first_imgThe Johannesburg skyline. South Africa leads the African continent in the second annual Legatum Prosperity Index. (Image: Chris Kirchhoff, MediaClub SouthAfrica. For more free photos, visit the image library)Janine ErasmusSouth Africa is the leading African country on this year’s Legatum Prosperity Index, which analyses countries around the globe for their effectiveness in creating a climate conducive to prosperity. More than 100 countries came under scrutiny, including 19 from Africa. Rankings are based on 22 key indicators and 44 sub-indicators.The Legatum Prosperity Index goes beyond GDP as a measure of national prosperity. It investigates and gives details of personal and policy choices that can increase the prosperity of individuals and nations around the globe – here the definition of prosperity encompasses both material wealth and quality of life.The index is produced by the Legatum Institute, an independent policy, advocacy and advisory organisation within the Legatum investment group of companies, whose mission is to research and promote the principles that drive global prosperity. This is so that policymakers, individuals, academics, the media, and other relevant parties can better understand how prosperity is created and so implement steps towards its attainment.Legatum derives its rankings based on the prevalence of conditions that foster prosperity in a given country – those factors that promote economic competitiveness and a better quality of life. These are known as drivers, compared to restrainers, which retard prosperity. Importantly, rankings do not indicate the actual prosperity of a country, but rather how effectively it is cultivating the practices that create prosperity.Conclusions are drawn from statistical analysis of more than 40 years of data in fields such as sociology, economics and political science, as well as theory, experience and lessons learned from history, and life satisfaction survey data for the 104 countries.South Africa leads the African continent in terms of drivers of economic and personal growth and wellbeing, followed by Botswana (45) and Namibia (55). These are also the only three African countries not ranked in the bottom quartile, an indication that the continent still faces many challenges. Coming in at number 38 out of 104, South Africa shares its slot with Costa Rica and Poland.Botswana was described as well-governed and in spite of severely high levels of HIV infection, has achieved one of the world’s fastest rates of income growth, while Namibia was found to have no obvious weaknesses and one major strength, equality of opportunity.Australia took the top spot, with Austria and Finland close behind. Yemen is last on the list, just ahead of Central African Republic, Mali and Zambia. These countries’ unfavourable ranking, and others low down the order, is due mainly to extreme poverty while there are some, such as Zimbabwe, that are affected by political instability. This hampers capital investment and consequently accumulation of wealth. Other factors include poor governance, low average life expectation, and high dependence on foreign aid.Legatum’s senior vice-president Dr. William Inboden said, “True prosperity consists of more than money. It also includes happiness, health, and liberty. The prosperity index shows that in addition to economic success, a society’s prosperity is based on strong families and communities, political and religious liberty, education and opportunity, and a healthy environment.”Africa’s biggest economySouth Africa, Africa’s biggest economy, achieved a ranking of 41 in economic competitiveness and 43 in comparative liveability. On the economic side the country scored particularly highly on entrepreneurship, because of the improved ease of starting a business. It also scored highly on religious life in the liveability category, indicating that South Africans enjoy high levels of both religious faith and religious freedom.South Africa’s other strengths were in the area of education, with a population that is relatively well-educated compared to most other African countries. With its abundance of natural resources South Africa has also managed to avoid excessive dependence on revenue derived from export of commodities, as these account for just 4.1% of GDP.A few weaknesses were identified, such as below-par commercialisation of innovation for an economy of this size – at 0.5% of GDP this is less than average. Legatum felt that the low number of R&D researchers is a possible reflection that highly-skilled professionals are at a premium, but noted that the high number of patents is positive. South Africa is known worldwide for its many ingenious inventions, such as the pool-cleaning Kreepy Krauly and the electronic device widely used during cricket and tennis games to measure the speed of the moving ball.With regard to liveability, South Africa has benefited from a stable political environment over the past 14 years, and political rights and civil liberties are upheld. However, income levels are still low and unemployment is high. Legatum cited public health as the country’s biggest challenge, especially in the fight against HIV and Aids.Besides religion, another factor that contributed positively to South Africa’s liveability score is the 30% proportion of women in parliament, which indicates an important role for women in society.Weighted indicatorsSeveral new indicators were introduced for the second index. These include the number of regional trade agreements signed, which is regarded as a driver of economic growth, as well as business ownership rate which is an indicator of entrepreneurship, and net migration, which links to levels of income and life satisfaction.To ensure fairness, Legatum used different key drivers according to a country’s level of development. For emerging countries with average incomes of less than $10 000 per annum per person, raising