(Visited 10 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 The assumption was that gene flow homogenized a population, and selection diversified it. But now, two studies in Nature1,2 of an English songbird called the great tit, Parus major, carried on for decades, has shown that differences between closely-associated populations can persist in spite of homogenizing gene flow. Garant et al. explain the significance of this to evolutionary theory:Evolutionary theory predicts that local population divergence will depend on the balance between the diversifying effect of selection and the homogenizing effect of gene flow. However, spatial variation in the expression of genetic variation will also generate differential evolutionary responses. Furthermore, if dispersal is non-random it may actually reinforce, rather than counteract, evolutionary differentiation. Here we document the evolution of differences in body mass within a population of great tits, Parus major, inhabiting a single continuous woodland, over a 36-year period. We show that genetic variance for nestling body mass is spatially variable, that this generates different potential responses to selection, and that this diversifying effect is reinforced by non-random dispersal. Matching the patterns of variation, selection and evolution with population ecological data, we argue that the small-scale differentiation is driven by density-related differences in habitat quality affecting settlement decisions. Our data show that when gene flow is not homogeneous, evolutionary differentiation can be rapid and can occur over surprisingly small spatial scales. Our findings have important implications for questions of the scale of adaptation and speciation, and challenge the usual treatment of dispersal as a force opposing evolutionary differentiation. (Emphasis added in all quotes.)David W. Coltman (U of Alberta),3 commenting on these papers, summarized, “Gene flow between populations – caused by migration, for instance – is most often viewed as a homogenizing force in evolution. But two studies of wild birds and non-random dispersal find otherwise.” These long-term studies complicate theories. He says: “we ought to be paying more attention to how quantitative genetic variation is spatially and temporally structured.” But even that is not enough: “Indeed, a truly mechanistic understanding of microevolution requires an understanding of genetic architecture (the properties of the individual genes underlying variation). One way of gaining such an understanding of microevolution in nature will be to apply genomics to ecological and evolutionary studies in non-model species, using comparative approaches.” The fact that he speaks in future tense indicates this has never been done.1Garant et al., “Evolution driven by differential dispersal within a wild bird population,” Nature 433, 60 – 65 (06 January 2005); doi:10.1038/nature03051.2Postma and Van Noordwijk, “Gene flow maintains a large genetic difference in clutch size at a small spatial scale,” Nature 433, 60 – 65 (06 January 2005); doi:10.1038/nature03051.3David W. Coltman, “Evolutionary genetics: Differentiation by dispersal,” Nature 433, 23 – 24 (06 January 2005); doi:10.1038/433023a.On the surface, this looks like it could accelerate evolution by removing the homogenizing effect of gene flow. But consider what these papers indicate. First, assumptions can be flat wrong. Many evolutionists assumed, with armchair modeling, that populations with many opportunities for interbreeding would become more homogeneous. Both these studies, however, showed that slight differences in clutch size and body mass could be maintained in spite of shared habitat. Second, they found that differentiation of two populations can be rapid and occur in a small area. Keep in mind that these studies involve only microevolution. They are about one species of bird, Parus major, that were still the same species at the beginning and end of the observations. They have nothing to say, therefore, about the origin of birds, the origin of flight, the origin of feathers, the origin of species or any other major change that would help Charlie feel gratified. In fact, creationists could use these studies to support the idea that microevolution was rapid after the Flood. The evolutionists themselves were surprised that their assumptions about population genetics were wrong, and admitted that these studies “challenge the usual treatment” of dispersal, as well as gene flow and selection, as agents of evolution. If you cannot trust your assumptions, you cannot trust your models; and if you cannot trust your models, you cannot trust your perception of reality. Incidentally, despite its embarrassing name, the great tit is beautiful bird. The picture accompanying David Coltman’s commentary shows the bird in flight, wings splayed in geometrical artistry, exquisitely-designed feathers extended, handsome black-capped head, food in its beak, alert eyes, displaying aerodynamic excellence. Differences in clutch size and egg size say nothing about these examples of functional adaptation par excellence. The caption reads, “The great tit: challenging assumptions about gene flow and genetic differentiation.” Darwinists preach macroevolution, but cannot understand microevolution. They want to explain the whole living world by their theory, and can’t even get the population genetics of one species of bird right.
A África do Sul gaba-se de ter das praias mais bonitas do mundo. Da costa inexplorada de Cape Vidal, em KwaZulu-Natal, ate a famosa Wild Coast no Cabo Oriental, da colonia de pinguins de Boulders Beach a ensolarada Camps Bay no Cabo Ocidental. quando se fala de praias, o triunfo e nosso, nao ha hipotese.As nossas praias sao muito mais do que um paraiso para os amantes de praia e do surf. Ha tanto para ver e fazer ao longo de toda esta costa espectacular, incluindo uma serie de excursoes fantasticas de varios dias. Eis um rapido resumo de algumas das melhores praias da África do Sul.Cabo OrientalKwaZulu-NatalCabo Ocidental: Peninsula do CaboCabo Ocidental: Rota dos JardinsCABO ORIENTALO Cabo Oriental tem algumas das melhores praias. Port Elizabeth e East London sao bons para a pratica de surf e a Wild Coast e famosa pelas suas paisagens escarpadas, mares furiosos e praias extravagantemente belas.Port St Johns, Costa SelvagemUma parte da costa muito bonita, ainda nao muito desenvolvida e tropical, com hipoteses excelentes para nadar e deixar-se ondular pelas ondas da lagoa.Port ElizabethAs agradaveis praias de Port Elizabeth, protegidas pelas curvas suaves da Algoa Bay, permitem nadar e fazer surf em segurança. A Kings Beach e uma das predilectas e a Humewood Beach e frequentemente Bandeira Azul. Tambem ha um parque de serpentes por ali perto e golfinhos no oceanario.East LondonA tranquila cidade de East London tem uma prospera cultura de praia, com dunas de areia, rochas e oceano. A Orient Beach e boa para nadar e as rochas negras da Eastern Beach sao optimas para fazer fotografia e explorar. Ou pode dar longos passeios pela Nahoon Beach ou pela Gonubie Beach.KWAZULU-NATALA costa de KwaZulu-Natal tem um clima excelente todo o ano e maravilhosas praias – por vezes com demasiada gente – quer a norte quer a sul. A meio, toda a cidade de Durban e de facto um sistema de suporte para todas as praias em volta!Cape Vidal, Parque iSimangaliso WetlandsUma das melhores praias do pais, com longos areais de areia branca. Os visitantes podem explorar as inumeras poças de agua nas rochas que existem por toda a praia e observar baleias jubarte em Outubro.Umhlanga RocksA norte de Durban, as praias de Umhlanga ficam cheias de vida quando terminam as aulas e sao uma festa para toda a familia. Pode-se nadar no mar, fazer surf, boogie boarding, andar pelas poças de agua do mar transparente e quente nas rochas.South Beach, DurbanParte da mundialmente famosa Golden Mile de Durban, South Beach e ideal para nadar e surfar. E ha muitas outras coisas que pode fazer: os vendedores ambulantes vendem trabalhos de contas Zulu, cestos, peças em madeira e artesanato, enquanto os homens que puxam os rickshas se ocupam do seu negocio. E no final do Golden Mile, espraiando-se ao longo de 15 hectares na linha da costa, fica o Mundo Marinho uShaka, o maior parque tematico marinho de África.Margate, Costa SulA capital da diversao da Costa dos Hibiscos de KwaZulu-Natal, com verdadeiras multidoes de gente, sobretudo jovens, nas ferias de verao.CABO OCIDENTAL: PENÍNSULA DO CABONa Cidade do Cabo, experimente ir a Clifton, uma das zonas mais na moda. Em Sandy Bay, a nossa praia nao oficial de nudismo, para transar-o-corpo sem preocupaçoes; e Long Beach para andar a pe. E para nadar com pinguins por perto nao ha como ir a The Boulders.Camps BayA replica de St Tropez no Cabo Oriental. É muito popular, com gente bonita vinda de todo o mundo, paisagens espectaculares de Lion’s Head e dos Doze Apostolos. O por-do-sol em Camps Bay e inesquecivel e se entretanto se fartou de areia e de surf, va a um dos restaurantes e bares para uma boa refeiçao.CliftonEste e o “passeio dos milionarios” do Cabo. As revistas de moda e os homens do cinema chamam-lhe o cenario perfeito. Clifton e o local de eleiçao dos modelos e estrelas de cinema internacionais – e os locais adoram, claro.BlougergstrandBloubergstrand – Blouberg Beach – oferece paisagens espectaculares da Table Mountain na Cidade do Cabo e da Ilha Robben, onde Nelson Mandela esteve encarcerado mais de 20 anos. Ha muitos bons restaurantes com terraços e esplanadas para um snack rapido ou longos almoços de preguiça.Boulders BeachBoulders Beach, que pertence ao Parque Nacional de Table Mountain, e um paraiso para os pinguins jackass, tambem conhecidos por pinguins dos pes negros ou pinguins africanos. A pequena quantia que se paga para entrar basta para manter a reserva. Alem dos pinguins, os enormes rochedos graniticos contribuem para o cenario sensacional e e um sitio optimo para nadar.HermanusA cidade adormecida de Hermanus e conhecida como o melhor ponto de observaçao de baleias em terra firme do mundo. A cidade tem um festival anual chamado o Festival da Baleia, para celebrar a migraçao de primavera das baleias franco austrais. Grotto Beach ganhou reconhecimento internacional por ser uma praia selvagem e inexplorada, com excelentes instalaçoes.MuizenbergSituada na costa do Oceano Índico, a agua de Muizenberg e mais quente do que a do lado do Oceano Atlantico na peninsula do Cabo, sendo mais procurada pelos banhistas e uma praia optima para levar a familia. É tambem um sitio ideal para um piquenique relaxante na praia, mas se preferir va a um dos restaurantes comer um marisco acabado de pescar.CABO OCIDENTAL: ROTA DOS JARDINSA Rota dos Jardins do Cabo Ocidental e conhecida pela sua beleza cenica natural, com florestas verdejantes e praias espectaculares.NoetzieMesmo a saida de Knysna encontrara a pequena cidade de Noetzie, famosa pelos seus tres castelos romanticos sobre a praia. Nao muito longe dali vera as areais virgens de Buffels Bay – definitivamente a merecer a sua visita.Plettenberg BayUm dos sitios de ferias mais concorridos da África do Sul, Plettenberg Bay acolhe duas praias incriveis, Robberg e Lookout. Em Robberg pode observar as baleias e em Lookout tem uma vista formidavel das montanhas Outeniqua e um por-do-sol espectacular sobre o mar.Reporter infoSA, incorporando material de Turismo Sul Africano
5 August 2008Local banking group Absa has become the first investor at the Coega Industrial Development Zone’s business process outsourcing (BPO) park, announcing plans to open a 105-seat outbound call centre.In a statement this week, Coega Development Corporation (CDC) business development director Khwezi Tiya said the project had come just as the company was making a concerted effort to lure more investors to the BPO park.“We are proud to have convinced Absa to locate the project here for maximum benefit,” said Tiya, adding that adding that it was the company’s solutions-driven approach to servicing potential investors was key to bringing the project to fruition.“From the outset we expected positive to excellent results from this project and our value proposition has been proven correct.”A pilot of the Absa contact centre has been running at Coega since January this year, and the CDC is also in talks with other international companies to take up prime space in the massive BPO park planned for the zone.Combining business and social imperativesThe outbound facility currently employs 105 people – the majority of whom were previously unemployed or had very little work experience – mainly from nearby townships of Motherwell, Zwide, Kwazekhele and New Brighton, and Absa Contact Centre head Andy Rigg said the success of the project confirmed the bank’s strategy of combining business with social imperatives.“The results are very exciting and we are not surprised because that is what you get when like-minded people gather in pursuit of a common objective,” said Rigg, referring to the bank’s partnership with the CDC.The initiative was aimed at doing business in a responsible way that enables people to uplift themselves through employment and business opportunities, with a key focus was on affording work experience to unemployed individuals.“This project delivers hugely on customer-centricity as well,” Rigg said. “The operation enhances Absa’s offerings by using a skills profile that customers can relate to with regards to language, accessibility, maturity and excellent service standards.”Making a positive social impactAlthough configured to provide an end-to-end service to customers needing short term lending products, the contact centre is also geared towards making a positive social impact in the economically depressed areas of the Eastern Cape.The close proximity of the project to the said townships ensured more economic benefits to the region and local infrastructure and skills base in the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality was utilized to the fullest.There was also a good degree of knowledge and skills transfer to support and uplift the local business community, said Rigg.“The CDC provided all the necessary services to make the location viable for the call centre,” he said. “These services range from human capital to world class information communication technology facilities, all key to the success of a call centre.”SAinfo reporter Would you like to use this article in your publicationor on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
24 March 2014 Trade between South Africa and Saudi Arabia nearly trebled from R29.7-billion in 2009 to R80.1-billion in 2013, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies said at the 5th session of the South Africa-Saudi Arabia Joint Economic Commission in Pretoria on Thursday. At the same, South Africa was keen to achieve more balanced trade between the two countries, Davies said, noting that SA’s trade deficit with Saudi Arabia had grown from R62.2-billion in 2012 to R74.8-billion in 2013. In January this year, Saudi Arabia overtook Germany to become South Africa’s second-biggest source of imports, with China being the largest. “There is no doubt that the level of our bilateral trade, especially South Africa’s value-added exports to Saudi Arabia, is far below potential and is also concentrated in a few sectors like oil and gas, raw materials, fruits and vegetables,” Davies said in a statement issued after the meeting. “This points to a need to diversify our basket of goods traded. More value-added and diversified trade will benefit both our countries as it will lead to job creation, which is one of our biggest challenges at present.” Davies and his Saudi counterpart, Minister Tawfiq Al-Rabiah, co-chaired the Joint Economic Commission meeting, which agreed to harness all means to promote further growth between the two regional powerhouses. “We have expressed our desire to collaborate with the Saudi side in the promotion of investments between the two countries,” Davies said. “This can be done through the exchange of company visits. To this end, the South African side will make available its top 10 investment projects to its Saudi counterparts.” He added that the two countries had agreed to promote cooperation in the fields of oil, gas and minerals by setting up meetings between oil and mining companies in both countries, as well as bilateral meetings to discuss joint investment opportunities and possible areas of cooperation. The commission had also agreed to increase cooperation in the field of mineral resources and mineral beneficiation by setting up exchange programmes for professionals working in the field. The meeting of the commission was preceded by a South Africa-Saudi Arabia Business Forum attended by business people from both countries. The forum mandated the South Africa-Saudi Arabia Business Council to identify complementary projects that businesses could collaborate on. SAinfo reporter
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation recently awarded $20,700 in grants to organizations that support and promote Ohio’s agricultural industry as well as local communities. The foundation’s Action & Awareness grants focus on four core areas: economic development, education, environment and the human-animal bond.Grant recipients are:AgriPOWER to support two scholarships for Ohio Farm Bureau’s intensive, year-long leadership program for farmers and agribusiness professionals.Crown Point Ecology Center to help convert an existing building into a honey extraction and beeswax processing facility that will be available to local northeastern Ohio beekeepers.Friends of the Juvenile Court in Clinton County to help expand an existing program that pairs at-risk youth with local farmers through the 4-H process.Ohio Energy Project in support of its Energy Sources Tour and Energy Sources Blitz programs that give teachers behind-the-scenes access to the energy industry.Ohio Hop Growers Guild to support its 2019 Ohio Hop Conference in January.The next application cycle for an Action & Awareness Grant is Jan. 1 to April 30, 2019. Grants may be used for general support, startup funding for new organizations, program expansion, or capital for equipment necessary to implement eligible programs. Learn more at ofbf.org/foundation/aagrants/.
