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Why Is It So Hard for Clothing Manufacturers to Pay a Living Wage?

Why Is It So Hard for Clothing Manufacturers to Pay a Living Wage? | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"In the garment industry, stories about workers who barely eke out an existence on 'starvation wages' are legion: Factory workers in New Delhi often describe living in makeshift hovels 'barely fit for animals.' A young woman from Myanmar might wrestle with the decision to feed her children or send them to school. In Bangladesh, sewing-machine operators frequently toil for 100 hours or more a week, only to run out of money before the end of the month. Workers have demanded higher pay in all those countries, of course, sometimes precipitating violence between protesters and police. Companies in general, however, have preferred to sidestep the issue altogether. In fact, no multinational brand or retailer currently claims to pay its garment workers a wage they can subsist on."

Seth Dixon's insight:

In some ways this isn't the right question to be asking.  While clothing brands don't want the bad PR from low wages, like all businesses, they are incentivized to minimize their inputs and maximize their profits.  If capitalistic logic were completely unrestrained, this situation would never change as long as their are low-skill workers.

 

Questions to Ponder: What institutions have the ability to change this situation and what are effective ways to bring about change?  Where are textile industries located in the international division of labor?  How do sweatshops impact the places where they locate in the international division of labor? 

 

Tagsdevelopment, laborglobalization, economicindustry, poverty

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Obesity: not just a rich-world problem

"Obesity is a global problem, but more people are getting fatter in developing countries than anywhere else. If current trends continue, obese children will soon outnumber those who are undernourished. Nearly half of the world’s overweight and obese children under five years old, live in Asia. And in Africa, the number of overweight children under five has increased by nearly 50% since 2000. Hunger still blights many parts of the world. But the share of people who do not have enough to eat is in decline. Globally one in nine people in the world suffer from chronic undernourishment. One in ten are obese. If current trends continue, the share of obese children in the world will surpass the number of undernourished by 2022. Africa has the fastest-growing middle class in the world. A move from traditional foods to high-calorie fast food and a more sedentary lifestyle is driving the rise in obesity. Health systems in Africa, more focused on treating malnourishment and diseases like malaria and HIV, are ill equipped to deal with obesity-related illnesses like heart disease and diabetes. "

 

Tagsmortality, medicaldevelopmentfood.

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Matt Manish's curator insight, March 8, 11:27 AM
This video has taught me some new facts in regard to the obesity crisis going on in the world. Growing up, I would hear so much about the obesity crisis here in America and how the rest of the world is so healthy for the most part. This video has given me a new perspective on the current obesity crisis, and that it isn't just an American problem anymore, but is now becoming a global problem.
One part of this video in particular which stood out to me was that in all of these developing nations that are suddenly becoming obese, American fast food chains are embedding themselves in their societies. It's no wonder that obesity is no longer just an American problem, but becoming a wold crisis since all of these American fast food chains are moving into these developing nations. It seems as though if the world wants to see a decline in obesity, we must stop eating so much processed food from these types of restaurants and get the proper amount of exercise needed for a healthy lifestyle.
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Globalization, Trade, and Poverty

What is globalization? Is globalization a good thing or not. Well, I have an answer that may not surprise you: It's complicated. This week, Jacob and Adriene will argue that globalization is, in aggregate, good. Free trade and globalization tend to provide an overall benefit, and raises average incomes across the globe. The downside is that it isn't good for every individual in the system. In some countries, manufacturing jobs move to places where labor costs are lower. And some countries that receive the influx of jobs aren't prepared to deal with it, from a regulatory standpoint.
Seth Dixon's insight:

There are many of the 35 videos in the Economics crash course set that touch on geographic issues, but I’d like to highlight episodes 16 and 17 especially.  Many see globalization as the path to economic growth and others see the process of globalization as what has created poverty.  In many ways both have a point as demonstrated in the 16th episode of this crash course.  In a follow-up video, they explain the difference between wealthy inequality and income inequality.  This video also has a nice layman's explanation of the GINI coefficient and how it measures inequality.   

 

Tagsdevelopment, laborglobalization, economicindustry, poverty, crash course

 

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Marilyn Ramos Rios's curator insight, November 13, 2017 8:52 AM
Is globalization good thing or not?
Ivan Ius's curator insight, November 13, 2017 11:32 AM
Geographic Thinking Concepts: Pattern and Trends; Interrelationships; Geographic Perspective;
Nevermore Sithole's curator insight, November 29, 2017 8:51 AM
Globalization, Trade, and Poverty
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Singapore passport becomes 'most powerful' in the world

Singapore passport becomes 'most powerful' in the world | Geography Education | Scoop.it

Historically, the top ten most powerful passports in the world were mostly European, with Germany having the lead for the past two years. Since early 2017, Singapore has tied for number one position with Germany. For the first time ever an Asian country has the most powerful passport in the world. It is a testament of Singapore's inclusive diplomatic relations and effective foreign policy."

 

Tag: SingaporeSouthEastAsia, politicaldevelopment.

