HCM City to pilot ’smart urban area’

Last update 16:44 | 17/03/2018

All districts will be expected to develop a “smart urban area” plan by 2020, Trần Vĩnh Tuyến, HCM City People’s Committee vice chairman and head of the smart city management board, said on Friday.

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HCM City plans to become a smart urban area by 2020.

The smart urban area project will be piloted in districts 1 and 12 and the Thủ Thiêm Urban Area in District 2. Continue reading “HCM City to pilot ’smart urban area’”


Modest level of research: weakness of Vietnam’s universities

Last update 10:08 | 15/03/2018
VietNamNet Bridge – Despite the sharp increase in the numbers of professors and associate professors, and lecturers with master degrees and doctorates, no Vietnamese university is included in international university rankings. 

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Students of Duy Tan University

The Science, Education and Environment Advisory Council, at a recent conference on post-graduate training and talent development, pointed out a number of problems in higher education and academic research.

While the number of research works is high, the quality is low and the results cannot be applied in real life. The number of internationally published articles remains modest, especially in social sciences. Continue reading “Modest level of research: weakness of Vietnam’s universities”

Authorities struggle to solve problem of delinquent owners of foreign-invested companies

Last update 13:00 | 17/03/2018
VietNamNet Bridge – Local authorities are finding it difficult to prevent owners of foreign-invested enterprises (FIEs) from fleeing the country, leaving unpaid salaries and debts. 

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The investor has run away, leaving unpaid debts

In Dong Nai province, KL Texwell Vina, the foreign owner of a foreign-invested enterprise, disappeared just days before Tet, leaving an unpaid debt of VND30 billion in social insurance premiums and wages. Nearly 2,000 Vietnamese workers of the company still have not received pay for January.

An analyst said that state management agencies don’t know how to deal with the cases. Continue reading “Authorities struggle to solve problem of delinquent owners of foreign-invested companies”

Cambodia ‘shocked’ by ‘disrespectful’ U.S. aid cut, says democracy intact

PHNOM PENH (Reuters) – Cambodia said on Wednesday it was saddened and shocked by a “disrespectful” U.S. decision to rein back aid programmes because of perceived democratic setbacks and defended its record on democracy.

Cambodia’s national flags are seen as labourers work at a construction site in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, October 7, 2016. REUTERS/Samrang Pring

The White House said on Tuesday it was suspending or curtailing several Treasury, USAID and military assistance programmes that support Cambodia’s military, taxation department and local authorities – all of which, it said, shared blame for recent instability.

Continue reading “Cambodia ‘shocked’ by ‘disrespectful’ U.S. aid cut, says democracy intact”

U.S. turns to music in bid to woo Cambodians

PHNOM PENH (Reuters) – With U.S.-Cambodian relations at a low and Chinese influence growing, Washington is trying a new way to win hearts and minds: sponsoring a well-known Cambodian musician to sing positive songs about America.

Singer Yorn Young poses for a picture before a news conference in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, March 6, 2018. REUTERS/Samrang Pring

“When there is tension, countries seek ways to ease it so arts and culture can help,” said 37-year-old Yorn Young, who launched his “Lovin’ USA” album in Phnom Penh on Tuesday. He was not worried if people thought it was propaganda, he added.

Continue reading “U.S. turns to music in bid to woo Cambodians”

40 percent of world’s people affected by water scarcity

11:26 AM, March 16, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 11:31 AM, March 16, 2018
BSS, Dhaka
At least 40 percent of the world’s people are affected by water scarcity at present, with as many as 700 million people at risk of being displaced by intense water scarcity by 2030.

More than two billion people are compelled to drink unsafe water and more than 4.5 billion people do not have safely managed sanitation services, according to a report of the High-Level Panel on Water (HLPW).

The HLPW handed over the outcome of the report on Thursday to the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and Senior Representative of the World Bank President at the UN Headquarters in New York, USA. Continue reading “40 percent of world’s people affected by water scarcity”

What it means that the Russians-hacking-US-energy-grid story is being leaked in a big way now



This morning, Associated Press (AP) had the story that Russians have succeeded in hacking into the US energy grid, though they were then expelled.  From the CNBC version:

U.S. national security officials said the FBI, the Homeland Security Department and American intelligence agencies determined that Russian intelligence and others were behind the attacks on the energy sector. The officials said the Russians deliberately chose U.S. energy industry targets, obtaining access to computer systems and then conducting “network reconnaissance” of industrial control systems that run American factories and the electricity grid. Continue reading “What it means that the Russians-hacking-US-energy-grid story is being leaked in a big way now”

At this rate, it’s going to take nearly 400 years to transform the energy system


Here are the real reasons we’re not building clean energy anywhere near fast enough.