Panaji: The four-day annual pre-Lent festival began with festive fervour Goa on Saturday.King Momo and his entourage entered the capital and kicked off the party, decreeing that everyone attending the festival must enjoy their time over next four days.Goa Chief Secretary Dharmendra Sharma flagged off the Panaji carnival floats parade on Saturday, with Mumbai-based music director, Joe D’Costa and Goa’s renowed Fado singer, Sonia Shirsat, playing the carnival theme song ‘Kai Boro Dis’. The attendees chanted “Viva Carnival” at King Momo’s float, at the streets of Panaji.However, the carnival parade was comparatively subdued this year, and the festival was bereft of its political patronage due to the State Assembly elections. The crowd of revellers, too, lacked enthusiasm. The floats highlighted various social, environment, and wildlife issues. Banks too highlighted the importance of cashless transactions in sponsored floats.
Questioning the credibility of electronic voting machines, BSP chief Mayawati on Monday asked why the BJP was afraid of holding elections through paper ballots. She said the chief election commissioner must think about it in wake of doubts being raised from several quarters.“If BJP leaders consider themselves honest, why are they afraid of conducting future elections through ballot papers,” she told a press conference on her 62nd birthday, alleging that the BJP came to power in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand because of alleged faults in the functioning of the EVMs. The debate over the authenticity of EVMs has been on for nearly an year now. Other political parties, including the Congress, too, previously raised the possibility of tampering with EVMs. The Election Commission has rejected the charge. Following the Gujarat Assembly polls in December, the EC did a random vote count on EVMs and paper trail slips in 182 polling stations in the state for greater transparency. An official of the election machinery in the state had then said there was a “100 per cent match” in the vote count. Ms. Mayawati, whose birthday is being celebrated as ‘Jan Kalyankari Diwas’ by her party, also expressed the possibility that the Lok Sabha polls, due in 2019, may be held this year along with various state Assembly elections. She released the 13th edition of a book based on her life — A Travelogue of my Struggle-Ridden Life and BSP Movement-13.“The BSP was the first party in the country to raise the issue of EVM anomalies soon after the results of the UP Assembly elections were out, and approached the Supreme Court.Later, whatever improvements were made in the EVMs, it was due to the efforts made by the BSP,” she claimed. The BJP won the Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls — held in February-March last year — after a gap of 15 years during which regional parties like the SP and the BSP had held sway. Attacking Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Ms. Mayawati said: .“Har-Har Modi, Ghar-Ghar Modi had a narrow escape of being thrown out from Gujarat this time. Had the voteshare of Dalits in Gujarat been 18 to 20 per cent, he would not had been able to escape.” The slogan she referred to was a campaign highlight of the BJP during the general elections in 2014. Levelling allegation at the Centre, she said: “The BJP government wants to change the Constitution and laws. A minister in their government is talking about changing the Constitution, but no action has been taken against him.” The BSP chief alleged that the Congress and the BJP have damaged every section of the society after Independence.“Today there is an atmosphere of communalism and casteism in every state. Capitalistic-minded political parties do not like our party. The BJP is trying to finish our party. Both, the Congress and the BJP are chor-chor mausere bhaai (hand in glove with each other). These parties do not want to see Ambedkar-inspired party (the BSP) to move ahead. First, it was the Congress and company, which tried to finish us, and now it is the BJP and company which is trying to do so,” she said. Ms. Mayawati said as she was not allowed to speak in the Rajya Sabha, she resigned.“In the same manner, Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar was also harassed, and subsequently he resigned from the post of the Union Law Minister,” she said. The BSP chief said: “I want to know from the Congress why Babasaheb was not honoured with Bharat Ratna. Why the recommendations of Mandal Commission were not implemented. The BJP government is virtually deactivating the reservation system, thereby rendering people jobless.” She said people who had to face trouble due to demonetisation would be given help by her party.
