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Are we Armenians insecure about food safety?

Vigen Sargsyan's picture
Also available in: Русский
I was quite surprised recently to find out that a poll of 1,066 people across Yerevan and all ten regions of Armenia revealed substantial gaps in public awareness of food safety and people's behavior. The Social Survey on Food Safety Public Awareness (June 2015) may have produced some provoking outcomes, but it could certainly become a roadmap for the State Service for Food Safety (SSFS) in its efforts to further enhance food safety in Armenia.

Young people run faster, but seniors know the shortcuts

Johannes Koettl's picture
Also available in: Русский
In a world of increasingly fluid labor markets, many older workers fear being pushed aside and out of their jobs by younger, more dynamic employees. But is this worry really justified? Are we less productive as we age?

The answer to the question has important implications for how well we can keep older people at work. As I have argued together with Wolfgang Fengler before, we not only live longer and healthier lives, but we also have the potential to work longer.

Yet, this will only happen if we have the right skills and abilities for the job also at old age. It is quite obvious that our body becomes slower and weaker as we grow old - but what about our brain? And even if our body and brain get weaker - does it matter for employers?

Why do students and scholars need budget literacy?

John Ivor Beazley's picture
Also available in: Русский
After one and a half days of intense discussions in Moscow with a group of experts from four continents, I have come away excited and energized by the possibilities of making students more aware of the business of government and becoming more active and responsible citizens. 
 
In most developed countries, anywhere from one-third to half of all national income is managed by the government - but how much does the average person really understand about the budget or the difficult choices and trade-offs being made by governments every day?
 
Should taxes be raised or lowered?
Should they spend on schools? Better hospitals? Pensions?
Is it better to run a deficit and let future taxpayers settle the bills or save today to pay down the debt? 
 
Why is this barely discussed in schools?  
 
To help address this basic question, the Russian Ministry of Finance, helped by the World Bank, is piloting an initiative designed to encourage responsible citizenship and greater engagement in the budget process. The idea is that high school seniors will debate and discuss these issues, using real life cases and information from government budgets. 
 

More oil from old wells: Innovating for Kazakhstan’s future

Yeraly Beksultan's picture
Also available in: Русский
Although innovation has been a hot topic in Kazakhstan for over a decade now, it’s not always easy getting brilliant ideas “from the laboratory to the market.”
 
Kazakh scientists navigate this winding, unpredictable road for years and generally come to the realization that great scientific research is not enough in itself. Too often, they face a lack of support when it comes to applying the results of their scientific research in a useful, practical way.
 
Fortunately, a team of Kazakh scientists at the Private Entity Institute of Polymer Materials and Technology in Almaty has had a somewhat more positive experience. This team has been working on a truly innovative project: developing a solution to improving the recovery of oil from old oil wells in Kazakhstan.
 
But why, you might ask?

Residential sector reform: Ukraine at the crossroads

Grzegorz Gajda's picture
Reform of the residential and utilities sector in Ukraine is now imminent, as much as the modernization of law enforcement or reform of the public health care system. In fact, Ukrainians deal with these areas on a daily basis and, historically, reforms in the residential sector were usually postponed until better times. First, it is important to explain why Ukraine finds itself in this situation. After gaining independence, Ukraine received, among other things, a tremendous amount of state-owned residential property.
 

In Kazakhstan, every number counts

Aliya Pistayeva's picture
Also available in: Русский
Mark Twain once said: “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” It might seem that not much has changed since then.

In Kazakhstan, however, we have tried to change this perception of statistics, starting with the KAZSTAT Project that was launched in 2013 to strengthen the national statistical system.

In aging societies, will young liberals become old conservatives?

Hernan Winkler's picture
The old saying goes, “If you’re not a liberal when you’re young, then you don’t have a heart - but if you haven’t become a conservative when you’re old, then you don’t have a brain.”

Scholars have long explored whether people’s opinions really change as they get older. This question is particularly relevant today for the aging economies of Europe, where the elderly are expected to reach 30 percent of the total population by 2050. And by 2030, the majority of voters will be 50 years or older in most countries of the region.
 
Elderly men, Serbia

Krijimi i besimit te qeveria

Jana Kunicova's picture
Teksti i mesazhit që qeveria u dërgon qytetarëve në përpjekje për të parandaluar korrupsionin.
Qytetarët shqiptarë që kohët e fundit kanë marrë shërbim në një spital shtetëror kanë gjasa të marrin një tekst mesazhi në celular që shkruan pak a shumë kështu: “Përshëndetje, unë jam Bledi Cuci, Ministër Shteti për Anti-Korrupsionin. Të dhënat tona tregojnë se kohët e fundit ju keni marrë shërbim në një spital shtetëror. A mund të më thoni, ju lutem, nëse ju është kërkuar të paguani ryshfet? Përgjigjja është falas. Faleminderit për kohën”. (English Version)



 

Russia's recovery? In the long term, it depends on structural reforms

Birgit Hansl's picture
Also available in: Русский
2015 is set to be a year of recession for Russia – with economic growth likely to come out somewhere between -2 and -4 percent.

The latest World Bank forecast for June projects a 2.7 percent contraction (based on an oil price of US$ 58 per barrel), which has been revised up from 3.8 percent (based on US$ 53 per barrel).

Is the region ready for the next big one?

Joaquin Toro's picture

By now everybody is witnessing the devastating consequences of the 7.8 magnitude (Richter scale) earthquake in Nepal. According to the latest figures, more than 7,000 people have died and more than 10,000 have been injured. These numbers are likely to increase as the authorities and relief agencies reach more remote locations.

In light of this event we asked ourselves a series of questions for our region:

When will the next catastrophic earthquake hit?
Where will it be?
Is it going to be in East Europe and Central Asia (ECA) region?
Are we prepared for it?


The answers to these questions are both simple and complex.

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