Fifteen years ago, Ken Caldeira, a senior scientist at the Carnegie Institution, calculated that the world would need to add about a nuclear power plant’s worth of clean-energy capacity every day between 2000 and 2050 to avoid catastrophic climate change. Recently, he did a quick calculation to see how we’re doing.

Not well. Instead of the roughly 1,100 megawatts of carbon-free energy per day likely needed to prevent temperatures from rising more than 2 ˚C, as the 2003 Science paper by Caldeira and his colleagues found, we are adding around 151 megawatts. That’s only enough to power roughly 125,000 homes.

At that rate, substantially transforming the energy system would take, not the next three decades, but nearly the next four centuries. In the meantime, temperatures would soar, melting ice caps, sinking cities, and unleashing devastating heat waves around the globe (see “The year climate change began to spin out of control”).

Caldeira stresses that other factors are likely to significantly shorten that time frame (in particular, electrifying heat production, which accounts for a more than half of global energy consumption, will significantly alter demand). But he says it’s clear we’re overhauling the energy system about an order of magnitude too slowly, underscoring a point that few truly appreciate: It’s not that we aren’t building clean energy fast enough to address the challenge of climate change. It’s that—even after decades of warnings, policy debates, and clean-energy campaigns—the world has barely even begun to confront the problem. Continue reading “At this rate, it’s going to take nearly 400 years to transform the energy system”

Vietnam marks 50 years since U.S. massacre at My Lai

QUANG NGAI, Vietnam (Reuters) – Vietnam marked 50 years since the My Lai massacre on Friday in a memorial ceremony at the site of the killings that was attended by survivors of the massacre, their families, and around 60 U.S. Vietnam War veterans and anti-war activists.

Performers take part during the 50th anniversary of the My Lai massacre in My Lai village, Vietnam March 16, 2018. REUTERS/Kham

American soldiers killed 504 people on March 16, 1968, in Son My, a collection of hamlets between the central Vietnamese coast and a ridge of misty mountains, in an incident known in the West as the My Lai Massacre.

Continue reading “Vietnam marks 50 years since U.S. massacre at My Lai”

Why Are Minerals Companies Trying to Make Batteries?


Lithium Australia is the latest in a series of firms looking downstream.

An Australian lithium mine.

An Australian lithium mine.

Lithium Australia last month became the latest in a growing list of mineral extraction firms to branch out into battery manufacturing.

The Perth, Western Australia-based lithium company announced acceptance of an offer for 99.7 percent of the Very Small Particle Company (VSPC), an Australian firm that develops and produces nanoscale metal oxides for lithium-iron-phosphate electric vehicle batteries.

Lithium Australia said VSPC, of Queensland, had spent 14 years and AUD $30 million (USD $23 million) developing “the world’s most advanced cathode production technology for lithium-ion batteries.” Continue reading “Why Are Minerals Companies Trying to Make Batteries?”

Four Things to Know About Gender-Based Violence in Asia


March 14, 2018

By Barbara RodriguezSofia Shakil and Adrian Morel

woman in IndiaGlobally, one in three women have experienced physical and/or sexual violence in their lifetime. On March 6, The Asia Foundation in Washington, D.C., hosted a panel discussion on why gender-based violence remains so prevalent in Asia and the legal frameworks that exist (or don’t, but should) to protect women and girls. Here are four key takeaways from our presentations and the ensuing discussion. Continue reading “Four Things to Know About Gender-Based Violence in Asia”

Trồng một cây

  • TTCT – 05.03.2018, 08:54

Năm 1977, học giả Kirkpatrick Sale đã hỏi kinh tế gia người Đức E.F. Schumacher: “Dựa vào những hiểu biết sâu sắc về kinh tế, xã hội của mình, ông có thể đưa ra lời khuyên nào có tính hoàn toàn chính trị không?”. Schumacher trả lời: “Hãy trồng một cây!”.