Click here to EnlargeThey’re the 25 most powerful professional women of the country. They come from different walks of life but what they have in common is a search for excellence. They are the embodiment of grit and grace. Whether it’s banking, sports, cinema or philanthropy, they’ve put India Inc on the map of the working woman’s world.Saina Nehwal, 21 National Badminton ChampionThe prodigal childBecause: She is ranked number 5 by the Badminton World federation. Because she is the first Indian badminton player to win the super-series title after winning the Indonesian Open in June last year. Because she is consistent in her performance, having not only won the India Open Grand Prix gold, but also the Singapore Open and the Hong-Kong super-series titles last year. Because she made a cricket obsessed nation notice her game by winning a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games 2010. Because she is a role model for youngsters with her single minded focus.Secret to success: “Analyse your achievements from time to time and work towards doing better everyday. Don’t set yourself targets that will scare you. “Biggest challenge: Being born in a Jat family in Haryana, her birth was a great disappointment to her grandparents. Her mother, Usha Rani, a state level badminton champion, was the one who showed immense faith in her talent and pushed her to excel in her sport. Her father, Harvir Singh, drove her down to the training centre every morning on a scooter. Eventually, they moved to Hyderabad in order to avail of better sports facilities.Through the looking glass: 2011 is a crucial year for her, as her focus will be to win as many tournaments as possible. Another major event. she is targeting is the world championship in August being held in London, England.advertisementKatrina Kaif, 27 ActorQueen beeBecause: She has gone from being a half English girl who knew no Hindi to being one of leading stars of Bollywood as well as one of its highest earners. Because she proved her critics wrong giving a fine performance in Rajneeti, holding her own besides actors like Ajay Devgn and Manoj Bajpai. Because she had the whole nation dancing to and drooling over her Sheila Ki Jawaani number. Because she was named the sexiest woman in the world for the third time in a row in 2010 by the London newspaper Eastern Eye. Because she is the only Bollywood actor with a Barbie doll made in her image.Biggest achievement: Learning Hindi and speaking it like a professional.Secret to success: Hard work. She is not a diva who throws her weight around. She always reports to shoots on time, knowing not only her lines but everyone else’s too.Through the looking glass: To do a film she will be remembered by.Schauna Chauhan Saluja, 34 CEO, Parle AgroYoung and restlessBecause: She is the force behind the aggressive new face of the Rs 1, 500-crore FMCG group Parle Agro. Because she has challenged international giants such as PepsiCo by first launching LMN, a lemon based drink in the Rs.1, 500 crore non-carbonated segment, and Hippo, a baked health snack in the Rs. 6, 500 crore branded snacked segment. Because she has expanded her company’s international presence by exporting to over 20 countries. Because she refuses to stop there and is keen on taking over the beverage sector. Because she recently diversified into the carbonated water segment.Biggest achievement: Adding a new factory in Orissa within a year with the aim of bolstering manufacturing capacities.Through the looking glass: “We have two more manufacturing locations coming up in Mysore and Varanasi and are looking at becoming leading players in not just beverages but the food segment as well.”Role model: “I admire Warren Buffet because of his beliefs and way of doing things. It’s not just for his business, but also for society at large.”Chanda Kochhar, 49 Managing Director and CEO, ICICI BankMoney mattersBecause: She heads the country’s largest private bank with total assets of Rs. 3,634.00 billion and a network of 2,528 branches. Because she put ICICI’s growth chart back on track after recession. Because her focus on performance has lead the bank to post a 30.5 per cent rise in net profits amounting to Rs 1,437 crore for the third quarter of this fiscal year.Biggest achievement: She was recently awarded the Padma Shri, one of the country’s highest civilian honors for her contribution to the field of banking.Secret to success: Constantly being in the loop. She never misses a single detail and reads every single mail in her inbox. She believes that one can excel in banking only if one takes feedback seriously.Through the looking glass: She aims to add 400 to 500 branches every year to the bank for the next three years along with a focus on infrastructure projects.advertisementPooja Shetty, 34 Joint Managing Director, WalkWater FilmsReel womanBecause: This heiress refused to sit pretty in her comfort zone and enthused the Gen Next feel in her father’s entertainment company. Because she launched her own production house WalkWater Films, with the aim of promoting experimental cinema in the country. Because her film Tere Bin Laden recovered its production cost of Rs 5 crore on the opening weekend subsequently earning a total of Rs. 14 crore, making it both critically acclaimed and commercially successful.Learning curve: When she started working at her father’s one-time company, Adlabs, she found herself pitted against a somewhat unpleasant colleague. Every day she would go home and moan about it. Finally her father (Manmohan Shetty) told her to figure out a way to work with him. After that, she really had no option but to learn to survive.Through the looking glass: She wants to focus on right kind of films and not just go along with the bandwagon. She recently called for auditions for young scriptwriters across the country.Ashita Nawalgaria, 32 IVAX Paper ChemicalsPage turnerBecause: At the young age of 32 she heads IVAX Paper Chemicals, the company that in 1988 introduced paper sizing chemicals to India and changed the way paper was manufactured. Because she has turned a small family business into a corporation through statistical analysis and emphasis on technology. Because in the six years that she has been with the company, it has gone from a single manufacturing unit to four, doubling profits. Because IVAX holds 45 per cent of the Rs 250 crore paper chemicals market.The biggest challenge: Reorganising and sorting the company accounts at a time when the turnaround rate was high and the oldest employee was six months old. A finance person, she streamlined processes, organised spreadsheets and automated information flow. “I was new to the manufacturing industry and it took me almost a year to set things right, to see the right numbers in the right format which would facilitate