Headlines

Of Arabs and Muslims and the Big Ban

Now that President Donald Trump’s decision to ban citizens of seven Muslim majority countries from entering the United States continues to drift into legal labyrinths about its legality–or not, it may be useful to clarify some myths that often lead to an even greater confusion regarding the over-written, under-reported issue of who are Arabs and who Muslims.

Making the Deep Blue Sea Green Again

Kids growing up in the Seychelles think of the ocean as their backyard, says Ronald Jean Jumeau, the Seychelles ambassador to the UN.

Alternative Mining Indaba Makes Its Voice Heard

“Comrades, we have arrived. This cherry is eight years awaited. We have made it to this place,” Bishop Jo Seoka told the crowd, pausing to allow for the whistles and cheers.

Expansion of Renewable Energies in Mexico Has Victims, Too

The growing number of wind and solar power projects in the southern Mexican state of Yucatán are part of a positive change in Mexico’s energy mix. But affected communities do not see it in the same way, due to the fact that they are not informed or consulted, and because of how the phenomenon changes their lives.

The Planned US Border Tax Would Most Likely Violate WTO Rules – Part 2

As American lawmakers and the Trump administration prepare the ground for introducing a border adjustment tax, many controversial issues have emerged, including whether they go against the rules of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

Still in Limbo, Somaliland Banking on Berbera

Crossing African borders by land can be an intimidating process (it’s proving an increasingly intimidating process nowadays in Europe and the US also, even in airports). But crossing from Ethiopia to Somaliland at the ramshackle border town of Togo-Wuchale is a surreally pleasant experience.

Beware of the New US Protectionist Plan, the Border Adjustment Tax – Part 1

A new and deadly form of protectionism is being considered by Congress leaders and the President of the United States that could have devastating effect on the exports and investments of American trading partners, especially the developing countries.

Improved Cookstoves Boost Health and Forest Cover in the Himalayas

Mountain communities in the Himalayan region are almost entirely dependent on forests for firewood even though this practice has been identified as one of the most significant causes of forest decline and a major source of indoor air pollution.

Can Bangladesh Become an Economic Powerhouse?

According to Pricewaterhouse Coopers, Bangladesh has the potential to become the world's 23rd largest economy by 2050. In a report released earlier this month, PwC also predicted Bangladesh would be the 28th biggest economy by 2030 in terms of its Gross Domestic Product calculated at Purchasing Power Parity. This may not seem like a big deal given that Bangladesh already has the 31st largest economy in the world in terms of total GDP; however, thinking along that line may be misleading given the bigger picture.

Corruption Kills

Preparing for earthquakes should go beyond first aid preparation. Most of the time schools, companies and government offices equip employees, workers, and students the basic knowledge of stop, drop, cover, hold, and then evacuate to open spaces, as protocols in the event of an earthquake. As an extra preparation, like in our offices at Palafox Associates and Palafox Architecture, all of our employees are equipped with emergency kits that have a whistle, flashlight, bottle of water, compass, first aid kit, and multi-function portable tools. Identified members of the company are trained to do first aid, rappelling, and coordination for emergencies. But at the end of the day, these are things that we hope will not be necessary because preparation goes beyond first-aid reactionary measures.

Washington Rules Change, Again

Over the last four decades, the Washington Consensus, promoting economic liberalization, globalization and privatization, reversed four decades of an earlier period of active state intervention to accelerate and stabilize more inclusive economic growth, associated with Franklin Delano Roosevelt and John Maynard Keynes.

Energy Access Builds Inclusive Economies and Resilient Communities

Jaipal Hembrum runs three one-man home enterprises - a bicycle repair shop, a tiny food stall and a tailoring unit in Kautuka, a remote village in eastern India. Sewing recycled clothes into mattresses late into the evening, the 38-year-old father of three girls says two light bulbs fed by a solar power system have changed his life.

Corruption Brings Down an Empire: Odebrecht in Brazil

People in Brazil have been overwhelmed by the flood of news stories about the huge web of corruption woven by the country’s biggest construction company, Odebrecht, which is active in dozens of fields and countries.

Fear of Education

There are two prevailing mindsets that could account for the staggered growth of female education in Pakistan: that which thinks of education as an asset, and the other which views it as a threat. The crux of the issue of slow-to-improve gender disparity in our education system is that Pakistanis appear to have both mindsets at the same time.

The High Price of the World Bank’s Blunder

It was the country's largest infrastructure project - that is up to that point of time in 2011, costing USD 2.9 billion. It was also the World Bank's largest loan to the tune of USD 1.2 billion. Asian Development Bank, JICA and Islamic Development Bank also joined hands to fund the project that would be so vital for Bangladesh's development, especially for the 30 million people living in the disadvantaged south for whom the River Padma stood as a solid barrier towards national integration.

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