Seth Dixon's insight:

Who else is high on the list of the most powerful passports in the world?  This tier system is based on the number of visa-free entries available to the holder of the visa:

1. Singapore

2. Germany

3. Sweden

3. South Korea

4. Denmark

4. Finland

4. Italy

4. France

4. Spain

4. Norway

4. Japan

4. United Kingdom

5. Luxembourg

5. Switzerland

5. Netherlands

5. Belgium

5. Austria

5. Poland

6. Malaysia

6. Ireland

6. USA (that's tied for 19th for you competitive sorts)

6. Canada

7. Greece

7. New Zealand

7. Australia

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Christina Caruso's curator insight, April 28, 2:29 PM
Most powerful passports in the world were mostly European, with Germany having the lead for the past two years. In early of last year, Singapore tied for number one position with Germany. The first time an Asian country has the most powerful passport in the world. Singapore and Germany is tied for the number one position for the most powerful passport.  
tyrone perry's curator insight, May 1, 12:31 PM
Travel is a leisure that has time constraints for most people.  Being able to just up and go is a great luxury.  So for Singapore to have the best passport is great.  This allows the traveler to go from country to country without obtaining visa and its lengthy process of waiting and or just to get a quick visa from certain countries.  The more countries that trust the visiting passport background checks the more passes one can visit.
Zavier Lineberger's curator insight, May 2, 11:54 PM
(Southeast Asia) I never thought about passports having different restrictions for different countries, let alone that it could be a measure of a country's power and greatness. Formerly tied with Germany, Singapore managed to scrape off another visa requirement from Paraguay, bringing Singapore's visa-free score to 159. The city-state, a major global commerce center, has become the first Asian nation to have the most useful passport. Visa-free requirements reflect a country's ability to negotiate foreign relations. While the country is poor in land size and resources, Singapore excels in their economy and statecraft.
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Pakistan's traditional third gender isn't happy with the trans movement

Pakistan's traditional third gender isn't happy with the trans movement | Geography Education | Scoop.it
For centuries, South Asia has had its own Khawaja Sira or third gender culture. Now, some third gender people in Pakistan say the modern transgender identity is threatening their ancient culture.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Sometimes our assumptions about a society, and how they might react to cultural issues are just that...assumptions.  I for one was very surprised to learn that Pakistan had a traditional third gender. 

 

Tags: culture, developmentpodcast, genderPakistansexuality, South Asia, religion.

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The Fallacy of Endless Economic Growth

The Fallacy of Endless Economic Growth | Geography Education | Scoop.it
What economists around the world get wrong about the future.

 

The idea that economic growth can continue forever on a finite planet is the unifying faith of industrial civilization. That it is nonsensical in the extreme, a deluded fantasy, doesn't appear to bother us. We hear the holy truth in the decrees of elected officials, in the laments of economists about flagging GDP, in the authoritative pages of opinion, in the whirligig of advertising, at the World Bank and on Wall Street, in the prospectuses of globe-spanning corporations and in the halls of the smallest small-town chambers of commerce. Growth is sacrosanct. Growth will bring jobs and income, which allow us entry into the state of grace known as affluence, which permits us to consume more, providing more jobs for more people producing more goods and services so that the all-mighty economy can continue to grow. "Growth is our idol, our golden calf," Herman Daly, an economist known for his anti-growth heresies, told me recently.

 

Tagsop-ed, economicindustry, sustainability, development, consumption, climate change, environment, resources.

 

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Short Film: How Water Gets From The Nile To Thirsty Refugees

Short Film: How Water Gets From The Nile To Thirsty Refugees | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Hundreds of thousands of refugees have fled the civil war in South Sudan and resettled in Uganda. This 12-minute documentary shows the daily struggle to get water.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Next to nothing in this video will make you happy about the way things operate for refugees in Northern Uganda who have fled from South Sudan.  We all know the about the dire conditions that refugees face, but knowing about the specifics, and hearing stories from the refugees about their lives and living conditions is powerful.  A huge influx of refugees can tax local resources, especially water.  Food can be shipped in, but water a much more locally variable resource.   The UN refugee camps recommend at least 15 liters of water per person be made available each day, but often it is more like 4-8 liters in these camps.  Dedicated wells (or boreholes) are more effective, but costly.  Trucking in water from the Nile River is the preferred method to simply keep these drowning people’s heads above water.    

Questions to Ponder: Consider how much water you drink, use for cooking, bathing, etc. per day in your household.  How difficult would it be to live on 4 liters of water a day?  What about your lifestyle would be changed? 

 

Tags: Africa, development, Uganda, migrationrefugees, environment, water, sustainability, resources.

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Kimmy Jay's curator insight, May 10, 2017 3:51 PM
This would be good to show during 6th grade lesson on refugees 

Matt Richardson's curator insight, May 10, 2017 6:43 PM
The multiple catastrophes occurring in Central Africa at the moment are among the worst in recorded history. These traumatized people need to be heard, understood, and helped. 
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Water Is Life

Hundreds of thousands of refugees have fled South Sudan to escape the civil war. When they arrive in Uganda, water is what they need most. Without it, they will die.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Next to nothing in this video will make you happy about the way things operate for refugees in Northern Uganda who have fled from South Sudan.  We all know the about the dire conditions that refugees face, but knowing about the specifics, and hearing stories from the refugees about their lives and living conditions is powerful.  A huge influx of refugees can tax local resources, especially water.  Food can be shipped in, but water a much more locally variable resource.   The UN refugee camps recommend at least 15 liters of water per person be made available each day, but often it is more like 4-8 liters in these camps.  Dedicated wells (or boreholes) are more effective, but costly.  Trucking in water from the Nile River is the preferred method to simply keep these drowning people’s heads above water.    

