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Daily Archives: February 12, 2014

2013 Giving To Higher Education: The Big Gift Revival

“The nonprofit world has been waiting to see tangible signs of true recovery, and 2013 clearly demonstrated that for the leading philanthropists it is time to give back and to give back in a significant way. Across the board, the mega-gifts that came to define campaigns in the early years of this century have now returned in a way that is in many ways even more powerful than what we saw before the Great Recession took hold. Faith in the market and faith in an improving economy led to near record totals of very large gifts in 2013, and these gifts came on top of an especially poor year for large donations in 2012. The controversies surrounding the election, the large gifts made to political action committees, and the anxiety produced by negative political rhetoric aimed at the wealthy kept big gifts artificially down in 2012 despite the bull market. All of this changed in 2013, and support by the very rich for all types of nonprofit organizations, but especially for higher education, has come roaring back.”

EIA – Short Term Energy Outlook

“Temperatures east of the Rocky Mountains have been significantly colder this winter (October – January) compared with the same period both last winter and the previous 10-year average, putting upward pressure on consumption and prices of fuels used for space heating. U.S. average heating degree days were 12% higher than last winter (indicating colder weather)Continue Reading

New GAO Reports – Computer Matching Act, DHS, Extreme Weather Events, HUD’s Info Tech, Maritime Administration

COMPUTER MATCHING ACT: OMB and Selected Agencies Need to Ensure Consistent Implementation, GAO-14-44: Published: Jan 13, 2014. Publicly Released: Feb 12, 2014. DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY: Ammunition Purchases Have Declined since 2009, GAO-14-119: Published: Jan 13, 2014. Publicly Released: Feb 12, 2014. EXTREME WEATHER EVENTS: Limiting Federal Fiscal Exposure and Increasing the Nation’s Resilience, GAO-14-364T: Published: Feb 12, 2014. Publicly Released: Feb 12,Continue Reading

Bank of England – Overview of the Inflation Report February 2014

‘The UK recovery has gained momentum and inflation has returned to the 2% target. Reduced uncertainty, easier credit conditions and the stimulative stance of monetary policy should support continued solid economic growth, with the expansion in demand becoming more entrenched and more broadly based. Robust growth has not so far been accompanied by a material pickupContinue Reading

Commentary – Floods in UK Caused by Extreme Rains in Indonesia?

Bloomberg: “The U.S. is freezing and the U.K. is flooded. Clearly, Indonesia is at fault. That, in any case, is my layman’s interpretation of a report this week from the U.K.’s meteorological agency, the Met Office. It makes fascinating, if nerdy, reading that can be boiled down to a few basic conclusions: * The extended, extreme weatherContinue Reading

Senior Supervisors Group Issues Progress Report on Counterparty Risk Reporting

“Senior financial supervisors from 10 countries—collectively, the Senior Supervisors Group (SSG)—today issued a report assessing progress on measuring and reporting of counterparty risk by large, complex financial firms. The report—Progress Report on Counterparty Data—concludes that while firms have made improvements in assessing counterparty risk, on the whole current practices fail to meet supervisory expectations or industryContinue Reading

NIST’s Cybersecurity Framework

“Recognizing that the national and economic security of the United States depends on the reliable functioning of critical infrastructure, the President issued Executive Order 13636, Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity, in February 2013. It directed NIST to work with stakeholders to develop a voluntary framework – based on existing standards, guidelines, and practices – for reducing cyberContinue Reading

The battle for Trayvon Martin: Mapping a media controversy online and off-line

“One of the biggest news stories of 2012, the killing of Trayvon Martin, nearly disappeared from public view, initially receiving only cursory local news coverage. But the story gained attention and controversy over Martin’s death dominated headlines, airwaves, and Twitter for months, thanks to a savvy publicist working on behalf of the victim’s parents andContinue Reading

Lib2Gov – Connecting Your Library to Online Government Service

“Lib2Gov is an engagement platform hosted by the Information Policy & Access Center at the University of Maryland and the American Library Association, with the goal of helping libraries to better meet the e-government needs of their users.  Learn about providing e-government services in your library, browse through information on popular e-government topics, and share what your libraryContinue Reading

DC Navy Yard Shooting: Fixing the Security Clearance Process

House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Staff Report: Slipping Through the Cracks: How the D.C. Navy Yard Shooting Exposes Flaws in the Federal Security Clearance Process, February 11, 2014. “The Committee on Oversight & Government Reform plans to consider legislation to improve problems identified in the security clearance process during this investigation. Section IV of the reportContinue Reading