Howard French has a fantastic piece on Chinese demographic trends over at the Atlantic. Consider this:
China today boasts roughly five workers for every retiree. By 2040, this highly desirable ratio will have collapsed to about 1.6 to 1. From the start of this century to its midway point, the median age in China will go from under 30 to about 46, making China one of the older societies in the world. At the same time, the number of Chinese older than 65 is expected to rise from roughly 100 million in 2005 to more than 329 million in 2050—more than the combined populations of Germany, Japan, France, and Britain.
And here is a summary of global population projections for perspective:
From a dictatorship of one, to a dictatorship of 349. I say this is progress. Admittedly, change has been slow. But the dispersal of power is almost always a good thing.
H/T Boniface Mwangi.
Public Finance is emerging to be one of the biggest development challenges of our age. Here’s Africa Confidential on Mozambique’s hidden loans, which may amount to more than $2b.
Sources close to Rosário Fernandes, ex-head of the revenue authority, the Autoridade Tributária de Moçambique, have told us of systematic diversions of taxes straight into the pockets of the Frelimo elite, especially in the later years of President Guebuza’s term of office, when he exercised enormous patronage. Massively inflated contracts were commonplace. The latest to emerge is the extravagant, nearly complete, Bank of Mozambique building in Maputo, which boasts a helicopter landing pad on the roof. Originally estimated to cost $90 mn., the final cost is reckoned at at least $300 mn., with kickbacks and ‘commissions’ accounting for the cost inflation, say Frelimo sources.
Guebuza engaged in an ultimately doomed attempt to extend his term of office, which ended in October 2014, and this partly explains the extraordinary scale of his liberality towards loyalists, sources formerly close to him told us (AC Vol 53 No 18, The Putin option). The schemes became increasingly brazen, and the creation in 2013 and 2014 of three companies – Empresa Moçambicana de Atum (Ematum), Proindicus and Mozambique Asset Management (MAM) – was the culmination of this programme. The companies, which received the totality of the $2 bn. now owed by the state, were mainly in the field of maritime security, even though it was the intelligence and security services that provided the management. They bypassed parliament, illegally, and defence procurement, effectively privatising, as one commentator put it, national security while lining the pockets of the elite into the bargain. Yet the ill-equipped companies could not cope and quickly collapsed. Ematum, which originally claimed to be focused on tuna fishing, is no longer operating its few licensed vessels because it cannot pay salaries (AC Vol 56 No 24, Nyusi’s nightmare).
If you are not a regular reader of Andrew Gelman’s blog, you should become one now. And here is John Oliver poking fun at BS “scientific” studies.
Oliver even talks p-hacking, sampling biases, replication studies, external validity….
This is from Fast Company using data from Y Combinator:
Probably a partial consequence of the bloggification of traditional news websites. The decline also reflects the initial misplaced hype about the popularity of blogs.
H/T Aubrey Hruby
This is a great opportunity for African students and young professionals interested in getting a world class MBA.
The application deadline is June 15, 2016.
The Stanford Graduate School of Business is excited to offer the Stanford Africa MBA Fellowship for the 2016-2017 application cycle. The Fellowship supports up to eight promising African students with financial need in obtaining an MBA at Stanford each year.
The Stanford Africa MBA Fellowship will provide financial support for tuition and associated fees for the two-year MBA Program (approximately $150,000).Within two years of graduating from the MBA Program, Stanford Africa MBA Fellows must return to Africa for at least two years of employment. This is an important aspect of the Fellowship because it assures that recipients will leverage their new skills to make an impact on the ground in Africa.
Details on the two-stage application process and criteria for selection are available here.
Applications are due 15 June, 2016.
As if legislative studies wasn’t exciting enough, there is an entire website dedicated to curating clips of legislators exchanging blows while at work.
This is from Turkey (not yet on the website):
This is from India:
And this is from the Alabama Senate (in the United States):
H/T Kimuli Kasara.