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The Case for Leaving Voice Mails

first_img Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Now A lot of salespeople tell me that they don’t leave voicemail messages when they call their dream clients. I understand completely if you don’t want to leave a message because you are going to try to call back later that same day, or maybe that same week.But I don’t understand not leaving a voicemail message at all. It’s a mistake, and here’s why.Is This Your First Call?A lot of salespeople have called your dream client in the past only to disappear. Many have called and continue to call every quarter like clockwork, usually just to check in and see if anything has changed. Your dream client might even know some of these salespeople by name.If you never leave a message, you are ensuring that you are unknown.You aren’t a secret agent. You need to be known, and you need to be known as a value creator. You aren’t accomplishing either of those things by not leaving a message.Instead, when you finally do reach your dream client contact on the phone, it is the very first time they have heard your voice. They have no idea of the effort you have made to contact them, how much you want to work with them, or that you can be valuable to them. You have no record of making an effort to reach your dream client.Be Known, and Double DownIf you are serious about pursuing your dream client, you’ll leave a detailed message describing who you are, how you believe you can make a difference, and your contact information. Then you double down and follow up your voicemail message with an email reiterating the message you left and telling them when you are going to try to reach them again.Your commitment to call back establishes a couple things. First, it says that you are not going to go away, that you intend to keep calling. Second, it acknowledges that you believe it is your responsibility to call them again.I know a few salespeople that are so good on voicemail that they can get a call back by the sheer force of their personality alone. Your dream client contact is under no obligation to call you back simply because you left a message, and that’s not why you are leaving the message in the first place. You are leaving it because you want to be known, and you want to start establishing yourself as someone seriously interested in making a difference.Leave a powerful voice mail message. Make yourself known. Make it known that you are in hot pursuit of your dream client’s business, that you can and will make a difference, and that you aren’t going to easily go away.QuestionsDo you leave voicemail messages? Why or why not?What could leaving a message do to start establishing you and making your known?What message could you leave that would indicate that you are a person whose call is worth taking?last_img read more

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Be a Person of Influence

first_imgInfluence. If you want to be your dream client’s trusted advisor, you want to influence them. You want people to believe that you are someone worth following, someone worth trusting, someone worth doing business with because of who you are.Think about the people who have been influential in your life. These people were honest and they acted with integrity (they walked their talk). They had character. And they truly cared about you as a person. This is why you count them among the few that influenced you.Persuasion. Persuasion is something a little less than influence. It means that you have to argue your case, advise, or urge someone to take action. To be sure, someone with influence may have to use persuasion.Think about the last time someone persuaded you to something. It’s likely that they were someone with influence. But maybe not someone with so much influence that you would unquestioningly follow their lead.Coercion. Coercion is the use of force or intimidation to get someone to comply with your wishes. It includes the idea of manipulating someone. It indicates an imbalance in power. All force isn’t necessarily physical; force is more often psychological.If you were ever coerced, you didn’t like it. You are never happy being coerced to something. Hopefully, you don’t have a recent memory of being coerced to do something.When you look at the old school tactics that salespeople used, they are closer to coercion than they are to influence. They are no longer effective or useful to professional salespeople. Tactical stuff like “tie downs” might still work, but the price of destroying relationships to win a transaction isn’t a good strategy for anyone who plays a long game; making people feel bad about their decision and bad about you isn’t ever a good idea.Be a Person of InfluenceYou want to be a person of influence. You want to be someone of character. The more influence you have, the less you have to persuade.If you are in sales, you are going to have to persuade your dream clients to take action. You are going to have to persuade them to see things through a new perceptual lens, to change their beliefs about what it possible, and to agree to change. You won’t always have enough influence to help people without having to persuade them.If you are going to be a trusted advisor (or what I call a Level 4 Value Creator), you can never use coercion. You can never be manipulative. Force is the strategy chosen by people who don’t want to do the work of becoming a person of influence or learning to use persuasion.What are you doing to become a person of influence?last_img read more

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Python rescued in Majorda

first_imgA 6.5-foot-long python that washed ashore was rescued by lifeguards at Majorda in South Goa on Thursday evening. The Drishti team of lifeguards at the beach rescued the snake and handed it over to the local forest guard. In March 2017, a six-foot-long python was rescued at Arambol in north Goa by Drishti lifeguards. In the past five months several injured turtles and dolphins that washed ashore were rescued by Drishti lifeguards and handed over to the authorities concerned.last_img

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Bhosale sparks rumours of rapprochement with NCP

first_imgPune: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) MP from Satara Udayanraje Bhosale sparked rumours of rapprochement with the party on Wednesday after he drove NCP president Sharad Pawar from Pune to Satara in his own SUV.Mr. Bhosale, a direct descendant of Chhatrapati Shivaji, has frequently been vocal against his own party. Mr. Bhosale, however, downplayed the road trip. “Many people are speculating about my journey with Mr. Pawar … I do not care who within the party complains to him … I live in my own style,” he said.Mr. Bhosale was first elected MP in 2009 on an NCP ticket in Satara. He won by more than three lakh votes in both the 2009 and the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. Soured relationsHowever, relations between him and the NCP top brass are at an all-time low, and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has been courting him. The BJP is attempting to breach the NCP’s stronghold in the Satara, Sangli and Kolhapur by roping in leaders like Mr. Bhosale.In May, senior BJP leader and State Revenue Minister Chandrakant Patil said the party would welcome the NCP MP if he wished to join the party. Mr. Bhosale was earlier with the Congress and then the BJP, before joining the NCP in 2009. He served as the revenue minister in the BJP-Shiv Sena government between 1995 and 1999.Incidentally, Rajya Sabha MP Chhatrapati Sambhaji Raje, another direct descendant of Shivaji, has already switched political allegiances after being nominated to the upper house with the BJP’s support.last_img read more

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Three killed in stampede at Bihar’s Begusarai district

first_imgThree women were killed and several others injured in a stampede near Simariya Ghat on the banks of river Ganga in Bihar’s Begusarai district around 7 am on Saturday, police said.Sadar Deputy Superintendent of Police Mithilesh Kumar said the incident occurred in a narrow lane next to the ghat, nearly 100 km from the state capital, where people had gathered in large numbers on the occasion of Karthik Purnima.“We are trying to ascertain the cause behind the stampede,” Mr. Kumar said, adding that the women’s identities have not been ascertained yet.Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has announced an ex-gratia of ₹4 lakh each for the families of the deceased and free treatment for those injured in the incident. Bihar stampede: Three dead, 10 injured at Simariya Ghatlast_img read more

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Five held in Delhi for duping people

first_imgFive members of a gang who allegedly duped people of their money have been arrested by the Dwarka district police of New Delhi. They had registered various fake companies and used a call centre-like set up to cheat people. Engineer in the netThe gang included an engineer and a post-graduate student. They had cheated people of over ₹1 crore. According to the police, the accused have been identified as Shekhar Tyagi, 25, Neeraj, 25, Tanvir, 28, Amit Kundu, 28, and Sandeep Kumar,29.Fake companiesThe modus operandi had been to register fake tele-caller companies with government departments and use those to dupe people, the police said.“The incident came to light when one Ashok Kumar Poddar filed a complaint with the Dwarka North police station that he had been lured into transferring nearly ₹one crore into bank accounts of various tele-caller companies for facilitating refund from his dormant insurance policies,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police (Dwarka) Anto Alphonse.The police traced the gang, after tracking their phone calls, email and bank accounts.“The gang was arrested from their office. Two SUVs were seized, besides bank pass books and cheque books,” said Mr. Alphonse.last_img read more

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No priority for sitting MLAs in Rajasthan Assembly polls: Congress

first_imgThe Congress has begun the exercise for distribution of tickets for the upcoming Assembly election in Rajasthan amid indications that no priority will be given to the 25 sitting MLAs. The party’s screening committee has sought recommendations from the 44-member Pradesh Election Committee (PEC), on the basis of which the candidates will be finalised in Delhi.The screening committee, entrusted with the task of shortlisting the aspiring candidates, met with the PEC members twice here this week. The committee’s chairperson and Rajya Sabha MP from Haryana, Kumari Selja, said there was no rule that the sitting MLAs would necessarily be fielded for the Assembly polls.List next weekThe first list of candidates for the December 7 election is likely to be released next week, as Ms. Selja said the committee’s work in the State was almost over. PEC members and the aspirants could still meet the committee in Delhi, she added. The women candidates may also get priority during the selection exercise.The Congress has made it clear that the aspirants’ ability to win will be the main criterion for finalising the candidates, though the factors such as the candidates’ ability, age, gender and social background will also be taken into account.Congress president Rahul Gandhi had announced during his roadshow in Dholpur district earlier this week that no “parachute candidate” would be fielded this time and he would “cut the strings” of such aspirants. Making a reference to those who join the Congress with the hope of getting ticket, Mr. Gandhi said they would be required to work for at least five years before claiming the right to contest.Panels to meetPradesh Congress vice-president Archana Sharma said all the committees appointed for smooth handling of election-related matters would hold their meetings at PCC headquaters here on Sunday. The committees include those for campaign, manifesto drafting, discipline, communication and transport.last_img read more

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J&K | Governor’s decision to dissolve Assembly ‘based on material available to him from multiple sources’

