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Pulitzer Prize winning reporter discusses new “age of acceleration”

first_imgThomas Friedman, three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter and author of six best-selling books, discussed his book “Thank You for Being Late: An Optimist’s Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations” on Friday in the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center during a lecture hosted by the Mendoza College of Business.Titled “The Big Trends Shaping the World Today: Economics, Technology and Geopolitics,” the event was part of the annual Thomas H. Quinn lecture series, named after a Notre Dame alumnus who previously served as chair of the Mendoza Business Advisory Council. A New York Times columnist who was a White House correspondent during Bill Clinton’s presidency, Friedman spent over 40 years covering international affairs. He said his book about the age of accelerations discusses the manner in which he considers the world. While sentiment in the past might have encouraged thinking inside or outside of the box, Friedman urged people to “think about the world today without a box.”This reflective thinking led to the title “Thank You for Being Late,” Friedman recalled. When waiting for guests to arrive to breakfast, he had time to ponder the world around him and ultimately came to new conclusions about it.“When you press the pause button on a computer, it stops, but when you press the pause button on a human being, it starts,” he said. “That’s when it starts to reflect, re-think and re-imagine.”Friedman discussed what he refers to as “the machine,” or the forces shaping and transforming the world today. “The machine is re-shaping five rounds [of the world]: politics, geopolitics, ethics, the workplace and community,” Friedman said.He asserted people are actually in the middle of three non-linear accelerations occurring at the same time due to three forces: the market, Mother Nature and “Moore’s Law.” “[Moore’s Law] predicts that the speed and power of microchips will double roughly every 24 months, and the price will stay roughly the same,” he said.Friedman explained his chapter on Moore’s Law is named “What the Hell Happened in 2007,” because 2007 can be understood in time as one of the greatest technological inflection points in history. Not only was the first iPhone released that year, he said, but Twitter went global, Google bought YouTube and Android, the Kindle launched and Netflix streamed its first video, to name a few.This sudden exponential increase in technology, Friedman said, created a large gap between social and physical technologies that was exacerbated with the 2008 stock market crash.Technology is advancing faster than the average human being in society, he said, and we need to consider how we can enable everyone to learn faster and govern smarter to take advantage of new technology.“The days where you could go to college for four years and think you can rely on that for 30 years is so 1950s,” Friedman said. “There are things students will learn in their first year that will be updated by their third year.”The digital divide was one of the most prominent divides in the past, Friedman said, but now people all over the world have access to technology. Nowadays, there’s the self-motivation divide, where people must learn to integrate technology to improve a world that has moved from being interconnected to “interdependent.”“[Mother Nature’s] most healthy ecosystems are all built on complex, adaptive networks and systems, where different parts work together to prove their resilience and propulsion,” he said. “My argument is that the company, the country, the university, the political party that most mirrors Mother Nature’s strategies of resilience and propulsion when the climate changes is the one that will thrive in this age of acceleration.”Tags: age of accerlation, Pulitzer Prize reporter, technology, Thomas Friedmanlast_img read more

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Notre Dame celebrates Earth Day virtually, reflecting on sustainability progress

