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Break Dancing, Phnom Penh-Style

"A former gang member from Long Beach, California, teaches break dancing to at-risk youths in Cambodia."


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
As crazy as it seems dancing is trying to help kids. A former gang member from Long Beach, California teaches dancing to children at risk in Cambodia. He got deported after being charged with a felony to a country he has never been before. However, he is changing his life around to help change the lives of todays youth through methods that he learned in the states.
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Jared Medeiros's curator insight, April 28, 2015 5:27 PM

It apperas that one countrys trash is anothers treasure, and possiblty so much more.  You can see first hand in this video how a culture from one part of the world can have great impact on another so different and so far away.  Being deported could be the best thing that happened to this teacher.  It also could be the best thing that happened to a lot of these childrens lives as well.

Katie Kershaw's curator insight, April 17, 2018 11:27 PM
Today’s world is so globalized it’s pretty inevitable that cultural aspects are going to be exchanged. In this case, a man who grew up in the U.S. became a well known break dancer, but ended up being deported to Cambodia after being involved with a gang.  What is interesting about his story is that he had never lived in Cambodia outside of infanthood, so he had to adjust to a whole new culture.  He was approached by some kids who wanted him to teach them to break dance, which is an American form of dance, and he agreed.  He has now been able to use breakdancing as a platform to help at risk kids in the city of Phnom Penh.  Kids are able to attend school to learn technology, English, and breakdancing.  He ensures that they avoid the negative experiences he had in a gang by teaching them about the dangers of drugs and HIV.  It was neat to see Cambodian kids listening to American rap music and breakdancing.  This just shows how something from one culture can be taken and used to help people in another culture.  I think people often think that change and foreigness are negative, but as in this case, sometimes cultural diffusion is beneficial. 
Corey Rogers's curator insight, December 15, 2018 7:00 PM
It is a unique video that shows how a certain culture in the US can find a home in Cambodia thousands of miles away. It gives an insight of a man from California brings back to Cambodia what he learned from living in the United States. It is a great story of how one man looks to change Cambodia in a positive way. 
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Break Dancing, Phnom Penh-Style

"A former gang member from Long Beach, California, teaches break dancing to at-risk youths in Cambodia."


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
As crazy as it seems dancing is trying to help kids. A former gang member from Long Beach, California teaches dancing to children at risk in Cambodia. He got deported after being charged with a felony to a country he has never been before. However, he is changing his life around to help change the lives of todays youth through methods that he learned in the states.
more...
Jared Medeiros's curator insight, April 28, 2015 5:27 PM

It apperas that one countrys trash is anothers treasure, and possiblty so much more.  You can see first hand in this video how a culture from one part of the world can have great impact on another so different and so far away.  Being deported could be the best thing that happened to this teacher.  It also could be the best thing that happened to a lot of these childrens lives as well.

Katie Kershaw's curator insight, April 17, 2018 11:27 PM
Today’s world is so globalized it’s pretty inevitable that cultural aspects are going to be exchanged. In this case, a man who grew up in the U.S. became a well known break dancer, but ended up being deported to Cambodia after being involved with a gang.  What is interesting about his story is that he had never lived in Cambodia outside of infanthood, so he had to adjust to a whole new culture.  He was approached by some kids who wanted him to teach them to break dance, which is an American form of dance, and he agreed.  He has now been able to use breakdancing as a platform to help at risk kids in the city of Phnom Penh.  Kids are able to attend school to learn technology, English, and breakdancing.  He ensures that they avoid the negative experiences he had in a gang by teaching them about the dangers of drugs and HIV.  It was neat to see Cambodian kids listening to American rap music and breakdancing.  This just shows how something from one culture can be taken and used to help people in another culture.  I think people often think that change and foreigness are negative, but as in this case, sometimes cultural diffusion is beneficial. 
Corey Rogers's curator insight, December 15, 2018 7:00 PM
It is a unique video that shows how a certain culture in the US can find a home in Cambodia thousands of miles away. It gives an insight of a man from California brings back to Cambodia what he learned from living in the United States. It is a great story of how one man looks to change Cambodia in a positive way. 
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Mekong Delta fights losing battle against salt water

Vietnam's rice region is facing the worst drought to date. Over half a million people have been affected, and the country could lose one million tons of its staple food.Leaders of six countries along the Mekong River met in China to discuss the relief measures.

Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Vietnam is facing a huge problem that being drought. Because of the drought the Vietnamese are on the verge of possibly losing one million tons of there staple food that being rice. Even though the Mekong looks flooded and has plenty of water. That water is toxic to the crops because its salt water. The water that is coming downstream is reducing allowing for more salt water from the sea to come in ruining people crops and lives.
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, August 18, 2016 2:49 PM

Economic progress for some often entails job loss and environmental degradation for others.  As dams upstream are slowing the flow of the Mekong River, the low-lying delta that is a rich agricultural region is facing the ocean water that is moving further inland.  The once isolated and remote Mekong is experiencing some impacts of globalization. 

 

Tags: fluvial, waterVietnamagriculture, SouthEastAsia.

Douglas Vance's curator insight, April 20, 2018 1:18 PM
The location of the pristine rice growing lands on the Mekong delta have also put that very land at risk for destruction. The slow of the flow of water from upstream has allowed saltwater to permeate inland and destroy enormous swaths of land by making them impossible to grow rice due to the salt. For a country like Vietnam that is so heavily dependent on rice exports in a globalized economy, this loss of production could prove to be devastating. 
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Korean Baseball 101: Way Beyond the Bat Flips

Baseball in South Korea is more than a game. It’s akin to a religion. American missionaries first brought the sport to the peninsula in 1905, and the country absolutely loved it. Today, the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO) features 10 teams and a unique sporting culture all its own. The city of Busan and its hometown Lotte Giants have a particularly passionate fan base. From the hitters’ flashy bat flips, to the team’s famous “cheermaster” and its unlikely American super fan, consider this is your crash course on the joyful madness that is Lotte Giants fandom.

Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Baseball in South Korea resembles that of baseball in America however they have there cultural differences. Baseball fans in Korean stadiums resemble that of soccer in Europe there fans are legendary. The bat flips are also much different than that in America. In South Korea they chuck the bat because that is culturally acceptable there. In America if you pimp a homerun your mostly likely going to get nailed by a 90 mph fastball during your next at bat because its seen as disrespectful.
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, August 30, 2017 4:00 PM

If a sport (or other cultural practice) diffuses to a new place, is it going to look exactly the same as it does in the original cultural hearth? Maybe, or like baseball in South Korea, it can have a culture all its own. This is an interesting story that shows how the diffusion of cultural traits around the globe doesn't have to lead to a more bland cultural mosaic. As cultural traits are reterritorialized into new places, they add vibrancy to the cultural fabric of the institution/sub-culture that they've adopted.

 

 

Tags: sport, popular culturediffusion, culturecultural norms, South Korea, East Asia.

Katie Kershaw's curator insight, April 12, 2018 1:28 PM
I don’t know if I subconsciously usually pick scoops that focus on negative situations, but this was one of the few scoops I can remember watching and feeling happy afterwards.  It is so cool that two countries can share a love for the same sport and watch the sport in such different ways.  The Korean fans seem to have much more enthusiasm while watching the game and the atmosphere seems really fun.  I have always enjoyed watching baseball and when I ask other people why they don’t watch, they always say they find it to be too boring.  But watching a Lotte Giants game seems to be anything but boring.  I think one of the biggest cultural differences that I saw between American baseball fans and Korean baseball fans is the ways in which they cheer.  I think that Americans use a lot more smack talk and taunting when they are at baseball games, but the Koreans seem to only be positive.  This is ironic because the Koreans are much more showy with how they cheer, but it’s not obnoxious or unsportsmanlike, it’s just peppy.  I also think it’s unique that the Lotte Giants have a cheer master, who’s job is to get the fans hyped.  American baseball doesn’t have anything close to this with the exception of mascots.  The American equivalent to the cheer master would probably be football or basketball cheerleaders, but they never get the crowd to be so in sync.  I also saw a lot of American influences still present in Korea, even though their experience is so different.  The most obvious is that the team name is in English and happens to also be an MLB team.  I also noticed that many advertisements had English and Korean on them.  It’s interesting that even though the sport is the same, the ways in which the fans celebrate are so different.
Mike curta's curator insight, April 26, 2018 8:41 AM
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The Border That Stole 500 Birthdays

The Border That Stole 500 Birthdays | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it
The story behind the the International Date Line.

 

Not too long ago (Jan. 2012), the arbitrary International Date Line (roughly opposite the Prime Meridian) was moved to better accommodate the regional networks and economic geography of the area straddling the line.  American Samoa, although politically aligned with the United States, was functionally more integrated on the Asian side of the Pacific Rim when it came to their trade partners and their tourism base.  Dynamic economic networks, political allegiances and cultural commonalities create a beautifully complex situation near this 'border.'    


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
The International date line is a tricky situation, initially more thought should have been put into it considering it is just a straight line right down the middle of some islands. One could be next door neighbors with someone who's calendar day is Saturday while they are already are on Sunday. Talk about jet lag.  
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WILBERT DE JESUS's curator insight, April 27, 2015 1:06 PM

This is to me the coolest geographic location in the World... A group of islands nation located in both the south and north hemispheres and also to both the east and west of the international time line zone.

Edgar Manasseh Jr.'s curator insight, May 1, 2015 8:06 PM

500 birthdays were taken away due to an international date line. In Samoa is in a confused state between the united states and the Asian pacific side of the timeline which would cause time and dates to be confusing.Dynamic economic networks and political allegiances have created a very difficult situation for the people near the border in Samoa.  The International Date line in Samoa is something that is needed to be watched and paid attention because it can affect people in ways that can be very significant even at a small tiny rate.

brielle blais's curator insight, April 26, 2018 1:33 PM
This post shows the importance of trade to each country, so much so that Samoa was able to get the International Dateline changed to accommodate their trade needs, skipping a day and allowing easier economic networks with China and Australia, who are important trading partners. 
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Island Biogeography

Part I, island biogeography in a World Regional context...click here to watch part II, why island biogeography matters in places that aren't on islands.  All links archived at: http://geographyeducation.org/2013/12/06/island-biogeography/


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Island life is very diverse as compared to continental life. The shifting plates pulling lands apart and pushing lands together contributed a lot to the diversity we see on islands. Even though Australia is a huge continent it is just as diverse as the smallest island. Islands are so unique with there biogeography because isolation + time = divergence (specialized niches). Species have time to adapt to there habitat with little completion. The divergence of islands is also what makes them so fragile because there is nothing like it anywhere else on earth. If something goes extinct on an Island it is gone for good.
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Kristin Mandsager San Bento's curator insight, May 4, 2015 12:35 PM

There are times where I wish certain species don't spread.  Other times I understand the migration and think it's great.  If humans died out then I believe all species would flourish just as Sir Ken Robinson says.  

Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 14, 2015 11:06 PM
Island Biogeography is the theoretical explanations as to why species occurs, it also studies the species composition and species richness on an island.. it is not specific to land masses around water. Isolation gives species a strong place in their environment. The fact that new species and things show up are amazing, but sometimes new species are not properly adapted because there is no other general force against them and they do not ever learn to defend themselves.
Corey Rogers's curator insight, December 15, 2018 8:47 PM
It is amazing to see how remote islands can create such unique creatures and wildlife animals. The more you see these animals the more you want to go and learn about how they formed and how they became to be one of those unique animals. 
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The Two Koreas

The Two Koreas | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it

"While the Korean War of the early 1950s never formally ended, its aftermath has created starkly divergent worlds for those living on either side of the north-south divide. What follows is a look at life in the two Koreas; how such a night-and-day difference came to be; and where the crisis could go from here. Both governments claimed to be the legitimate rulers of the peninsula. Tensions between north and south gradually mounted, until finally, in June 1950, hundreds of thousands of North Korean troops stormed across the 38th parallel. The unsuspecting South Korean defenders were outgunned and outnumbered, and beat a hasty retreat southward."


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
The two Koreas are polar opposites literally, North and South. The Korean war that took place some 68 years ago never formally ended because they could not come to peace agreements. So the border between North and South Korea known as the DMZ is the most heavily fortified border in the world because tensions still run high. The DMZ is the cease fire line. Both sides fear invasion, however in the current state of things it seems as if the North is more aggressive towards invasion that the South, as the South has found some secret tunnels and fear there's more by the North Koreans. Economically the North is severely behind in the world because of there dictators. While the South has become an economic Tiger thanks to the UN and USA trying to promote democracy in the area.
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Zavier Lineberger's curator insight, April 26, 2018 7:53 PM
(East Asia) This article explains the relationship between the Korean War and modern tensions. After WWII, the USSR occupied territory to the north of the 38th parallel and the US occupied the south. The governments of each half both claimed to be the true government of the whole peninsula until North Korea invaded the South, starting the Korean War. Communist China's entry forced UN and US troops into a stalemate at the parallel, eventually leading to an armistice establishing the DMZ, the most defended border in the world. In subsequent decades, North Koreans have dug tunnels under the DMZ to start a new invasion.

With Soviet help, Kim Il-sung created a military communist dictatorship in the north while the UN created a democracy in South Korea.

Despite common cultural heritage, there is a stark contrast between the two countries. The north has half the population, a higher birth rate, and a life expectancy 12 years lower, displaying the country's mismanagement. While the South has free press, free travel, and is the strongest economy in Asia, North Korea subjugates through punishment and is almost completely isolated. North Koreans have little access to food, electricity, and roads.

North Korea has developed a more aggressive policy in the last decade. Many successful missile tests have been made, including one fired over Japan into the Pacific Ocean last year. Even China, North Korea's one ally, has imposed sanctions on the country. Some think a peaceful solution is still available, while others watch the USA-NK Twitter war in anticipation.
Matt Danielson's curator insight, December 12, 2018 3:51 PM
The two Koreas are a great example of how Capitalism, Democracy, and liberty are far better than Communism. Just the difference in light visible from satellites at night in the two countries speaks volumes. The war being technically not over and only under cease-fire always leaves that chance for the conflict to reopen. Though today they are taking major steps toward peace and making moves that have never been done before. The amount of famine and overall  sub quality of life in North Korea is mind blowing, and with much of it kept secret its hard to imagine how bad it really is.
Kelvis Hernandez's curator insight, December 14, 2018 3:54 PM
For the two Korean nations, there are stark contrasts in the standard of living and wealth of the people. While the Korean war began in the 1950's it never formally ended a ceasefire was called and has just not flared up in a massive battle again. The two nations are uneasy with each other having different ideas for what Korea should be, but both nations do want a joint Korea. Looking at a map of the energy consumption by the two nations there is a line between those who have it and those who do not. These two have shown solidarity as well in the Olympics joining as one nation, but tensions will continue to flare for a long time.
 
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Changes in Three Gorges Dam

NASA's animation of China's Three Gorges Dam construction over the years.

Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
From the animation that NASA has created of the construction of the Three Gorges Dam it is apparent that land has been lost. The Three Gorges Dam was created to generate more energy for Chinas growing economy. It is known as the largest hydroelectric project ever costing around 40 billion dollars and requiring 20,000 workers. There is a good and bad side to the creation of this dam. It has helped Chinas economy grow however to the expense of the people that were displaced because the dam took away land as we can see In the animation. It also effected people downstream negatively as we can see as well because there water supply was depleted. Like most things that take place today the people that benefit from something usually live far away from the problem while those that live closest pay the more costly price.
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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, October 19, 2015 6:32 PM

Inland water - environmental change 

Benjamin Jackson's curator insight, November 9, 2015 5:40 PM

The impact of the Three Gorges Dam on the residents upstream is amazing. I cannot imagine anything like this happening in the US, mostly because of the impact on the people both upstream and downstream. Ecological damage from this dam may not phase the Chinese government, but I think any North American or European government would shudder at the thought of the backlash among their citizens this would create.

Matt Ramsdell's curator insight, December 14, 2015 9:27 PM

Three Gorges damn in China is the largest dam ever constructed. This was created to save on power by creating hydroelectric power for the people of the land. One of the issues with this was the the flooding of the land up streams displacing millions of people. It created a larger up stream area and very small down stream. A lot of the people that lived up stream had to be relocated further inland and faced changing climatif weather. The banks of the river are carved out between what seems like mountainous regions so as you move more uphill the weather and temperature will be a whole new category of life (Depending on how far you relocated).

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Rise of solar panel energy in Bangladesh


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Bangladesh is a very poor and undeveloped nation and most do not have access to electricity. For most of life before solar energy, people stopped when the sun went out. At first the people of Bangladesh did not believe in the idea of Solar energy but that is because they didn't know what it was and the good it could do. Within two years however people started to believe and know around one million homes have solar panels. This is the fastest expansion of solar panels in the world.  The solar panels are also cheap which help the villagers who do not bring in a lot of extra income. The fact that solar panels are actually attainable amenities in Bangladesh is key to villagers success in the modern world.
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Sarah Cannon's curator insight, December 14, 2015 10:26 AM

I believe solar energy will help improve living in places such as Bangladesh. With solar energy, it can provide light at night, store food, and help to produce and cook food. Telecommunications would also be easier to access.

Matt Ramsdell's curator insight, December 14, 2015 3:28 PM

Because of the rise in solar power energy it is allowing what I would consider a dark country is so important is because it is allowing the people of the area to have a longer day. Most people would be at home in the dark but with this cheap and affordable government funded solar panel they are able to have a longer day and seem to be able to be healthier lifestyle as they are not left out in the dark and able to go to a pharmacy at all times. These solar panels can run up to two light bulbs for ten hours allowing life to continue whether its dark or not.

Taylor Doonan's curator insight, March 30, 2018 5:33 PM
A small village in Bangladesh is not generally what comes to mind when you think of solar energy, but this small village is using solar energy to help advance it.. Homes and businesses in this village are installing solar panels due to the lack of electricity. These solar panels make it possible for this town to function past sundown. 
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First taste of chocolate

"To be honest I do not know what they make of my beans," says farmer N'Da Alphonse. "I've heard they're used as flavoring in cooking, but I've never seen it. I do not even know if it's true." Watch how the Dutch respond to a cocoa bean in return or you can watch our entire episode on chocolate here.


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Chocolate is linked to modern day slavery in Africa. The cocoa bean is a billion dollar industry where westerners have the luxury of enjoying while the Ivory coast farmers have the sad fate of cultivating. Most farmers on the Ivory coast do not even know what the cocoa bean is made out of or what chocolate tastes like. Chocolate is a luxury on the Ivory coast because it is hardly available and very expensive. They simply are trying to make a living off of a highly consumed, taken for granted item in wealthy countries. We only see the pleasure behind the cocoa bean not the horrors it actually comes with.
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Benjamin Jackson's curator insight, December 13, 2015 6:02 PM

this is an interesting demonstration of the disconnect between the consumer and the producer. we would consider chocolate to be the product these guys are producing, yet we forget that they only deal with it at the rawest level. something we see everyday is something as rare as gold to these guys.

Martin Kemp's curator insight, December 17, 2015 3:12 PM

how do these people not know what the crop they are producing is or tastes like? that is amazing to me how you can be so oblivious to what you are doing. and how the place that produces cocoa does not actually have access to it.

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 2016 8:15 AM

What is the geography of chocolate like?  This video was produced in the Netherlands, the global center of the cocoa trade, but the world's leading producer of cocoa is Côte d'Ivoire.  There is a dark side to chocolate production; the dirty secret is that slavery is commonplace on cocoa plantations in West Africa.  Although the worst of the situation is glossed over in this video, it still hints at the vast economic inequalities that are part and parcel of the global chocolate trade and the plantation roots of the production.  What are some of your reactions to this video?  


Tags: chocolate, Ivory Coast, Africa, poverty, development, economic, globalization, industry, labor.

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The Daily Show–Spot the Africa

Between rampant racial inequality and Ebola outbreaks, South African comedian Trevor Noah admits he hesitated to visit a country as underdeveloped as America.

Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
This clip is a whimsical but also a way for Americans to understand there labeling of people is actually very incorrect, rude, and offensive. Most of America juts makes assumption based on what Hollywood puts out , for movies and commercials that this place is all desert and needs vast amounts of help. That however is far from the truth. Yes, they have the Sahara desert but that only makes up half of Africa. The bottom half of Africa is prosperous and we as Americans need to not believe everything we see.
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Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 14, 2015 6:15 PM
As comical as this is, it goes to show the kind of racism and pride we have in our country. Here the guest speaker says he took multiple photos of different places and wanted the host to figure out if it is America or Africa. Most of the photos showed undeveloped or terrible sections of the US and opposite for Africa. Each time the pictures were shown, the host assumed it was Developed America and underdeveloped Africa.
Taylor Doonan's curator insight, March 24, 2018 5:24 PM
This video takes a South African and an American and they address misconceptions about Africa by playing a game where the American is shown two images and is to guess which one is in Africa and which is in America, of the images shown the worse looking ones were generally in America. They are not trying to say necessarily that America is worse off than parts of Africa, but that parts of Africa are doing well, and that they are not as bad as we may think. 
Kelvis Hernandez's curator insight, December 14, 2018 12:06 PM
This is such an amazing skit between Trevor Noah and Jon Stewart. It is so informative in how ignorant average U.S. American's can be. Jon Stewart is portraying many people in the U.S. are genuine in their ignorance. With the pictures of scenes from different countries in Africa and in the U.S., you see that these so-called "developing countries" do have some very good things that are happening and the "greatest country" also has issues. It is just one of those things where you don't notice how much better life is getting in the world today.
 
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A Northern Neighbor Growls, and Azerbaijan Reassesses Its Options - The New York Times : ORIGINAL ARTICLE

A Northern Neighbor Growls, and Azerbaijan Reassesses Its Options - The New York Times : ORIGINAL ARTICLE | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it
Azerbaijan, a small, oil-rich country on the Caspian Sea, has balanced the interests of Russia and the United States since it won its independence from the Soviet Union.
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Azerbaijan has a interesting geography being located in between Iran and Russia and sharing a border with the Caspian Sea. This is a small oil rich country that has to dance between Russia and the West the United States included. Azerbaijan as small as it is wants to assert its dominance and impact on the world through energy reserves and the formation of pipelines that will sky rocket Azerbaijan’s economy. These projects will cause them to recieve pressure from Russia. Azeri’s have to find a way to get along with Russia because they have a trend of trying to take over regions that they deem a threat. 
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To Save Its Cliffside Towns, Italy Revives the Art of Terracing - The New York Times: ORIGINAL ARTICLE

To Save Its Cliffside Towns, Italy Revives the Art of Terracing - The New York Times: ORIGINAL ARTICLE | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it
The dry stone walls that create farming plots on steep slopes are more than picturesque: They protect the villages below from floods and landslides.
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Terracing is an important technique that keeps the Cliffside towns like Cinque Terre from washing away. The permeable dry stone walls that border plots are vital to Cinque Terre's survival because they absorb water from heavy rain and allow for that water to run slowly down the hillside preventing the water from washing away towns. Italy is the most terraced land in Europe because of the jagged coastline and mountain chains. As of right now the terraces in the city of Linguria are in poor shape. Leaving this area vulnerable to landslides. It is important to know about this issue because if these terraces are not repaired and maintained villages, cultures, and religions could be swept away in landslides as well.
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Azerbaijan Is Rich. Now It Wants to Be Famous.

Azerbaijan Is Rich. Now It Wants to Be Famous. | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it
Oil-rich, velvet-rope-poor Azerbaijan, a country about the size of South Carolina on the Caspian Sea, would very much like to be the world’s next party capital.

Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Azerbaijan is an oil rich country considering its borders the Caspian Sea. Azerbaijan produces one million barrels of oil everyday making it a legit energy power with a great deal of potential for more. Its a tiny country only about the size of South Carolina and has a population of around 9.2 million people. If this nation can get a proposed pipeline that runs from turkey to Austria it could bring in billions of dollars a year. Azerbaijan is rising in the world all thanks to its abundance of oil.
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Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 14, 2015 3:13 PM

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

Kelvis Hernandez's curator insight, November 1, 2018 7:43 PM
Azerbaijan is an oil-rich country in central Asia. It pumps from the oil fields in their territory under the Caspian Sea. Though a small nation they are becoming masters of the political game as they deepen relationships with both the West and the East. As it becomes more politically and culturally relevant they are looking to expand into a dubaiesque power. One of the richest men in Azerbaijan plans to create a 55 artificial island archipelago where they can build thousands of apartments, some hotels, an airport, and an over 3000 ft tower. This is their way to claim they are now a relevant economic power as well.  
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Corey Rogers's curator insight, December 15, 2018 6:42 PM
What Azerbaijan lacks in size, makes up in overall wealth the country has. Due to the high amounts of oil in the region makes them very profitable and wanting to be talked about more often. With its Primate City of Baku wanting to grow it's popularity and wanting to become, if not better than, Dubai. 
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How Vietnam became a coffee giant

How Vietnam became a coffee giant | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it

"Think of coffee and you will probably think of Brazil, Colombia, or maybe Ethiopia. But the world's second largest exporter today is Vietnam. How did its market share jump from 0.1% to 20% in just 30 years, and how has this rapid change affected the country?"



Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Vietnam does cultivate rice but it is the worlds second largest exporter of coffee. Vietnamese do not drink coffee much they are more of tea drinkers. The cultivation of coffee has been good economically for the country but environmentally it has ruined the country.
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Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 14, 2015 9:29 PM
Typically I would always associate coffee and coffee beans coming from Spanish speaking countries and I would associate Asian countries with drinking tea. This threw me for a little twist, The Vietnamese do drink coffee though. Coffee was introduced to Vietnam in the 19th century by the French. A majority of their coffee beans are exported since the country needs money. After the Vietnam war had ended, their communist ally, The Soviet Union did nothing to help the crippled country. Agriculture was a disaster, bu the government decided to take a risk in the 80s with growing coffee. It was a success and kept increasing 20%-30% every year in the 90s. Now it employs over two million people. Even major brands like Nestle has coffee bean growing rights there.
Richard Aitchison's curator insight, April 3, 2018 8:22 AM
So how does a traditionally tea drinking country, become the 2nd biggest export of coffee? Well we need to look at colonization and well desperation. While the Vietnamese still prefer to drink tea many of the French that were there during colonization prefered coffee. However, coffee production never really took off until post Vietnam War and with a desperation move to help the economy. With a floundering economy and practices that were not working the government turned its eye to coffee production. At the time 60% of Vietnamese people lived below the poverty line, however nowadays they are just about under 10%. It is not without its problems as it has caused problems with destruction of land and heading into the future they have started to exhaust all of the lands that they can use to produce coffee.  They will need to continue to be innovative if they want to continue to see a surge in the coffee market. It is definitely interesting to see why and how certain items are exported out of countries and the history behind it. I for one would never think Vietnam would be a coffee giant.  
tyrone perry's curator insight, May 1, 2018 12:59 PM
Vietnam is one of the highest coffee producers of the world.  It help bring down the poverty level in the country.  But when something good happens of course something negative has to happen.  Many of Vietnam’s fields are thought to still be filled with mines from the war.  Because of that many forests have been cut down to provide fields to grow the coffee.  Needless to say their environmental dangers are rising.
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Singapore passport becomes 'most powerful' in the world

Singapore passport becomes 'most powerful' in the world | Geography 200 Portfolio | 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: Singapore, SouthEastAsia, political, development.


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Singapore has become the holder of the most powerful passport in the world. This means that people from this country has free access to the most countries around the world. America thought they had the most powerful visa in the world however that's the farthest from the truth. Since Donald Trump has become president America's visa has gone down even more while Singapore has been quietly climbing the totem pole.
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Zavier Lineberger's curator insight, May 2, 2018 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.
David Stiger's curator insight, November 27, 2018 1:22 PM
This articles highlights the logistics and technical minutia of globalization in real life. When people think about people traveling, it is easy to forget that there are barriers such as visas. Depending on the prestige and status of a country, a passport can allow a traveler to enter a foreign land visa free or at least hassle free. As the world becomes more interdependent and borders lose their strict nationalistic rigidity, this ability to traverse freely and more easily is important. One might not think that the small nation of Singapore now has the most capable passport out of 195 countries worldwide. Once tied with Germany to access 158 countries visa-free, Singapore pulled ahead when Paraguay reduced its visa restrictions for Singapore. This serves as another sign that Asia and the "global south" is truly catching up to the Western world. As these other nations catch up to the West's development, even surpassing the West's premier status, people's attitudes will eventually change towards these Asian, African, and Latin American nations. The positive associations will attract more business and more travel giving rise to new opportunities and stronger globalized connections. In the end, Singapore's win over Germany in international travel is a victory for globalization. Now whether one thinks globalization is good or bad is another matter entirely. 
Kelvis Hernandez's curator insight, December 14, 2018 4:37 PM
The Singaporean passport is the most powerful passport in the world, which is a great tagline but what does it mean? Well, passports are created for you to travel between borders and usually to create to another country you need to obtain a visa, but if you have a passport from Singapore you now have the most visa-less passport in the world. Allowing you to travel more freely and will allow many people better opportunities. 
 
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Where Ships Go to Die, Workers Risk Everything

In Bangladesh, men desperate for work perform one of the world's most dangerous jobs. They demolish huge ships in grueling conditions, braving disease

Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Bangladesh is a poor country and the shipping trade has taken advantage of the poverty here because they know men will work for little pay and do very dangerous work. As well the shipping industry takes advantage of the lack of environmental laws here so they can pollute and will not get in trouble for it. Making the efforts of countries with environmental laws obsolete. Bangladesh's coast line if filled with huge ships waiting to be demolished this ship wrecking industry has ruined there shore line. The workers are exposed to harsh chemicals and fumes diminishing there life expectancy. It does not seem like there is any hope for these people. It needs to come from the shipping boat companies and all they care about is money not people.
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Matt Manish's curator insight, March 29, 2018 8:57 PM
The workers in this video breaking down old cargo ships are indeed risking everything including their health and their lives for their jobs. The conditions and the hours in which they work are extremely hazardous and it seems like there are no rules where anything goes. There are no safety regulations or equipment for workers to wear. Also, their are multiple deaths that occur in this shipyard every year. This type of work is being brought to Bangladesh because the labor there is so cheap and one can see that these workers are truly being exploited for the type of work they are doing in so many ways. Not only is this very difficult work, but it is extremely dangerous to their health and their lives. More structure and safety regulations should be put in place so this industry in Bangladesh can grow and help the economy there, as well as keep their workers safe most importantly.
Douglas Vance's curator insight, April 23, 2018 12:22 PM
The dangerous conditions of working on these ships is impossible to imagine. Toxic chemicals and fumes, risks of collapses, explosions, or falling debris makes this job borderline inhumane. The risks to workers seems irrelevant in the eyes of the owners of these ships who com to Bangladesh because they know the environmental and workplace regulations are nonexistent. However, this entire situation is created by the swelling pressures of globalization and rapidly accelerating international sea trade.
tyrone perry's curator insight, May 2, 2018 12:24 PM
Bangladesh is one of the largest shipwrecking ports in the world.  This is a very dangerous and low paying job.  because work is so scarce in Bangladesh there are many skill less people looking for work at any cost.  many ships show up with dangerous gasses still in the ship and also lined with asbestos.  on average in the last few years about 15 people die a year.  This has become large because of cheap labor and low environmental and safety standards.
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The Marshall Islands Are Disappearing

The Marshall Islands Are Disappearing | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it
Most of the 1,000 or so Marshall Islands, spread out over 29 narrow coral atolls in the South Pacific, are less than six feet above sea level — and few are more than a mile wide. For the Marshallese, the destructive power of the rising seas is already an inescapable part of daily life. Changing global trade winds have raised sea levels in the South Pacific about a foot over the past 30 years, faster than elsewhere. Scientists are studying whether those changing trade winds have anything to do with climate change.

Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Islands are already at a disadvantage of losing land for a few reasons. First the fact that the older the island gets the more corroding that takes place under the sea. Another reason is they are in the middle of no where so relocation is not easy, costly and not many countries these days are willing to take people in. The Marshall islands like I am sure many other islands are facing in recent years is global warming causing sea levels to rise. So know they have another reason to worry about losing lands. The global warming that takes place on earth never effects the contributors, it almost always effects the little guys who cannot doing anything to fight back. They just get to watch there homes be destroyed because of big time nations. More attention needs to be brought to the subject of global warming and everything and one who is negatively effected by it. What if we were in there shoes, we surely would change our ways then.
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Mark Hathaway's curator insight, December 12, 2015 6:21 AM

Climate change is a controversial issue in the United States. The debate over climate change in our current political environment is stuck in a denial or belief stage.  It is foolish to deny that our climate is changing. The overwhelming majority of scientists have provided the world with data, that proves that man is altering the climate. Those who deny climate change, probably do not really believe that it is not occurring.  They are denying climate change, because they do not favor altering our economic system in an attempt to stop the phenomenon. To really effect climate change, major changes are going to have to be made in the way we consume our energy. Our current political environment cannot and will not implement these changes. As with most problems, nothing will be accomplished until a large swath of Florida is underwater.

brielle blais's curator insight, April 26, 2018 11:45 AM
This post shows how climate change is currently impacting small island nations such as the Marshall Islands. Pacific Sea waters are rising and driving families out of their homes. It is changing the entire physical geography of the land. It is also changing the political climate between different nations as the battle over climate control continues and countries react in different ways to ideas and suggestions, or even laws stating nations like the United States would have to pay money to help those other countries being flooded. 
David Stiger's curator insight, December 7, 2018 11:00 AM
Catastrophic property destruction from sea level rising is (at this point in time) inevitable. A number of Islands that serve as homes for hundreds of thousands of people will be devastated and most likely destroyed. These spots will become uninhabitable and dangerous. The Marshall Islands is just one area that will suffer this fate. Trying to save the islands is a moot point. What is now needed is a discussion about ethics and fiscal responsibility. Industrialized and developed nations led the way in destroying parts of the planet and should be held accountable. To become wealthy, these affluent nations collectively sacrificed the world's fragile environment. With this understanding, people of the Marshall Islands should be given a new home and compensation for their losses. Fortunately, the United States has a deal with the Marshall Islands to allow people to immigrate to the U.S. While this is a good start, these people will require job training, education, homes, transportation, and funds to rebuild their lives. Instead of spending massive amounts of tax dollars on military and defense budgets, Congress needs to reassess its values and priorities. By committing to ethical and noble leadership, the U.S. will have more international prestige and leverage to build defense coalitions and negotiate through diplomatic means. An immense single-nation military-industrial complex will be less relevant. By reducing military spending, this country can address problems like the sinking Marshall Islands and our nation's energy needs. How would it look if the U.S. became a true champion of justice and a despotic nation like China attacked the U.S.? The world would be outraged. The U.N. would condemn the aggressor. Alliances could step forward, allowing America to step back as the world police officer which no one ever asked us to be.  
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Highly concentrated population distribution

"Only 2% of Australia's population lives in the yellow area. "


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
The population of Australia is highly concentrated at the coast. Only about two percent of the population lives in the yellow shaded area on the image present in the article. The reason for the middle of Australia being so lightly populated is because the harsh climates. Where most people do not live the climate resembles the Sahara desert, which is very dry, and lacks rainfall. While the coastal areas where most of the population is concentrated resembles climates like Brazil, California, and India. These climates that most people live are not as harsh on the human and better for agriculture, cattle and port cities are known to be economically more powerful and populated. Since they access to the sea is so imperative these days.
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brielle blais's curator insight, April 26, 2018 1:24 PM
This post shows how this physical geography and climate of a country can impact who lives where, and how crowded the actual livable places can be. The land in the yellow is very hot, dry, and mostly desert and rugged. It would be very difficult for anyone to actually live in this area, due do land that cannot be used for any agriculture, most likely very little water sources, and just plain hot. This means the density of livable cities is very high, giving Australia a unique demographic. 
Nicole Canova's curator insight, May 2, 2018 4:13 PM
This distribution of Australia's population should come to no surprise to people who have a vague idea of the continent's geography. The coastal areas are by far preferable to the desert areas of the continent's interior. A good example of how geography impacts population density and where people decide to live.
Matt Danielson's curator insight, December 12, 2018 4:38 PM
The area often referred to as the "Outback" of Australia is one of the most sparsely populated areas on the planet. Due to the harsh environment and lack of resources not many people live their at all with the exceptions being some scientist, anthropologist, and native aboriginal tribes. This environment to many   seems like a horrible, desolate place. Hence why it was a great setting for Mad Max to help Illustrate the gravity and desperateness of the situation. To people that know the land better there is a lot there and a vast array of species only found in the Outback. 
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China to end one-child policy

China to end one-child policy | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it

"All couples will now be allowed to have two children, the state-run news agency said, citing a statement from the Communist Party. The controversial policy was introduced nationally in 1979, to reduce the country's birth rate and slow the population growth rate. However, concerns at China's aging population led to pressure for change."