incomes is a priority because it is the single strongest indicator of how content the population will be. Therefore indicators such as levels of education, commercialisation of innovation and costs of starting a business were more relevant.The index did find, however, that many poorer countries, particularly in Africa, have high levels of wellbeing because of traditional social support through religion and the community. This compensates, to a degree, for a lower standard of living. Higher levels of optimism were also evident in these countries – many people believe that by working hard they will forge ahead in life.For countries with per capita income of more than $20 000, continued economic growth is a focus and here the drivers include entrepreneurship, invested capital and commercialisation of innovation.In richer countries, a key element of continued prosperity and quality of life is the move beyond material wealth and into other areas which improve life satisfaction. Drivers here include charitable giving, political rights and civil liberties, equality of opportunity, and good health.Do you have queries or comments about this article? Email Janine Erasmus at janinee@mediaclubsouthafrica.com.Related storiesSouth African inventionsSouth Africa’s economyDoing business easier in SAUseful linksLegatum InstituteLegatum Prosperity Indexlast_img read more


first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Our weather pattern looks to calm down and dry out some over the coming week to 10 days. In fact, in the next week, we have only one minor chance of moisture for the entire state, and the totals there are significantly lower than our look at the same system last week. So, it seems we finally are trying to morph into some semblance of a normal July weather pattern. We are dry today, tomorrow and most of Wednesday, as sunshine dominates. We saw a different air mass move into eastern corn belt yesterday behind the frontal passage Saturday and yesterday morning. This will lead to lower humidity values still over the next 3 days, although we will slowly walk those humidity values higher the closer we get to Wednesday afternoon and evening. Clouds will also begin to increase Wednesday afternoon and evening. Our one somewhat organized chance of moisture over the next week comes Thursday, as a cold front looks to sag through the state. This front looks significantly less impressive than it did last week, and at this point we would suggest only a few hundredths to a tenth or two across 60% of the state. Those totals are lower and the coverage well below our look from last week. There will be plenty of areas that miss out on that action. However, one area to watch later Thursday afternoon will be far east and southeast Ohio, where we can see a strengthening of action. Most of the thunderstorms likely miss us east into Western PA, but we need to keep an eye out for some totals up closer to half an inch before midnight Thursday night. Behind that front, we go dry again for Friday and then the weekend too. Humidity values back off, and we should see good evaporation. That will be another good window for field and forage work.Early next week looks interesting. We cant rule out a few scattered showers Monday over the western half of Ohio. These are mostly a product of some heat based instability, but totals will be under a quarter of an inch, an coverage will be only about 40%. But, the interesting part of the pattern comes from something else. We are watching a tropical system that seems to be headed for the gulf coast areas late this week and weekend. That storm is being projected to move north, and its remains may make it through the Tennessee valley and into the lower Ohio valley early next week. IF that comes to be, that would spell showers for southern Indiana and Illinois next Monday, and then a slow spread north through Tuesday and perhaps Wednesday. AT this time, models are projecting some of this tropical moisture moving into far western OH, mostly west of I-75 on Tuesday. However, without that tropical moisture pushing north, we should be able to continue a dry pattern. So, at this time we feel comfortable saying that most of Ohio stays dry for Tuesday and Wednesday, but we really have to watch the western areas. Models typically get way overzealous on the first tropical system or two, but with this one in July, rather than May or June…we don’t want to dismiss anything too quickly. The map below shows 10 day rain potential and includes some tropical influence on western Ohio at this time…in fact, that is the only reason we have some of those bigger rain totals in the west. Temps over the next 10 days will be near normal. As humidity builds, we have to leave the door open to temps feeling much warmer than normal, but we think overall, this is a typical July set up on temps. The combination of temps and some rain free days should be very beneficial to a large part of the state.last_img read more


first_imgWorking with a new director or DP can be a tricky process that takes some time to develop. Here are some filmmaking tips to help streamline that process, and to make sure your production is getting the most out of that relationship.Top image: Quentin Tarantino and Robert Richardson on the set of Kill Bill via The Red ListWith advancements in technology and professional production equipment constantly becoming more affordable, it seems that timelines (and usually budgets) for projects become smaller and smaller every year. This means that you have to work more efficiently — and as a solid team — to finish with a project that everyone can be proud of.One of the best ways to do this is to make sure that the director and the director of photography have a clear and singular vision for the execution of the project. Here are some suggestions for ways to make sure the two are in sync.Start With a LookbookAn example of a strong look – Blade Runner