first_imgSerena Zacharias | The Observer The Office of Sustainability hosted a Zoom seminar Wednesday presenting on the progress the University has made in the past few years to adopt sustainable practices.Mullaney and others in the Office of Sustainability highlighted sustainability initiatives and progress Notre Dame has made in the past year in multiple categories, including energy and emissions, water, building and construction and waste.In terms of energy and emissions, the University broke ground of the hydroelectric generation facility in Seitz Park on the St. Joseph River and announced a solar facility partnership with the Indiana Michigan Power.“Once commissioned these two renewable energy projects together will supply the equivalent of approximately 15% of the University’s electrical needs purely from renewable sources,” Allison Mihalich, senior program director in the office of sustainability, said.Notre Dame has also phased out coal burning entirely and commissioned a plant which uses geothermal well fields in order to power Dunne, Flaherty and McCourtney Halls. Fourteen campus buildings now have Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification with Duncan Student Center, Corbett Family Hall and O’Neill Hall receiving the honor just last week.Mihalich also noted the care Notre Dame facilities have taken with major renovations and reconstruction projects on campus, specifically mentioning McKenna Hall. Since McKenna Hall closed reconstruction, 693 pieces of furniture and fixtures have been distributed to other University departments across campus.In addition, the Grotto’s asphalt was replaced over the summer with permeable pavers and sidewalks.“Permeable surfaces are really great for the environment as they reduce the amount of stormwater runoff entering our natural waterways and allow it to naturally drain into the surface,” Mihalich said.The University also introduced a new food waste system, Grind2Energy, in the past year to reduce the amount of nonconsumable food waste on campus while providing clean energy to a local farm. Since the three systems were installed in the beginning of 2019, Mihalich said over 280 tons of food waste have been diverted from the landfill.The Office of Sustainability also mentioned progress in the food sourcing, education, research and community outreach. Prior to the cancellation of in-person classes at the University, many of the events slated to occur on Earth Day involved lectures and discussions allowing faculty members and researchers across campus to discuss sustainability work.As the first Earth Day was organized as a teach-in, Caitlin Jacobs, the associate program manager in the Office of Sustainability, said in an interview that the planning committee wanted to nod to the day’s history by structuring the events in a similar style.“We agree that calling it a teach-in wouldn’t be quite right because a teach-in kind of implies opposition to the administration and rather we conceived of it as a teach-for the planet,” Annie Gilbert Coleman, an associate professor of American Studies who was involved in planning for the day, said.While in-person events were cancelled, the Office of Sustainability worked to gather a number of digital resources for students, faculty and staff to honor the planet while staying safe.Coleman urged faculty members in a letter sent out last week to use the newly-created Take 10 for the Planet page, which Alex Hajek, program coordinator for the minor in sustainability, worked on building. The page offers resources at varying time commitments over a number of disciplinary standpoints to learn more about climate change and the environment. While Hajek said the page is still a work in progress, the website offers resources which can serve as a starting point to learn more about environmental issues.In place of an exhibit in the Rare Books and Special Collections department of the Hesburgh Library, an online exhibit was created to feature primary sources to learn more about the natural world and policies and campaigns throughout history relating to the environment. Jacobs also provided a list of suggestions of films about sustainability and the climate which can be accessed for free on Kanopy with a Notre Dame net ID and password.Coleman hopes these resources and the discussions regarding the state of the planet can help shed light on the importance of improving environmental issues, as COVID-19 has made it clear how people, the economy, consumerism and political ideologies are connected to the natural world.“The virus really is exposing environmental problems we’ve been brushing under the rug for a long time,” she said.Tags: Earth Day, Grind2Energy, Minor in Sustainability, Office of Sustainability, sustainability While many Earth Day events were canceled across the globe, the Office of Sustainability provided resources to allow Notre Dame community members to celebrate the environment indoors on the historic 50th anniversary of the holiday.In the past few years, the University has prioritized creating a comprehensive strategy to address sustainability concerns across campus after Pope Francis issued his encyclical Laudato Si in 2015, which called on people to take action against environmental degradation.“I think that gave us a new, and a kind of an enhanced call to action,” Carol Mullaney, the senior director in the office of sustainability, said during a Zoom discussion Wednesday.last_img read more