 

Questions to Ponder: Consider how much water you drink, use for cooking, bathing, etc. per day in your household.  How difficult would it be to live on 4 liters of water a day?  What about your lifestyle would be changed? 

 

TagsAfrica, development, Uganda, South Sudan, migrationrefugees, environment, waterenvironment depend, sustainability, resources.

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Ivan Ius's curator insight, April 8, 2017 11:49 PM
Geographic Thinking Concepts: Interrelationships; Geographic Perspective;
Seth Dixon's curator insight, June 5, 2017 12:15 PM

Next to nothing in this video will make you happy about the way things operate for refugees in Northern Uganda who have fled from South Sudan.  We all know the about the dire conditions that refugees face, but knowing about the specifics, and hearing stories from the refugees about their lives and living conditions is powerful.  A huge influx of refugees can tax local resources, especially water.  Food can be shipped in, but water a much more locally variable resource.   The UN refugee camps recommend at least 15 liters of water per person be made available each day, but often it is more like 4-8 liters in these camps.  Dedicated wells (or boreholes) are more effective, but costly.  Trucking in water from the Nile River is the preferred method to simply keep these drowning people’s heads above water.    

 

Questions to Ponder: Consider how much water you drink, use for cooking, bathing, etc. per day in your household.  How difficult would it be to live on 4 liters of water a day?  What about your lifestyle would be changed? 

 

TagsAfrica, development, Uganda, South Sudan, migrationrefugees, environment, water,  environment depend, sustainability, resources.

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Death toll doubles in Ethiopia garbage dump collapse

Death toll doubles in Ethiopia garbage dump collapse | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"The death toll from a collapse at a landfill outside Ethiopia’s capital has risen sharply to 113, an Addis Ababa city official said Wednesday, as the country began three days of mourning for victims who were mostly women and children. Saturday’s collapse of a mountain of garbage buried makeshift mud-and-stick homes inside the Koshe landfill on the outskirts of the capital."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Some geographies are uncomfortable to discuss because they expose some of the social and spatial inequalities that we wish weren't part of economic geographies.

 

Questions to Ponder: Why did this happen?  Why were so many people in the landfill?  

 

Tags: Ethiopia, Africa, development, urbanpoverty, squatter.

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Katie Kershaw's curator insight, March 31, 3:36 PM
When I think of dumps or garbage I usually don’t think of them being deadly.  Unfortunately in Addis Ababa, part of the dump collapsed and 113 people ended up dying.  Not only did the collapse injure people, but it also wiped out the homes that surround the area.  The lack of codes about infrastructure in the city is most likely the cause of this incident.  There were no regulations about how garbage had to be dumped in order to keep it from collapsing.  There were also no rules about how homes should be built or where they could be built.  This article points out that there were attempts made in order to stop dumping at this particular landfill, but the dumping was resumed right before the collapse.  The government also relocated some of the residents that lived by the dump, but were not able to move everyone before the accident.  Although efforts were made to avoid a situation like this, the government wasn’t forceful or fast enough to prevent it.  Many of the victims of this were women and children which is telling of the culture of the city.  The women and children scavenge the landfill in order to find things they can either repurpose for themselves or sell to make money.  The last section of the article also says that Ethiopia prides itself as being one of Africa’s fastest growing economies.  But this incident shows that they still have a ways to go before they can become a more developed country.
tyrone perry's curator insight, April 5, 3:26 PM
Inside the Koshe landfill in Ethiopia, there were makeshift mud and stick homes.  Residents say the collapse the has killed over a hundred residents could have been because of protests at another landfill and some blamed the construction at a new waste to energy plant at Koshe.  families who lost loved ones haverecieved or will receive any where from $430 to $650 each and will be resettled permanently in the coming years.  It is sad to see people living like this but most of all to see a government allow such situations to exist.
Matt Manish's curator insight, May 3, 12:08 AM
According to this article, Ethiopia has one of Africa's fastest growing economies. This tragic event makes me wonder about the spatial inequality of Ethiopia's capital city Addis Ababa. Especially, since capital cities in most nations are usually the most developed part of the country. It would seem that is a more highly developed area like a capital city in Ethiopia, that there would be more adequate housing for residents than a landfill, even if those residents are considered to be poor. From looking at this article it seems as though there must be a wealthier class in the city that is developing rapidly, while the poorer community is forced to live on the outskirts in the landfill. Hopefully a tragedy such as this one never happens again and more suitable housing can be found for the lower class in Ethiopia.
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Flawed Justice After a Mob Killed an Afghan Woman

Flawed Justice After a Mob Killed an Afghan Woman | Geography Education | Scoop.it
At first, the trial and convictions in the death of Farkhunda Malikzada seemed a victory in the long struggle to give Afghan women their due in court. But a deeper look suggests otherwise.
Seth Dixon's insight:

DISCLAIMER: I strongly recommend that the video not be shown in class (I wouldn't show the embedded video in my college classes, but I would discuss the article).  The video is as horrific as anything I've ever seen and yet I feel compelled to share the story because it is important to understand the cultural and institutional problems of Afghanistan to get a handle on the deeply entrenched issues. This also shows parts of Afghanistan are seeking to make the transition into a more modern society, but there are other elements that are firmly rooted in the past where mob rule was once more easily justified.  

