The Economics of Directly Giving Poor People Money

Giving poor people money directly appears to work. This is counter to who we who are in the first world think however. This article discusses what the people do with the money; things such as starting a business or investing in a roof that has lower total cost of ownership. If this method of charity works, what does it say about the brick and mortar charities?

http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2013/08/23/214210692/the-charity-that-just-gives-money-to-poor-people

The end of economic growth

The end of economic growth; or significantly slower growth (much closer to zero) – it’s debatable. What does this mean for 1st world nations? What does this mean for us personally? Are current events helping transition our economies? A great article exploring this new reality:

http://nymag.com/news/features/economic-growth-2013-7/

They Know You

http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2009/05/hear_they_know_you.html

Behavioral economics & behavioral finance; these things have taught me more about people and the world than my psychology class ever did! As credit card companies analyze us to get their money back they learn interesting things about our behaviour. And they know that “You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.”

 

Scandals To Remember

Leadership matters. These are people who have the potential to short circuit humanity’s tendencies when applied to a misappropriate situation. For example, take this whopper. Described in the podcast is what happens to regulators when they interact with their peers and how their polite interaction let a world-wide crisis bloom.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2009/05/hear_forget_me_not.html

Are your best employees thinking about leaving?

A great intro to what to expect from recruiters. It summarizes the different job seeking types, how frequently they move jobs and the level of enticement needed. It then moves on to describe a successful recruiter/candidate interaction.

www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20130805013502-15454-are-your-best-employees-ready-to-jump-ship

Business Analysts ask “is this of value to the company?”

The value of a Business Analyst is asking “is this of value to the company?” Without someone to ensure the value of a project a project manager will take and complete what is given to them. It is often said that a Project Manager will deliver, on time, on budget and in scope, the perfect set of concrete shoes. The skillsets are complimentary as often a Business Analyst needs a project manager.  Even analysis requires project management.

http://www.batimes.com/articles/the-value-of-a-high-performing-business-analyst.html

http://www.iiba.org//ba-connect/2013/oct/future-no-more-uncertain.aspx

Telecom Economics Drives Google to “go it alone”

“Google Inc. is deep into a multipronged effort to build and help run wireless networks in emerging markets as part of a plan to connect a billion or more new people to the Internet. … Providing …networks would allow Google to circumvent incumbent cable companies and wireless carriers….Google sees its revenue-generating …services as ‘inextricably linked to the infrastructure’…. Google has long been involved in public trials to prove the technology—which operates at lower frequencies than some cell networks, allowing signals to be more easily transmitted through buildings and other obstacles and across longer distances—can work. ”

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323975004578503350402434918.html

The economics that drive Google to do this are the same economics that can and should drive Oil & Gas companies. The business case is that to deploy the value add services in an under-served (rural) area, you need infrastructure. And in getting that infrastructure, in the current climate, it is often cheaper to build it yourself (this presumes the company has the ability to fund the capital). The incumbent telecom companies have not changed their cost structure in many years and in the mean time the cost to build has come down. So, using the services that need to be delivered as a lever, it’s driving companies to look at the cost to build it themselves vs the cost of the incumbents. Over the 200+ telecom projects I have participated on, the payback period is often less than 3 years.