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Grape Growers

first_imgWith the growth and increased marketability of the state’s wine industry, Athens, Georgia, is hosting new conferences that will focus on how to create quality fruit and turn it into a palatable beverage. The Southeastern Regional New Grape Growers Conference will be held at the University of Georgia’s South Milledge Greenhouse Complex in Athens on Dec. 11.The December conference is being organized by UGA, Virginia Tech and North Carolina State University. Members of these schools and industry representatives will speak at the Athens conference on Dec. 11 and again at a conference in Asheville, North Carolina, on Dec. 12. The conference will be held from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. in the greenhouse complex classroom at 2500 South Milledge Avenue.The UGA Viticulture Team will be represented at the conference and will provide support and guidance for new vineyard growers. The team has been experimenting with cultivation practices during on-farm research trials and will share commercial management strategies.The conference also includes a panel of Cooperative Extension specialists, winemakers, owners and vineyard managers from Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia.The conference will conclude with an optional tour of UGA’s Durham Horticulture Farm in Watkinsville, Georgia.The 2019 Georgia Wine Producers Conference will be held on Feb. 4-5, 2019, at Chateau Elan in Braselton, Georgia.The conference will include presentations by viticulture faculty and graduate students from UGA and Cornell University as well as industry representatives from Virginia and Georgia. Techniques in viticulture, disease management, winemaking and marketing will all be covered at the conference.Both conferences will explore the complexities of growing grapes and creating wine in the realms of cost, vineyard design, site choice, integrated pest control and overall management.Registration for the Regional New Grape Growers Conference is limited to the first 40 participants. To register, go to events.attend.com/f/1383787186.For a detailed schedule and speaker biographies, or to register for the 2019 Georgia Wine Producers Conference, visit www.georgiawineproducers.org/2018-annual-meeting. Register before Jan. 9, 2019, for an early bird discount.last_img read more

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$65,000 USDA grant finances strategic marketing for two Randolph companies

first_imgLEDdynamics hired a new employee this week – and they hope to hire more. Despite the economic downturn, this Randolph business, a national leader in energy efficient LED lighting technology, is growing. In part, they credit their success to marketing efforts funded with Recovery Act dollars.Through a $65,000 USDA Rural Development Rural Business Enterprise Grant backed with American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds, the Randolph Area Community Development Corporation (RACDC) was able to finance marketing services and technical assistance for two Randolph companies – LEDdynamics and the Randolph Farm Stand.LEDdynamics developed the first true LED replacement bulb that fits in a standard fluorescent light. Unlike the billions of fluorescent bulbs in use around the world, the EverLED tubes contain no mercury or lead.  They also last up to five times as long as fluorescent tubes and use 33-percent less power. These and other innovations have put the company on the cutting-edge of the green energy business. What they needed was a way to get the word out.“It’s hard for a small Vermont business to get things out in the tech world,” said Cheryl Gilbert, Chief Financial Officer for the company.With RACDC’s assistance, they were able to work on marketing efforts, which included the creation of a new logo, targeted campaigns, an updated website, and the addition of a marketing manager. Since the grant was obligated in September 2009, the company has seen an uptick in business and added five employees.“To grow at all in this economy is amazing,” said Gilbert, whose company supports 28 technical jobs in this agrarian based rural community.The Randolph Farm Stand has also begun to make changes due to the strategic marketing funding.  One of the big transformations the company made was the adoption of a new name – Chef’s Market – to better reflect their products and services.Chef’s Market is a full service small grocer connecting producers of high quality local produce with consumers who value local agriculture and high quality food. It has established itself as an important community institution in a town with fewer than 5,000 residents. Owners Scott and Tammy Aronson have also recently added a kitchen, deli and dinners “to go,” prepared by Scott, a French chef, whose grandfather once owned a French restaurant in Randolph. The couple hopes to serve a need in the community and bring their offerings to a larger audience.“We’re doing great,” said Tammy Aronson.  “Even with the economy, we’re running really well.”President Obama signed The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 into law on Feb. 17, 2009.  It is designed to jumpstart the nation’s economy, create or save millions of jobs and put a down payment on addressing long-neglected challenges so our country can thrive in the 21st century. The Act includes measures to modernize our nation’s infrastructure, enhance energy independence, expand educational opportunities, preserve and improve affordable health care, provide tax relief, and protect those in greatest need.”President Obama’s Recovery Act has helped create jobs and lay a new foundation for economic growth during the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.  “USDA has used Recovery Act funding to create badly-needed jobs and stimulate local economies, help farmers and rural businesses make it through tough times, ensure that struggling families can put food on the table, and build and revitalize critical infrastructure in rural communities across AmericaFor more information about USDA Rural Development’s * Program in Vermont/New Hampshire contact the *Name Office at *number or visit http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/vt(link is external), and for information about USDA’s Recovery Act efforts visit www.usda.gov/recovery(link is external).  More information about the Federal government’s efforts on the Recovery Act is available at www.recovery.gov(link is external).             USDA Rural Development’s mission is to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for rural residents. Rural Development fosters growth in homeownership, finances business development, and supports the creation of critical community and technology infrastructure. Further information on rural programs is available at a local USDA Rural Development office or by visiting USDA Rural Development’s web site at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/vt(link is external).Source: USDA. Randolph, VT, February 17, 2010 —#last_img read more