 

Tags: Afghanistan, culture, developmentgender

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India’s campaign to change cultural practices

India’s campaign to change cultural practices | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Television commercials and billboards now carry a message that strike at the heart of the Indian contradiction of being the world’s fastest-growing major economy and also where relieving oneself in the open is the norm in most villages. Research shows that one of the reasons for the stubborn social practice is the centuries-old caste system, in which cleaning human waste was a job reserved only for the lowest caste. Having a toilet at home is still considered unclean by many villagers. They regard it cleaner to go to the open farms, which can cause water-borne diseases, the second leading cause of death of Indian children younger than 5."

Seth Dixon's insight:

An aggressive new campaign is ridiculing those who are no longer poor but continue to defecate in the open--even this UNICEF campaign (some language and low-brow humor, so use your own discretion) is working hard to change the cultural patterns and practices surrounding defecation and sanitation.  There are more cellphones than toilets in India and the lack of adequate sanitation and toilets is serious enough that that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has made building toilets a national priority.  Comics are using their platform to bring this issue of uneven development to light. 54% of people in India do not have regular access to toilets and these comedians are using their platform to not only get some laughs, but to advocate for social change. 

 

Tagsdevelopment, poverty, India.

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Africa’s Charcoal Economy Is Cooking. The Trees Are Paying.

Africa’s Charcoal Economy Is Cooking. The Trees Are Paying. | Geography Education | Scoop.it
In Madagascar, the booming charcoal business is contributing to deforestation and may exacerbate the effects of global warming.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Deforestation does not happen in a vacuum--it occurs in an economic, political, and historical context.  Rural Africans have less access to high value commodities and converting forests into charcoal is one of the few options (similar to the issue in Haiti).  The short-term economic gain for a few individuals leads to long-term environmental problems such as soil erosion, flooding, and habitat destruction for many species.  

 

Tags: biogeography, environmentecology, poverty, development, economic, labor, Madagascar, erosionAfrica, resourcespolitical ecology.

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Launceston College Geography's curator insight, June 13, 2017 9:51 PM

Deforestation drivers

Alex Smiga's curator insight, August 9, 2017 9:41 AM
If we know that furthering education and economic opportunities will help alleviate the problems present here, why aren't we as a planet seeing that they are implemented? 
brielle blais's curator insight, May 1, 10:23 PM
Charcoal has become the unlikely hero of the informal economy of Africa. This is a positive for the economy. However, this is not a positive for the environment. Deforestation has become a large issue since the boom of more people using charcoal. This will speed up the issue of climate change. This post shows the negative and positives a product can have involving geography.
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How To Get A Country To Trust Its Banks

How To Get A Country To Trust Its Banks | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"It's something you can see on every block in most major cities. You probably see one every day and never give give it a second thought. But in Yangon, Myanmar in 2013, an ATM was a small miracle. For decades, Myanmar was cut off from the rest of the world. There were international sanctions, and no one from the U.S. or Europe did business there."

Seth Dixon's insight:

We often assume that one form of technology, a system, institute should work equally well where ever it is.  But the nuances of cultural geography mediate how societies interact with technological innovations, and as demonstrated in this Planet Money podcast, "People in Myanmar (Burma) were reluctant to use ATMs because they didn't trust the banks. They weren't sure that the machines would actually give them their money."  

 

Tags: Burma, Southeast Asia, poverty, development, economicpodcast.

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Richard Aitchison's curator insight, April 11, 9:11 AM
We often take for granted our infrastructe and in this case our banking system. Have we seen recessions, yes , have we seen our banks fail yes, but to not trust them at all well thats another story. In pretty much every American city and most major cities around the world ATMs are very common. I am pretty sure most of us have used an ATM at least once if not all of the time. So when the small country of Myanmar had its sanctions lifted and VISA and Mastecard had the opportunity to put in ATMs they went for it and thought it would be a great ooportunity. They did forsee what would happen though. Myanmar citizens had almost no confidence in their banking system thus most people just kept their money at home with them. So since they did not have money in the banks they did not need to use the ATMs. Its very important for companies, even big ones such as Visa and Mastercard, to understand the market and the culture of the population in which they are setting up the business. If Visa and Mastercard had done a little more research they might have foreseen this problem. In this ever global world it is important for businesses to remain culuturally aware or risk losing mililons.  For start up companies or investment companies it becomes even more important as they do market research as well.
brielle blais's curator insight, May 3, 3:33 PM
This showcases how different cultures in different places really are. The idea of credit cards in Myanmar isn't exactly greeted with positivity. Most people are skeptical of the banks and keep their money at home instead. This way of living seems so different to people from places like the US because Myanmar doesn't have and connection to the US with institutions such as banks and atm. However this way of running a country does not allow for anything to be fixed, which is why is it so rugged, with cars with no floors, awful roads, and anything else that a bank would normally help fund. 
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Income and Wealth Inequality