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
China enacted a one child policy in hopes of controlling the overpopulation problem in the major cities. It was not a strict law per say that you would go to jail if you had a second child, you got tax breaks if you managed to only have one child. The one child policy ended up working and because of it there are 300 million less children than if they did not have this policy. However they stopped the policy because of the problems that the future generations and rural families faced. The one child policy was bad for rural farmers because they needed more than one child to work the land or work in general to help support the family. There was also a surplus of males because of the ultrasound, the females were usually aborted because makes are seen as more valuable. As well one child will also be burdened with taking care of all there elders, which is costly for one person.  
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Mark Hathaway's curator insight, November 24, 2015 6:58 AM

Chinas change in policy can be directly attributed to the need of unskilled labor. China has become an economic superpower, by exploiting its vast resources of labor. For decades, China has had a vast reservoir of cheap labor to rely on. In recent years, that vast reservoir has begun to run dry. This new phenomenon can be traced to the governments one child policy.  The lack of multiple new births has lead to an older population. An older population can provide the type of manual labor, that China needs to compete in the global market. The government  hopes to revesre the aging trend by ending this policy. If successful, China would likely see another era of great growth within its economy.

Gene Gagne's curator insight, December 1, 2015 7:37 PM

Lets not forget the expansion of china also with its economic strength and its military strength which is a threat to other countries in the area because china can take control and with Chinese moving into Africa and United states as residents china is going to need to populate its own country.

Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 14, 2015 8:55 PM

First implemented in 1979 and diminished in 2013 It is good to hear something like this has finally come to an end. Although it deemed successful by stopping the birth of an estimated 400 million babies, there were some places that allowed two children in rural areas if the first was a girl. It is assumed though that even though this is no longer a required policy, many couples may only have one child since it is accepted as a social norm. 

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Dhaka: fastest growing megacity in the world

A five-part, multimedia series on the coming dystopia that is urbanization.

 

This is a great introduction to the explosion of the slums within megacities.  This video as a part of the article is especially useful.   Click on the title to read the accompanying article.


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Dhaka is the highly overpopulated city in Bangladesh. Dhaka is one of many megacities that can food production cannot keep up with the influx of people. Dhaka is home to 15 million people. Which is crazy because its not a country its a city within a country. It is one of the fastest growing megacities but also one of the poorest with slums around every corner. People gravitate to Dhaka because of the many natural disasters that ruin peoples only source of income and food their land. People ultimately will have no other choice but to move to this megacity in the near future.
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Meagan Harpin's curator insight, November 20, 2013 11:43 AM

The city of Dhaka has experienced a massivie boom in population. Both the rich and the poor are flowing into this city causing many problems that all complain the government is ignoring instead of fixing. The city is very inefficient, with traffic so bad that it is costing the city millions of dollars. There are frequent water shortages resulting in protests in the streets. There is much infrastructure throughout the city as well. But it is also represents a sense of hope to the people that are coming in and moving into the slums, that with the better jobs and money they will be able to get they can better provide for themselves or their family.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 6, 2014 11:23 PM

Dhaka is the fastest growing city in the world, as rich and poor people move to the city everyday. So many poor people are moving here due to the fact there is no other place worth living in Bangladesh. The city is facing many problems, such as lack of traffic signals, minimal clean drinking water for residents and horrible housing for many people. However, some feel the city’s slums offer the best chance for an improved life.   

Sarah Cannon's curator insight, December 14, 2015 10:48 AM

There is a lot of poverty and pollution in Dhaka. The demands for energy and water are high in Dhaka as well. I personally don't see how these people and migrants can live in such a polluted and dirty place and the reason why I can't imagine living in such a place is because I never have. I'm lucky enough to not experience poverty and I greatly appreciate  my life and home. Hopefully things improve in Dhaka and places like Dhaka. Hopefully there will be less pollution and poverty in the future any where in the world.

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Why caste still matters in India

Why caste still matters in India | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it

INDIA’S general election will take place before May. The front-runner to be the next prime minister is Narendra Modi of the Bharatiya Janata Party, currently chief  minister of Gujarat. A former tea-seller, he has previously attacked leaders of the ruling Congress party as elitist, corrupt and out of touch. Now he is emphasising his humble caste origins. In a speech in January he said 'high caste' Congress leaders were scared of taking on a rival from 'a backward caste'. If Mr Modi does win, he would be the first prime minister drawn from the 'other backward classes', or OBC, group. He is not the only politician to see electoral advantage in bringing up the subject: caste still matters enormously to most Indians."


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
The caste system in India still takes place today because it is slow to change. Even though Gandhi went to extreme measures to end the caste system. A caste system is a hierarchy of beings based on heredity. So if your not one of the lucky ones who is born into a top caste there is virtually no way of climbing the social ladder. In elections in particular voters all across the nation are swayed by the caste of the candidates. Caste is also very prominent in rural areas. If someone were to marry someone of a lower caste in rural areas they could face death because that is disrespectful to the norms of these particular areas. Even though many caste laws have been eradicated to benefit the people its still the people that are practicing this tragic system. Its tradition to them, some cannot see past the social injustices that this type of system permits.
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Lora Tortolani's curator insight, April 8, 2015 9:18 PM

I agree that until there are more jobs created for the people of India, the slower the caste will fade out.  Over time it will fade out eventually, but the creation of jobs and more social interaction will help the process move along faster.  