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Shumlin holds slight lead in Democratic primary, recount possible

first_imgSenate President Pro Tem Peter Shumlin (D-Windham) says it looks like he’s won, while state Senator Doug Racine (D-Chittenden), only 182 votes back, is not ready to concede in the race for the Democratic nomination for governor of Vermont. Even when the official results are posted it might not be over. Both Racine and Secretary of State Deb Markowitz are less than 2 percentage points behind Shumlin, which would allow either to call for a recount. According to Vermont Public Radio, with all precincts reporting, the unofficial results show Shumlin with 18,239 votes to Racine’s 18,057. Markowitz is more than 600 votes back in third, with Matt Dunne of Hartland in fourth and state Senator Susan Bartlett (D-Lamoille) in fifth.Racine declared Wednesday morning: “We are seeing discrepancies in the online, unofficial results, and we want to wait for the official results before making a decision about next steps. I have not conceded and I have talked with Peter Shumlin, who has agreed that we should see the official results before announcing a winner.”The Secretary of State told Racine that the official results would be available Tuesday, August 31.In an email to supporters, Shumlin said, “Thanks to your incredible support, it looks like we have won the Democratic gubernatorial primary!”I am honored by the support that you have given me and honored by the opportunity that it appears we have before us. I would like to thank each and every one of you for your support.  Thank you for sharing your stories and your experiences.  Thank you for inviting me into your towns and into your homes.  And finally, thank you for believing in my vision for Vermont.”I would also like to thank my opponents for engaging in a respectful campaign that elevated the political discourse in Vermont and did a service for our democracy.  Our record number of forums presented an incredible opportunity for Vermonters to engage with us on the important issues facing our state.”Yesterday’s record turnout was an indication of the strength and enthusiasm of our Party and our ability to beat Brian Dubie in November.”Below are links to several reports about Tuesday’s election:VPRUnofficial Total Places Shumlin In LeadSecretary of State: Condos Wins For Dems; Gibbs For GOPWCAXVt. statewide primary racesDemocrats for governor hold unity rallyBurlington Free PressShumlin: ‘Looks like we’ve won’By Terri Hallenbeck, Free Press Staff WriterWith all precincts reporting, State Sen. Peter Shumlin was leading Sen. Douglas Racine by 190 votes, with Secretary of State Deb Markowitz in third place trailing by 684 votes.Photos: Democratic Unity RallyResults: Unofficial numbers from Governor, U.S. Senate and U.S. House racesBreaking: Dunne concedes racePhotos: Vermont Primary Daylast_img read more

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Diversity Insight: What matters is not how employees look, but how they think

first_img“Alexa, what is diversity?”The state of being diverse; variety; a range of different things.“Alexa, what does it mean to have diversity?”Understanding that everyone is unique and recognize individual differences.Most of us get these definitions. We understand what diversity is, what it means to have diversity within our workforce and why it is important. So why are we still not moving the needle with our diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives?To understand this, let’s go back to what it means to “have diversity.” It is not just about understanding that each individual is unique and recognizing differences, but about what differences we recognize. To help us think about this, let’s look at two types of diversity: continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

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Biggest Japan bank kicks off new era with $700 million Grab bet

first_imgTopics : He’s not even the boss yet, but Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc.’s Hironori Kamezawa is already making his mark on Japan’s biggest bank.As the leader of MUFG’s digital push, Kamezawa is spearheading the lender’s $700 million investment in Singapore tech giant Grab, people with knowledge of the matter said. The deal, which equates to about 5% of Grab’s current estimated $14 billion value, may help MUFG tap the ride-hailing startup’s millions of app users and deepen its presence in Southeast Asia.Read also: Gojek, Grab prices now included in inflation calculation as they ‘grow significantly’ The deal is set to be MUFG’s biggest investment in a tech startup. Through the alliance, it intends to market a range of financial services from insurance to loans to Grab’s users, said a person familiar with the deal who wasn’t authorized to discuss the matter publicly.Grab is trying to build a regional super-app that offers a range of services including finance, payments and rides. The startup doesn’t disclose its number of users, but says its app has been downloaded onto more than 166 million mobile devices in the region.Read also: Grab launches new airport e-taxi service at Soekarno-Hatta The digital hook-up would complement MUFG’s growing physical standing in Southeast Asia, through its units including Bangkok-based Bank of Ayudhya Pcl and the recently acquired PT Bank Danamon Indonesia.It could also give MUFG know-how in developing digital offerings at home, where the retail banking system remains heavily burdened by a reliance on cash and paperwork at branches. MUFG is even offering to pay customers to give up their passbooks and migrate to online platforms.“This is a noteworthy deal if true, since it could push forward MUFG’s offering of financial services on apps,” said Ken Takamiya, an analyst at Nomura Holdings Inc. in Tokyo. “The question is how fast they can start offering services and how the experience gained there will be utilized in the domestic business.” Kamezawa, 58, was named chief executive officer last month, and he will take the post in April to steer the bank through challenges ranging from negative interest rates to the need to modernize services. Analysts have expected MUFG to accelerate its financial-technology efforts under the new leader, who has already been helming projects including the development of the bank’s digital coin.“Kamezawa as new CEO would like to put his imprint on the strategic direction at an early stage,” said Michael Makdad, an analyst at Morningstar Inc. in Tokyo.The University of Tokyo mathematics graduate is a rare breed in an industry where most elites have either law or economics backgrounds. He has been digital transformation officer since 2017, overseeing efforts ranging from introducing more automation at branches to driving a blockchain payments initiative with U.S. firm Akamai Technologies Inc.Depending on the price paid for Grab, Kamezawa will need to justify the investment with synergies that boost MUFG’s Asian business, Makdad said.last_img read more

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DC schemes urged to consider currency hedging

first_img“In addition to that, in this era of political change we believe that currency markets will be increasingly [more] volatile over the next few years rather than less,” Sharples said.As a result, DC schemes should give currency hedging serious consideration and take action if necessary.In its paper, Aon Hewitt said it believed hedging foreign currency exposure back to sterling would generally dampen overall portfolio volatility over the medium term, though the risk reduction benefits may not be so significant for long-term investors.The consultancy recommended hedging the full currency risk for asset classes with relatively stable underlying values, such as overseas bonds or absolute return strategies. Investors should take a pragmatic approach with asset classes such as equity, hedging half of the currency risk. Among things that trustees needed to think about was whether to make a strategic decision for the long term or a tactical decision for the medium term, Aon said.“Clearly a tactical decision requires ongoing monitoring and periodic adjustment, which increases the required governance capacity, and may also increase tracking error which would require careful communication with members,” the firm said. “Following the recent depreciation of sterling, we believe the pound has fallen to a level sufficient for trustees to consider whether to introduce a strategic currency hedge, if not already in place,” it said.Aon Hewitt cautioned that trustees should consider their scheme’s specific circumstances and investment beliefs to make sure currency hedging cut their risk enough to justify the extra cost. UK defined contribution (DC) pension schemes should consider using currency hedging to protect members as they become more globally diverse, according to a new paper.Consultancy Aon Hewitt said in a paper on currency hedging and DC pension schemes that currency movements could have a significant impact on portfolio volatility and, at times, can dominate returns. Joanna Sharples, principal consultant at Aon Hewitt, said: “With DC schemes increasingly exploring investment options on a global basis and using overseas assets both to seek returns and to diversify, it is inevitable that there is the potential for members to be more exposed to exchange-rate fluctuations.”This meant schemes faced the dilemma of how to protect themselves against adverse currency movements.last_img read more