Inequality is a big, big subject. There's racial inequality, gender inequality, and lots and lots of other kinds of inequality. This is Econ, so we're going to talk about wealth inequality and income inequality. There's no question that economic inequality is real. But there is disagreement as to whether income inequality is a problem, and what can or should be done about it.
Seth Dixon's insight:

There are many of the 35 videos in the Economics crash course set that touch on geographic issues.   This crash course team explains the difference between wealthy inequality and income inequality.  This video also has a nice laymen’s explanation of the GINI coefficient and how it measures inequality.   In another video in the series, they demonstrate how globalization can be seen as the path to economic growth and others see the process of globalization as what has created poverty

 

Tagsdevelopment, laborglobalization, economicindustry, poverty, crash course

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Matt Manish's curator insight, March 15, 6:33 PM
It is interesting to see how unequal some income is for people around the world. Especially in countries like China and India that have some of the world's largest populations. These same countries also have some of the lowest incomes in the world for the majority of their citizens. Adding to that, it is intriguing to see how only a small percentage of people hold most of the wealth in the world, while the vast majority of the world population aren't even close to that level of wealth. While the income inequality gap has increased significantly since the time of the industrial revolution and continues to grow bigger.
theascen sionhouse's comment, March 17, 12:54 AM
nice
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As Venezuela Collapses, Children Are Dying of Hunger

As Venezuela Collapses, Children Are Dying of Hunger | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Venezuela has the largest proven oil reserves in the world. But in the last three years its economy has collapsed. Hunger has gripped the nation for years. Now, it’s killing children. The Venezuelan government knows, but won’t admit it. Doctors are seeing record numbers of children with severe malnutrition. Before Venezuela’s economy started spiraling, doctors say, almost all of the child malnutrition cases they saw in public hospitals stemmed from neglect or abuse by parents. But as the economic crisis began to intensify in 2015 and 2016, the number of cases of severe malnutrition at the nation’s leading pediatric health center in the capital more than tripled, doctors say. 2017 was even worse."

 

Tagsmortality, medical, developmentfood, poverty, Venezuela, South America.

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Kelsey McIntosh's curator insight, February 13, 9:57 AM
The article explores the devastation that Venezuela is feeling right now. After the economy collapsed in 2014, the entire country has been in shambles. Because of the inflation caused by the economy collapse, food has been nearly impossible to find. The article discusses multiple families who lost their children as a result of severe malnutrition. However, the government has turned a blind eye to the increasing infant mortality rate, often telling doctors and hospitals to not record many deaths.
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Divided island: How Haiti and the DR became two worlds

Haiti and the Dominican Republic share a border, and an island. But the two countries are very different today: the Dominican Republic enjoys higher quality of life for many factors than Haiti. I went to this island and visited both countries, to try and understand when and how their paths diverged.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This video is an exciting debut for the new series "Vox borders."  By just about every development metric available, the Dominican Republic is doing better than Haiti, the only bordering country on the Caribbean island of Hispaniola with the DR.   

 

Questions to Ponder: How does the border impact both countries?  How has sharing one island with different colonial legacies shaped migrational push and pull factors?

 

Tags: Haiti, Dominican Republic, video, poverty, development, economic, labor, migration, political, borders.

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Kelsey McIntosh's curator insight, February 13, 8:41 PM
This video is extremely interesting seeing as it points out the differences between two very different worlds that are only separated by a single border. The video shows how racist the Dominicans are to their neighbors and shows us how the Haitians live under such scrutiny. On each end of the border, there are two markets that are supposed to allow both the Haitians and the Dominicans to trade their goods, however, the strict border patrol officers keep the Haitians from entering until their neighbors have set up their shops at the best spots. The director of the video also notes that he believes the reason Haiti is much poorer than the Dominican Republic stems all the way back to when they were colonies of France and Spain. 
Matt Manish's curator insight, February 16, 12:47 PM
I found this video to be very insightful into the relationship Haiti has with the Dominican Republic and how the Haitian government has formed into what it is today. It was especially informative for myself because I didn't know very much about these countries before watching this video. I knew Haiti was the first slave colony to have a successful revolt against their slave holders, but I didn't know or realize all the consequences of that slave uprising. It seems like Haiti wasn't given a proper chance right off the bat to succeed as a nation. The French overworked their land and destroyed the soil which is still a problem today. Once Haiti declared independence, many nations enforced embargoes on Haiti because it was considered a threat due to it being a black republic, which strangled their potential for a strong economy. Adding to that France demanded a large sum of money from Haiti after they declared independence because France was upset about losing profits from the colony, which hindered the Haitian economy even more. It's too bad that Haiti got a bad hand of cards right from the beginning, I hope that one day they can rise above adversity, and truly flourish as a nation.
tyrone perry's curator insight, March 14, 10:43 PM
watching this showed many disturbing facts about the island shared by the D.R. and Haiti.  because of both of their previous owners the island went in two different directions.  Haiti owned by the French brought over many slaves to pillage and exploit their side of the Island.  Haiti could not flourish because of racism and debt.  D.R. had a different history the Spaniards integrated with the locals and worked together to help the country grow.  they took care of their land and their was no racism playing any role in destroying the people of that country.  driving up and down the you can see the difference on both sides.  Haiti has a bare and eroded land while the D.R. has lush jungles.  according to the narrator there is strong racism towards the Haitians by the Dominicans.  Even thou they both share the island the Dominicans look down on the Haitians and refuse to help them even thou D.R. is a so to speak rich nation they could really help improve and grow both nations as a whole.  Its sad to see that the reason people cant grow is because of systemic and blatant racism. 
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The World Bank is eliminating the term “developing country” from its data vocabulary

