All posts by Contributor

Canada’s problem with polygamy

MENTION polygamy in Canada and what might come to mind is Bountiful, a suitably named town in British Columbia. It is home to Canada’s best-known polygamist, Winston Blackmore, who has an estimated 148 children. He and James Oler, a fellow...

/ December 7, 2017

Curious Kids: Where does the oxygen come from in the International Space Station, and why don’t they run out of air?

This is an article from Curious Kids, a series for children. The Conversation is asking kids to send in questions they’d like an expert to answer. All questions are welcome – serious, weird or wacky! Where does the oxygen come...

/ December 5, 2017

For Beijing, the greatest threat to China’s national security is not the Kim regime: it is the US

With every new North Korean missile – such as the one launched on Tuesday November 28 – or nuclear test, all eyes are on China. Like previous American presidents, Donald Trump believes that the road to a diplomatic solution on...

/ December 1, 2017

Flying chariots and exotic birds: how 17th century dreamers planned to reach the moon

People have been dreaming about space travel for hundreds of years, long before the arrival of the spectacular technologies behind space exploration today – mighty engines roaring fire and thunder, shiny metal shapes gliding in the vastness of the universe....

/ December 1, 2017

A Delicate Weave: folk singers from Western India celebrate diversity in the face of intolerance

A Delicate Weave (Jhini Bini Chadariya), a documentary film set in Kachchh, Gujarat in Western India, traces four different musical journeys, all converging in the ways they affirm religious diversity, syncretism (blending of religions and cultures) and love of the...

/ November 29, 2017

For LGBTI employees, working overseas can be a lonely, frustrating and even dangerous experience

As the number of workers taking international assignments increases, companies have more responsibility to look after their LGBTI employees who face persecution while on assignment. Russia, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia and Indonesia are becoming some of the most challenging expatriate assignment...

/ November 22, 2017

How Hong Kong Umbrella movement was crushed and pro-democracy activists gradually silenced

Young Hong Kong democracy activists Joshua Wong, Alex Chow and Nathan Law were released on bail from jail on October 23. They will now appeal against the prison sentence for their role in the 2014 Umbrella Movement. Hong Kong’s version...

/ November 15, 2017

China and the US are both shooting for the moon – but don’t call it a space race

On the face of it, it looks like two of the world’s biggest powers are racing to get astronauts back on the lunar surface. China is aiming to land crew on the moon by 2036, while on the other side...

/ November 8, 2017

Earthquakes caused by industrial activities: what are the risks and how can they be reduced?

On September 3, 2016, a magnitude 5.8 earthquake struck just northwest of Pawnee, Oklahoma, causing moderate to severe damages in buildings near the epicenter. It was the largest ever recorded in the state. The Pawnee earthquake followed the dramatic increase of seismic...

/ November 6, 2017

When cities were Nature’s haven: a tale from Bangalore

We tend to think that nature and cities are polar opposites. Yet this is not true. As my research on Bangalore or Bengaluru – India’s IT hub – shows, for centuries, the population of this region grew because of nature,...

/ October 25, 2017

Kyrgyzstan: migrant women workers and a ‘lost generation’ of children

Dilya-eje, a secondary school teacher in the border village of Samarkandek, Kyrgyzstan, often visits the houses of her neighbourhood to record the children who should attend school the next year. She always indicates the status of their parents in her...

/ October 24, 2017

China’s green planning for the world starts with infrastructure

The United States is retreating from the global community under a president who rejected the Paris Climate Accords and denigrates NAFTA and NATO. This provides an opportunity for China to play a greater role in global affairs. This provides the...

/ October 17, 2017

Peace makes strides in Colombia, but the battle is far from won

One year after Colombians initially rejected a peace agreement with the FARC guerrilla group, today the outlook for peace seems almost promising. On Oct. 10, the country’s constitutional court shielded that accord from any changes for a period of 12...

/ October 16, 2017

Tackling climate change could bring North and South Korea closer and help stabilise the region

The Paris Agreement, signed in 2015 requires every country to make pledges to tackle climate change. North Korea is no exception. Given that air pollution doesn’t recognise borders, there are already several emissions-reduction projects underway that will require cooperation between...

/ October 12, 2017

Design global, manufacture local: a new industrial revolution?

What if globally designed products could radically change how we work, produce and consume? Several examples across continents show the way we are producing and consuming goods could be improved by relying on globally shared digital resources, such as design,...

/ October 11, 2017

Fmr. Manager of DOD Aerospace Threat Program: “UFOs are Real”

Something extraordinary was revealed today. Former high-level officials and scientists with deep black experience who have always remained in the shadows came forward on one platform. These insiders have long-standing connections to government agencies which may have programs investigating unidentifed...

/ October 11, 2017

A close-up look at what happens when tourists and Maasai communities meet

My study of interaction between tourists and a Maasai community raised questions about the boundaries between research, tourism and entertainment. For one thing, the local Maasai generally classify overseas visitors, whether researchers, NGO workers, businessmen or tourists, in the same...

/ October 11, 2017

El flagelo del aborto ilegal en América Latina: ¿hay democracia sin derechos reproductivos?

Read in English. Tres cuartos de todos los abortos en América Latina se hacen de forma ilegal. Junto con África y Asia, esta región reune gran parte de los 17.1 millones abortos realizados de manera insegura cada año alrededor del...

/ October 11, 2017

Dams on Myanmar’s Irrawaddy river could fuel more conflicts in the country

Myanmar makes many headlines these days. While most of the focus has been on the Rohingya issue, the country is also heading towards an important economic and livelihood crisis. Myanmar was once called “Asia’s rice bowl”, and that label stuck...

/ October 10, 2017

Refugees in India have to fend for themselves – we’ve been talking to them about how they manage

Attempts by the Indian government to deport tens of thousands of Rohingya refugees have thrust the country’s laws into the spotlight. Lawyers representing the Rohingyas have reiterated the constitutional right (of citizens and non-citizens alike) to equality, life and personal...

/ October 10, 2017