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Syracuse remains winless after 5-2 loss to Colgate

first_imgSyracuse goalkeeper Ady Cohen saved a quick shot, but then Colgate gathered the rebound and scored. That was the theme of the first period, as Syracuse fell behind, 3-0, en route to a sixth straight loss to start the season. A poor first period left Syracuse (0-6) chasing Colgate (3-2-1) in Hamilton, NY on Friday Night. The scoring started early with the Raiders taking the lead seven minutes into the first period. Then two goals in three minutes by Colgate, including one on a five-on-three power play, demoralized SU. With the win, the Raiders remained undefeated at home this season. After the first intermission, Syracuse came out of the break reenergized and reinvigorated. Perhaps it was something head coach Paul Flanagan said in the locker room. In the second period, SU outshot Colgate 11-0, but couldn’t score.Liz Auby, Colgate’s goalie, leads the nation with over 300 minutes played. She also added 31 saves tonight to her 101 saves on the year.On the other side, Flanagan chose to switch up his starting goalie once again as Ady Cohen got the start with Allison Small dealing with an injury. Cohen allowed five goals on 26 shots, which added to the ongoing battle for the starting spot. Flanagan has yet to decide on a starting netminder for SU this season.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“I don’t think we have an established number one,” said Flanagan last week.The fire that the Orange had in the second period fizzled out in the third with the game effectively over. Two consolation goals from SU made the final score 5-2. However, this was yet another performance where the Orange looked bright in brief moments, but were outplayed for most of the game.Syracuse returns to Tennity Ice Pavilion tomorrow afternoon seeking its first win over Colgate in five years. Comments Published on October 18, 2019 at 8:59 pm Contact Gaurav: gshetty@syr.edu Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

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Richard Flint – Racing is a ‘critical friend’ of betting in tackling its regulatory predicaments

first_img StumbleUpon Share UK Racing pushes for drastic levy reforms as deep recession looms August 25, 2020 Spotlight ups matchday commentary reach and capacity for new EPL Season  August 21, 2020 Ending his 17-year tenure at Sky Betting & Gaming (Sky Bet), industry figurehead Richard Flint has called for betting and racing leaders to work in partnership, tackling an ‘existential threat’ facing all betting stakeholders.Speaking to the Racing Post, Richard Flint the former Executive Chairman of Sky Bet, warned UK racing leaders not to be complacent in believing that their sport is immune to betting’s current regulatory predicaments.In his warning, Flint acknowledges the growing profile of gambling industry sceptics, ‘that is way higher now’, stating that negative perspectives are becoming ‘influential among policymakers’.“That’s why I think it’s a dangerous moment for the betting industry and by extension for the racing industry because there are more politicians with a very negative view of the industry than there are with a positive view,” Flint said.With the UK government having enforced its FOBTs £2 wagering reduction last April, Flint warns that campaigners and politicians have turned their attention to scrutinising betting’s links with sports.A stricter regulatory agenda could lead to a blanket ban on betting-sports advertising and sponsorship damaging racing indefinitely.“If all advertising was banned that would take racing off the terrestrial TV, it would stop race sponsorships, it would do vast harm to racing’s finances,” Flint said.Describing racing as a ‘critical friend’ of the betting, Flint calls for sector leaders to take heed of warnings, and work together in partnership.Issuing a response, the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) acknowledged Flint’s concerns, reaffirming that it wouldcontinue to promote socially responsible betting as core mandate, as well as emphasising the importance of the sector to the sport to politicians. Related Articles Share Spotlight delivers Racing Post translated services for Pari-Engineering Russia August 26, 2020 Submitlast_img read more

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