The World Bank is eliminating the term “developing country” from its data vocabulary | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"In the 2016 edition of its World Development Indicators, the World Bank has made a big choice: It’s no longer distinguishing between 'developed' countries and “developing” ones in the presentation of its data. The change marks an evolution in thinking about the geographic distribution of poverty and prosperity. But it sounds less radical when you consider that nobody has ever agreed on a definition for these terms in the first place. The International Monetary Fund says its own distinction between advanced and emerging market economies “is not based on strict criteria, economic or otherwise.” The United Nations doesn’t have an official definition of a developing country, despite slapping the label on 159 nations. And the World Bank itself had previously simply lumped countries in the bottom two-thirds of gross national income (GNI) into the category, but even that comparatively strict cut-off wasn’t very useful."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Labels and categories are so often problematic, but they are also necessary to make sense of the vast amount of information.  Regional geography is inherently about lumping places together that have commonalities, but acknowledging that many differences from place to place makes the world infinitely varied and complex.  Since we can’t process an infinite amount of complexity, we categorize, for better or for worse.  In education, we are continually trying to show how some categorizations fail, hoping that our students will categorize the information they receive in better ways (non-racist ways for example).  The regional terms we use--Latin America, the Middle East, Europe, etc.—impacts how we think about the world.  Each of those terms highlights a few similarities and ignores some important differences.  The terms More Developed Countries (MDCs), Newly Industrialized Countries (NICs), and Less Developed (LDCs) is how many people have socioeconomically categorized the world’s countries, some preferring developing countries instead of LDCs because it less stigmatizing.  In 2015, many at the World Bank have thought that the term “Developing Countries” obscures more than it reveals.  In 2016, the World Bank removed the term from its database since there are more differences than similarities in the economic structures and trajectories of developing countries.         

 

Questions to Ponder: What are some of the major problems that you see with the term developing country?  Even with its problems, what utility is there in the term?  Will you keep using the term or will you abandon it?  How come? 

 

Tagsdevelopment, statistics, economicindustry.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, September 29, 2017 3:06 AM

Global challenges: Development

James Piccolino's curator insight, February 8, 6:51 AM
I agree that it is important to categorize in order to learn and group things together. I understand some of the implications but it is nonetheless important to the way we learn about other areas. To do away with all labels of this kind will not make the topic and world view more inclusive, but instead make things so complicated that people will either not understand it or not bother with it's complexities. Things need to be distinguished between qualities and traits in order for proper analysis. 
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As U.S. Life Expectancies Climb, People In A Few Places Are Dying Younger

As U.S. Life Expectancies Climb, People In A Few Places Are Dying Younger | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"The wealthiest country, which spends the most money on care for the sick, has far from the best health outcomes. Babies born in eastern Kentucky, along the Mississippi Delta and on Native American reservations in the Dakotas have the lowest life expectancies in the country. If current health trends continue, they aren’t expected to live much beyond an average of 70 years. Meanwhile, a baby born along the wealthy coast of California can be expected to live as long as 85 years, the authors found."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Questions to Ponder: What geographic and socioeconomic factors shape mortality rates?  What is better about society today then before?  Has anything worsened?  How come?

 

Tagsmortality, medical, developmentregions, USA, population, statistics.

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Julia May's curator insight, July 20, 2017 1:21 PM
Very interesting article but a haunting truth! 
Deanna Wiist's curator insight, September 12, 2017 9:00 PM

Questions to Ponder: What geographic and socioeconomic factors shape mortality rates?  What is better about society today then before?  Has anything worsened?  How come?

 

Tagsmortality, medical, developmentregions, USA, population, statistics.

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Anti-vaccine activists spark Minnesota’s worst measles outbreak in decades

Anti-vaccine activists spark Minnesota’s worst measles outbreak in decades | Geography Education | Scoop.it
In Minnesota, the Somali American community has been hit hard, with a fourth of the young patients hospitalized.
Seth Dixon's insight:

I had measles as a child. I am so disheartened to see this now-perfectly preventable disease that nearly killed me resurface in the United States because of a fear-baiting, anti-intellectual movement.  The spread of any disease carries spatial component that interests geographers, but there is also cultural geographies that help to understand, explain, and (hopefully) combat this issue.  Please vaccinate the ones you love.   

 

Tagsmedicaldiffusion, culture, mortality, development, cultural norms.

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Why do women live longer than men?