decision-making.”Through the looking glass: She wants to start her own securities firm to help the less privileged as they have very little or no knowledge of investing. “I would like to teach them the importance of saving by investing in simple structured products which are risk-free and give reasonable returns.”Nandini Sundar, 44 AcademicRevolutionary roadBecause: As professor of sociology at the Delhi School of Economics, she has moved beyond the classroom to give a voice to the marginalised, consistently and passionately, for over 20 years. Because her book Subalterns and Sovereigns: An Anthropological History of Bastar brought into the public sphere questions of justice and fundamental rights for tribals, much before the country recognised it as its biggest domestic ‘problem’. Because she has the courage to challenge authority and jointly petitioned the Supreme Court against the Salwa Judum. Because she showed courage in spearheading the campaign to clear Binayak Sen, accused of sedition against the state. Because as a recipient of the Infosys Award for Social Sciences, 2010, she has shown the possibilities of social science research.Through the looking glass: She is all set to resume her research once her current administrative duties as dean of the faculty of social sciences are over. Next up? A book on the Salwa Judum, democracy and violence. In the works is also a volume she is editing on civil war in South Asia as well as a reader on the scheduled tribes of India.advertisementMeher Pudumjee, 44Chairperson, Thermax LimitedPower houseBecause: Under her leadership, Thermax has grown from a Rs 850 crore revenue generating company to a a staggering Rs 3,300 crore enterprise today, at an annual growth rate of 40 per cent. Because she was instrumental in divesting the non-core businesses and restructuring the business portfolio of Thermax towards alternative energy sources and a green portfolio.The sound of music: She is passionate about western classical music and is a part of The Chamber Singers, a Pune-based western classical choir. They meet every Tuesday to practice and hold concerts once or twice a year in Mumbai and Pune.Biggest achievement: Repositioning Thermax as a sustainable energy and environment solutions company. It recently designed a unit to provide solar power to a village in Maharashtra in a public-private partnership.Sneha Rajani, 40 Executive Vice President & Business Head, SET MaxMatch pointBecause: She brought a new dimension to cricket viewing by spearheading the programming of the Indian Premier League (IPL) to Indian television. Because the IPL has been topping TV ratings with IPL3 securing the highest reach at 143 million last year. Because the company SET Max will collect at least Rs 2,100 crore from the first IPL three seasons and is expected to earn revenues of over Rs 1,000 crore this season. Because she is the force who lobbied for Amitabh Bachchan to host Kaun Banega Crorepati on Sony. Because his return generated peak ratings (TVR) of 6.7 and an average show ratings of 5 for Sony.Biggest challenge: “The biggest challenge for me was relocating from London to India 15 years ago. The Indian economy was not booming and people thought I was really stupid, but I stuck on simply because I believed in perseverance and hardwork. The first couple of years were tough but it eventually paid off for me.”Through the looking glass: To contribute towards making Sony a bigger and a better brand in the coming years.Anuradha Desai, 48Chairperson, Sri Venkateswara HatcheriesSunny side upBecause: She is the first Indian to take over an English Premier League (EPL) football club, the Blackburn Rovers, for almost Rs 165 crore. Because the club climbed up the ladder in the EPL rankings ever since she bought it. Because she is the chaiperson of the Sri Venkateswara Hatcheries (popularly known as Venky’s), a Rs 3,850-crore poultry giant. Because she has fuelled the company’s growth from Rs 400 crore to Rs 5,000 crore since she took over the reins in 1996.Secret to success: Is what her father taught her all along: business is common sense. She likes taking decisions and is not afraid of them. She never considers herself number one, as it hampers her urge to do betterMethod in madness: At a time when the competition was making profits by injecting hormones, she maintained her conventional business tactics, priding herself on producing the most hygienic chicken.Rekha Menon, 50 COO, Accenture IndiaTechnically soundBecause: She leads the corporate functions of Accenture, in one of the company’s largest geographies. Because her company is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing giant with a net revenue of $ 21.55 billion. Because through her work, she connects India Inc to a global network of technology, outsourcing and industry skills. Because she merges her corporate responsibility with social projects such as providing micro-credit facilities to small farmers and generating livelihood projects for entrepreneurs in the company.Striking the balance: She manages the work-life balance with support from her children, Ishan, 17, and Anishi, 13. And if not working, she loves exercising, reading and indulging her best stress-buster-cooking her speciality, banana bread.Sangeeta Pendurkar, 45 Managing Director, Kellogg IndiaCereal champBecause: In a country where breakfast cereals are still a fast growing concept, she heads the Indian division of the world’s leading producer of cereal and convenience foods. Because Kellogg India has a market share of 65 per cent in the Rs 400 crore cereal industry category. Because at a time when the market is getting competitive she holds the challenge of keeping the company’s top spot.Biggest achievement: “My ability to build high performance teams in my assignments. There is great joy in seeing people develop and it is gratifying when they come together to achieve the impossible. As an individual I believe I have managed to strike the right balance between my professional and personal priorities, without making life seem like a compromise on either front.”Kirthiga Reddy, 39 Head of operations, Facebook, IndiaConnecting peopleBecause: She heads the India division of the world’s fastest growing website. Because Facebook.com is not only the third most popular website in India with a reach of 37.6 per cent but also the top social networking site with over 20.9 million visitors a month. Because she is the one responsible for driving the growth of the company in the Indian market.Role model: Andy Grove, former CEO of Intel. “I am inspired by his journey, coming from a middle-class family in Hungary, emigrating to the US, and then going on to build the most valuable company during his tenure as CEO is an achievement.”Through the looking glass: “I aim to continue building