• Reviewing the role of jobs in economic development - If you want to know the most vital ingredients to economic development, look at the indicators used by economists in measuring economic growth. The problem is that most of these formalized metrics and indicators are dominantly quantitative; which means that they are principally  concerned with numbers and statistics and not with the quality of those indicators that are needed to ensure development. One economic indicator that is rarely discussed in a qualitative and in-depth manner is a country’s employment level or the level of job production. In the World Bank’s 2013 World Development Report on Jobs, the global institution aims to answer the crucial questions policy… READ MORE...
  • The shaky making of economic policies - When markets are wrong and fail, governments step in and correct them - is that so? Or, the other way around; when governments make a mess of things; markets tend to find their own ways to correct them. Absolutely not! But many seem to believe that such relations exist between markets and governments’ actions in the making and shaping of economic policies. As usual, reality is much more complex than most of us are able to grasp. Even economists and other analysts of public affairs tend to take for granted that there exist a sort of permanent confrontation between governments and markets. Two camps can… READ MORE...
  • The modernisation of fairy tales - Most European regions are rich with folklore dating back to the “beginning of times”. These stories are a key element in most traditions, reflecting the kind of moral and ideological foundations local cultures are rooted in. In the early 19 th century, two German brothers took these bits of folklore and weaved them into well-loved classics that would soon be generally known as fairytales. Today, in 2013, the tales spun by the Brothers Grimm a couple of centuries ago, live on. Almost everyone in the current generation grew up listening to bedtime stories or watching Disney adaptations of classic fairytale stories such as Cinderella, Snow White, and… READ MORE...
  • The language of politics - Politics is primarily a battle of ideologies. CNN’s Jon Avlon has even called it an “ideological bloodsport”. A politician’s “power”, or authority, is drawn from the office she or he is holding at any given time, and, of course, from the amount of people that the politician in question has persuaded to side with her or him. The job of politicians is to sell ideas, and what better way to do this than through, preferably, well composed messages presented by a smooth and easy understandable language? Because language is a common tool, an everyday practice and experience for everybody; still,… READ MORE...
  • The Google revolution - What would the world have been like without Google? It shouldn’t be too difficult to answer this question, taken into consideration that the company has been around for only less than 20 years. But really, what would life be like without Google? Most people will find it hard to imagine, considering how much of our daily tasks are now aided by different tools offered by Google - Google Search, Mail, Drive, Docs, Maps, Reader, among others. I was led to ponder on this question when The Economist, on its Free Exchange blog, posted a commentary about Google’s announcement of shutting… READ MORE...
  • The ‘Flynn Effect’ - Human intelligence has been a subject of extensive debate for a long time in the academic and medical fields, as well as in everyday conversations. One name stands out, however, having made waves in recent discussions about the state of human intelligence: James Flynn. Flynn is best known for the phenomenon named after him: the “Flynn effect”, in which the intelligence of the world’s general population has been significantly soaring since the 1930’s until present. In most of Flynn’s writings (most remarkably in his latest book Are We Getting Smarter?), however, he chooses not to go too deeply into the element of gender in relation to… READ MORE...
  • The digital divide - The fast advancement of information and communication technologies (ICTs) has made it easier and simpler to access services such as health, education, commerce, and finance, online. By use of smartphones, computers and the internet, one can apply for a health card, learn from experts in math, shop, and settle utility bills without leaving the house. ICTs are instrumental in a development perspective as well, as they basically enable us to connect and communicate with the world, to get equal opportunities, compete globally, and learn from others. Certainly, technology in general continues to make our lives better, as we have enough money for taking it into use.… READ MORE...