator insight, February 13, 2015 12:28 AM

  Tensions between Isreal and the rest if the world are tense which is show by  this article.  The EU if they follow through with this suspension of the treaty then they will lose some of the trust of other countries. Although if they really feel this is needed then they must act fast with there desision.