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African farming: would you survive?

The simply designed 3rd World Farmer is a serious game that “aims at simulating the real-world mechanisms that cause and sustain poverty in 3rd World countries”. The brainchild of IT-University of Copenhagen students, this addictive game forces you to make tough choices on a tight budget. (Does it remind anyone else of the Oregon Trail?) Visit their forum for discussion and suggestions. My advice: start with corn and hope someone offers you a wife.

Entrepreneurship: it’s all about the genes?

What determines levels of entrepreneurship? I would normally argue the quality of business regulations, access to finance, education levels, ambition etc... – but some argue that genes may be the key. For example, one study:

MIT's social entrepreneurs

The MIT Entrepreneurship Competition, recognizing the best business plans to come from the MIT community, added a Development category for 2006. Last month the prolific social entrepreneur Illac Diaz and his company CentroMigrante won $30,000 in start-up money, besting an impressive group of semi-finalists.

Can beer bottle caps green Africa?

Beer bottle tops 'make ideal measuring pots for "micro-dosing", a technique that lets farmers focus precious nutrients where they are needed rather than wasting them. The results so far are encouraging… Steve Twomlow of the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISCAT), based in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, established that about 5 grams of ammonium nitrate is enough to feed three plants: That’s one beer cap full. Conventional scattering of fertilizer uses five capfuls for every three plants…'


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