Daily Archives: March 20, 2019

Emily Dickinson Archive

Harvard University Press
Published on Sep 18, 2013

Emily Dickinson Archive (http://www.edickinson.org/) makes high-resolution images of manuscripts of Dickinson’s poetry available in open access, along with transcriptions and annotations from historical and scholarly editions. A collaboration between Amherst College, Boston Public Library, Brigham Young University, Harvard University Press, Houghton Library at Harvard, and other institutions holding Dickinson manuscripts, Emily Dickinson Archive is designed to inspire new scholarship and discourse on this literary icon.

Russell Geekie discusses aid operations in the aftermath of Cyclone Idai

BBC World Service – The Real Story, China’s Big Social Experiment

In 2014, the Chinese government issued a document aimed at increasing the amount of ‘trust’ in society. Today this emerging system is known as China’s social credit system – like a credit score but tracking more than financial transactions. China’s central government wants to have the system in place across China by 2020, using a range of information — including shopping habits, driving fines and even what’s written on social media — to rate and rank individuals. People with poor scores could find themselves unable to get bank loans or buy plane tickets. Advocates claim that a system is necessary in a country where few people have credit ratings. But detractors see it as a kind of dystopic super-surveillance. Celia Hatton and a panel of expert guests weighs up the costs and benefits of social credit.

(Photo: A Chinese woman walks along the street holding a broom and dustpan. Credit: Getty Images)


Rana Mitter – Professor of Chinese History, Oxford University

Samantha Hoffman – Visiting Fellow at Mercator Institute for China Studies

Cindy Yu – Writer at the British magazine, The Spectator

Duncan Clark – Chairman of BDA China, a technology consultancy in Beijing

China’s social credit score bans some from travel

CBS This Morning

Published on Apr 24, 2018

By 2020, China plans to give all its 1.4. billion citizens a personal score based on how they behave. Some with low scores are already being punished if they want to travel. Next week, the program will start expanding nationwide. Ben Tracy reports.

China’s “Social Credit System” Has Caused More Than Just Public Shaming ( HBO)


Published on Dec 12, 2018

China is testing a new plan to urge its citizens to do more good and be more trustworthy – the Social Credit System. It’s kind of like the American credit score, except it tracks far more than financial transactions. It tracks good — and bad — deeds.

Part of the system is a neighbor watch program that’s being piloted across the country where designated watchers are paid to record people’s behaviors that factor into their social credit score. A high score could bring you lower interest loans and discounted rent and utility bills, but if your score is low, you can be subjected to public shaming or even banned from certain kinds of travel, life gets hard.

China’s economy has exploded over the past decades, economic reforms required banks to be able to evaluate individuals looking to borrow money to buy houses or start new businesses. Fraud and excess borrowing were rampant because most people didn’t really have much of a credit history. To measure its citizens’ trustworthiness, in 2014, The State Council laid out a plan that aims to build a centralized database to evaluate individuals and organizations based on their financial and social behaviors.

The program is scheduled to be nationwide by 2020, which means every Chinese citizen will be tracked, scored, and receive perks and restrictions accordingly.

VICE News went to a village in one of the first pilot cities to see how the local office funnels the behaviors of 3,000 residents in this neighborhood into social credit scores.

What is the human cost to China’s economic miracle? | Head to Head

Al Jazeera English

Premiered Mar 15, 2019
In this episode of Head to Head, Mehdi Hasan challenges Charles Liu, Senior Fellow at Peking University, seasoned Chinese entrepreneur and informal adviser to the Chinese government, on Xi Jinping’s record in power so far, the government’s crackdown on the Uighur Muslim minority, and what role for China if it becomes the 21st century’s military and economic superpower.

With the presidential term limit abolished in 2018, critics say that Chinese President Xi Jinping appears to be paving the way to being able to stay in power for life, but Charles Liu, founder of Hao Capital, disputes this. Separately, despite lower-than-predicted growth, China is still growing substantially and is set to become the world’s biggest economy.

But the economic boom has been paired with an increase in state surveillance and crackdowns on dissent, as well as the repression of the Muslim Uighur minority. So at what cost has China’s economic miracle come? And what’s the future for civil liberties of the Chinese people?

In recent years China has also increased its military spending while some Chinese officials have been ratcheting up their militaristic rhetoric, raising fears of direct military confrontation with the United States.

On this Head to Head episode filmed at the Oxford Union, we challenge Charles Liu on all these topics, ask him whether the Chinese economy has hit a wall, and whether China’s neighbours should dismiss their fears as his country builds up its military and extends its global reach.

We are joined by a panel of three experts:

Andreas Fulda – China Specialist at Asia Research Institute and Assistant Professor at the School of Politics and International Relations, University of Nottingham.

Victor Gao – Vice President of the Beijing based Center for China and Globalization and former interpreter for the late President Deng Xiaoping.

Steve Tsang – Professor and Director of the China Institute at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) University of London.

Watch the US stall on climate change for 12 years

Published on Oct 10, 2018

It was once a bipartisan issue, but now one of America’s major parties acts like climate science doesn’t exist. This is an updated version of a video we published in 2016.

A Story of the Future of Earth | David Wallace-Wells | RSA Replay


Streamed live on Feb 13, 2019

We think we know what’s at stake when it comes to climate change, and we often treat it as if it’s tomorrow’s problem. The real story is much, much more urgent. We have released more carbon into the atmosphere over the last thirty years than in the rest of human history, bringing the planet to the brink of climate catastrophe in less than a generation. And yet we still think of climate action as a peripheral concern; a ‘nice to have’ once our more pressing priorities are taken care of. New York magazine deputy editor and viral sensation David Wallace-Wells paints a disturbing picture of what we’re up against, warning of the real human costs and irrevocable planetary damage that climate change will bring – and sooner than we think. No longer can we live in ignorance or denial. He issues an urgent call to arms, imploring us to change the way we think and talk about our planet’s future.

Tech billionaires could end climate change. So why aren’t they? | David Wallace-Wells

Big Think

Published on Mar 20, 2019
• Saving the world from the apocalyptic impact of climate change should be a dream for many Silicon Valley titans concerned about legacy, says David Wallace-Wells, and yet few are dedicating themselves to addressing the catastrophe.
• Negative emissions technology funded by Bill Gates exists. It would cost $3 trillion per year to operate globally and would mean human industry could continue at current levels without global warming.
• That figure sounds astronomical, however global subsidies to fossil fuel industries cost $5 trillion per year.

David Wallace-Wells is the author of “The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming” (https://amzn.to/2Of5N3y). He is a national fellow at the New America foundation and a columnist and deputy editor at New York magazine. He was previously the deputy editor of The Paris Review. He lives in New York City.

The Belt & Road Initiative Is a Trillion-Dollar Blunder || Debate #2

IntelligenceSquared Debates
Published on Mar 1, 2019

Is China’s Belt & Road project a trillion-dollar blunder?

Ian Bremmer, Founder and President, Eurasia Group

Michèle Flournoy, Co-Founder & Managing Partner, WestExec & Fmr. U.S. Undersecretary of Defense for Policy

Yasheng Huang, Professor, MIT & Author, “Capitalism with Chinese Characteristics”

Parag Khanna, Founder & Managing Partner, FutureMap

Susan Thornton, Senior Fellow, Yale University Paul Tsai China Center & Fmr. Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairsrnton, Senior Fellow, Yale University Paul Tsai China Center & Fmr. Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs.