January 24th, 2013
05:57 PM GMT
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London (CNN) – “Let’s stop all this talk of two-speed Europe, of fast lanes and slow lanes, of countries missing trains and buses, and consign the whole weary caravan of transport metaphors to a permanent siding.”

The irony is unmistakeable, but this was a serious call to plain speaking. David Cameron’s words, delivered early on in his seminal speech on Britain’s in the European Union, came as a cruel blow to those of us spending our days attempting to illustrate each tiny increment of this crisis with a language that often falls short.

Read more: Cameron promises referendum on Britain's place in Europe

The consequences are difficult to contemplate. We must wave goodbye to the train of European federalism, end all talk of capital flight, and as for the good ship QE…well, she will be consigned to the scrapyard of mere acronyms. And once you do that, there’s no going back. It’s a one-way ticket.

Much like the prospect of Britain leaving the EU, the potential mortality of our metaphors leaves us with a nagging doubt. Can we survive without this linguistic safety net? No sooner had Cameron finished speaking, the cries of protest against a “Europe a la carte” started up, and the French foreign minister Laurent Fabius hit back with a sporting salvo: “Imagine Europe is a football club and you join, but once you're in it you can't say, 'Let's play rugby.'” Had he simply said, “you can’t pick and choose your European experience,” we probably wouldn’t have remembered.
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January 24th, 2013
07:47 AM GMT
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Editor’s Note: Members of the Young Global Leaders forum at the World Economic Forum in Davos share some of their ideas for innovative ways to boost the economy and unleash intellectual capital.

(CNN) – Declining birth rates and longer life expectancy mean that many countries, particularly in the developed world, are faced with aging populations. In Japan, for example, the median age has risen from 22 in 1950 to 45 today and is expected to reach 53 by 2050.

This long-term demographic trend poses huge challenges for affected economies, putting pressure on social welfare systems while dragging on productivity and economic growth. It is worth noting that 17 of the world’s oldest countries in terms of median age are European, creating further challenges to economic recovery in the region.

The problem is exacerbated by social conventions on working age. In 1960, a 65-year-old man had a life expectancy of about 12.8 years but today that figure is about 17.4 years. This rise of almost five years is challenging pension systems and the assumptions that they are based on, particularly the notion in some countries that we should retire at 65 or younger. FULL POST

Filed under: Davos


January 24th, 2013
07:44 AM GMT
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Editor’s Note: Members of the Young Global Leaders forum at the World Economic Forum in Davos share some of their ideas for innovative ways to boost the economy and unleash intellectual capital.

(CNN) – Is 20% youth unemployment in the western world inevitable?

Will generations of young workers be condemned to precarious work conditions in developed economies, or persistent poverty in the emerging ones?

This doesn’t have to be the new reality.  If we consider that just as the “knowledge economy” defined the 20th century, the “creative economy” will dominate the next. FULL POST

Filed under: BusinessDavos


January 24th, 2013
07:10 AM GMT
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Editor’s Note: Members of the Young Global Leaders forum at the World Economic Forum in Davos share some of their ideas for innovative ways to boost the economy and unleash intellectual capital.

(CNN) – I met a very inspiring person couple of years back and he told me three things that have been a great lesson for me:

  1. The hiring process of organizations are more fine-tuned to reject rather than select people, as most often they are focused on identifying the weakness of people – what they can’t do rather than look at what they can.
  2. Everyone is good at something – we need to find a way to match people’s strength to organization needs.
  3. When you give something to someone who least expects it, they give back to you much more.

That helps explain why my we decided to hire individuals in the autism spectrum at SAP Labs India. FULL POST

Filed under: Davos


January 24th, 2013
05:19 AM GMT
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(CNN)
– Henry Kissinger, Bill Gates, David Cameron, Mario Monti and Thomas Friedman are just several of the headline speakers in the second full day of the 2013 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

While thousands of global economic, political and civil leaders have paid tens of thousands of dollars to personally attend this year’s summit, you can watch many sessions online and on-demand – without breaking the bank.

Thursday’s highlights include:

1. “The State of the World: A Strategic Assessment”

Henry Kissinger, Nobel Peace Prize winner and former Secretary of State for President Richard Nixon, takes the spotlight in this one-on-one session with Klaus Schwab, the founder of the World Economic Forum.

Kissinger, who helped engineer the normalization of U.S. relations with China and the end of the Vietnam War, will discuss how world governments can restore their legitimacy at a time when they are increasingly being challenged, questioned and doubted by their own citizens.

2. “Eurozone Crisis – The Way Forward”

The 17-member union that shares the common Euro currency has been battered by sovereign debt crises over the past three years but is now pulling back from the brink.

This session explores what Europe needs to do next to turn the past few years of crisis into future years of opportunity that stresses fiscal order, more effective frameworks for governance and smart reforms.

Featured speakers include Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti, Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk, the Netherlands’ Prime Minister Mark Rutte, Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny and Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt.

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Filed under: Business


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