Why do women live longer than men? | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Despite the social inequality women experience, they live longer than men. This is the case without a single exception, in all countries.
Seth Dixon's insight:

The question “why do women live longer than men?” is both biological and cultural.  This means that 1) gender as a cultural construct that influences behavior is a mitigating factor and 2) sex, as a biochemical issue, is a separate set of determining factors.  Estrogen benefits women because it lowers “bad” cholesterol) and “good” cholesterol, but testosterone does the opposite.  Women are more likely to have chronic diseases, but non-fatal chronic disease, but men are more prone to the more fatal chronic illnesses.  For the cultural reasons, men are less likely to seek treatment, adhere to the prescribed treatment, commit suicide, and engage in more risky behavior.  While these may read like a list of gendered stereotypes that don’t apply to all, when looking at the global data sets, these trends hold  and are more likely to be true.  How masculinity and femininity is constructed certainly shapes many of these factors and deserves some discussion. 

 

Tags: culture, population, mortality, development, cultural norms, statisticsgender

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Senegal's Great Green Wall combats desertification

"A 7,000 km barrier is being built along the footsteps of the Sahara to stop the desert expanding. The Great Green Wall project started in 2007 in Senegal, along with 10 countries in Africa to combat the effects of climate change. Al Jazeera’s Nicolas Haque reports from Widou, deep in the Sahel."

Seth Dixon's insight:

The Great Green Wall initiative is composed of 11 countries that are cooperating together to combat the physical and human geographic characteristics that make the Sahel one of the more vulnerable ecosystems in the world.  This swath running through Africa is the transition zone where tropical Africa meets the Sahara.  The Sahel is susceptible to drought, overgrazing, land degradation and desertification.  These issues of resource management and land use transcend international borders so this "Green Wall" was created with the intent to protect the environment, landscapes and people of the Sahel from desert encroachment (the shorter, social media friendly version of this video is available here).

 

Tags: Africa, Senegal, development, environment, waterbiogeography, ecology, environment depend, physical, weather and climate, supranationalism, political ecology.

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Katie Kershaw's curator insight, March 31, 9:34 PM
This “Green Wall” was originally supposed to span the southern border of the Sahara from the east to west coast of Africa. It was made up of trees and elements of forests in order to prevent the desert from expanding and reducing the amount of land available for food production. This seems like it would be a great idea that would work well, but the plan has some flaws. In the early stages of building up the barrier, nomadic herders are supposed to be prohibited from using the land, as their cattle would destroy it. However, the system in place in Somolia sees only one soldier guarding hundreds of kilometers by himself. The nomadic people are often desperate for food, so they often try to break in and sometimes resort to violence. This is problematic because it defeats the purpose of the barrier in increasing the farm land. Many of the countries in along the “Green Wall” do not maintain it as well as they should and Nigeria actually abandoned the project all together. For this reason many ecologists believe the effort is a waste and the climate change can not be stopped. But the efforts of the Somalians has paid off. Crops such as grapefruit and watermelon have been grown in areas that would have been unsuitable for such crops a few years ago. Migratory European birds also settle in the area during the winter. Another benefit that comes from the Wall is that nomads are not forced to join terrorist organizations as their only sources for food, because farming is made easier in the Sahel. 
tyrone perry's curator insight, April 5, 3:12 PM
The great green wall is a man made ecological wall from the Atlantic ocean thru 10 countries to the red sea.  This is to prevent the desert from expanding, but also it is protected from nomadic herders, and loss of food.  This project still has a long way to go but ha not been completely abandoned yet. 
Douglas Vance's curator insight, April 21, 10:12 AM
Although Senegal is one of the few countries in the Sahel to actually follow through on its promise of building its green wall, it may be fruitless in the long run. The expansion of desert regions seems relentless. However, what is most surprising is how rapidly the ecosystems have changed and the crops that can be grown there. Watermelon, grapefruit, and European migratory songbirds have all taken hold, drastically altering the agriculture and environment of the region. 
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How did Zimbabwe get so poor?

President Mugabe's economic mismanagement of Zimbabwe has brought the country poverty and malnutrition. After 36 years in charge, he's looking to extend his rule by 5 more years.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Poverty at the national level is usually not a function of limited resources, but more often it is a sign of weak institutions.  This is but one example of how governmental mismanagement can put a country's developmental progress back decades.

 

Tags: Africa, Zimbabwe, development, economic, political.

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Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, March 9, 2017 11:58 AM
unit 4 and unit 6 #democratization?
Kelsey McIntosh's curator insight, March 31, 4:58 PM
This video investigates how the country of Zimbabwe managed to become impoverished. Under the reign of Robert Mugabe, the country’s agricultural sector was destroyed. In doing so, he caused the money run out, so he printed more which caused worst hyperinflation ever. This video shows how the countries that are run poorly can affect its inhabitants.
Douglas Vance's curator insight, April 21, 10:02 AM
Robert Mugabe's blatant and stunning incompetence and corruption destroyed the value of the Zimbabwean dollar and the resulting hyperinflation decimated the national economy. This is one of the premier examples of how a total lack of competent and powerful institutions can undermine a once promising economy and devolve a nation into one of the poorest on earth. 
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The other Asian tiger

The other Asian tiger | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Vietnam's success merits a closer look."

 

Which Asian country has roared ahead over the past quarter-century, with millions of its people escaping poverty? And which Asian economy, still mainly rural, will be the continent’s next dynamo? Most would probably respond “China” to the first question and “India” to the second. But these answers would overlook a country that, in any other part of the world, would stand out for its past success and future promise.

