19 May

Explaining why the economies of many autocracies rely on natural resources: it’s easier than good governance

The “resource curse” typically holds that places with more natural resource wealth are more prone to autocratic government. A major new book, “The Institutions Curse” flips the “resource curse” on its head.

From a review of the book: “…the source of the association of high oil and gas rents with nasty political outcomes is located not in the properties of the commodities being exported but, rather, in the institutions existing in today‚Äôs resource-reliant countries before they began extracting hydrocarbons”

https://www-cambridge-org.proxy.lib.umich.edu/core/journals/perspectives-on-politics/article/institutions-curse-natural-resources-politics-and-development-by-victor-menaldo-new-york-cambridge-university-press-2016-401p-9999-cloth-3499-paper/8322BEF359551ECDE237FF6541B686EC/core-reader

11 May

China’s Huge Bike Graveyards

The BBC just posted a video of China’s huge bike “graveyards” – where bikes from the dozens of competing bikeshare companies are impounded after being illegally parked. Pretty incredible drone footage!

http://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-asia-china-43999482/the-problem-of-china-s-huge-bike-graveyards

02 May

Sea level in Florida

Note the comment about Southern Florida being underwater within 80years…

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/may/02/mangroves-everglades-florida-rising-sea-level