Latest activities of group #04’s Hackable Car2012-05-15T10:31:26Z<p><img title="Behar&rsquo;s Hackable Car" src="/s3/photos%2F2011%2F04%2Fb008d6ead99eda17.png" alt="Behar&rsquo;s Hackable Car" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">It&rsquo;s a car! It&rsquo;s a truck! It&rsquo;s an ambulance! Fuseproject&rsquo;s Yves&nbsp;B&eacute;har&rsquo;s cute, new &ldquo;hackable&rdquo; car could be almost anything&nbsp;we want it to be. He designed this emerald-colored beauty&nbsp;for the developing world (think India and China), but the&nbsp;greenest, most design-minded are tripping over themselves&nbsp;figuring out how to get their very own. Behar unveiled&nbsp;the automobile at this year&rsquo;s Greener Gadgets conference&nbsp;in New York, where the designer of One Laptop per Child,&nbsp;explained the do-it-yourself car concept. The vehicle is&nbsp;meant for dirt roads far from traditional power structures&nbsp;and will have the option of being powered by solar energy.&nbsp;&ldquo;The car industry needs rethinking,&rdquo; Behar says. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s rare&nbsp;that we get to a place where the industry is behind&nbsp;what people want. But the car industry is far behind&nbsp;the consumers&rsquo; desire for alternative energy projects&nbsp;in the spirit of the 21<span>st </span>century.&rdquo;</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">&nbsp;</p> <p><img title="Behar&rsquo;s Hackable Car" src="/s3/cache%2F9b%2Ffe%2F9bfe424d666b44d086373b088b1866d2.jpg" alt="Behar&rsquo;s Hackable Car" width="400" /></p>Already the Biggest Exporter, China to Become the Biggest Importer in Early 2012.2011-05-07T20:04:06Z<p><img style="float: right;" src="/s3/cache%2F98%2F1b%2F981b6966abdc138cb25790e0fed21038.jpg" alt="" />The world took notice in 2009 when China officially became the biggest exporter. But Don Brasher, CEO of Global Trade Information Services (GTIS), thinks that what is about to happen next is even bigger news.</p> <p>&ldquo;Probably by the end of 2011 and certainly in early 2012, China will become the world&rsquo;s biggest importer,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;And, if China is the biggest importer, how much longer will it be before the price of oil and other commodities are set in Renminbi, not US dollars?&rdquo;</p> <p>Just-released data compiled by GTIS clearly shows China&rsquo;s imports rising vertically, with the US, Japan and the major European economies following a flattened trend. &ldquo;China is the engine of global markets as an importer and no longer as an exporter alone,&rdquo; Brasher says.</p> <p>Although GTIS data shows that China already leads imports in a number of commodities, he believes that China&rsquo;s current growth trends are unsustainable. &ldquo;It is unrealistic to think that China can continue to grow this fast,&rdquo; he says. So, China&rsquo;s current imports of coal and iron ore, for example, are unlikely to continue at current levels.&nbsp;</p> <p>To read the full report, order a copy of the&nbsp;<a rel="nofollow" title="Global Journal Issue 04" href="">magazine</a>.</p>The Spring of Progress2011-05-02T14:10:30Z<p><img style="float: right;" title="Editor in Chief" src="/s3/cache%2F4f%2F2c%2F4f2c7d13abf9f2fc42e816d509e34ea2.jpg" alt="Pic JCN" width="146" height="220" />We thought the word &ldquo;progress&rdquo; had disappeared from the dictionary, replaced by a blank space and a note: &ldquo;See &lsquo;crisis&rsquo; or &lsquo;depression&rsquo;&rdquo;. And here it is making a comeback where least expected. The lead weight covering the countries of North Africa is yielding to the blows of the people. Whether orange or green, brown or red, no one can swear to the color, but the revolt of little Tunisia has shaken the world. The shock wave is traveling at top speed, stirring consciences and stomachs. It takes courage for Libyans to confront a dictator whose dementia has revealed its full extent. Courage, too, for Bahrainis to call for a new Prime Minister. It will take even more for Belarussians or North Koreans to end their torpor and throw off the Communist yoke of the past. The only certainty is that the insurrection underway marks the end of one world, but we must wait and see if it becomes revolution.