China is facing massive pressures – internal and external – regarding environmental issues, resource availability, social and economic inequality and more. In many ways, the People’s Republic is facing an imperative to change its economic model and advance not only its methods of production, but what it’s producing. Two examples are China’s foray into nuclear energy and its imminent entry into the commercial aerospace sector.
If Mao’s China was China 1.0 and today’s low-cost manufacturing powerhouse is China 2.0, this new China will be China 3.0. As Chinese policy-makers confront the prospect of slowing growth and the middle-income trap, more business leaders and policy makers are noting everything China buys is becoming more expensive and everything China sells is becoming cheaper. This is one reason why the imperative to master advanced industries is gaining strength: the promise of higher value addition combined with the desire to demonstrate national capability. These developments are significant in their respective industries, but in a more fundamental sense, they are symbolic of a new emerging China – one that is focused on mastering advanced industries that embody complex technology and systems integration. Continue reading →
President Obama’s announcement on December 17 that the U.S. will work with Cuba to restore normal diplomatic relations between the two countries after more than 50 years should be good news to the majority of Americans who support better relations with Cuba. It is particularly exciting for an old-timer like me, whose father regularly traveled to Cuba on business in the 1950s. I remember how much my father loved Cuba and how excited he and his Cuban colleagues were when a young Fidel Castro overthrew the brutal dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista in 1959. Unfortunately, Castro was not the democratic liberator those middleclass Cuban businessmen had expected, and soon they all fled Cuba. My father always hoped to visit Cuba again, but he died without doing so.
According to The New York Times, President Obama will take executive actions that will reduce restrictions on banking and remittances of Cuban Americans to family members in Cuba. Actions should also permit telecom and Internet connections between the two countries and travelers will be allowed to bring back $400 in goods, including $100 in Cuban rum and cigars. The President has asked Secretary of State John Kerry to work on re-establishing diplomatic relationships with Cuba and re-opening a U.S. Embassy in Havana. Secretary Kerry will also investigate whether Cuba can be removed from the list of countries that sponsor terrorism, a list it has been on since 1982. High-level delegations will begin talks on issues such as Cuban-American migration, narcotics, the environment, human rights and human trafficking. Travel restrictions will be eased for the 12 categories of visitors currently allowed to visit Cuba, but not for the ordinary American tourist looking for an inexpensive vacation on a sunny beach in Cuba. Continue reading →
Out of homesickness, I just checked the November weather for the ‘Burgh. Amazing coincidence: the temp on this day in Pittsburgh should hit 22 degrees and here in Sydney, at this very moment it’s 22 degrees!
Celsius that is.
Y’all learned how to do °C à °F in school, right? But in case you forgot, here in Sydney it’s 72 bright, sunny, warm, U.S. degrees. No cloud to be seen either. The sun enrobes you like gossamer cashmere. Perhaps a bit chilly for some, but if you were here, you just might be tempted to go to the beach.
And Sydney has beaches. Take your choice: Bondi, Tamarama, Bronte, Clovelly, Coogee, Marouba — and that’s just on the south of town accessible by bus from the city center. Continue reading →
“platypus” (That works but c’mon, you didn’t say that)
“ostrich” (wrong, but a similar thing called an emu)
“…that cute little furry teddy-bear-like thing?” (maybe you mean koala, which is right, or maybe panda, which is wrong)
Nah…you probably said kangaroo!!!
My wife keeps asking me, “Have you seen any…kangaroos?” No, can’t say I have. Sydney is a city and these guys generally aren’t urban critters, although try telling that to one spotted recently in the Adelaide suburbs patiently awaiting his/her train.
However, on my third time to the Night Noodle Market (on a CAPA field visit), I did see something at a distance that I thought was a weird squirrel with a scrawny tail (it was in the same park as the Market, but far from the noodle action).
“No,” said Dana the CAPA lady leading our little band. “It’s just a ‘possum, a baby.” A brush-tailed type, no doubt, as I learned later with some Internet time. Continue reading →
Faculty Member Bob Atkin is currently in Sydney teaching at the Pitt Business Global Business Institute.
So this is my first blog ever, so please excuse me if I sound like a newbie!
Do you like noodles? I do. All sorts of noodles. Especially pasta. And pasta in all forms, because somehow the same basic ingredients, flour and water, taste different because some are, say, linguine and others shells. Who knows why?
But noodles are also central to many Asian cuisines, and Sydney has just the venue to show off Asian noodles and their kindred form, Asian dumplings and buns.
Enter, the Night Noodle Market.
Ingredients? Start with half a mid-city park, mix warm spring evenings (we’re south of the equator here folks, kinda’ like April-going-into-May for you) with 50+ noodle and dumpling and bun vendors, add a gelato stand or two, toss in a food-crazed city, and you’ve got this bizarre celebration of the Night Noodle Market.
The Market happens once a year, for two weeks, in the middle of Sydney’s food month (and in the middle of the fall term). That’s right: Sydney has a food MONTH! Continue reading →