Vietnam, with a population of more than 90m, has notched up the world’s second-fastest growth rate per person since 1990, behind only China. If it can maintain a 7% pace over the next decade, it will follow the same trajectory as erstwhile Asian tigers such as South Korea and Taiwan. Quite an achievement for a country that in the 1980s was emerging from decades of war and was as poor as Ethiopia.

 

Tags: Vietnam, globalizationdevelopment, economic, SouthEastAsia.

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Katie Kershaw's curator insight, April 20, 11:33 AM
Like this article points out in the beginning, Vietnam is not a country I typically think of when talking about countries who's economies are growing rapidly.  I think that there are still leftover thoughts from the Vietnam War over the state that the country is in.  By expanding manufacturing, they were able to boost employment and exports- two keys to a healthy economy.  Vietnam has also become heavily involved in global trade, which now accounts for a large part of its GDP.  They have been able to take advantage of their physical location nearby China by offering lower prices for businesses looking to develop in Asia, particularly those looking to do business with China.  Vietnam has also invested heavily in education which has made their population competitive in math and science.  Vietnam has done such a good job of managing and growing their economy that they are actually the second fastest growing economy in the world.  They have also encouraged competition among their provinces which has given the country a greater variety in valuable industries.  The obstacles that Vietnam faces into becoming an even more powerful economy are lack of domestic supply chains, meaning they have to import goods to sustain their own population, and a one-party government that is unstable.  Without changes to this, they will struggle to become a major world economy.  However, they show that it is possible for small, developing countries to grow their economies and gain the status of being a developed country.
Zavier Lineberger's curator insight, May 3, 12:10 AM
(Southeast Asia) This article argues the importance of Vietnam as an upcoming Asian Tiger. Vietnam has the second highest growth rate in the world, leading to a current population of 92.7 million. By reducing trading regulations, Vietnam is a cheap substitute for hosting companies in China. Each region of the country was stimulated to have different economies, causing a variety of services to Vietnam. Additionally, Vietnam spends a large budget on education in order to produce reliable workers for the economy. However, the dictatorial government, state owned businesses, and China's dominance of international markets poses a problem for its ascension to a highly developed nation.
brielle blais's curator insight, May 3, 3:11 PM
This showcases how quickly economies can bounce back or change. For a long time China and India were thought to be Asia's two economic dynamic duo. However, despite the decades of war that struck the country and ruined the economy and were as poor as Ethiopia, Vietnam has had a 7% increase the growth rate per person. This alters political geographies and economic geographies. 
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The Best News You Don’t Know

The Best News You Don’t Know | Geography Education | Scoop.it
I’ve covered massacres in South Sudan, concentration camps in Myanmar and widespread stunting in India, but it’s also important to acknowledge the backdrop of global progress. Otherwise, the public may perceive poverty as hopeless and see no point in carrying on the fight — at just the point when we’re making the most rapid gains ever recorded.
Seth Dixon's insight:

The world is winning the war on extreme poverty, but most Americans think that poverty is getting worse. Doom and gloom can dominate media coverage because a horrific tragedy gets better rating than slow incremental improvements.  The general public is often ignorant of the measurable improvements going on in the world today.  No, the world isn’t perfect, but it is getting better. 

 

Tags: mediapoverty, development, economic, perspective.

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Sally Egan's curator insight, October 6, 2016 9:36 PM
This article provides a positive look at the advances made in global development measures.
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Bangladesh's Hazardous Geography

Bangladesh's Hazardous Geography | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Bangladesh is exposed to threat of hazards resulting from a number of natural disasters and remains classified as one the most vulnerable countries. Majority of the country is affected by cyclone, drought and floods.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Bangladesh is regularly hit with different types of natural disasters. The impact of these natural disasters costs the country millions making it dependent on foreign aid.  Disaster clean-up and relief aid after major floods, droughts, and hurricanes.  

 

Tagsdisasters, environmentBangladeshSouth Asia, development.

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Lee Hancock's curator insight, November 1, 2016 8:47 PM

Multiple challenges already face residents of Dhaka and Bangladesh in its entirety, but add into the mix climate change and the situation becomes even worse. How does this human induced phenomenon impact upon the population of the developing country and its ever-growing Mega City?

Richard Aitchison's curator insight, March 22, 10:53 AM
These maps help show all of the natural disasters that Bangladesh is accustomed to. As one look through all of the maps that shows such things such as flood zone, cyclone zones, and drought zones we can tell that this country is ripe with geographical issues that will effect its problems both politically and economically.  With this many geographical problems with natural disasters one can only imagine how much money the country spends simply on just rebuilding itself. It is hard to continue to move forward as a country when you need to constantly rebuild. Also you become dependent on other countries with a need for foreign aid for these problems. By needing foreign aid Bangladesh becomes dependent on these countries thus making it harder for them to make good deals for their economy. If you were setting up the perfect location for a country, Bangladesh probably would not be the first place selected. However, we must look at the history of the people that live there and see why this location was chosen?  Also we must look at the future and with a changing climate how will it effect Bangladesh geography, and will we eventually see people moving out of the country and how will that effect the surrounding areas and their population.