Chris Costa's curator insight, November 15, 2015 2:51 PM

It was interesting to read about Modi's run for prime minister- I recently read a TIME magazine article about him, his original platform, and his subsequent work in office- and to see so much of Obama's run for office in Modi's struggle. Modi's support among his own caste, traditionally one that has been discriminated against in Indian society, is not at all different from Obama's support among the African American community. It goes to show that, for all our differences, people are a lot more alike then we'd care to think. Beyond that, it was interesting to see how much power the old caste system continues to hold in Indian society, much like the issues with race that Americans continue to struggle with within our own society. Appeals to different castes have been employed successfully by politicians and other forms of media; I once read that the most popular Indian films are often love stories revolving around "forbidden love" between two members of different, opposite castes. In a society that is so rich and complex, with hundreds of different languages and beliefs, it is so easy for lines to be drawn and for differences to be focused upon in a negative light. Happily for India, it has come a long way to address these problems and to move forward. While not perfect, India's future looks bright.

Martin Kemp's curator insight, December 17, 2015 3:34 PM

i dont understand how a country like india that is mostly modern and on the world scale can still have such an ancient system of labeling people be such a prominent practice in their society, i hope modi gets elected so he can start to eliminate this

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A short, recent history of Congo

Mapping the war in Congo: mineral wealth, militias and an epic march

Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
The natural resources located in Congo have caused a lot of government instability. There are many competing groups of violent people in the small country of Congo. The country of Congo has been through a lot militia struggle and people trying to seize power of the country, not always for the resources but in some cases for ratification of minority group that the majority group does not like. Congo is at the bottom of the spectrum of health and wealth as well.
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Martin Kemp's curator insight, December 17, 2015 3:00 PM

once again a recurring theme, greedy and corrupt people running countries. with such immense mineral deposits how can this country not be prospering. because the people of these countries are selfish and once again not nationalistic to the point where people will try to make a significant change.

Brian von Kraus's curator insight, January 12, 2016 6:15 PM

Amazing videographic from The Economist showing the recent history of Congo that explains the current instability of the country. 

Matt Danielson's curator insight, November 19, 2018 1:55 PM
his is a great short yet informative breakdown of recent conflict in the Congo. this mineral wealth has lead to much conflict over groups attempting to gain control over it ranging from local militias, the government troops, and outside conflicts spilling in (Rwanda rebels for example). These conflicts have had a severe negative effect on the countries population ranging from political issues, to economic lack of growth because even though minerals are being sold, the wealth gained is not spread to better the country, but to retain control on the mines and for making themselves rich.
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Population growth far outpaces food supply in conflict-ravaged Sahel

Population growth far outpaces food supply in conflict-ravaged Sahel | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it

"The Sahel’s ability to produce food is not keeping pace with its growing population, and global warming will only exacerbate the imbalance, according to a new study.  Among the 22 countries making up the arid region in northern Africa, the population grew to 471 million in 2010 from 367 million in 2000, a jump of nearly 30%. As the population grew rapidly, the production of crops remained essentially unchanged.  Using satellite images to calculate annual crop production in the conflict-ridden Sahel belt, south of the Sahara desert, the researchers then compared output with population growth and food and fuel consumption."

 

Tags: Africa, Sahel, population, environment, water, ecology, environment depend, weather and climate, sustainability, agriculture, food production.


Via Seth Dixon
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Also known as the African Transition Zone, this region is one of the harshest areas on the planet. So it is no wonder that the Sahel is having trouble feeding the population influx. It is a very Arid climate making food production difficult if lacking the technology to make this desert terrain work, which the Sahel does lack. The global warming that is taking is also going to have a terrible effect on the Sahel if there population trends continue. They need help, mostly how to make this area sustainable for the people that live here.
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Benjamin Jackson's curator insight, December 13, 2015 5:59 PM

with the strife in this region it is hardly surprising that it is hard to maintain food supplies in the face of large scale immigration. in a region where it is hard to survive, immigration would be a massive threat, straining already thinly spread resources.

Raymond Dolloff's curator insight, December 15, 2015 12:22 AM

If a country has a big population growth, the resources that it has if they are already scarce may become devastating. As the population of Sahel does increase, the amount of food resources will not have the proper time to react to the growth. Granted it may take a while for agricultural crops to grow and many citizens may face hard times facing finding food, but their hardships will be overcome by farmers trying to produce more crops to help ease that hardship.

Martin Kemp's curator insight, December 17, 2015 2:38 PM

this seems like an alarmingly common problem in the world today with population growth happening at an alarming rate in many parts of the world. most notably india and china. as well as in sahel, if your population grows by 100 million in 10 years it will be impossible to keep up and be able to provide for that many people in such a reletively short time.

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Russia’s Villages, and Their Way of Life, Are ‘Melting Away’ - The New York Times : ORIGINAL ARTICLE

Russia’s Villages, and Their Way of Life, Are ‘Melting Away’ - The New York Times : ORIGINAL ARTICLE | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it
Contrary to President Vladimir V. Putin’s claims of population growth, rural areas — long considered the wellspring of Russian culture and identity — are dying.
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
Russia’s villages literally are melting away. A resident of one of the villages states that “We have not had a wedding or a baptism for quite some time — we mostly have funerals”. This statement seems to show that Russians are dying faster than they are being born. So the lack of population growth in Russia is contributing to villages being lost. This is sad to think that small rural areas are disappearing because they are the backbone of all countries, they hold old traditions and cultures that will end up being lost if these villages and people disappear. 
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Opinion | How Not to Engage With Pakistan - The New York Times : ORIGINAL ARTICLE

Opinion | How Not to Engage With Pakistan - The New York Times : ORIGINAL ARTICLE | Geography 200 Portfolio | Scoop.it
President Trump’s attempt at humiliating and punishing Pakistan won’t work. Pakistan has greater leverage over us than we imagine.
Stevie-Rae Wood's insight:
The Trump administration recently came out and stated that they are stopping security aid to Pakistan, because Trump stated that they have been feeding use lies and deceit. This is a tough line approach to is not likely to work as effectively as the Trump administration thinks, because they have leverage over us. Our war in the landlocked Afghanistan has been dependent on the geography of Pakistan. We have been over the past 16 years been dependent on transit through Pakistani territory. Without Pakistani cooperation  our army in Afghanistan risks becoming a beached whale. So Trumps attempt at trying to reprimand Pakistan will not work.
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