Shyam's Slide Share Presentations


This article/post is from a third party website. The views expressed are that of the author. We at Capacity Building & Development may not necessarily subscribe to it completely. The relevance & applicability of the content is limited to certain geographic zones.It is not universal.


Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Switzerland leads the 5th consecutive edition of the IMD World Talent Ranking 11-22

Image credit : Shyam's Imagination Library.

The 2018 edition of one of the world’s foremost reports on the quality of international workforces h
as been released, with Western Europe dominating the top-10

IMD's fifth edition of the World Talent Ranking 2018 assesses the extent to which countries develop, attract and retain talent to sustain the pool that enterprises employ to create long-term value
Canada is the only non-European nation in top-10

The full ranking is available here

Lausanne, Switzerland 19 November 2018 - Switzerland in first and Denmark in second, firmly lead the IMD World Talent Ranking 2018 for the fifth year in a row, followed by Norway, Austria and the Netherlands. Norway joins the top three, advancing four places up from last year, thanks to an improvement in public expenditure on education and the readiness of its talent pool. Canada (6th), Finland (7th), Sweden (8th), Luxembourg (9th), and Germany (10th) complete the top 10.
The Slovak Republic (59th), Colombia (60th), Mexico (61st), Mongolia (62nd), and Venezuela (63rd) are the last countries in the ranking.

“Since 2014, the Talent Ranking assesses how the 63 economies we study develop, attract and retain highly-skilled professionals. Cultivating a skilled and educated workforce is crucial to strengthening competitiveness and achieving long-term prosperity, particularly in the current dynamic landscape where artificial intelligence, robotics and other new technologies constantly redefine the challenges that governments, businesses and society in general will have to face in the future,” said Arturo Bris, Director of the IMD World Competitiveness Center. “This year the most successful countries in talent competitiveness are mainly European, mid-size economies. Moreover, these countries share high levels of investment in education and quality of life,” concludes Arturo Bris.

The IMD World Talent Ranking 2018, which has just been released from the Singapore edition of IMD’s signature program Orchestrating Winning Performance (OWP), evaluates the capability of 63 countries in developing, attracting and retaining talent. The assessment is based on three factors: Investment and Development, Appeal, and Readiness. These factors include indicators that capture the resources invested in developing local talent, the extent to which a country attracts and retains talent, and the quality of skills available in the talent pool.

Hard data and responses to the IMD Executive Opinion Survey are used to produce the ranking. The latter annual survey compiles input from over six thousand executives based in 63 different economies.

Western Europe leads, Eastern Europe lags, North America gives strong performance

This year, Switzerland once again confirms its role as an important global talent hub. It ranks 4th in Investment and Development, and 1st in both the Appeal and Readiness factors. In addition, several European countries fall within the 25 most competitive with respect to talent. Belgium (11th), Cyprus (15th), Portugal (17th), Ireland (21st), United Kingdom (23rd), and France (25th) complete this list.
With the exception of Estonia (28th), Slovenia (30th), and Latvia (33rd), Eastern European countries generally place in the lower part of the ranking. For instance, Slovak Republic (59th), Bulgaria (57th), and Romania (56th) underperform in attracting highly skilled workers from abroad and they also face problems in retaining their locally-grown talent.

Canada (6th) is the only non-European country in the top ten, rising from 11th place, lifted by an improvement in the quality of its talent pool. The USA (12th) also moves up with respect to last year showing advancements in all three talent factors.

Singapore and Hong Kong SAR lead in Asia Pacific

In Asia, Singapore (13th), Hong Kong SAR (18th) and Malaysia (22nd) achieve the best placements in terms of talent competitiveness. While the two city-states continue to excel in tapping into the international talent pool, Malaysia instead focuses on investments in education to develop its homegrown skilled workforce. Taiwan (27th) prioritizes the attraction and retention of talent, Japan improves (29th) due to the availability of skilled labor and the effectiveness of its education system and South Korea advances (33rd) partly due to increased government expenditure on education and improvements in the implementation of apprenticeships programs and employee training. China (39th) places in the second half of the ranking, because of its difficulties in attracting foreign skilled workers paired with a level of public expenditure in education that remains below the average of other advanced economies. Kazakhstan (40th) and Thailand (42nd) also fall in the second half of the ranking, partly due to their performance in the readiness of domestic talent.