via Warner Bros.An image can be a hard thing to explain with words. One easy way to make sure that the visual style of a project is decided on and agreed upon is to begin the process with a lookbook. A lookbook is a collection of images that define the look and tone of the image that you’re going for.It can be any number of things… paintings, photographs, stills from another film, anything that is a representation of what you want to do visually. It helps to take notes on each image, so that you can reference what it is about that image specifically that will support your story/look.I prefer to use a cloud-based file storage service for creating lookbooks (Dropbox, Google Drive, etc). This way, while on set or scouting a location, you can always pull up the lookbook and effectively communicate a visual idea on the spot. Evan E. Richards runs a blog with a comprehensive selection of screengrabs of various films that’s a great resource for building a lookbook.Learn Their Process Early OnChristopher Nolan via Warner Bros.Everyone does things differently. Some directors will want to have a lot of involvement in how the image is created, down to the placement of the camera and focal length of the lens. Other directors aren’t interested in those details, and will fully look to the DP to deliver the look that they’re going for, with little to no direction otherwise.This needs to be discussed ahead of time. That bit of information will completely define the nature of the DP’s job on that project, and it can be different every time. It’s important for everyone to know their role on set, and for all expectations to be made perfectly clear before the production begins. Some of these topics are touched on in this Hollywood Reporter roundtable of Oscar-nominated directors discussing their craft. Get Everyone InvolvedRobert Elswit location scouting for Nightcrawler via ScreenDailyIt’s not acceptable to bring the DP in right before the shoot. The DP should be able to walk the locations well ahead of time, taking photos, looking for power (if needed), and getting an overall game plan on load-in and the plan of attack. This will make it easier for them to create lighting diagrams for each of the setups as well, which is a huge timesaver (and will also allow them to put together the gear list for the shoot). A great app for creating lighting diagrams is Shot Designer.It’s important to work together in creation of a shot list (check out the awesome Shot Lister app) and game plan for each shoot day based on the location scout. This should be done before anyone starts to put together a schedule, and (in most cases) before booking the talent.It is the director of photography’s job to know what time will work best for each location (sun through windows, sun positions for best backlight, etc). If they never get to see the locations, there’s no way that they can do their job. This is one of the most overlooked issues in low-budget productions.Keep an Open Line of CommunicationJeff Cronenweth discusses a Gone Girl scene with director David Fincher via 20th Century FoxThere’s always time to talk. No matter how short on time you are, it will almost always save you time if you stop to pull your DP or director aside and have a quick chat about what’s going on and (hopefully) figure out what isn’t working. Sometimes you just have to get away from the rest of the crew and actors to really get some real thinking done.When things are moving and decisions are constantly being made, it’s really easy to get in the swing of things and lose track of what’s actually going on. Always be asking yourself: Are we executing the plan? Am I supporting my colleagues process? Are we achieving the look that we laid out in the lookbook? And most importantly: Are we making something we’re all going to be proud of?If there is ever any doubt, pull your director or DP aside and figure out how you can fix it — and do it sooner than later.Know Your Role in the RelationshipDenis Villeneuve and Roger Deakins working together via Warner Bros.In the end a film can look lousy but work because of a great performance but not the other way round. That’s something always worth remembering. – Roger DeakinsOne thing a DP should always remember is the pecking order on set. The director is always in control. While filmmaking is a very collaborative process, it’s important that the DP keep the ultimate vision of the director and execution of the project at the front of their mind at all times. If you don’t watch out for it, ego can set in and arguments can begin because the DP wants or takes too much control.However, that works both ways. If the director isn’t assuming the lead role in the execution of the project in a way that cannot be questioned, someone else is going to have to step up to make sure the project is completed. There is an art to doing this in a way that gets the best work out of people, while also getting the best out of the project.When working quickly, and under stressful guidelines, these things can be a weak point in the hyper-sensitive ecosystem that film sets usually become. It’s important to be aware of everything, and everyone’s feelings, especially when it comes to the way that the director and the DP work together.Have any filmmaking tips for the community? Share them in the comments below!last_img read more


