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  • China - The Next Superpower?
    March, 2011 By Sanaa Arora

    Recently China unveiled a new government policy document outlining its Innovation Strategy for the next decade. Its ambitious plans include filing a mind boggling 2 million patents in 2015 (including utility and invention patents) and increasing its R & D investment to 2.5 % of GDP by 2020, bringing it to the same level of R & D spending by USA.  China’s goals of moving away from being a low cost manufacturing hub to becoming a leader in strategically important areas such as supercomputers, cloning, space science, biotechnology, and alternatively energy already has the world watching in trepidation.

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  • Bangladesh-China Relations: Should India Be Concerned?
    March, 2011 By Sowmya Suryanarayanan

    China and Bangladesh have intensified their bilateral cooperation in areas such as trade, investment and infrastructure development, which has led to the signing of a 10-point joint communiqué in 2010. In addition, the China-Myanmar-Bangladesh road and rail link received fresh impetus last year with all three countries agreeing to sign an agreement to develop transit facilities. Moreover, Bangladesh has sought China’s assistance to develop and use the Chittagong port, as well as a deep sea port at Sonadia Island in Cox’s Bazaar in Bangladesh. The tri-nation cooperation in opening up transit facilities will boost trade in both Bangladesh and China. However, the Chinese-backed infrastructure development in Bangladesh, while a boon for economic prosperity in the country, could pose challenges for India in the coming decades. 

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  • The Tenth Parallel - Book Review
    February, 2011 By Ambika Vishwanath

    Christianity and Islam share a fifteen hundred year history in the heart of Africa, which began in 615 AD when Prophet Mohammed sent dozens of his followers to Abyssinia (modern day Ethiopia) to find refuge. Within a decade of his death more Muslims fled east across the Nile to settle in parts of southern Sudan and as far as Timbuktu, along the tenth parallel. Today, this line of latitude, 700 miles north of the equator, is home to 60 per cent of the world’s Christians and 75 per cent Muslims, across Africa and Asia alone. Here, along this fault line, in the crowded cities and tenements of Asia, and the insect infested jungles of Africa, the two religions meet and clash, continuously shaping the others future. 

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  • Pakistan’s Green Threat: Extremism and Political Islam
    February, 2011 By Gitanjali Bakshi

    On the 4th of January 2011, the Governor of Punjab-Pakistan, Salman Taseer, was assassinated by his own elite forces bodyguard, Malik Mumtaz Hussein Qadri. Taseer was shot 26 times with a sub-machine gun as he returned to his car after meeting a friend for lunch at Kohsar market in Islamabad.

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  • Carbon Opportunities in the Gulf
    February, 2011 By Shivangi Muttoo

    The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, in particular Qatar and the UAE, rank among the world’s worst performing countries in terms of per capita carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Perturbed by the increasing international concern, these countries have now announced plans to reduce emissions. As a result, the region could emerge as a hub of clean technology and renewable energy in the future. It may also benefit from the emerging carbon trading system. 

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  • Something Old, Something New-Water Conservation in Rajasthan
    February, 2011 By Anumita Raj

    In the past few years, the state of Rajasthan in India has seen its poor water fortunes aided in part by the revival of traditional and ancient water conservation systems. 

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  • Rise of Women Entrepreneurs in Bangladesh
    February, 2011 By Sowmya Suryanarayanan

    Ten years ago, a majority of the women workers in Bangladesh worked in the informal sector. They were mostly unpaid and did not contribute directly to formal economic activities. However, the demographic structure of the labour participation in Bangladesh is witnessing a remarkable change. An increasing number of women are working in the formal sector as entrepreneurs and paid workers, a situation that was not seen in the past. This gradual transformation of women’s participation from the informal to the formal sectors has resulted in an upward mobility in the social and economic status of women, especially that of poor women in the country.

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  • The Final Frontier
    February, 2011 By Sahiba Trivedi

    China’s sky-high space ambitions have the potential to upset the current world order. Within the coming decade, China may become capable of challenging America’s dominance over space and its monopoly over global navigational systems. 

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