Saturday, 17 September 2011

How to save millions of lives in one policy change - use bribery

China cuts childbirth mortality rate by promoting hospital births

China has slashed the death rate of newborn babies by almost two-thirds in 12 years by promoting hospital births, research has shown.

Monday, 12 September 2011


During the recent UK riots, it became apparent that most pundits had forgotten their Freakonomics. I reproduce a piece of their wisdom here. It applies to the US, of course, but still....

We spent an entire chapter in Freakonomics exploring the factors that do and do not seem to have brought down the rate of violent crime in the U.S. In short, factors that matter include: number of police; number of prisoners; changes in drug markets; and the availability of abortion. And those that don’t seem to much matter: the economy; innovative policing strategies; most gun laws; capital punishment; and demographics.

For the full link, see

Surprise! eLearning students in secondary schools like to entertain and socialize

Education Technology Debate is an interesting newsletter about the use of computerised learning in developing countries.  In a recent post, a chap from Kenya relates a project to set up eLearning in a secondary school there. I have excerpted part of the conclusion:

This clearly demonstrated that, students when left on their own to use the Internet will only engage in areas that seem to entertain and socialize. Proper supervision, control and guidance will help the students unlock their potential in looking for information that will have direct impact on their academic life. Further when 2 or more students share a computer, they are more creative in terms of the information that they look search for in the net.

You can read the full article here: