Monday, June 27

Month: March 2022

China’s Forced Technology Transfer Policy: Takeaways for the Developing World
All Posts, Technology

China’s Forced Technology Transfer Policy: Takeaways for the Developing World

By: Sebastian Marrero Workers in an automobile factory in Beijing, China. China’s economy has historically been an ambitious one. Traditionally focused on  low-value-added, low-wage textiles and clothing manufacturing, China has in recent decades asserted itself as a burgeoning superpower in the global economy. Industries such as semiconductors, information technology, and robotics have seen enormous growth in recent decades due to policies geared towards mixing government planning with elements of private enterprise. Beginning in the early 1980s, ambitious economic reformers like Deng Xiaoping laid a mixed economy foundation that allowed small to medium-sized enterprises to perform robust R&D, onboard foreign talent, and manufacture its own technologies while receiving unb...
Sanctions Trigger Market Volatility Amid Russia-Ukraine Crisis
All Posts, Economy and Government

Sanctions Trigger Market Volatility Amid Russia-Ukraine Crisis

By: Lexi Blakes Thursday, Feb. 24, U.S. President Joe Biden announced additional sanctions on Russian banks in light of the recent escalation of the Russia-Ukraine conflict. The crisis has been mounting since tensions developed in 2014, when protesters in Ukraine overthrew President Viktor Yanukovych, who was partisan to Russia’s interests. That same year, Russia invaded and annexed the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea. In the years following, the Minsk Accords were signed by Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany, but it did little to protect Ukraine from Putin’s ambitions. Now, in 2022, Putin has ordered a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Citing pro-Western revolutions and NATO eastward expansion, Putin declared that Russia did not feel safe to “develop and exist” because of the “con...
Down But Not Out: SMIC’s Rocky Path Forward
All Posts, Technology

Down But Not Out: SMIC’s Rocky Path Forward

By: Edward Ding December 18, 2020 was a particularly bad day for SMIC, China’s largest semiconductor manufacturer. The U.S. government blacklisted dozens of Chinese companies, including SMIC, and effectively restricted their purchase of advanced U.S. technology. SMIC, already behind foreign competitors in terms of chip technology, found its plans for catch-up innovation further complicated; its production processes were and continue to be significantly reliant on American tools, equipment, and components. The blacklist’s detrimental effect has yet to fade, but SMIC is likely turning to a different, domestically-oriented path to the technological frontier. Semiconductors, also known as chips, are an essential part of virtually all modern electronics. Products ranging from smartph...
The Key Trends of Fintech
All Posts, Technology

The Key Trends of Fintech

By: Ke Tang The discussion of how technology can revolutionize the financial system is a heated topic. There is an increasing number of financial institutions starting to integrate their offerings and services with technology such as blockchain. As fintech (financial technology) and digitalization of the financial services industry are developing, fintech startups are facing more capital financing demand. SPACs provide a viable way for fintech startups to go public and acquire the funds necessary for expansion. The relatively easier operation and shorter timeline make fintech SPACs heated in 2021. Two key trends of fintech are consolidation and digitalization, which is evidenced by the SPAC IPO of Dave. Fintech company Dave went public via a SPAC merger in early January 2022. Da...
Pacific Island Economies
All Posts, Economy and Government

Pacific Island Economies

By: Trevor Jones An often overlooked facet of global economics is the functionality of island economies. I began exploring this in the wake of the Tonga volcano eruption in January 2022, when a massive eruption caused rampant flooding in the Pacific island nation. The publicity of this disaster led me to consider how the economies of Pacific islands work, given how they have seemingly little area or natural resources to build their wealth off of. With this article I aim to explore the broad components of island economies and compare them to our economy here in the United States. Primarily, the biggest change on the surface is the ideology behind these countries’ economies. Countries like Tonga or any other island in the Pacific are not focused on industrialization and developmen...
Russo-Ukrainian Crisis: The Effectiveness of Economic Sanctions on Russia
All Posts, Economy and Government

Russo-Ukrainian Crisis: The Effectiveness of Economic Sanctions on Russia

By: Ron Ye When I began working on the first version of this article, it was about a week before the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. There were many uncertainties. Would Russia even invade Ukraine? It seemed like a risky move for Putin to make. How willingly would European nations support sanctions on Russia? Germany had shown reluctance in agreeing to the possible sanctions. Wouldn’t China help Russia economically? During the Olympics, Putin and Xi Jinping seemed to have had each other’s backs. Because of recent events, these uncertainties have been mostly answered.  However, the effectiveness of the sanctions that have been placed on Russia remains yet to be seen. Current Situation On February 23, 2022, at around 9:00 p.m. U.S. Central TIme, the Russian Federation...
Is Fossil Fuel Divestment a Legal Responsibility?
All Posts, Sustainability

Is Fossil Fuel Divestment a Legal Responsibility?

By: Rohan Upadhyay Photo by American Public Power Association on Unsplash Dores Divest, alongside the Climate Defense Project, recently filed a legal complaint to Tennessee’s attorney general to compel Vanderbilt’s Board of Trust to divest from fossil fuels. Similar complaints came from students at Princeton, MIT, Stanford and Yale to their respective attorney generals.  The complaint argues that:  “Under the Tennessee Uniform Prudent Management of Institutional Funds Act, the Board of Trust has a fiduciary duty to invest with… charitable purposes…  [which] distinguishes non-profit institutions from other investors. It is problematic, then, that the Board… has invested… in the fossil fuel industry — raising a serious question of conflicts of interest… as wel...