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Daily Archives: July 11, 2014

World Trends in Freedom of Expression and Media Development

“Freedom of expression in general, and media development in particular, are core to  UNESCO’s constitutional mandate to advance ‘the mutual knowledge and understanding  of peoples, through all means of mass communication’ and promoting ‘the free flow of ideas by word and image.’ For UNESCO, press freedom is a corollary of the general right to freedom of expression. Since 1991, the year of the seminal Windhoek Declaration, which was endorsed by our Member States, UNESCO has understood press freedom as designating the conditions of media freedom, pluralism and independence, as well as the safety of journalists. It is within this framework that this report examines progress as regards press freedom, including in regard to gender equality, and makes sense of the evolution of media actors, news media institutions and journalistic roles over time. This report has been prepared as the basis of a summary report on the global state of press freedom and the safety of journalists, presented to the General Conference of UNESCO Member States in November 2013, on the mandate of the decision by Member States taken at the 36th session of the General Conference of the Organization. The overarching global trend with respect to media freedom, pluralism, independence and the safety of journalists over the past several years is that of disruption and change brought on by technology, and to a lesser extent, the global financial crisis. These trends have impacted traditional economic and organizational structures in the news media, legal and regulatory frameworks, journalism practices, and media consumption and production habits. Technological convergence has expanded the number of and access to media platforms as well as the potential for expression. It has enabled the emergence of citizen journalism and spaces for independent media, while at the same time fundamentally reconfiguring journalistic practices and the business of news.”

How Citizen Scientists Are Using The Web to Track the Natural World

Yale environement360: “By making the recording and sharing of environmental data easier than ever, web-based technology has fostered the rapid growth of so-called citizen scientists — volunteers who collaborate with scientists to collect and interpret data. Numerous Internet-based projects now make use of citizen scientists to monitor environmental health and to track sensitive plant and wildlife populations.Continue Reading

Banks Try to Tame Gadget-Flooded Workplace with Management Software

American Banker: “MDM [mobile device management] software has been available for awhile, but it is being slowly adopted by banks. Many of these banks once used only BlackBerry products, but the Ponemon study found that 23% of banks are migrating from BlackBerry to a multi-OS mobile environment and 18% plan to do so. And a recent ForresterContinue Reading

America’s Shifting Statehouse Press – Pew

“Within America’s 50 state capitol buildings, 1,592 journalists inform the public about the actions and issues of state government, according to new data from the Pew Research Center. Of those statehouse reporters, nearly half (741) are assigned there full time. While that averages out to 15 full-time reporters per state, the actual number varies widely—from aContinue Reading

Majority of STEM College Graduates Do Not Work in STEM Occupations

Census news release: “The U.S. Census Bureau reported today that 74 percent of those who have a bachelor’s degree in science, technology, engineering and math — commonly referred to as STEM — are not employed in STEM occupations. In addition, men continue to be overrepresented in STEM, especially in computer and engineering occupations. About 86Continue Reading

Monthly Budget Review for June 2014

“The federal government ran a budget deficit of $366 billion for the first nine months of fiscal year 2014, CBO estimates—$144 billion less than the shortfall recorded over the same span last year. Through the end of June, revenues were about 8 percent higher and outlays were about 1 percent higher than they were atContinue Reading

Agriculture: occupational employment and wages

Stella D. Fayer  – economist in the Office of Employment and Unemployment Statistics, BLS:  This study uses special tabulations of data collected as part of the short-term Green Goods and Services Occupations (GGS-OCC) program to analyze employment and wages in the agricultural sector as a whole. The GGS-OCC program estimates combined data from two U.S. Bureau ofContinue Reading

GDPNow – Atlanta Fed

“The growth rate of real gross domestic product (GDP) is a key indicator of economic activity, but the official estimate is released with a delay. Our new GDPNow forecasting model provides a “nowcast” of the official estimate prior to its release. Recent forecasts for the GDPNow model are available here. More extensive numerical details—including underlying sourceContinue Reading

HHS IG – Special Fraud Alert: Laboratory Payments to Referring Physicians

June 25, 2014  – “This Special Fraud Alert addresses compensation paid by laboratories to referring physicians and physician group practices (collectively, physicians) for blood specimen collection, processing, and packaging, and for submitting patient data to a registry or database. OIG has issued a number of guidance documents and advisory opinions addressing the general subject of remunerationContinue Reading