first_imgJ&K Governor Satya Pal Malik’s communique announcing the dissolution of the State Assembly on November 21, 2018. Photo: Special Arrangement Mr. Abdullah, replying to Ms. Mufti said politics was “truly a strange world”.”And I never thought I’d be retweeting anything you said while agreeing with you. Politics truly is a strange world. Good luck for the battle ahead. Once again the wisdom of the people will prevail,” he tweeted. Model Code of ConductThe Election Commission will examine whether the model code of conduct can be imposed in Jammu and Kashmir even before fresh elections are announced there, PTI reports a senior official as saying.The poll panel had recently decided that in states where assemblies are dissolved prematurely, the model code will come into force immediately. The poll code, which bars the caretaker government and the party in power from taking policy decisions, otherwise comes into force the day polls are announced by the EC.Telangana was the first state where the model code of conduct had come into effect before the assembly polls were announced.“Model code was imposed there (Telangana) as the elected government had dissolved the assembly. Here (Jammu and Kashmir), the case is different. Here the assembly could have been dissolved out of compulsion… There was no government … We will examine in the coming days whether the model code can be imposed in Jammu and Kashmir, too,” the functionary explained. Fax machine mishapBoth parties tweeted out their intention to form the government, after the fax machine at the Raj Bhavan was reportedly not working.J&K Raj Bhavan needs a new fax machine urgently.— Omar Abdullah (@OmarAbdullah) November 21, 2018  Earlier, former Chief Minister and PDP patron Mehbooba Mufti staked the claim to form a government with the support of the Congress and the National Conference.Shortly thereafter, People’s Conference leader Sajad Lone also staked claim to form the government with the help of the 25-member BJP. J&K party positionAccording to the information available on the J&K Assembly website, the PDP has 28 legislators in the 87-member Assembly. The Congress has 12, the NC 15 and the BJP 25.S. No.PartyStrength1Peoples Democratic Party (PDP )282Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP )253J&K National Conference (J&KNC )154Indian National Congress (INC )125Independent & Others (IND. )56Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPI(M) )17J&K PEOPLES DEMOCRATIC FRONT (PDF )18NOMINATED2 Total89Date | TimeCommunication from the office of Governor Satya Pal MalikAccording to a communication from the office of Governor Satya Pal Malik, the Governor took the decision to dissolve the Assembly with immediate effect “based on the material available to him from multiple sources.” The communication also listed the “main reasons because of which the Governor arrived at this decision”. “i) The impossibility of forming a stable government by the coming together of political parties with opposing political ideologies including some which have been demanding dissolution of the Assembly; whereas the experience of the past few years shows that with the fractured mandate that is there in the Assembly, it is not possible to form a stable  government comprising of like  minded parties. The coming together of such parties in a grouping is nothing but  an attempt to gain power rather than to form a responsive government.”ii) Reports of extensive horse trading and possible exchange of money in order to secure the support of legislators belonging to widely diverging political ideologies just to be able to form a government. Such activities are not healthy for democracy and vitiate the political process.”iii) Serious doubts about the longevity of any such arrangement where there are competing claims of majority.”iv) The fragile security scenario in the state of Jammu and Kashmir where there is a need to have a stable and supportive  environment for security forces which are engaged in extensive anti- militancy operations and  are gradually gaining control over the security situation.”The Governor came to the conclusion that, in this background, he has satisfied himself that the best course of action is to dissolve the assembly so as to provide stability and security to the state and hold  elections at an appropriate time so that a government with a clear mandate is duly formed,” the communication said.  “J&K needs firm administration”The BJP twitter handle tweeted saying, “The proposed alliance between the INC and the PDP broke up even before it was formed. They have taken contradictory positions on dissolution. One supports it and the other opposes it. Keeping the security scenario of J&K in mind, can it afford horse-trading and instability?”It also added that the state needed a “firm administration”.”J&K needs a firm administration to deal with terrorism and not a combination of terror-friendly parties. The best option in such a scenario is to go in for a fresh election at the earliest. This assembly cannot produce a stable government,” the political party’s official handle tweeted. “Thought I had seen it all”Former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti tweeted that she would like to express her gratitude to Omar Abdullah and Ambika Soni. “In my twenty six year old career as a politician, I thought I had seen it all! But like they say never say never! Nevertheless, I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to @OmarAbdullah and @Ambikasoni4 ji for helping us achieve the seemingly impossible,” she tweeted.She also said the “very idea of a grand coalition” gave the Centre “jitters”.”Since the past five months, regardless of political affiliations, we shared the view that the state assembly be dissolved immediately to avert horse trading & defections. Oddly enough our pleas fell on deaf ears. But who would have thought that the very idea of a grand coalition would give such jitters,” she tweeted.PS – In todays age of technology, it is very strange that the fax machine at HE Governor’s residence didn’t receive our fax but swiftly issued one regarding the assembly dissolution. 4/4— Mehbooba Mufti (@MehboobaMufti) November 21, 2018 Srinagar – In a sudden development, the Jammu and Kashmir Governor late on November 21 dissolved the State Assembly, which has been in suspended animation, shortly after rival alliances staked claim to form the government.Governor’s rule was clamped in J&K on June 19 for a six-month period following the collapse of the PDP-BJP coalition government after the saffron party withdrew support. The State Assembly was also kept in suspended animation so that political parties could explore the possibility of forming a new government.The decision by Governor Satya Pal Malik to dissolve the State assembly under the relevant provisions in the State Constitution was announced in an official communique. The state is now headed for another spell of central rule beyond December 18 when the Governor’s rule comes to an end.center_img  “Have been trying to send this letter to Rajbhavan. Strangely the fax is not received. Tried to contact HE Governor on phone. Not available. Hope you see it, @jandkgovernor,” Ms. Mufti tweeted.“Sending the letter also by mail,” Ms. Mufti added in another tweet.Have been trying to send this letter to Rajbhavan. Strangely the fax is not received. Tried to contact HE Governor on phone. Not available. Hope you see it @jandkgovernor pic.twitter.com/wpsMx6HTa8— Mehbooba Mufti (@MehboobaMufti) November 21, 2018  Lone’s claim”We have sent a letter to His Excellency the Governor staking our claim to form the government. Fax not working. We have whatsapped it to the PA to his excellency. @jandkgovernor,” tweeted Mr. Lone.In a letter to Mr. Malik, Mr. Lone, whose party has two MLAs, including himself, said he has the support of more than required number of legislators in the assembly to form a government.“Following our telephonic conversation regarding government formation in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, I hereby formally stake claim for the government formation in the State with the support of the BJP and more than 18 other elected members of the J&K state legislature…,” he said.Mr. Lone said he would submit the letter of support from the BJP legislature party and other members supporting the government headed by him as and when asked to do so.“I assure your excellence that with the support I have from the BJP and other members of state legislature, I will form a strong and politically stable government for restoring peace, harmony and prosperity in the state and would work towards overall development in all three regions of the state,” Mr. Lone said. Offer of supportEarlier in the evening, our correspondent Peerzada Ashiq reported that J&K Congress chief Ghulam Ahmad Mir had offered support to the National Conference (NC) and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to form a unity government in Jammu and Kashmir.“The Congress is ready to support both the PDP and the NC if they are willing to form a government. Both the PDP and the NC have held talks on the subject of government formation. These talks are informal and hopefully these parties will conduct formal talks now,” said Mr. Mir.The development comes just a day after senior PDP leader and Lok Sabha member Muzaffar Hussian Baigh publicly offered support to a third front headed by People’s Conference (PC) chief Sajad Lone and backed by the BJP. Suspended animationGovernor Satya Pal Malik decided to keep the Assembly in suspended animation and advocated against its dissolution, our correspondent Peerzada Ashiq reported earlier in the day.The BJP withdrew its support to the Mehbooba Mufti government in July last, paving the way for the Governor’s rule.“Yes, the NC and the PDP are talking to each other. The option of forming a government is on the table,” a senior PDP leader told The Hindu.Senior NC leader Nasir Aslam Wani also confirmed that the two parties “were talking to each other.”Mr. Lone, who has two MLAs, was also working on cobbling together numbers to stake claim for government formation. BJP national general secretary Ram Madhav recently came to Srinagar to congratulate the PC’s performance in the Urban Local Bodies (ULB) polls. The PC succeeded in installing its own Mayor in Srinagar with the help of 40 councillors out of 74.(With inputs from PTI)last_img read more

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Victory a validation of govt.’s welfare policies: Khattar

first_imgHaryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Wednesday termed the party’s victory in mayoral elections a validation of the welfare policies of his government, but the Congress casts doubts over it saying that “something was amiss” and reiterated its demand to use ballot papers to conduct polls.Addressing a press conference at his Chandigarh residence, Mr. Khattar said that he was thrilled by the poll results and hoped that people of the State would continue supporting the party and ensure its victory in the upcoming Jind by-election and Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha elections due next year. He credited the victory to the party workers and supporters.Former Congress Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, however, said that “something was amiss” since the BJP won the elections for Mayor in Rohtak and Hisar, but lost the municipal corporations to Independents supported by the local Congress leadership. “The victory of the BJP in Panipat, with a huge Muslim population, also raises doubts. Why did the State Election Commission not use VVPATs for the elections,” he asked. Mr. Hooda added that despite his party’s victory in the recent Assembly elections, he demanded that polls be conducted using ballot papers.He said the BJP could not claim to have defeated the Congress since the party did not fight elections on its symbol. Indian National Lok Dal spokesperson Praveen Atri said though his party, with a traditional support base in rural areas, failed to register a single win, its vote share had increased. He claimed that the party did not suffer on account of recent split, except in Hisar.Referring to the controversial advertisement in Hindi dailies in Karnal wherein the BJP made an appeal to Punjabi voters to vote for it, Mr. Atri said the fact that the Chief Minister had to resort to caste-based politics was a “moral defeat” for the party.last_img read more

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Aravallis in Faridabad deemed forest, rules NGT

first_imgThe National Green Tribunal (NGT) has held that Aravallis in Faridabad district will be considered as deemed forest. The NGT was hearing a plea against the Haryana government permitting felling of more than 7,000 trees for a group housing project, to be undertaken by Bharti Land Limited. A Bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel said, “It is difficult to uphold the stand of Haryana with which the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Changehas agreed that the area in question is not a forest area. Once it is so, mere fact that the area is included in [relevant section] in the Master Plan is not conclusive to hold the same to be not covered by the definition of ‘forest’ in terms of law laid down by the Supreme Court.” Observing that the MoEF&CC had “mechanically upheld Haryana’s stand by ignoring” the enquiry report of the northern regional office of the Ministry, the Bench said, “If such a report was to be disagreed, it was necessary for MoEF&CC to have given reasons. The report was based on valid factual and legal basis which was brushed aside in agreeing with the erroneous view of Haryana.”The State government had contended that the 52-acre land in question was not “recorded as forest land” and hence, it should be considered as “non-forest.” However, the green panel held this view as “erroneous in law” while citing previous judgments where it has been said that the “status of land is to be seen not only on the date of enactment of Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980, but also with reference to subsequent status.” The petition filed by Lt. Col. (Retd.) Sarvadaman Oberoi contended that the Haryana government’s permission for the project was in violation of Supreme Court judgments.last_img read more

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Man killed in M.P. clash; arms, ammo seized

first_imgOne person was killed and nine were injured in a clash between supporters of two political parties in Hoshangabad district of Madhya Pradesh on Sunday.The deceased has been identified as Dayaram (30), son of Bhallu Gurjar, of Nibhora village. He received serious injuries on his stomach in the clash.The injured have been admitted to the government district hospital here.Superintendent of Police, Hoshangabad, M.L. Chari said guns, sticks and stones were used in the clash.According to the police, there was festering rivalry between the two groups since the last panchayat elections and the latest provocation was the ongoing construction work of a drain in the village. The groups owe allegiance to the ruling Congress and the Opposition BJP, the police said. In another incident, the Barwani district police have seized a huge cache of arms and ammunition from the house of a local leader. Seventeen crude bombs, 10 pistols and 111 bullets were seized from the house of Sanjay Yadav, who has BJP links, in Sendhwa town of the district.“We are taking the help of experts to identify whether the pistols were countrymade or imported,” Barwani Superintendent of Police Yang Chen Dolkar Bhutia said.In the last 20 days after the announcement of the elections, cash, illegal liquor and drugs worth over Rs. 14 crore have been seized.last_img read more

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Statistical Fluke? Researcher’s Observations on Tea Party and Science Spark Political Frenzy

first_imgWARNING: Before you read this article, beware that the more scientifically literate you are, the more likely you are to misinterpret this information in a way that supports your own ideology.Sorry. According to psychologist and political scientist Dan Kahan, even seeing that warning won’t help you. “Being warned about cognitive biases doesn’t immunize someone from them,” says Kahan, who works at Yale University.So reader, continue at your peril, as you learn that Kahan is now embroiled in a politically charged controversy in which, he says, his own research on the misinterpretation of scientific research is being deeply misinterpreted.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)“I’m so tired of this,” he tells ScienceInsider.It started innocently on 15 October. On his blog, Kahan posted an informal analysis of survey data that compares people’s comprehension of scientific concepts and their political outlook. The data were gathered from a large U.S. study of how people perceive the risk of vaccination. And when Kahan crunched the numbers, they revealed a small correlation between science comprehension and political leaning. One finding: Those who identified themselves as “liberal” tended to have greater scientific comprehension than those who self-identified as “conservative.”Or, as Kahan put it: “The sign of the correlation indicates that science comprehension decreases as political outlooks move in the rightward direction–i.e., the more ‘liberal’ and ‘Democrat,’ the more science comprehending.” Statistically, the effect was small—a correlation coefficient of r = 0.05—and only weakly significant, with a probability of p = 0.03. That is just under the traditionally accepted threshold of p = 0.05 that researchers use to identify a correlation that is unlikely enough to be the result of chance alone.Many studies of people’s ideological leanings and ability to parse scientific information have found similar correlations. It has added up to the widespread perception that politically conservative beliefs go hand in hand with poor scientific understanding.But Kahan cautions that this interpretation, known as the asymmetric hypothesis, is itself an example of the misinterpretation of scientific information. And he argues that the available data instead supports the symmetric hypothesis, which holds that such biases apply equally to liberal-leaning people.To push back against the tide of misunderstanding and dampen the polarization, in his blog post, Kahan pointed out that survey participants who self-identified with the libertarian-leaning Tea Party movement also showed a slightly higher affinity for understanding scientific concepts. Again, the effect was tiny (r = 0.05) and even less significant (p = 0.05).“[T]he relationship is trivially small, and can’t possibly be contributing in any way to the ferocious conflicts over decision-relevant science that we are experiencing,” Kahan wrote. But he hoped that pointing out the Tea Party factoid would dampen the political polarization, perhaps giving readers pause before making generalizations.The post, however, had the opposite effect. One of the first shots fired was an article on POLITICO titled “Eureka! Tea partiers know science.” More than 20,000 Facebook “likes” later, the website of conservative pundit Glenn Beck shared the good news that, “much to [Kahan’s] surprise, the data found a strong correlation between science comprehension and self-identified TEA Party members.” Science writer Chris Mooney then weighed in, noting that it was ironic that Beck, a leading light of the Tea Party, “muffed the statistics” in “trying to show that tea partiers are good at science.” The public discussion grew far more polarized and vitriolic on Twitter.For his part, Kahan took to his blog on 19 October to decry some of the misreporting, and muse on the ironies, in a post titled, in part: “Congratulations, tea party members: You are just as vulnerable to politically biased misinterpretation of science as everyone else!”“Tea party members are like everyone else, as far as I can tell, when it comes to science comprehension,” he wrote. “Is this something to be proud of?  I don’t think so. It means that if we were to select a tea-party member at random, there would be a 50% chance he or she would say that ‘antibiotics kill viruses as well as bacteria’ and less than a 40% chance that he or she would be able to correctly interpret data from a simple experiment involving a new skin-rash treatment.”Of the “recurring irony” of the misrepresentation of such results, Kahan wrote: “It’s funny. It’s painful. And it’s depressing—indeed, the 50th time you see it, it is mainly just depressing.”“I really empathize,” says Michael Dodd, a psychologist at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, whose own research touches on the effects of political beliefs on perception. By the time the information reaches the public, he says, journalists have already injected their own ideological biases. “When we do interviews on our biology and politics work, interviewers are quite clearly getting us to try to make a claim or give them a sound bite that is provocative, but is an overreach based on the data,” he says. In spite of “bending over backwards” to correct journalists’ misinterpretations, he says, “I can’t say a mainstream article has ever been published on my work where I didn’t think the author was taking liberties with what we said in our interview or our paper in order to make the story flashier.”But even a news story about these cognitive biases, like the one you are reading, is unlikely to make a dent, Dodd says. “It’s unfortunate and I don’t think it will end anytime soon.”Kahan is somewhat more optimistic. In a lengthy e-mail to ScienceInsider, he notes that “[t]he number of issues on which we see cultural conflict over relevant science is minuscule in relation to the ones in which we don’t.” And he argues that people can only ignore science that is relevant to their well-being for so long.  “[W]ays of life that fail to align their members with the best available evidence on how to live well,” he writes, “will not persist.”last_img read more

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USDA Wants to Step Up Innovation Research

first_imgChange doesn’t always come quickly at an institution as big and venerable as the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). But advocates for agricultural research were pleased this week when the White House budget request included $75 million for three new research institutes. The announcement comes in the first budget request possible after a report by the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) recommended the idea as part of an approach to stimulating more innovation in agricultural research.“This is a very exciting moment for us in agricultural research,” says Molly Jahn of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and an author of the PCAST report. “We’ve been heard.”The plans for the institutes, which are not yet fully sketched out, were inspired by research hubs undertaken by the Department of Energy (DOE) and public-private partnerships, such as energy company BP’s investment at the University of California, Berkeley. If approved by Congress, each institute would receive $25 million a year (ideally for 5 years) that would be used to stimulate research relevant to companies and the public.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)PCAST argued that there are key challenges and opportunities in agriculture that don’t offer immediate financial incentives for companies to invest in research, but for which science is likely to help create solutions. Creating collaborations between industry scientists, government researchers, and academics can stimulate these new ideas and products, the committee concluded. PCAST recommended USDA fund six institutes and tap expertise at other agencies, including the National Science Foundation, DOE, and the National Institutes of Health, the committee said.  In a fact sheet about the institutes, USDA notes that the participants should be chosen on a competitive basis, and the institutes should build on university, company, and USDA infrastructure. “Funds should go to research, not to bricks and mortar,” the department writes. USDA is asking for funding for institutes that would work on biomanufacturing and bioproducts development, pollination and pollinator health, and antimicrobial resistance research to fill emerging information gaps.There are many details to work out. PCAST mentioned a few: “Such a structure needs to be built and will likely require a clear definition of research responsibility for each aspect of the research, from conception to handling of data and publication. An open environment of investigation and publication is usually most beneficial, although the need to protect proprietary aspects of research must be considered for businesses to participate fully.”The institutes appear to be a priority for administration officials. They were mentioned in Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack’s public remarks about the budget, and they were included in the agency’s core budget request, not a separate $56 billion fund—known as the Opportunity, Growth, and Security Initiative—that Congress is unlikely to fully fund. USDA may be covering the cost by trimming its intramural research arm, which would decline under the budget request by 2.1% to $1.2 billion. In line with recent administration efforts to boost competitive extramural funding, however, the proposed budget for 2015 would increase the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative by 2.8% to $325 million.last_img read more

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Did Dogs Help Drive Mammoths to Their Graves?

