Why It’s Important to Keep Up With the News

Many people neglect the news and are unaware of what is going on in the world around them. This is a large mistake however and a good understanding of current affairs is actually crucial for many reasons. Here we’ll look at just why it’s so important to follow the news and why you should look for a news blog, website or news channel to provide you with regular updates.

Firstly the news can sometimes affect you. You might not think that news is constantly about crises in other countries, or things that have happened to other people, but more likely the news reflects a policy or government decision that will be utilising your tax money and that will affect your economy. The government is designed to work for us and this is the true idea of a democracy, however it’s the press and the blogs and news channels that allow us to actually see what the government are doing and that allow for democracy to work. People fought and died for freedom of speech and the freedom of the press that comes with it, and so to turn your back on it is a serious mistake. When it comes to an election, the news through the last few years should be the main thing influencing your decision.

At the same time the news can often affect you directly. For example the recent news of the ash cloud covering the sky meant that many flights had to be cancelled or couldn’t go ahead. However only those who read a news blog or watched a news channel would have known not to go ahead and book any last minute flights. Even on a more basic level, the news often includes the weather, and this will affect whether we get wet when we head outside or remember to bring an umbrella.

The news is also very important for conversation. If something big has happened in the news then this is a sure fire way to spark up a conversation with someone where there might otherwise have been an awkward silence. At the same time in a group of people talking about the news you won’t want to be the only one who isn’t aware of what’s going on as this can make you feel very isolated and out of touch. At the same time you might lose respect from the other people who value the news and current affairs more.

Of course the news is also just interesting and while there will be a lot you’re not interested in, there will always be something that catches your attention and that is related to one of the fields you find interesting. If you like celebrities and gossip then this always finds its way on to the news, while meanwhile you’ll also likely find information about sports and cutting edge science.

If you want to stay up to date with the news but struggle to find the time, new media technologies are now allowing many …

Importance of Road Safety Education

Public health problems are taken into serious considerations for the effective solution of problems. Health problems include number of entities but unfortunately, things are not pertained into serious frame in our country ‘Pakistan’. Health and Education are the two important and focused parameters that should be on prior basis for any developing country because it is associated for the rapid change in the economy of respective country. Due to the increase in vehicle ownership, the graphical trend of road traffic accidents in Pakistan is abruptly disturbed which include minor, severe and fatal road crashes of all type of road users. The problem is again connected with the health issue, road traffic is not a problem that should be tackled through Enforcement action, it is a common health problem affecting common public. As per the statistical analysis of Social Research and Development Organization (Non Government Organization and Research center working on the effective road safety education culture and promotion for entire Sindh), high severity rate is recorded for Karachi, a metropolitan city of Pakistan. The areas include Korangi road, Korangi Industrial area, National Highway (Urban), MA Jinnah road and Shahrah-e-Faisal.

There is the immense need to facilitate the users in terms of effective road safety education. Education is the least important parameter among the three E’s of transportation but it could play the major role when set from initial phases. In this connection planning and management from the perspective of stakeholders is mandatory. Road users are not aware from civic sense, traffic rules and regulations and unfortunately they are the registered direct license holders of vehicles. This corresponds to the negligence driving by the road users and ultimately leading towards road crash. It is not the blame game to target the users but it needs the orientation of existing system. The system should be designed in a manner that without basic road safety knowledge, a person should not be able to withstand for his/her personal vehicle. Road safety education and important subject matter should be introduced at primary; secondary and higher level in order to better immaculate the awareness raising issue. Inauguration of traffic safety seminars, forums, conferences not only for the relevant stakeholders but also for the common man is another important way forward step of betterment. It should be the part of documented legislation that road users are capable enough to attend these types of seminars in the past at the time when license is issued.

Government functionary bodies, Private sector, Universities, Schools, Colleges, Engineers and Practitioners need to sit together and should work on the curriculum and syllabus of road safety education at different levels. For any productive result, the basics should be as stronger and involvement of road safety in the syllabus is the first step. After the accomplishment of this step, the further steps including the awareness programs, Engineering and Enforcement issues will be partially resolved. In the similar way, training sessions should be arranged and effectively designed for each class of road user like drivers, …

The Business Model and Today’s Economy – A Warning to Universities and Investors

As spring is upon us, this is the time deans and higher education vice presidents across the land embark on their yearly budget exercise. Given the rosy economic scenario painted by improving wages, job reports and corporate profits, it would not be out-of-place to start dreaming of expanding their own little circles and propose larger budgets and increased hiring for their respective units – what Warren Buffett has dubbed the institutional imperative. My warning: beware!

As an academician, I have often heard high-ranking officials espouse how public universities should be run using a business model. My own university president is a strong proponent of the idea. The problem is that universities are saddled with challenges most companies don’t have to deal with. For example, let us suppose that demand for your company’s product goes down. To keep your company viable and responsible to stockholders you will cut down on production. Fewer sales means less personnel will be needed leading to workforce reductions. Despite lower revenue, the bottom line is kept steady by lowering expenses for materials and personnel.

Let’s look at what happens at a university. Let’s suppose demand for your product, classes, goes down – i.e., fewer students are enrolled. The cost of materials to run a class is minimal as compared to personnel and physical plant costs. You can’t shut down buildings so your only recourse is personnel reductions. Here is a problem corporations don’t have. They never have a case where the few remaining clients demand that the company put out as much product as before the reduction in demand. But if you have a class of 40 reduced to 30 or even 20 students the university cannot cancel it. These students registered for the class well in advance, before the semester even began. Their schedules and even graduation are predicated on it. If the class does not make, students will be in an uproar and in this day and age they have no trouble letting the world know – online. As the news become viral, the university will gain a bad reputation. It will affect future enrollment. Any whisper of lower enrollment sends chills down high administrator’s backs.

Here is another difference between corporations and higher education providers. Corporation hires are more fungible. If you let go someone all you need is several weeks’ notice. Not so for academia. You may let go of staff personnel that way but instructors are on an academic year contract. University administrators may decide not to renew a contract for a non-tenured instructor after the academic year but they cannot terminate during. That means hiring and budget decisions have to be made well in advance.

Back in 2007 I was in the middle of this dilemma. I was the founder and Chair of the Idaho State University Budget Committee. Our mandate, as I saw it, was to keep abreast of economic developments so we could best advise administrators of “hiccups” leading to reductions in state allocations to higher education. Once …