>> Đời luôn sẵn kẻ mộng mơ

Trồng một cây? Đó lại là một lời khuyên chính trị hay sao? Và đó là câu chuyện ở phương Tây nửa sau thế kỷ 20. Nhưng ở Việt Nam, nửa đầu thế kỷ 19, “trồng một cây” đã là một quyết định chính trị rồi. Theo sách Quốc sử di biên, năm 1831, vua Minh Mạng đã ban chiếu có đoạn: “Chiếu sai các thành trấn, thành phủ và đường quan đều trồng cây mít, cách 5 thước trồng một cây. Đê sông lớn, đê sông nhỏ đều trồng cây liễu; các vườn tược bỏ hoang đều phải trồng đay gai”.Đến đầu thế kỷ 21 này, khi rừng tự nhiên mất đi với tốc độ chóng mặt, lũ lụt năm sau gây hậu quả nặng nề hơn năm trước, không chuyện gì chính trị và thời sự hơn là việc “trồng một cây”. Và không gì hay hơn để bắt đầu bằng việc nghe những người trồng cây kể chuyện của họ.
Bờ kè An Nhiên trước lũ. (Ảnh: trang trại An Nhiên cung cấp)

Continue reading “Trồng một cây”

Đời luôn sẵn kẻ mộng mơ

  • TTCT – 05.03.2018, 12:05

Những kẻ mơ mộng ấy muốn rằng ngày sẽ có thêm nhiều người mơ mộng, để trồng thêm dù chỉ một cái cây, và nhiều cây sẽ thành một khu rừng.

>> Trồng một cây

Đời luôn sẵn kẻ mộng mơ

Ba Lan đang ở giữa mùa đông, khắp nơi cây cối đều trụi lá, trơ cành đen đúa, khẳng khiu, tưởng như đã chết khô héo, kể cả những cây thông vốn giỏi chịu lạnh cũng đổi sang màu xanh pha vàng úa hoặc xanh xám ghi. Để có chút màu xanh của cây cối, nhân dịp cuối tuần đi chợ nông dân, tôi mua ít củ hoa hyancyth (ở Việt Nam gọi là hoa tiên ông), hoa tulip và ít củ thủy tiên về trồng. Thoạt đầu, trông chúng chả khác gì mấy củ hành tây mua ngoài chợ, thế mà chỉ mấy ngày trong căn bếp ấm, được tưới nước đầy đủ, các loại hoa đã thi nhau bật tung nụ, làm rạng rỡ cả ngày đông tuyết trắng đơn sắc ngoài cửa sổ. Continue reading “Đời luôn sẵn kẻ mộng mơ”

Powerful Images From the National Walkout – Học sinh toàn nước Mỹ biểu tình đòi an ninh

The adults act like kids, and the kids act like adults
Người lớn hành động như trẻ em, trẻ em hành động như người lớn.

Truyền thông Mỹ đang nói câu đó. Nước Mỹ thường xuyên xảy ra sát nhân giết người hằng loạt bằng súng, đặc biệt là trong các trường học. Tổng tống Mỹ và các nghị sĩ đảng cầm quyền Cộng Hòa ở Thượng Viên và Hạ Viện Mỹ ngồi yên không dám nhúc nhích vì sợ làm mất lòng National Rifle Association (NRA – Hội Súng Trường Quốc Gia) với tiền bạc đổ vào mọi cuộc bầu cử ủng hộ ứng viên Cộng Hòa và hệ thống lobbying vĩ đại của hội (vận động hành lang Quốc hội và các cơ quan chính phủ). Vì vậy, các em học sinh trung học tự đứng dậy đòi hỏi giải quyết vấn đề.

Ngày thứ tư 17/3/2018, đúng một tháng từ ngày 17 học sinh bị bắn chết ở trường Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School ở bang Florida, học sinh từ nhiều trường trên khắp nước Mỹ làm cuộc walkout (bước ra khỏi lớp học), biểu tình, đòi hỏi chính quyền thay đổi luật về mua bán súng để trường học an ninh hơn. Các em tuyên bố sẽ không ngừng đòi hỏi cho đến khi luật thay đổi, và nói rằng các em 18 tuổi trở lên nhất định sẽ đi bầu để bầu những người hỗ trợ tăng kiểm soát mua bán súng (thường là người của đảng Dân Chủ).


Thousands of students are participating in Wednesday’s protest
Posted Mar 14, 2018 11:54 AM CDT

Gabe Martin, 17, center, a senior at Erie High School, speaks to fellow students during a student walkout on Wednesday, March 14, 2018 to protest gun violence in schools in Eire, Pa.   (Jack Hanrahan/Erie Times-News via AP)
Continue reading “Powerful Images From the National Walkout – Học sinh toàn nước Mỹ biểu tình đòi an ninh”