Facebook India in line with the global culture, an organisation that will have an impact on our global users, developers and advertisers, and also to drive growth within India.”Nandita Lakshmanan, 41 Founder and CEO, The PracticeThe social networkBecause: She made The PRactice, the public relations firm she founded, international after entering an alliance with Porter Novelli. Because her clientele includes technology giants such as Infosys, Oracle and Logitech among others. Because her firm won two silver awards at the Public Relations Council of India’s Corporate Collateral Awards 2010. Because in a post-Radia age of bad PR for PRs, she restores faith in the profession.Biggest achievement: Setting up her firm with just Rs 35,000 and four employees and taking it to an “unimaginable” height of a mid sized venture with the country’s most important tech client, Infosys, in its bag.Through the looking glass: “I would love to get back to studying at some stage in my life. But right now, it’s my company all the way.”Passion besides work: “I have been pursuing Hindustani classical music for the last three years. I find it therapeutic and after a day’s work, the thought of being a student is beckoning. I also spend time with my nine year old, Aryaman.”Nandita Gurjar, 49 Senior Vice President and Group Head, HR, InfosysThe people treeBecause: She is responsible for introducing the learning and development wing at Infosys. Because Infosys added 27,000 employees to its base of more than one lakh employees last year. Because her company has some of the best HR practices in the industry such as performance-driven compensation and benefits for women employees.The biggest challenge: “A career woman is always concerned with whether she’s doing the right thing by her family, her job and herself. I believe that realising the correct balance between the three is an a-ha moment in itself. A woman should not have to compromise with her space and time and should be allowed to excel.”Apart from work: She loves to listen to music. And travelling with her family. This also gives her the opportunity to meet new people and build relationships. Also, she spends her weekends working with missionary sisters in Bangalore who take care of children with HIV.Secret to success: “I am passionate, confident and honest. I believe life is short and beautiful. So I don’t carry baggage, believe in calling a spade a spade and trust the spirit of human nature.”Zarin Daruwala, 45 Group Executive, Wholesale Banking, ICICI BankPenny wiseBecause: She is now the Group Executive, Wholesale Banking, ICICI, which is India’s largest private bank. Because the net profit of ICICI wholesale banking was close to Rs 3,445 crore in December 2010, up from Rs 2, 590 crore for the same period in the previous year. Because she manages more than 4,000 corporate clients and is a key member in CEO Chanda Kochhar’s formidable new team.Biggest challenge: When in 2002 she was asked to lead a team of 10 people when ICICI ventured into rural and agricultural banking. Having been a corporate banker all her life, she had no idea how to set that business up. At the end of her tenure in 2005, it was a successful venture worth Rs 8,000 crore.Secret to success: “Believe in your ideas, put the right resources into it, drive the change agenda and watch it culminate into a business plan. And most of all trust the people you’re working with. Give them the freedom to exercise their opinion.”She looks upto: “My role model is undoubtedly Chanda Kochhar because of her colossal achievements at a young age.”Anjali Bansal, 40 Managing Partner, Spencer Stuart, IndiaThe talent scoutBecause: Not only does she head the Indian arm of the world’s leading executive search consulting firm, top rated in corporate governance and CEO search, but she also set up the business in India. Because under her leadership, the firm has made a formidable name for itself, despite strong competition and presence of older players in the sector. Because she belongs to a small set of influential women whom top Indian companies have come to rely heavily for advice on leadership. Because as a member of the firm’s global board she is a frequent commentator on corporate governance.Secret to success: Be the best you can be, live every single day to its potential, and never stop striving for excellence. Be true to your work, your family and yourself.Family ties: “Besides work, it is my family that keeps me occupied. I have two boys, aged 8 and 10, and I love to spend time with them.”On the side: She’s passionate about development and entrepreneurship, and chairs the board of Friends of Women’s World Banking, a global livelihood promoting institution.Akhila Srinivasan, 49 Managing Director, Shriram Life InsuranceRest assuredBecause: She is the managing director of Shriram Life Insurance, part of the Rs 40,000 crore Shriram Group. Because she is not an heiress and has worked her way through the ranks from an executive trainee in 1986 to the woman in charge. Because in its three years of operations, the insurance wing of the company has grossed over Rs 1,700 crore in policy premiums.Giving thing: She spearheads the group’s CSR initiatives through a trust, Shriram Foundation, that provides education to over 3,000 underprivileged children as she feels education is what separates the haves from the have-nots.Rohini Nilekani, 50 Founder and CEO, Arghyam and Pratham BooksWe are the worldBecause: Since she set up Arghyam, an organisation that works closely with the government to conserve water, she has contributed about Rs 150 crore of her own money to the cause. Because her second initiative Pratham Books is trying to create a shift in the paradigm publishing children’s books in India at an affordable cost in multiple Indian languages and has reached over 15 million children in the past six years. Because she chose not to fall back on her husband, Infosys co-founder, Nandan Nilekani’s identity and forged ahead to carve her own. Because she is one of India’s most radical philanthropists.Role model: “Elaben Bhatt, Founder, Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA); Aloysius Fernandes, Chairman, NABARD; and the late Gandhian activist and writer L.C.Jain among so many others.”Through the looking glass: “I hope to do more of the same, as long as I can and so long as I am wanted.”Priya Paul, 44 Chairperson, Apeejay Surrendra Park HotelsBoutique baronessBecause: She has turned a two hotel entity into a chain of 12 boutique hotels synonymous with cutting edge style. Because her latest baby, The Park, Hyderabad, has set a new bar for green luxury. Because she is playing a larger role in the hospitality business as the president of the Hotel Industry of India. Because she finds time to indulge her twin passions of art and education, by