</p> <p><span style="white-space: pre;">&nbsp; </span>If China operates through planning ahead, many countries do not seem to know where the winds of history will carry them. The world&rsquo;s largest economy, the U.S. is at a crossroads, the number of &ldquo;Sputnik moments&rdquo; that it could face are multiplying. On the central issue of energy policy and its commitment to climate change, it is difficult to imagine the United States playing Sleeping Beauty. The first part of the Obama mandate has been disappointing, to say the least, in this matter: nothing appears to be moving. But not so fast. We want to know more about the Americans who have not given up. Here, we introduce you to 15. These 15 are able to boost America&rsquo;s legendary creativity and effectiveness, to create the consensus that is lacking. Without it, the dollar will weaken all the faster, currency reserves that have always been supported by the American conquering spirit will dwindle. The idea of an Apollo Program for Energy could be the solution the White House needs. The breakthrough will certainly be technological, (but also) - and probably the work of individuals. The members of Congress do not want it. But the members of the Dream Team we have assembled here seem to be saying &ldquo;let&rsquo;s do it without those sitting on Capitol Hill&rdquo;. The new century has rolled in with a new lifestyle and pattern of consumption. Who can hold back the tide?</p> <p><span style="white-space: pre;">&nbsp; </span>For the waves are powerful. Don Brasher, CEO of GTIS, is convinced that China will become the world&rsquo;s largest importer probably by the end of 2011 and no later than early 2012. Number 1 exporter, Number 1 importer&hellip;and the West moves into the background. For how many months can the dollar remain as the reserve currency under that pressure? Will the emotions of the financial markets speed up this transition? Time is not always on the side of those in power, as North Africa has reminded the world&rsquo;s leaders. And, while Iran appears to have been stalled in its nuclear race, the world has yet to accomplish a positive transformation of its own energy model.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>To read the magazine, order a copy&nbsp;<a rel="nofollow" href="">here</a></p>American Energy Dream Deam2011-04-12T19:38:27Z<p>The Global Journal has imagined the core of this Dream Team. Others will join them, but, here are the first 15 Americans that we see turning the crank and restarting the engines. They are more than capable of doing so. But, when? Sputnik moments are multiplying! The world should be concerned,&nbsp;because China, although certainly wide-awake, will not be able to turn the planet round by itself. The world may well need these 15 Americans.</p>Ambassador Richard L. Morningstar2011-04-12T19:35:55Z<p><span>S</span>ince becoming Special Envoy for Eurasian energy&nbsp;in 2009, Richard L. Morningstar has had a lot on&nbsp;his plate. He has been making a business argument&nbsp;for many of the big energy projects in Europe, during&nbsp;a time when money has been dwindling because of&nbsp;the global recession.&nbsp;Morningstar realizes that it&rsquo;s all about economics.&nbsp;To create an efficient way to transport energy throughout&nbsp;Eurasia there must be a way for businesses to&nbsp;make a profit, he explained in a speech given last&nbsp;year. Big projects are overwhelmingly expensive.&nbsp;Energy markets are uncertain. The full impact of the&nbsp;financial crisis is still unfolding. Finding financing for&nbsp;projects will be more difficult than ever.</p> <p>&ldquo;And that implies, in the short to mid-term, that the&nbsp;smart approach to energy security, particularly for specific&nbsp;countries or regions, may be local and incremental:&nbsp;an approach that focuses on getting the most out&nbsp;of existing infrastructure and opportunities,&rdquo; he said.&nbsp;Secretary Clinton appointed Morningstar to support&nbsp;the United States&rsquo; energy goals in the Eurasian region,&nbsp;including key energy issues relating to Europe, Russia,&nbsp;Ukraine, Turkey, Central Asia and the Caucasus.&nbsp;Since his appointment he has provided the Secretary&nbsp;with strategic advice on policy issues relating&nbsp;to development, transit, and distribution of energy&nbsp;resources in Eurasia.</p> <p>His previous job was working on regional energy&nbsp;issues during the Clinton Administration. He also&nbsp;served as United States ambassador to the European&nbsp;Union from June 1999 to September 2001. He received&nbsp;his B.A. from Harvard in 1967 and J.D. from Stanford&nbsp;Law School in 1970.&nbsp;In addition, Morningstar is pushing for cooperation&nbsp;on key energy issues through the newly-created&nbsp;EU-US Energy Council. Two of these strategic issues&nbsp;are: security of supply and advancing clean energy&nbsp;technologies and efficiency programs.&nbsp;He is also focused on connecting existing gas and&nbsp;electric power networks and building gas storage&nbsp;capacity, which needs very little new investment.&nbsp;Meanwhile, the EU has committed several billion&nbsp;euros to investment in these facilities. The EU is also&nbsp;moving forward on greening its economy through&nbsp;improving energy efficiency, investing in renewables,&nbsp;and liberalizing energy markets.&nbsp;Yet demand will outstrip supply if new infrastructure&nbsp;isn&rsquo;t built. Large, dedicated pipelines are needed,&nbsp;he said. And with over a dozen projects in the offing it&nbsp;seems as though there will be many more pipelines.&nbsp;The key will be for the U.S. and Europe to look&nbsp;out for each other&rsquo;s energy security - our economies&nbsp;depend on it.</p>Captain Planet2011-04-11T15:14:19Z<p><img style="float: left; margin: 0 20px 10px 0;" title="Todd Stern" src="/s3/photos%2F2011%2F04%2Fbd4ae2dd1975f37f.png" alt="Todd Stern" width="600" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="color: #808080;">Tood Stern,&nbsp;Special Envoy for Climate Change, US State Department</span></p> <p><span style="color: #808080;">&nbsp;</span><span>T</span>odd Stern undoubtedly has the most critical role&nbsp;in the US contemporary energy adventure. The&nbsp;Special Envoy for Climate Change, close to Hillary&nbsp;Clinton, in reality acts as Viceroy for the United States,&nbsp;and perhaps this isn&rsquo;t such a bad idea.</p> <p>To read the full article&nbsp;<a rel="nofollow" href="">buy the magazine</a>.</p>Tahrir Square Revolt and the “Beijing consensus” - A Second Look2011-04-11T14:41:56Z<p><img style="float: left; margin: 0 40px 30px 0;" title="André Schneider" src="/s3/photos%2F2011%2F04%2F2993e1d61d47c82f.png" alt="André Schneider" width="200" height="269" />Before looking at the significance of the Tahrir&nbsp;Square events, let&rsquo;s remind ourselves about&nbsp;what is commonly understood by the &ldquo;Beijing consensus.&rdquo;&nbsp;This term is used to describe an alternative&nbsp;plan for development in the emerging world&nbsp;and was first presented in a paper by Joshua Cooper&nbsp;Ramo in 2004. This alternative approach proposes&nbsp;a new way of addressing the challenges&nbsp;posed by the changing economic and social environment;&nbsp;specifically, a rejection of per capita&nbsp;GDP as the be-all and end-all of development&nbsp;priorities, and the need for self-determination&ndash;an emphasis on the importance for developing&nbsp;countries to actively seek independence from external&nbsp;pressure as imposed by &ldquo;hegemonic powers&rdquo;.&nbsp;It does not automatically refer to a system based on a marriage between an authoritarian one-party system&nbsp;and capitalism, as erroneously presented in the&nbsp;article in<strong> Le Monde.</strong></p> <p>If we now take a closer look at what happened&nbsp;at Tahrir Square, while the event is portrayed as an&nbsp;important ideological battle in Le Monde, and one&nbsp;which will determine the future, or more specifically&nbsp;the end, of the &ldquo;Beijing consensus&rdquo;, I do not agree&nbsp;with this interpretation. In my view, the revolt is a&nbsp;reminder for us, in the clearest terms, of a crucial&nbsp;principle for government leaders: when young people&nbsp;do not feel understood anymore, and do not believe in&nbsp;their government&rsquo;s capacity to offer them a real prospect&nbsp;for their future, then they will rise up. This uprising&nbsp;will succeed when the general population shares&nbsp;a common lack of faith in a highly corrupt class of government leaders acting with impunity, with its&nbsp;ensuing social injustice and exclusion. Modern technology&nbsp;enables such movements to gain in size and&nbsp;momentum via today&rsquo;s world of Facebook, Twitter&nbsp;and other social networks.</p> <p><span style="color: #888888;">...</span></p> <p>To read the full article&nbsp;<a rel="nofollow" href="">buy the magazine</a>.</p> <p><strong>Andr&eacute; Schneider&nbsp;has been World&nbsp;Economic&nbsp;Forum&rsquo;s Chief&nbsp;Operating Officer&nbsp;for the last&nbsp;8 years. He has&nbsp;traveled China&nbsp;thoroughly for&nbsp;the last 5 years.&nbsp;His consultancy,&nbsp;Andr&eacute; Schneider&nbsp;Global Advisory,&nbsp;was created at&nbsp;the end of 2010.