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Genuine Leather and 200 Years of Inspired Fakes
What makes genuine leather genuine? What makes real things real? In an age of virtual reality, veneers, synthetics, plastics, fakes, and knockoffs, it's hard to know.
Over the centuries, men and women have devoted enormous energy to making fake things seem real. As early as the fourteenth century, fabric was treated with special oils to make it resemble leather. In the 1870s came Leatherette, a new bookbinding material. The twentieth century gave us Fabrikoid, Naugahyde, Corfam, and Ultrasuede. Each claims to transcend leather's limitations, to do better than nature itself—or at least to convince consumers that it does.
Perhaps more than any other natural material, leather stands for the authentic and the genuine. Its animal roots etched in its pores and in the swirls of its grain, leather serves as cultural shorthand for the virtues of the real over the synthetic, the original over the copy, the luxurious over the shoddy and second-rate. From formica, vinyl siding, and particle board to cubic zirconium, knockoff designer bags, and genetically altered foods, inspired fakes of every description fly the polyester pennant of a brave new man-made world. Each represents a journey of scientific, technical, and entrepreneurial innovation. Faux Real explores this borderland of the almost-real, the ersatz, and the fake, illuminating a centuries-old culture war between the authentic and the imitative.
Ce manuel propose un exposé rigoureux de la gestion des risques en finance. Les aspects théoriques de la question sont abordés par des démonstrations claires et des rappels élaborés des bases mathématiques de la finance computationnelle. Le texte est émaillé de nombreux programmes écrits en langages Visual Basic (Excel), Matlab et EViews qui prépareront l'étudiant à sa carrière de spécialiste en ingénierie financière.
Théorie, politique et pratique, 2e édition
Quels sont les rôles des banques centrales, du FMI, des gouvernements et leur capacité d'action sur l'inflation, le chômage et les taux d'intérêt? Comment réduire la dette des PVD sans déstabiliser les économies du Nord? Doit-on opter pour une monnaie mondiale ou régionaliser l'usage des monnaies fortes? Exemples à l'appui, l'auteur explique et décrit les pratiques financières courantes ainsi que le comportement des banques centrales et du FMI à travers les divers accords négociés de haute lutte par les représentants des différents pays.
The Enron Failure and the State of Corporate Disclosure
A few years ago, Americans held out their systems of corporate governance and financial disclosure as models to be emulated by the rest of the world. But in late 2001 U.S. policymakers and corporate leaders found themselves facing the largest corporate accounting scandals in American history. The spectacular collapses of Enron and Worldcom as well as the discovery of accounting irregularities at other large U.S. companies seemed to call into question the efficacy of the entire system of corporate governance in the United States. In response, Congress quickly enacted a comprehensive package of reform measures in what has come to be known as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. The New York Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ followed by making fundamental changes to their listing requirements. The private sector acted as well. Accounting firms watching in horror as one of their largest, Arthur Andersen, collapsed after a criminal conviction for document shredding tightened their auditing procedures. Stock analysts and ratings agencies, hit hard by a series of disclosures about their failings, changed their practices as well. Will these reforms be enough? Are some counterproductive? Are other shortcomings in the disclosure system still in need of correction? These are among the questions that George Benston, Michael Bromwich, Robert E. Litan, and Alfred Wagenhofer address in Following the Money. While the authors agree that the U.S. system of corporate disclosure and governance is in need of change, they are concerned that policymakers may be overreacting in some areas and taking actions in others that may prove to be ineffective or even counterproductive. Using the Enron case as a point of departure, the authors argue that the major problem lies not in the accounting and auditing standards themselves, but in the system of enforcing those standards. Rather than attempting to craft a single set of accounting and reporting standards for all companies throughout the world, the authors advise policymakers to allow competition between the two major sets of standards: Generally Accepted Accounting Principles and International Financial Reporting Standards. The authors also believe that the corporate disclosure system needs to be updated to reflect changes in the underlying economy. In particular, they recommend new forms of disclosure for a variety of nonfinancial indicators to better enable investors and analysts to ascertain the source and nature of intangible assets. They also urge policymakers to exploit the advantages of the Internet by encouraging more frequent financial disclosures in a form that will make them more widely accessible and more easily used.
From Farmyard to Shopping Cart
In recent years, the integrity of food production and distribution has become an issue of wide social concern. The media frequently report on cases of food contamination as well as on the risks of hormones and cloning. Journalists, documentary filmmakers, and activists have had their say, but until now a survey of the latest research on the history of the modern food-provisioning system—the network that connects farms and fields to supermarkets and the dining table—has been unavailable. In Food Chains, Warren Belasco and Roger Horowitz present a collection of fascinating case studies that reveal the historical underpinnings and institutional arrangements that compose this system.
The dozen essays in Food Chains range widely in subject, from the pig, poultry, and seafood industries to the origins of the shopping cart. The book examines what it took to put ice in nineteenth-century refrigerators, why Soviet citizens could buy ice cream whenever they wanted, what made Mexican food popular in France, and why Americans turned to commercial pet food in place of table scraps for their dogs and cats. Food Chains goes behind the grocery shelves, explaining why Americans in the early twentieth century preferred to buy bread rather than make it and how Southerners learned to like self-serve shopping. Taken together, these essays demonstrate the value of a historical perspective on the modern food-provisioning system.