In the Pacific area, Australia (14th) and New Zealand (20th) confirm their role as talent-appealing hubs. Both countries show high levels of readiness in their talent pool and offer attractive quality of life for international professionals.

Latin America struggles.

At the bottom of the ranking are several Latin American countries. These economies are struggling to develop and retain talent. Venezuela (63rd), Mexico (61st), Colombia (60th) and Brazil (58th) all share issues related to brain drain, matched by a relatively low level of investment in education.
In annex: detailed region and country-specific information.


Switzerland tops the talent ranking for the fifth consecutive year confirming its role as an important global talent hub. It ranks 4th in Investment and Development, and 1st in both the Appeal and Readiness factors.

The country ranks 1st in apprenticeships, health infrastructure, highly-skilled foreign personnel, remuneration in the services professions, remuneration of management, the education system, university education and management education. Other strengths include international experience (2nd), retaining human capital (2nd), and quality of life (3rd). The latter, however, shows a slight decline this year.

Switzerland’s lowest rankings at the indicator level are in cost-of-living (59th), labor force growth (38th), pupil-teacher ratio in primary education (30th) and female labor force (26th). There has been an increase in negative perceptions of the prioritization that the private sector gives to attracting and retaining talent which drops to 12th (from 4th).

Nordic countries

Denmark ranks 2nd in the overall ranking. Norway takes 3rd place, Finland and Sweden come in at 7th and 8th respectively. Iceland, the only Nordic country ranked outside the top 10, is 16th.
For the third consecutive year, Denmark ranks 1st in the Investment and Development Factor. The country improves three places in the Appeal factor in which it ranks 7th. However, it drops 4 places in the Readiness factor to 8th. Norway improves its performance in all factors, ranking 3rd, 12th and 10th in Investment and Development, Appeal and Readiness, respectively. Finland rises in the Appeal factor (21st) and decreases two positions in both the Investment and Development (7th), and Readiness (7th) factors. Conversely, Sweden remains 9th in Investment and Development, and improves to 9th in Appeal and 15th in Readiness (from 12th and 19th, respectively).

At the factor level, Nordic countries all have their best performance in Investment and Development. Here they are all highly ranked in total public expenditure. Norway, Finland and Denmark rank 2nd, 6th and 7th (respectively) in health infrastructure. In the employee training indicator, Denmark is 1st and Norway reaches 5th place.

In the Appeal factor, most Nordic countries are perceived to have high quality of life and be successful in attracting and retaining talent. Nevertheless, high cost of living and high personal income tax rates may constrain the Nordics from further strengthening their talent pools.
In Readiness, the region ranks high in the availability of finance and language skills. Denmark, Norway and Finland perform well in the effectiveness of their education systems in general, and specifically in management education as well as science in schools. Notably, the indicator capturing the availability of senior managers with international experience is one of the weakest points in the performance of Norway (34th) and Iceland (51st).


Spain is positioned (31st) in the top half of the annual IMD World Talent Ranking.
Among Western-European countries, it ranks ahead of only Italy (32nd) and Greece (44th). However, Spain performs better than almost all Eastern European countries with the exception of Estonia (28th) and Slovenia (30th).

In the Investment and Development factor, Spain drops from 30th to 36th. While in the Appeal factor Spain remains in the 25th spot. In the Readiness factor it improves slightly from 41st to 40th.
The Investment and Development factor includes one of Spain’s key strengths; in the health infrastructure indicator, it ranks 9th. However, this factor also shows some of its main weaknesses. The country ranks 58th in employee training and 55th in the implementation of apprenticeships. This may explain Spain’s relatively poor performance in Investment and Development.

Key strengths lie in Spain’s Appeal factor. In both, the remuneration of management and the quality of life indicators, Spain ranks 19th. Although this factor highlights the need to prioritize attracting and retaining talent (58th position).