<br /></strong></p>American Energy Dream Team2011-04-11T14:17:38Z<p><span>S</span>een from outside the box &ndash;the American one, that is&ndash; many&nbsp;wonder what the USA is or is not doing to move forward&nbsp;in the field of energy. Not so much what the giants of oil, solar&nbsp;or wind are doing. But whether there are individuals able to&nbsp;restore, in any lasting way, the American spirit of competition&nbsp;and innovation against the general inertia that seems to have&nbsp;stricken the United States. Long before the Democrat defeat/Republican victory in the House of Representatives, the&nbsp;question of U.S. commitment to &lsquo;new&rsquo; energy &ndash;the heart of&nbsp;the debate on climate change&ndash; remained unanswered. Will&nbsp;this commitment ever come? From the markets? Multinationals?&nbsp;NGOs? Who now needs convincing? Public opinion? The&nbsp;consumer? Politicians? An &ldquo;American Energy Dream Team&rdquo;&nbsp;must, sooner or later, emerge to launch a new kind of Apollo&nbsp;Program, for energy, that will, finally, lead the world in the&nbsp;21<span>st </span>Century to switch to sustainable energy.&nbsp;The Global Journal has imagined the core of this Dream Team.&nbsp;Others will join them, but, here are the first 15 Americans&nbsp;that we see turning the crank and restarting the engines.&nbsp;They are more than capable of doing so. But, when? Sputnik&nbsp;moments are multiplying! The world should be concerned,&nbsp;because China, although certainly wide-awake, will not&nbsp;be able to turn the planet round by itself. The world may&nbsp;well need these 15 Americans.</p> <p>Ruthie Ackerman meets the Dream Team and reports.</p> <p><span style="color: #888888;">...</span></p> <p><span style="color: #888888;">To read the full article&nbsp;<a rel="nofollow" href="">buy the magazine</a>.<br /></span></p>Gordon Brown, the Huge Transition Phase in Our History2011-04-11T13:02:35Z<p><img title="Gordon Brown | Car" src="/s3/photos%2F2011%2F04%2F4b1abc9bc220e759.png" alt="Gordon Brown | Car" /></p> <h3><span style="color: #000000;">&ldquo;We&rsquo;re at a Huge Transition Phase in Our History&rdquo;</span></h3> <p>Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown was at&nbsp;the helm in London when the global financial system came&nbsp;close to collapse in the autumn of 2008. He speaks about&nbsp;his snap decision to recapitalize British banks and explains&nbsp;why global regulation has been so long in coming.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="color: #c24a3d;">Early one morning at the height of the banking crisis, you told&nbsp;your wife Sarah to get ready to move out of Downing Street as&nbsp;you might resign that afternoon. How did she react?</span></p> <p>Very professionally. She got on with the preparations. Of course,&nbsp;she couldn&rsquo;t call in the movers just yet. That would have been a&nbsp;bit too disastrous a signal to the markets.</p> <p><span style="color: #c24a3d;">We&rsquo;re talking about Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2008. Lehman Brothers&nbsp;had just filed for bankruptcy. In your new book &ldquo;Beyond the&nbsp;Crash,&rdquo; you write: &ldquo;I sensed that if no-one acted, total collapse&nbsp;was imminent.&rdquo; What exactly were you expecting?</span></p> <p>The Royal Bank of Scotland would have collapsed within hours.&nbsp;HBOS was not far behind, and in that case, other European and&nbsp;American banks would have followed. I think people still misunderstand,&nbsp;in retrospect, the scale of the collapse that we were&nbsp;facing: It would have been absolutely catastrophic.</p> <p><span style="color: #c24a3d;">Would the ATM&rsquo;s have stopped handing out money?</span></p> <p>Most likely. People would have been in panic about their savings,&nbsp;there would have been a run on the banks. But what worried&nbsp;me most was that at this moment there was a total lack&nbsp;of leadership about the way forward, both within banks and&nbsp;governments. The banks still deceived themselves. One banker&nbsp;told me on the day before his bank collapsed: &ldquo;All we need is&nbsp;overnight funds.&rdquo; He didn&rsquo;t even realize that his institution was&nbsp;virtually on the brink.</p> <p><span style="color: #c24a3d;">That morning, you announced the immediate recapitalization&nbsp;of the British banks using billions of pounds in public funds,&nbsp;and which basically meant nationalization. Today, you receive a&nbsp;lot of praise for the steps you took. But how did you know then&nbsp;that it would work?</span></p> <p><span style="color: #c24a3d;">&nbsp;</span>I didn&rsquo;t. To be honest, it was a gamble. No other country had&nbsp;done it before. I would have resigned that day if it failed. But it&nbsp;worked. Within days, most large economies followed our path.&nbsp;At around the same time, German Finance Minister Peer Steinbr&uuml;ck&nbsp;was still in denial, blaming the problem entirely on Anglo-American banking practices.