December 6, 2016

Thanks to a rapidly growing middle class, China has transformed into the largest moviegoing market in the world. And while Hollywood is the source for many of the nation’s hit flicks, American filmmakers still face a number of hurdles before they can do business in China. This video looks at the ways Hollywood tries to appeal to Chinese culture in order to break into this tough but rewarding market.

Questions:

 

  1. What are the advantages and disadvantages of China’s revenue Continue reading
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November 17, 2016

DavidSteadmanWhile the holiday shopping season in the U.S. doesn’t officially kick off until next week, Chinese retailers are already counting their profits from the phenomenon known as Singles Day. Founded in the 1990s by a group of college students celebrating their bachelorhood, the November 11 holiday has since morphed into a nationwide shopping spree. This year the online retailer Alibaba brought in nearly $18 billion in sales, far more than what the entire American retail industry earns during Black Friday Continue reading

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November 10, 2016

When a group of Australian special effects artists were having trouble finding work, they decided to pool their resources together and create their own animatronics company. Most had planned to return to working on movies and television once they’d made a splash with their enormous, lifelike representations of dinosaurs and monsters. But Creature Technology wowed the world with their creations, leading to the bustling and almost magical workshop shown in the video below.

Questions:

 

  1. Why must Creature Technology keep Continue reading
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October 27, 2016

Although the world’s population is always increasing, the physical size of the globe stubbornly remains the same. As a result, humans might soon face a shortage of some key resources, including food with high protein content. But here’s where the humble cricket hops in: while many Americans may consider them pests, crickets can be a nutritious and environmentally sustainable food source. This video takes a look at the ways one cricket farm operates and how its owners hope to market Continue reading

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October 25, 2016

MicheleM.FIsraeli entrepreneur Yekutiel Sherman had a great idea for a product: a selfie stick that folded seamlessly into the back of a smartphone’s case. He spent a year carefully designing his idea, producing prototypes and securing small investments from family and friends. By December 2015 Sherman launched a Kickstarter campaign in order to finish funding the item, now called Stikbox. But while the project immediately attracted investors, his popular crowdfunding campaign also caught the attention of Chinese bootleg manufacturers. Within Continue reading

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October 21, 2016

PaulBicaThe remote region of Cape Breton in Nova Scotia, Canada, is not known for its bustling population. Just 130,000 people live on the 4,000 square-mile island, with 1,000 others leaving each year for the past two decades. As the population steadily drops, many Cape Breton natives have worried about the future of the island’s tight knit communities. Among these concerned citizens was Jim and Ferne Austin, local entrepreneurs who operated the Farmer’s Daughter Country Market in sleepy Whycocomagh, Nova Scotia, Continue reading

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September 8, 2016

MichaelBentleyAlmost 95 percent of all manufactured goods arrive at their destinations in shipping containers. These freight boxes often begin their journeys aboard enormous cargo ships that transport items around the globe. Normally this process is simple enough: a ship pays a docking fee upon arrival along with additional charges for unloading and container storage. In the case of South Korea’s Hanjin Shipping Company, however, this common process has been halted. After filing for bankruptcy protection last week, ports across the Continue reading

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August 31, 2016

RichardUntenDroneA few years ago Amazon announced a plan to start their own drone-based delivery service, allowing customers to receive goods just hours after ordering. At the time the idea seemed almost too futuristic to be true. After all, the image of dozens of robots circulating the sky and dropping off packages sounds like something straight out of a sci-fi movie. According to the company, however, the plan for Amazon Prime Air remains on track and may even become a reality Continue reading

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August 29, 2016

As the Trans-Pacific Partnership inches closer to ratification in the U.S. and abroad, the debate surrounding free trade agreements like it has grown more intense. This video takes a look at one of the first of these tariff-eliminating multinational deals, NAFTA, and the ways that it has remained controversial.

Questions:

 

  1. Do free trade deals like NAFTA or TPP provide enough of an economic benefit to justify their potentially negative effects on the U.S. job market?
  2. How do tariffs encourage Continue reading
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August 26, 2016

IgorMaynaudCigaretteFrance is home to more than 13 million smokers, which includes one-third of teenagers and a quarter of adults. For years the nation’s health ministry has attempted to reduce this enormous number by spearheading initiatives that target the consumer appeal of cigarettes. For instance, the French government has long followed European Union laws requiring tobacco companies to cover 65 percent of their packaging with health warnings. In May, however, lawmakers took this concept a step further by passing “neutral packaging” Continue reading

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