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  • Asia Dialogue - First steps towards youth citizenship, a vital ingredient in India’s future

    First steps towards youth citizenship, a vital ingredient in India’s future

    Mukta Naik

    In the Indian city of Indore, located 570 kms from Mumbai, Mohan spends his day attending classes at an engineering college and his evenings with his friends. His father owns a small business and he is the first in his family to go to college. His family expects him to get a well-paid job when he graduates. Mohan, aware of how tough the job market is, resents his family’s unreasonable expectations and is desperately seeking a sense of direction. READ MORE

    Categories: Citizenship, Governance, Identity, Youth

  • Asia Dialogue - Himalayan Scrapyard Living

    Himalayan Scrapyard Living

    Sarah Rooney and Nayan Pokhrel (Fixer)

    Rajkumar is in the backyard of a popular bar, sorting through rubbish. He comes here every few weeks to collect empty booze bottles and any other recyclable material. Today, there are five or six old posters – alcohol advertisements – that he can shred, reselling both the sheet on which the poster was printed and the aluminum frame. He adds to his haul a few used cardboard boxes and an old neon sign for Yeti Airlines. READ MORE

    Categories: Informality, Livelihoods, Waste and Recycling

  • Asia Dialogue - Online Work: The Game-Changer for Asia’s Entrepreneurs

    Online Work: The Game-Changer for Asia’s Entrepreneurs

    Nicolas Picard

    An exciting tech trend is reshaping Asian workforces. In countries like Bangladesh where the economy is expanding alongside faster broadband speeds and mobile penetration, entrepreneurs and skilled workers looking for employment are turning to online work, or eWork. A 2014 report on global online work by Elance-oDesk (a merger of two eWork “freelance” platforms) measured over 8 million registered online freelancers and 2 million registered business clients on its two platforms combined. It is predicted that in 2014, $930 million worth of work will be completed on the platform. READ MORE

    Categories: Citizenship, Livelihoods, Technology, Youth

  • Asia Dialogue - Secondary cities across Asia are neglecting their online presence

    Secondary cities across Asia are neglecting their online presence

    Rowan Fraser

    Google often receives take-down requests from local governments scattered across the world. A take-down request is a request from an organization or individual for Google to remove content from the internet (or just the link to the content) which the organization or individual believes to be wrong or damaging in some way. Google rarely complies. But this points to three things:

    1. that local governments recognize the need to manage how the public views them;

    2. that local governments see the internet as contributing to their public image;

    3. that local governments seek to manipulate their online images. READ MORE

    Categories: Governance, Identity, Technology

  • Asia Dialogue - Greening the kampung: A small but vital step towards sustainable development in Surabaya

    Greening the kampung: A small but vital step towards sustainable development in Surabaya

    Mukta Naik

    Over the last two decades, the awareness of the adverse impacts of climate change has grown and sustainability has become a key objective in urban planning. However, the interpretation of the green agenda in most Asian cities has been literal, with money spent on obvious aspects like parks and tree plantation, while more complex and holistic approaches have been harder to understand, leave alone implement. READ MORE

    Categories: Food Security, Livelihoods, Sustainability

  • Asia Dialogue - The Grosvenor ranking of urban resilience

    The Grosvenor ranking of urban resilience

    Rowan Fraser

    Finally!  I’ve been waiting for this to happen for a while now and I must say its good to see it’s been done: a global ranking of the resilience of cities.

    There are indices quantifying and ranking cities for numerous other things: quality of life, attractiveness to tourists, air quality, sustainability and economic strength, to name but a few.   But until mid-April there was no ranking of urban resilience, despite mounting attention to the issue and increasingly vocal calls to tackle urban vulnerability.

    READ MORE

    Categories: Governance, Infrastructure, Livelihoods, Resilience, Safety and Security

  • Asia Dialogue - Spotlight on citizenship: Hope lives in India’s secondary cities

    Spotlight on citizenship: Hope lives in India’s secondary cities

    Mukta Naik

    The recently concluded 2014 Indian national polls were the largest exercise in democracy in the world. However, while franchise is a well-exercised right in the country of 1.2 billion people and over 800 million voters—60% was the voter turnout in 2009—this doesn’t translate into active citizenship. Nor does it ensure citizens access to basic rights enshrined in the Constitution.

    READ MORE

    Categories: Citizenship, Gender, Governance, Identity, Livelihoods

  • Asia Dialogue - Restoring lakes to benefit the ecosystem: The case of Mysore

    Restoring lakes to benefit the ecosystem: The case of Mysore

    Mukta Naik

    Late in the 1980s birding enthusiasts in the city of Mysore, located 140 kms southwest of India’s IT capital Bangalore, noticed a sickly green coating grow over the surface of the lakes they frequented. Awareness about the ill effects of pollution was growing and they began to worry about their city. Particularly, they worried about the wetlands and water bodies that they saw as critical habitats for wildlife and birds. They were pained by the increasing amount of raw sewage that was finding its way into these waters as the city grew. READ MORE

    Categories: Food Security, Livelihoods, Resilience, Water

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