&nbsp;What really sparked the whole thing was the subprime crisis in&nbsp;America. But what people hadn&rsquo;t yet realized was that half the&nbsp;subprimes had been sold into European banks. The banks were&nbsp;undercapitalized, and they had a lot of impaired assets on their&nbsp;balance sheets.</p> <p><span style="color: #808080;">...</span></p> <p>To read the full article&nbsp;<a rel="nofollow" href="">buy the magazine</a>.</p> <p><span style="color: #808080;">by Marco Evers and Christoph Pauly &copy; 2011 Der Spiegel/Distributed by The New York Times Syndicate</span></p>Sandrine Salerno, Mayor of Geneva2011-04-11T12:43:57Z<p><span style="font-size: 18px; font-weight: bold; color: #000000;">The City, the World's Local Laboratory</span></p> <blockquote> <p>Sandrine Salerno, Mayor of Geneva since June 1, 2010, is convinced&nbsp;that the future of global governance starts at the local level.&nbsp;Here, she explains how cities should be working together to fulfil&nbsp;their natural role. And why it&rsquo;s time that Geneva stopped being&nbsp;so modest and became the hub of global governance.</p> </blockquote> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><img style="float: left; margin: 0 40px 30px 0;" title="sandrine salerno" src="/s3/photos%2F2011%2F04%2F3f1503b0a2a54853.png" alt="sandrine salerno" width="300" height="360" /></p> <p><span style="color: #c24a3d;">You have made two trips recently, to Mexico and to&nbsp;Senegal. What was behind these journeys?</span></p> <p>Geneva is part of an international network of cities&nbsp;called UCLG, United Cities and Local Governments,&nbsp;and once every three years, this organization brings&nbsp;together as many of its members as possible. That&nbsp;was the reason for my trip to Mexico City, which followed&nbsp;a visit to Korea at the beginning of my term,&nbsp;three years ago. The UCLG meeting allows elected officials&nbsp;to share knowledge on issues, exchange information,&nbsp;learn best practices, even learn from each&nbsp;other&rsquo;s difficulties and failures. It is also a network&nbsp;of elected officials who, like Geneva&rsquo;s officials, are&nbsp;interested in developing local policy and comparing&nbsp;it to other realities, even if they are very dissimilar.&nbsp;And since the city of Geneva has funds for cooperation&nbsp;and development, we can work in certain directions&nbsp;at the local level, and have the financial means&nbsp;to support other local authorities, other elected officials,&nbsp;with their own projects. This helps to develop&nbsp;decentralized cooperation between cities. The city of&nbsp;Geneva is no missionary trying to develop its counterparts.&nbsp;Instead, the idea is to have a project that can&nbsp;enrich our city and the collaborators who work here,&nbsp;through which they can meet their counterparts in&nbsp;other parts of the world. It is also about creating intelligent&nbsp;solidarity between cities, because I think that,&nbsp;in the years to come, even if it takes time internationally&nbsp;and diplomatically, cities will have more weight&nbsp;and will be heard. Over 51% of the world&rsquo;s population&nbsp;already lives in urban areas.</p> <p><span style="color: #c24a3d;">Were any important cities missing from the meeting?</span></p> <p><span style="color: #c24a3d;">&nbsp;</span>There are already some not in the UCLG structure.&nbsp;There are very few U.S. cities. Some Chinese cities,&nbsp;but relatively few considering China&rsquo;s potential. UCLG&nbsp;now has about 1000 members, cities and local authorities.&nbsp;These can be a city or province or, in our case, a&nbsp;canton or a community of communes.</p> <p><span style="color: #c24a3d;">Why are so few U.S. cities members?</span></p> <p>UCLG was born from the merger of two existing structures&nbsp;representing cities and local government where&nbsp;the U.S. already had very little presence. The organization&nbsp;is now seven years old, so it is young. Over&nbsp;time, as UCLG grows in importance, the U.S. will perhaps&nbsp;see that joining is in its interest. These include&nbsp;the realities of international openness, openness to&nbsp;the world. When you travel to the United States, it&nbsp;is a bit like traveling in China, even if the situations&nbsp;are very different.</p> <p>...</p> <p>To read the full article&nbsp;<a rel="nofollow" href="">buy the magazine</a>.</p> <p><span style="color: #808080;"><br /></span></p> <p><span style="color: #c24a3d;"><span style="color: #808080;">by Jean-Christophe NOTHIAS &ndash; photographs by Pascal Dol&eacute;mieux</span><br /></span></p>