Within the Readiness factor, Spain’s performance in indicators assessing the effectiveness of university and management education and the availability of competent senior managers, shows steady improvement since 2016. Yet, there are some weaknesses in this factor. For example, in labor force growth, Spain ranks 53rd and in language skills, it comes in at 52nd.


With the exception of Estonia (28th) and Slovenia (30th), Eastern European countries generally place in the lower part of the ranking.

Estonia improves slightly this year. It ranks 16th in Investment and Development, 33rd in Appeal, and 31st in Readiness. It progresses five ranks in the Appeal factor mainly due to improvements in worker motivation, the impact of brain drain, and the country’s attractiveness for highly-skilled foreign personnel. In the Readiness factor, Estonia also moves up four ranks as a result of an upturn in positive perceptions of the availability of finance skills, executives with international experience, competent senior managers, language skills, and the effectiveness of the education system.

Slovenia moves from 37th to 30th place. It ranks 27th in Investment and Development, 42nd in Appeal and 29th in Readiness. The country’s ranking improvements arise from more positive executive opinions about the private sector’s prioritization of attracting and retaining talent, quality of life, and availability of senior managers with international experience and language skills. There are some worrying signs for the future development of the country’s talent pool. It ranks 59th in the implementation of apprenticeships and 56th in the country’s attractiveness for highly-skilled overseas staff.

Elsewhere in the region, other countries improve to different degrees: the Czech Republic ranks 37th, Ukraine 48th, Hungary 49th and Croatia 54th. Ukraine’s strong performance in moving out of the bottom five originates mainly in gains in the implementation of apprenticeships, emphasis on employee training and the effectiveness of its health infrastructure. In addition, Ukraine improves in the prioritization of attracting and retaining talent, availability of a skilled labor force, financial skills and competent senior managers.

Conversely, Lithuania (33rd to 36th), Poland (34th to 38th), and Russia (43rd to 46th) all decline.
At the lower end of the ranking, Romania (56th), Bulgaria (57th), and the Slovak Republic (59th) all decline in the Investment and Development factor. In the Appeal factor, the Slovak Republic and Bulgaria drop, and Romania rises. While Bulgaria and Romania slightly improve in the Readiness factor, the Slovak Republic drops several ranks because of a deterioration across all components of the factor.

View at the original source

Monday, November 19, 2018

How to Teach Engineering to a 5-Year-Old 08-27

Here’s a neat (and short) lesson from Washington state’s latest Teacher of the Year, Camille Jones. Camille teaches science and engineering to students as young as 5 years old. When she visited my office earlier this year, I asked her how she talks to such young kids about engineering. Take a look at what she showed me:

One thing I love about this is that it takes ideas that can seem very abstract, like pressure and tension, and makes them concrete. Camille told me the lesson was designed by the Museum of Science in Boston—a great example of how putting great lessons and other tools in the hands of talented teachers can lead to magical moments in the classroom. Technology is making it easier for teachers to find these tools, which is one of the things that makes me hopeful about the future of education.
You can read more about my visit with Camille here.

Education, at its most engaging, is performance art. From the moment a teacher steps into the classroom, students look to him or her to set the tone and course of study for everyone, from the most enthusiastic to the most apathetic students. Even teachers who have moved away from the traditional lecture format, toward more learner autonomy-supportive approaches such as project-based and peer-to-peer learning, still need to engage students in the process, and serve as a vital conduit between learner and subject matter.

Camille Jones is the kind of teacher I wish I would have had when I was in school, someone who could peak a kids interest in science and engineering instead of a nun who just whacked you across the knuckles with a ruler if you were holding your pencil too tight or the wrong way! 

Monday, November 12, 2018

Seeing the glass as half full: Taking a new look at cognition and aging 11-12

Image credit : Shyam's Imagination Library

From a cognitive perspective, aging is typically associated with decline. As we age, it may get harder to remember names and dates, and it may take us longer to come up with the right answer to a question.
But the news isn’t all bad when it comes to cognitive aging, according to a set of three articles in the July 2014 issue of Perspectives in Psychological Science.
Plumbing the depths of the available scientific literature, the authors of the three articles show how several factors — including motivation and crystallized knowledge — can play important roles in supporting and maintaining cognitive function in the decades past middle age.

Motivation Matters
Lab data offer evidence of age-related declines in cognitive function, but many older adults appear to function quite well in their everyday lives. Psychological scientist Thomas Hess of North Carolina State University sets forth a motivational framework of “selective engagement” to explain this apparent contradiction.
If the cognitive cost of engaging in difficult tasks increases as we age, older adults may be less motivated to expend limited cognitive resources on difficult tasks or on tasks that are not personally relevant to them. This selectivity, Hess argues, may allow older adults to improve performance on the tasks they do choose to engage in, thereby helping to account for inconsistencies between lab-based and real-world data.
Prior Knowledge Brings Both Costs and Benefits
Episodic memory – memory for the events of our day-to-day lives – seems to decline with age, while memory for general knowledge does not. Researchers Sharda Umanath and Elizabeth Marsh of Duke University review evidence suggesting that older adults use prior knowledge to fill in gaps caused by failures of episodic memory, in ways that can both hurt and help overall cognitive performance. While reliance on prior knowledge can make it difficult to inhibit past information when learning new information, it can also make older adults more resistant to learning new erroneous information.
According to Umanath and Marsh, future research should focus on better understanding this compensatory mechanism and whether it can be harnessed in developing cognitive interventions and tools.
Older Adults Aren’t Necessarily Besieged By Fraud
Popular writers and academics alike often argue that older adults, due to certain cognitive differences, are especially susceptible to consumer fraud. Psychological scientists Michael Ross, Igor Grossmann, and Emily Schryer of the University of Waterloo in Canada review the available data to examine whether incidences of consumer fraud are actually higher among older adults. While there isn’t much research that directly answers this question, the research that does exist suggests that older adults may be less frequent victims than other age groups.
Ross, Grossmann, and Schryer find no evidence that older adults are actually more vulnerable to fraud, and they argue that anti-fraud policies should be aimed at protecting consumers of all ages.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

The world has its first fully organic state - and it’s in India 11-12

  • The UN ‘Oscar for the Best Policy’ was awarded to the northeastern Indian state of Sikkim.
  • This makes Sikkim the 1st fully organic state in the world with its sustainable agricultural policies that are inclusive and comprehensive of all socioeconomic aspects.
  • Pawan Kumar Chamling, the state’s Chief Minister, propagated ‘building an organic world together’.
It’s not news that the north-eastern state of Sikkim is a leader in sustainable policies. But, the state’s efforts were finally recognised by the United Nations (UN) garnering the award for having the world’s best food policies or what’s called the ‘Oscar for the Best Policy’. 

The world has its first fully organic state - and it’s in India.
In actuality, Sikkim was already fully organic when 2015 rolled in having started its journey to being sustainable back in 2003. 

According to Maria Helena Semedo, Food and Agriculture Organisation’s (FAO) Deputy Director, Sikkim’s policies have benefited over 66,000 family farmers. Rather than focusing on food security in isolation, the state’s food policies take socio-economic aspects like tourism, consumption, markets and development into its fold to form a comprehensive and inclusive approach toward agriculture. 

Sikkim’s organic world 

Unlike most regions that turn to sustainability and being organic as a solution once their natural capital in jeopardy, Sikkim’s organic policy came into being because of its treacherous terrain that makes normal farming methods obsolete. 

Going organic was an opportunity utilise land that was currently lying unused. 

Now Sikkim is home to bio-villages that employ effective microorganisms (EM) technology for compost and bio-pesticides. The agricultural fields use vermiculture hatcheries and compost-cum-urine pits for manure production. 

Even the seeds they use are organic, rather than the hybrids that are used in other parts of the country. With the ‘Seed Village Scheme’, Sikkim ensures that it has locally adapted high-quality seeds. And, in order to ensure that those seeds yield the maximum output, the state conducts regular soil health assessments. 

The transformation didn’t happen overnight. And the most important aspect of its success is probably the invention programme that was implemented to raise awareness about organic farming practices among farmers. 

That being said, it’s easier said than done. When Sikkim started on its journey to becoming an organic state in 2003, chemical lobbyists and opposition parties didn’t make it easy. Chamling asserted that it was through strong political commitment and hard work that Sikkim is where it is now. 

In fact, Sikkim’s story is a model example of sustainability that is currently being emulated in other northeastern states of the country and Kerala, who recently faced extensively floods as a result of unsustainable development amplified by climate change. 

Sikkim beat out 51 nominations from 25 countries from all over the world at the event organised by the FAO and the World Future Council (WFC). The state’s Chief Minister, Pawan Kumar Chamling, even stated, “Let us build an organic world together,” when accepting the award. 

View at the original source

Friday, November 9, 2018

Indian Women Are Voting More Than Ever. Will They Change Indian Society? 11-11

In India’s patriarchal society, many more women are voting. Will their newfound clout reshape the country’s politics? 

Are Indian women voting at higher rates than before?

Women in India are casting their ballots more frequently, and in greater numbers. Today, women’s turnout has actually been higher than that of men in two-thirds of India’s state elections. This is a remarkable turn of events in a deeply patriarchal, conservative society.

Why is this so surprising?

Men in India have always turned out to vote in larger numbers than women, as far back as the data goes. As recently as 2004, men held an 8.4 percentage-point turnout advantage over women in national elections. But by 2014, that gap had shrunk to just 1.8 percentage points.

Why is this happening?

That remains something of a puzzle. There is likely a combination of push and pull factors at work: more women want to vote, and institutions are encouraging them more to go to the polls.
Indian women are steadily becoming more literate, more educated, and wealthier. This could be making them more politically aware. They have also been taking part in collective organizing in unprecedented numbers, usually through small local groups in which women encourage one another to save money and pool their resources to pay for emergency needs. Some evidence suggests that when women take part in these economic networks, they are more likely to get involved in politics. These groups were not set up to achieve a political goal, but they may be having political consequences.
State institutions have been trying to make voting easier for women as well. For instance, India’s Election Commission has been trying to encourage more women to vote by improving the safety of polling booths to reduce voter intimidation and by setting up separate queues for women on election day.

Why does this shift matter particularly in India?

For decades, voting in India has been a male-dominated enterprise. And because many more men have always turned out to vote, it is perhaps unsurprising that mainstream parties have never seen women as a vital constituency worth wooing.
It seems plausible that some concerns that disproportionately impact women—such as public safety or healthcare—have often taken a backseat, because women have historically tended to be less politically engaged than men.

Does this shift mean that more women are voting in India than men overall?

No, it doesn’t. More women are voting than ever before, but their overall size as a voting bloc still lags behind men.
This is because even though a higher percentage of female voters go to the polls, there is a significant gender imbalance in India’s general population. According to the country’s 2011 census, the country has approximately 943 women for every 1,000 men. This places India near the bottom at 186 out of 194 countries, according to the World Bank.
The sex ratio among India’s registered voters is even worse. There are only 908 women for every 1,000 men on the country’s voter rolls.
This means that, despite progress, Indian women suffer a double-blow at the polls: above and beyond an entrenched preference for sons (which results in illegal sex-selective abortion and fewer educational opportunities for girls than boys), women are less likely than men to be registered to vote.

Is the fact that more women are voting already making a difference in terms of policy?

It appears to be. As Indian women become more politically mobilized, this seems to be changing how Indian candidates campaign and how they govern once they are in office.
For example, in the state of Bihar, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar brought in a draconian new anti-alcohol law in 2015 when he was reelected. Kumar said that this ban was motivated by a promise he had made on the campaign trail to women, who had told him that rampant alcoholism was devastating their families and communities.
As India gears up for the 2019 general elections, women’s status has become a focal point of campaign rhetoric. Prime Minister Narendra Modi of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has made what are billed as female-friendly policies a hallmark of his platform.
Modi regularly says that his administration’s efforts to improve sanitation, improve welfare subsidies (for things like the education of girls and the provision of clean cooking fuel) , and guarantee universal banking are transformative for India’s women. This is because the burdens of inadequate service provision disproportionately fall on women. Women are more likely to shoulder daily household tasks such as gathering water for everyday use, or caring for sick children. Opposition parties have adopted this framing as well, to counter Modi’s claims.

How many more women are running as candidates compared to before?

The number of female candidates has gone up, but there is a long way to go.
In 1962, the first general election for which there is data on gender, a paltry 3.7 percent of candidates were women. This figure stayed roughly the same until 1991. In the 1990s, the proportion of women running for office began to rise, thanks to greater pressure on political parties to choose female candidates.
In 2014, just over 8 percent of candidates in parliamentary races were women. This is, at once, a big improvement and yet a tiny proportion in absolute terms.
According to data collected by Francesca Jensenius on Indian state elections, things are no better at the state level. Between 2011 and 2015, just 7.3 percent of candidates for state office were women.

What kinds of political office are Indian women running for?

Research has found that Indian women are more likely to run in two types of constituencies. First, female candidates are more common in constituencies that have relatively more men than women. This is startling, because one might expect women to run where they are better represented in the population. But this does not appear to be the case.
Second, women are more likely to run in constituencies reserved for historically disadvantaged groups. India has one of the most advanced systems of affirmative action found anywhere in the world. Roughly one-quarter of legislative seats at the state and national levels are reserved for two protected groups: Scheduled Castes, who are at the bottom of the Hindu caste hierarchy, and Scheduled Tribes, who make up India’s native, indigenous population.

Has the #MeToo movement tangibly shaken up Indian politics, or has it been more of a trending topic on social media?

The #MeToo movement has taken a long time to catch fire in India. But in the past month, the #MeToo hashtag exploded on social media, as Indian women began talking about how they have suffered verbal and physical harassment in and out of the workplace.

These accusations have affected the worlds of film, media, business, and even politics. For example, former minister of state for external affairs M.J. Akbar was accused of wrongdoing by more than twenty-one women and was forced to resign over the allegations. Although Akbar still retains his parliamentary seat and has vowed to fight the charges, his resignation from his position as minister was a major victory for the movement. Many more skeletons may tumble out of politicians’ closets in the weeks and months to come.

Will having more female voters, candidates, and politicians really change deeply held Indian cultural attitudes toward women’s role in society?

There is some evidence that having more women in office does change gender perceptions.
For example, one study of affirmative action for women in Indian local politics has found that, while having female politicians does not necessarily mean voters are less likely to prefer male leaders, it does help reduce stereotypes about gender roles in public and private life.
Another study has found that having female politicians can be extremely beneficial for the aspirations and educational attainment of girls living under their jurisdiction. Other new research has found that female representatives are linked to higher growth, as well as less corruption and political opportunism.

Are Indian women more likely to vote for female candidates?

No. There is little evidence to suggest that women in India are more likely to vote for female candidates. Parties led by prominent women also do not fare better than other parties among female voters, though this may be changing.
One study has found that providing additional security at polling booths brings out more women to vote—but the vote share for female candidates actually goes down as a result. One possible explanation is that many Indian women, like men, often have ingrained biases against female leadership.

 As Indian women vote more frequently, are they also joining the workforce in greater numbers?

 No, they are not. This is a central paradox of India’s political and economic future. Despite enjoying unprecedented social and political empowerment, Indian women are dropping out of the labor force at a rapid clip.
There is a well-known U-shaped statistical relationship between a given country’s per capita income and female participation in the labor force. In very poor and in very rich countries, women tend to participate in the workforce at higher rates.

But in the middle of the income distribution, women’s participation dips, as households reach a certain threshold of per capita income that encourages (or forces) women to stay at home.
Relative to countries at similar income levels, India’s female labor participation rate is a distinct outlier.
What’s more, the rate of Indian women working outside the home has gone from bad to worse. According to the International Labor Organization, India ranks 121 out of 131 countries in female labor force participation. Just over a quarter of women in the country are in the labor force today, compared to more than a third in 2005.