building an eclectic personal collection of art and being on the advisory board of directors of IIM Lucknow.Through the looking glass: “Aligning people and processes to achieve the goal of 20 Park Hotels in the next 10 years. On the personal front, I constantly work towards a better balance between work and family to maximise my time with them.”Naina Lal Kidwai, 50 Group General Manager and Country Head, HSBC IndiaFirst among equalsBecause: Not only does she head the India division of HSBC, the largest bank in Europe, but because she was also elevated to HSBC’s Asia Pacific board last year. Because under her leadership, HSBC India saw a headline rise of 82 per cent in pre-tax profits for 2010, up to Rs 3,070 crore. Because she is a key player in the banking industry and is chairperson of the Population and Health Committee, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) as well as member of the National Council of CII and the Corporate Governance Council of CII.Secret to success: “It’s about hard work and being passionate about every project that I undertake. Another thing that I feel works for me is my urge to continue learning.”Punitha Arumangam, 44 CEO, Madison MediaBranded for lifeBecause: She heads the third largest media agency in India with gross billings of Rs 30 billion a year. Because she is the master of the medium, whether it is in strategy, planning, buying, research or operations and has contributed to the company’s growth from a twoclient agency to one with over 40 blue chip clients, from Tata Tea to Airtel. Because under her leadership, Madison World launched its fourth media unit, Crest, recently. Because she is pushing the bar and experimenting with innovative mediums, having just announced a joint venture with Onmobile for mobile marketing.Learning curve: “It is not the area of work, but the people I interacted with. That’s who I learnt from. Clients who have demolished my presentations, media owners who have walked out of meetings, colleagues who had a better idea and anyone who has told me a no. I learnt from all of them.”Defining moment: “The turning point in my life was my decision to shift base to Mumbai in order to live life on my own. It was a daunting task since I had had a very pampered and protected existence in Chennai.”Mallika Srinivasan, 51 Chairperson, TAFEGood earthBecause: she is the chairperson of, a Rs 2,500 crore enterprise, Tractors and Farm Equipment Company (TAFE ). Because in the year 2010, under her aegis as CEO, TAFE became the third largest manufacturer of tractors in the world. Because the company opened its first overseas manufacturing unit in Turkey last year. Because she was the first woman in the macho tractor manufacturing business. Because when she joined the company in 1986, its turnover was Rs 85 crore and has now crossed Rs 4,850 crore and joined the $1 billion club.Family ties: She is the wife of Venu Srinivasan, chairman and managing director, TVS Motors and mother of the soon-to-be-wed Laxmi Venu, Director, Strategy, Sundaram Clayton Limited.Shikha Sharma, 51 MD and CEO, Axis BankImportance of being earnestBecause: She heads the third largest private sector bank in the country with over 22, 000 employees, capitalised at Rs 409 crore. Because under her leadership Axis performed consistently at a time when most banks took a hit. Because she has sharpened its focus and powered the bank towards a growth of 36 per cent. Because since she joined, she has drawn on Axis’ strengths such as retail banking, infrastructure finance, processing payments and lending to small and medium-size enterprises. Because she debuted in the Forbes list of 100 most powerful women in the world at number 89 last year.Through the looking glass: Her strategy is to pursue profitable growth in the areas that will lend momentum to the economy.Besides work: She is passionate about going to plays, reading Mills and Boon romances and watching movies. She is also trained in Hindustani classical music.Renu Karnad, 58 Managing Director, HDFC IndiaThe householderBecause: She is on the board of directors of India’s largest home loan enterprise. Because the company registered a 25 per cent increase in profits last year, from Rs 2,650 crore to Rs 3,310 crore. Because she is also on the board of several of the group’s companies including HDFC Bank which she headed for eight years until 2010. Because she has built brand HDFC since the nascent stages of the housing finance industry in the country three decades ago and is part of the senior management team responsible for overall policy. Because HDFC was adjudged the most admired company in the financial sector in India by The Wall Street Journal’s Asia 200 survey in 2010.Biggest achievement: “That the company is perceived as a role model not only for housing finance in India but is also a benchmark for several developing countries.”Besides work: She has a passion for travelling. “Being the daughter of a railway officer, it is in my genes. I love visiting new places.”
zoomIllustration; Image Courtesy: Pixabay under CC 2.0 license Shipping will continue to attract investors in 2019 if it fulfills its environmental, social and governance (ESG) responsibilities, according to the latest report from Moore Stephens.Confidence in the shipping industry dipped slightly towards the end of 2018, but that was against a four-year high recorded in the first half of the year. Both new and existing players however still have an appetite for investment in shipping which is likely to continue in 2019 so long as shipping lives up to its ESG responsibilities, Richard Greiner, Shipping & Transport Partner, explained.Existing and emerging regulations such as those on ballast water management and greenhouse gas emissions show that shipping is becoming more environmentally aware and accountable.“New funds will be needed and the environmental investment story should prove attractive to many potential investors. Green doesn’t come cheap, or easy, however,” Greiner continued.This year important decisions will be made on investments to comply with the new environment-driven regulations which are coming into force, and the industry will have a better idea of whether the drydocking capacity exists to cope with demand.Meanwhile, the industry will face other challenges, according to Greiner. These include operating costs that are set to increase, tonnage imbalances set to endure in some trades, the Baltic Dry Index which may behave less erratically than in the latter part of last year, and Brexit that may finally mean Brexit. Additionally, the introduction of new lease accounting standards is to change things for some, while the effect of geopolitical influences would continue to be felt throughout 2019.“Uncertainty is likely to remain the norm in 2019,” Greiner concluded.