first_imgIt’s known as the mammoth cemetery for good reason. Along the banks of a Siberian river not far from the Arctic Ocean lie thousands of bones, most of them belonging to the giant, shaggy relatives of today’s elephants. A new study argues that such mysterious graveyards were not the results of a natural catastrophe, but rather the work of early human hunters—who may have had help from some of the world’s first dogs.“This is the first time that someone’s gone out on a limb and suggested something different than what we thought before,” says Angela Perri, a postdoctoral fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, and an expert on dog domestication. “But it’s still very speculative at this stage.”Study author Pat Shipman first became interested in what she calls “mammoth megasites” in 2009. About 30 such spots have been unearthed in central Europe and North Asia, some with tens of thousands of bones packed tightly on top of each other across areas as small as 60 square meters. The massive tusks and femurs of mammoths jut out among the remains of wild horses, deer, foxes, and other animals. “They’re crazy sites,” says Shipman, an anthropologist at Pennsylvania State University, University Park. “The sheer number of dead mammoths is astounding.” More than 160 of the tusked goliaths lie in the mammoth cemetery—a site known as Berelekh—alone.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)How did they get there? Some scientists think it was an act of nature—perhaps a flood that swept dozens of animals to a particular spot, or an unlucky herd that fell through thin ice. But recent evidence has suggested that people may to be blame. Shipman says the mammoth megasites begin to appear about 44,000 years ago, just about the time that modern humans entered this part of the world. What’s more, archaeologists have found evidence of huts made of mammoth bones at some of these locations, as well as cuts and burn marks on the bones that could only have been made by people.To get a clearer picture, Shipman combed through the literature on more than a dozen mammoth megasites, paying particular attention to the age and sex of the mammoths unearthed there. She then compared these demographics with those seen with the deaths of large numbers of elephants, the mammoth’s closest living relative. Natural disasters such as droughts kill the youngest and oldest elephants, but other sudden die-offs—such as a herd falling through ice or a cull of elephants to control their population—kill indiscriminately, leaving behind the carcasses of young and old, male and female. Elephant hunters, meanwhile, tend to kill each animal in a different place. “To my surprise, hardly anything matched these patterns,” Shipman says of the mammoth bones. What’s more, the dating on the bones indicated that they had been laid down over hundreds of years. That suggests that the animals were killed over and over in the same spot over many generations, she reports in Quaternary International. “There’s something that’s drawing them to that location.”Shipman says the data point to a scenario in which humans killed the mammoths, but not in the way people do today. Instead of culling them or hunting them across vast plains, ancient peoples may have ambushed the creatures. The reason so many bones are found in the same location may be that these spots were ideal for such ambushes. Perhaps they were surrounded by thick brush, in which spear-hurling humans could hide, or maybe they lay along a commonly traveled migration route. Shipman also thinks the hunters may have had some help from dogs.It’s still unclear exactly when or where dogs became domesticated, but some recent archaeological evidence suggests it may have happened around the same time and place as the mammoth megasites. A skull recovered from a cave in southern Belgium, for example, has both wolf- and doglike features, and it dates to about 32,000 years ago. Though genetic evidence indicates that this animal may not have been an ancestor of today’s dogs, the find suggests that the process of canine domestication could have begun tens of thousands of years ago. Significantly, Shipman says, similar skulls have been found among the mammoth bones at several megasites. Many of the skulls bear healed fractures, a possible indication that these animals were cared for by humans.Shipman speculates that the mammoth megasites may be the first significant evidence of a cooperative relationship between man and dog. The canines could have corralled the mammoths at the ambush sites and held the prey in place while human hunters moved in for the kill, Shipman says. Once the mammoths were dead, the dogs could have protected the sites from scavengers. “All of that mammoth meat would have brought predators from miles around,” she says. In return, the humans may have provided these canines with food and protection. And slowly, a closer relationship may have begun to form.Finding more large and strong doglike animals at these sites would support her hypothesis, Shipman says. Such finds will be necessary to convince archaeologists like Nicholas Conard that the new work is more than just a leap of faith. “I like it as an idea, but there’s no smoking gun,” says Conard, who works at the University of Tübingen in Germany and who has personally excavated mammoth megasites. Perri agrees. “We don’t know enough about what early dogs—or even the wolves of the time—looked like,” she says. “This is extrapolating from too few examples.” Still, Conard says, “there are so few ideas about how these sites formed, and what Shipman is arguing is possible and testable. It’s a move in the right direction.”last_img read more

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Members of previously uncontacted tribe infected with flu

first_imgLate last week, Brazil’s Indian affairs department (FUNAI) publicly announced an event that many anthropologists and medical researchers had feared. In the remote Brazilian state of Acre, members of a long-isolated Amazon tribe have contracted influenza after making voluntary contact with the outside world. Some researchers now fear that the contacted individuals, who speak a Panoan language, will spread the potentially fatal virus to other nonimmunized members of their tribe.Late last month, members of the tribe emerged from the forest along the Upper Envira River in Brazil, raiding the village of another remote but settled tribe, and then contacting members of a FUNAI team and spending up to 3 weeks in their company. Researchers suspect that the newly contacted people were fleeing illegal loggers and cocaine traffickers in part of their home territory in a Peruvian park. Apparently, the tribespeople picked up influenza from this recent contact, according to the FUNAI announcement. Flu virus is potentially deadly to isolated tribespeople because they have no immunity to it, and such transmission is exactly what anthropologists and medical experts hope to avoid during contact. In case after case, contact has proved tragic as diseases like flu and measles decimated previously isolated tribes.According to the FUNAI announcement, a government medical team treated the newly infected tribespeople and gave them flu immunizations. But the contacted people then slipped back into their forest home—a development that alarms many researchers. “We can only hope that [the FUNAI team members] were able to give out treatment before the sickness was spread to the rest of the tribe in the forest,” says Chris Fagan, executive director at the Upper Amazon Conservancy in Jackson, Wyoming. “Only time will tell if they reacted quickly enough to divert a catastrophic epidemic.”Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)While FUNAI’s medical officials worked with the tribe, another group of researchers has tentatively identified their culture: The tribe in question may be part of a larger group of Chitonahua people, says Adam Bauer-Goulden, president of the Rainforest Rescue Coalition in Chicago, Illinois. A village of some 40 to 100 tribespeople, believed to be Chitonahua, was photographed from the air in a village along the Xinane River, not far south of the contact area, and the body ornamentation and haircuts of these villagers closely resemble those of the newly contacted group (photo above). Bauer-Goulden thinks the newly contacted folk may come from that exact village. A group of previously contacted Chitonahua now live along the Yurúa River in Peru.FUNAI noted in the announcement that the newly contacted group said that they had been violently attacked by outsiders. The Xinane River village lies along a major route used by cocaine smugglers, notes Bauer-Goulden, who suspects that “the narcotraffickers pushed them out” of their own lands.But for now, the immediate worry is disease transmission. It’s possible that the tribespeople picked up other diseases such as malaria during contact. If so, they could conceivably spread the newly acquired pathogens to other members of their tribe. Fiona Watson, research director for Survival International, a nongovernmental organization based in London that seeks to support indigenous tribes, also worries that FUNAI may not have sufficient medical resources on the ground nearby in the event of an epidemic. “There does not seem to be a health team in situ right now,” Watson says. “FUNAI says it will send in a team but only next month.”It’s a worrisome situation, says anthropologist Robert Walker of the University of Missouri, Columbia. “We are just hearing of one of the many contacts that are going on in this region,” he says. “If you think of how many loggers and narcotraffickers there are in this region, and that there could be as many as 3000 to 4000 uncontacted people there, the potential for contact is huge.”last_img read more

