Argentina’s sovereign debt crisis and battle with “vulture funds”

Since Argentina defaulted on $15 billion in sovereign debt last July, the battle between hedge-fund billionaire Paul Singer and the Argentine government has climaxed in 2014 and headlined the financial world.

In its latest move to thwart off so-called “vulture funds,” Argentina has voted to allow its government to pay international debt bonds in either Buenos Aires or Paris, or through other bondholders.

Continue reading

Photo: prince_volin

Euro-American leaders dismiss the story behind Isis

Leaders such as David Cameron and Barack Obama have spoken extensively on the human rights violations committed by Isis and the group’s growing threat to “the West.” Simultaneously, it seems that the two have overlooked their own role in catalysing the rise of what has been dubbed by one US Senator as “one of the most barbaric and well-financed terrorist groups of our time”.

Continue reading

Photo: EU Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection

The Economic and Social Implications of Epidemics

By Sharon Lili Elhadad, M.A. and Dana Elhadad, M.Sc

Throughout history emerging infectious diseases have shaped the course of human history and have caused incalculable misery and death. New advances in science, technology and medicine have helped us gain ground against certain infectious diseases. However, even in the twenty-first century infectious diseases continue to emerge at a rapid pace. Many Emerging Infectious Diseases (EIDs) have been catalyzed by wars, loss of social cohesion, and natural disasters. Under these conditions and in addition to microbial or viral virulence factors, a contagious disease may lead to an epidemic outbreak. An epidemic is categorized as a fast growing outbreak that affects many people almost instantly, usually within a city. If the epidemic is not sufficiently contained it can become a pandemic outbreak, that has no social or geographical boundaries.

Continue reading

Photo: Kyoshi Masamune

Scotland votes No; The UK remains united

And so, almost two full years after the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, put pen to paper and signed a deal granting Scottish Parliament the power to hold a referendum on independence, the United Kingdom for now remains intact after victory for the ‘No’ campaign. A battle that has thoroughly energised political debate – particularly so in these final few weeks of campaigning, when debate has been near feverish – culminated in the early hours of Friday morning with a verdict far more comprehensive than most expected. Yet, as both Scottish voters and the wider British publish begin to come to terms with the continuation of their fourfold union, discussions on the very nature of that union moving forward are only just commencing. Continue reading

Photo: Herkie

The Long and Short Term Effects of Graduating in a Recession: Male and Female Graduates

For those about to graduate, the job market does not look promising. There have been several studies done on college graduates in the past years in an attempt to assess the importance of alternative career models and to predict the long-ranging effects of graduating in a recession. This article characterizes the decrease in gender wage gap between male and female college graduates from the early 90’s to 2012 in the USA. Continue reading
Photo: Carole Kerbage

The Europe-Wide Rise in Anti-Semitism

The recent escalation of violence in Gaza has been followed up by increase in anti-Semitic sentiment across Europe. Attacks on Synagogues have become frequent and there have been worrying reports anti-Semitic slogans chanted at demonstrations. Causal explanations for this outburst vary. One line of argument runs that anti-Semitism is inherently coupled with anti-Zionism, and that emotive media coverage helps only to fan the flames. Alongside the tune of sensationalist media, those on both sides of the dispute over Gaza only feed the fire further by presenting narratives of European anti-Semitism, which are influenced largely by either moral or political concerns. Continue reading

Photo: United Nations Photo

Island nation the first victim of climate change inaction

The town of Choiseul with a population around a thousand people will be relocating from Taro Island. Choiseul is among the first population centers to be forced to migrate due to sea level rise. The small island is less than 2 meters above sea level. With sea level rising by more than third of a meter by the end of the century, this vulnerability has become a serious liability for the citizens of Taro Island. This small island is part of the Solomon Island chain, and its evacuation means something for policymakers. Continue reading