first_imgAll 5 children reported missing from Linda Vista special-needs home located Updated: 11:18 AM Ed Lenderman, KUSI Newsroom, FacebookTwitter Categories: Local San Diego News 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave Settingscenter_img Ed Lenderman, KUSI Newsroom February 6, 2018 Posted: February 6, 2018 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) — 9:00 p.m. — All five children reported missing from the Linda Vista group home were located, according to the San Diego Police Department.4:50 p.m. — Two of the five children reported missing Tuesday afternoon were found several miles away from the group home.The youngsters — two boys and three girls, ages 10 to 12 — were reported missing from the San Diego Center for Children in the 3000 block of Armstrong Street shortly after 9:30 a.m., according to San Diego police.Officers searched neighborhoods and open areas around the facility — which serves children with mental, emotional and behavioral challenges — by ground, aided by service dogs, and aboard a patrol helicopter.About 3:45 p.m., police located a pair of the youngsters in Old Town, several miles to the south of the group home, Officer John Buttle said. They were believed to be unharmed.It was unclear how the two children had gotten to the spot where they were found, Buttle said.The search for the other three youngsters was ongoing as of late afternoon.3:37 p.m. — Five children receiving treatment at a Linda Vista group home for special-needs youths disappeared from the facility Tuesday morning, prompting an intensive search by law enforcement personnel that was still underway as of mid-afternoon.The youngsters, boys and girls ages 10 to 12, were reported missing from the San Diego Center for Children in the 3000 block of Armstrong Street shortly after 9:30 a.m., according to San Diego police.Officers were searching neighborhoods and open areas around the facility — which serves children with mental, emotional and behavioral challenges — by ground, aided by service dogs, and aboard a patrol helicopter, Officer Joshua Hodge said. last_img read more


first_imgA video grab from footage broadcast by the UK Parliament`s Parliamentary Recording Unit (PRU) shows Britain`s prime minister Theresa May (3L) reacts as opposition Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn responds to her statement to the House of Commons in London on 14 January 2019. Photo: AFPThe British parliament holds a historic vote Tuesday on the Brexit deal agreed with the EU and all sides are bracing for turmoil when the text is almost certainly rejected.With just over two months to go until the scheduled Brexit date of 29 March, a bitterly divided Britain is in limbo and the world is on tenterhooks about what will happen next.Few expect the deal to pass, but the scale of prime minister Theresa May’s defeat could determine whether she tries again, loses office, delays Brexit — or if Britain even leaves the EU at all.MPs from all parties oppose the agreement, for different reasons, but on the eve of the vote May urged them to look again.”No, it is not perfect. And yes, it is a compromise,” she said.”But when the history books are written, people will look at the decision of this house… and ask: did we deliver on the country’s vote to leave the European Union?”Or did we let the British people down?”Nothing has changedThe deal was agreed with the EU in November after 18 months of talks described as Britain’s toughest since World War II.But hardline Brexit supporters fear it keeps Britain too closely tied to the EU and represents a “betrayal”, while pro-Europeans argue it leaves the country half-in, half-out.Rather than heal the divisions exposed by the 2016 Brexit referendum, it has reignited them, with pro-European MPs facing death threats and harassment outside parliament.Brexit supporters around the country have voiced growing frustration with what they see as parliamentary blockage of their democratic vote, while europhiles see hope in the increased talk of a second referendum to end the impasse.May postponed a House of Commons vote on the deal in December, facing certain defeat, and has since offered MPs clarifications she hopes will convince them.Criticism is focused on an arrangement to keep open the border with Ireland by aligning Britain with some EU trade rules, if and until London and Brussels sign a new economic partnership.May has offered parliament greater oversight of this so-called backstop, and at her request, EU leaders have also given written assurances that the arrangement would not become permanent.A handful of Conservative MPs have changed their minds to back the deal, but a junior minister resigned on Monday so he could vote against it — and the core of May’s critics say she has not done enough.”Nothing has fundamentally changed,” said Nigel Dodds of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), the Northern Irish party on whom May relies for her Commons majority.Opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said May had “completely and utterly failed” to ease MPs’ concerns and said if she loses the vote on Tuesday night, she must call an election.His party has also threatened a confidence vote in her government.Risk of no dealVoting begins at 7:00 pm (1900 GMT), with MPs likely to decide on a number of amendments first, which could seek to change or kill the Brexit deal.In the event of a defeat, the government must set out what happens next by Monday at the latest.Speculation is growing on both sides of the Channel that May could ask to delay Brexit, but she said Monday: “I don’t believe that the date of March 29 should be delayed.”The withdrawal agreement includes plans for a post-Brexit transition period to provide continuity until a new relationship is drawn up, in return for continued budget contributions from London.Without it, and if there is no delay, Britain will sever 46 years of ties with its nearest neighbours this spring with no new arrangements to ease the blow.MPs fearful of a “no deal” scenario have vowed to use parliamentary procedures to force the government to seek an alternative plan that the Commons can support.Some commentators suggest May could return to Brussels, seeking further assurances on the deal and the future EU-UK relationship and ask parliament to vote again.”At the second time of asking, MPs might just vote for her deal over the catastrophe that would be no deal,” said John Springford, deputy director of the Centre for European Reform.last_img