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U.S. Senate approves new DOE science undersecretary

first_imgAfter a yearlong wait, Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz is one step closer to having his science leadership team in place at the Department of Energy (DOE).This morning, the U.S. Senate confirmed chemical engineer Franklin “Lynn” Orr, a professor and administrator at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, to fill the new position of undersecretary for science and energy. Tomorrow, the Senate is expected to make physicist Ellen Williams, the former chief scientist at energy giant BP and a longtime professor at the University of Maryland, College Park, the second head of DOE’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E).The fate of the researcher Moniz wants to lead DOE’s Office of Science remains unclear, however. That’s because there is no vote scheduled on the nomination of physicist Marc Kastner of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)The White House nominated all three researchers for the DOE jobs in November 2013, and all received glowing reviews at subsequent Senate confirmation hearings. But lawmakers have been slow to act on the nominations for a variety of reasons, including partisan squabbling over unrelated issues.Moniz welcomed today’s confirmation of Orr on a voice vote. “I look forward to working closely with Lynn to shape the nation’s clean energy agenda, and to sustain American leadership in science,” Moniz said in a statement. Orr’s job, which Moniz created last year as part of a reorganization of DOE’s top leadership, involves overseeing all of DOE’s science research programs, including 10 national laboratories that do not work on nuclear weapons.Orr, 67, would be the first person to occupy the new undersecretary slot, which Moniz created after a number of groups recommended revamping DOE’s management structure. In addition to science, it oversees fossil, nuclear, and renewable energy research programs and electrical grid and technology transfer issues. Orr had worked at Stanford since 1985 and directed its Precourt Institute for Energy since 2009.Assuming Williams is confirmed tomorrow, she would succeed Arunava Majumdar, who left ARPA-E in June 2012. The fledgling agency ARPA-E spends roughly $230 million annually on high-risk but potentially high-reward efforts to commercialize new energy technologies.Senate leaders have given no hint as to when the body might vote on the nomination of Kastner to lead DOE’s Office of Science, which oversees a $4.6 billion research portfolio. But research groups are pushing for action. In a 25 November letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D–NV), the Energy Sciences Coalition, an alliance of science, university, and industry groups, urged Kastner’s confirmation, calling the move “vital to the direction and oversight of the important scientific and energy research.”If Congress doesn’t act before it adjourns later this month, the White House would have to resubmit Kastner’s nomination next year. Of course, that’s assuming he still wants the job.last_img read more

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Dark matter found in Milky Way’s core

first_imgMost of the material of the universe is dark matter—stuff we can’t see, though we can still feel its gravity. It was discovered in the 1970s when astronomer Vera Rubin showed that stars in the outer regions of spiral galaxies, far from the center, were moving faster than they should be. This suggested there was some sort of unseen mass in a “halo” around the galaxy. But physicists disagree over whether all this dark matter is at the margin or if there is some in a galaxy’s core. Now, a team of researchers has attempted to answer that question for the Milky Way (pictured). They collected all the data they could find about stellar speeds in the inner regions of our home galaxy to see how they varied with distance from the center, they report online today in Nature Physics. Then they took the best models for how much normal matter there is throughout the galaxy and calculated how fast you would expect stars to be moving if only that normal matter was pulling on them. They found that the measured speeds and calculated speeds didn’t agree, demonstrating that dark matter does indeed play a role in the inner galaxy. The researchers hope their studies will help narrow down searches for the nature of dark matter as well as aid the understanding of galaxy formation.last_img read more

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Indian Economy Set To Be Bigger Than UK’s This Year

first_imgIndia’s economy grew at a faster pace than most major nations in 2018, and this year, it’s poised to overtake the U.K. to become the world’s fifth-biggest. But that journey won’t be smooth. The outcome of a general election due by May is a potential pitfall for a nation already battered by emerging market turmoil and a currency rout last year. Also, any attempts by the government to undermine the central bank’s freedom and raid its surplus capital may spook investors and carry damaging consequences for the economy.Read it at Live Mint Related Itemslast_img read more

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News Corp Elevates India Business

first_imgRupert Murdoch’s News Corp. is restructuring its Asian broadcast business, significantly elevating the profile of its STAR India business.The group’s Asian broadcast business is being segmented into STAR India, STAR Greater China and Fox International Channels.STAR India will run 19 channels and manage News Corp.’s interest in seven ventures. STAR Greater China will oversee five Chinese language channels and two joint ventures. Fox International Channels combines 37 channels including Star World and National Geographic Channel. Related Itemslast_img read more

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