Neoliberal Globalism and Biotechnology in Latin America
Recent decades have seen tremendous changes in Latin America's agricultural sector, resulting from a broad program of liberalization instigated under pressure from the United States, the IMF, and the World Bank. Tariffs have been lifted, agricultural markets have been opened and privatized, land reform policies have been restricted or eliminated, and the perspective has shifted radically toward exportation rather than toward the goal of feeding local citizens. Examining the impact of these transformations, the contributors to Food for the Few: Neoliberal Globalism and Biotechnology in Latin America paint a somber portrait, describing local peasant farmers who have been made responsible for protecting impossibly vast areas of biodiversity, or are forced to specialize in one genetically modified crop, or who become low-wage workers within a capitalized farm complex. Using dozens of examples such as these, the deleterious consequences are surveyed from the perspectives of experts in diverse fields, including anthropology, economics, geography, political science, and sociology. From Kathy McAfee's “Exporting Crop Biotechnology: The Myth of Molecular Miracles,” to Liz Fitting's “Importing Corn, Exporting Labor: The Neoliberal Corn Regime, GMOs, and the Erosion of Mexican Biodiversity,” Food for the Few balances disturbing findings with hopeful assessments of emerging grassroots alternatives. Surveying not only the Latin American conditions that led to bankruptcy for countless farmers but also the North's practices, such as the heavy subsidies implemented to protect North American farmers, these essays represent a comprehensive, keenly informed response to a pivotal global crisis.
Nation, Gender, and the Space of Modernity
A bold and challenging consideration of questions of development, economic globalization, communities and subjectivity from a unique feminist perspective. A must-read book for those who wish to understand restructuring and resistance in this era of intensified globalization. ---Isabella C. Bakker, York University "Bergeron's pathbreaking analysis challenges orthodox development theories, questions current feminist economic thinking and highlights crucial new gendered challenges to globalization." ---Jane Parpart, Dalhousie University "Cutting-edge scholarship. Bergeron deftly engages the complexity of current debates while retaining clarity, improving analyses, and illuminating alternatives." ---V. S. Peterson, University of Arizona By tracing out the intersection between the imagined space of the national economy and the gendered construction of "expert" knowledge in development thought, Suzanne Bergeron provides a provocative analysis of development discourse and practice. By elaborating a framework of including/excluding economic subjects and activities in development economics, she provides a rich account of the role that economists have played in framing the contested political and cultural space of development. Bergeron's account of the construction of the national economy as an object of development policy follows its shifting meanings through modernization and growth models, dependency theory, structural adjustment, and contemporary debates about globalization and highlights how intersections of nation and economy are based on gendered and colonial scripts. The author's analysis of development debates effectively demonstrates that critics of development who ignore economists' nation stories may actually bolster the formation they are attempting to subvert. Fragments of Development is essential reading for those interested in development studies, feminist economics, international political economy, and globalization studies.
Stories, Recipes, and More
Fritos® Pie is an insider’s look at the never-before-told story of the Frito Company written by Kaleta Doolin, daughter of the company’s founder. Filled with personal anecdotes, more than 150 vintage and newly created recipes, and stories, this book recounts the company’s early days, the 1961 merger that created Frito-Lay, Inc., and beyond. In 1932 C. E. Doolin, the operator of a struggling San Antonio confectionery, purchased for $100 the recipe for a fried corn chip product and a crude device used to make it, along with a list of nineteen customer accounts. From that humble beginning sprang Fritos® (“fries” in Spanish), a product that, thanks to Doolin’s marketing ingenuity and a visionary approach to food technology, would become one of the best-known brands in America. One of the first firms to utilize point-of-sale advertising, the Frito Company developed dozens of recipes intended to get American homemakers “Cooking with Fritos.” Indeed, Doolin shows that many of the vintage recipes developed by her grandmother, her father, and company employees became integral to the company’s marketing success. The book includes recipes—for everything from appetizers to desserts, all using Fritos as an ingredient—along with the author’s comments and anecdotes about her adventures experimenting with them in her kitchen. Doolin also draws upon hours of interviews with her mother, siblings, cousins, and many of her father's closest business associates as well as focused research in Frito-Lay corporate archives and other collections to paint a portrait of her father as not only an innovator in food marketing but also a visionary inventor, a forward-thinking agriculturalist, and an entrepreneur with an amazing grasp of detail.
Important changes have buffeted the insurance industry over the past decade. The 1999 repeal of key provisions of the Glass-Steagall Act unleashed a wave of conglomeration in financial services, as bank holding companies acquired insurance and securities businesses and, to a much lesser degree, insurance companies acquired securities firms and banks. Rivalry within the sector has intensified: insurance companies have developed products that compete directly with the offerings of banks and securities firms and vice versa. In addition, the industry has become increasingly global.
Against this backdrop, pressure has been building for fundamental changes to the structure of insurance regulation in the United States. Despite several court challenges over the years, insurance continues to be regulated by the states. Many insurance companies view state regulation as an increasing drag on their efficiency and competitiveness and support a federal regulatory system. However, powerful stakeholders, including state officials, state and regional insurance companies, and many insurance agents, oppose federal regulation. As a result, proposals to establish an optional federal charter (OFC) for insurance companies and agents remain mired in fierce debate.
The Future of Insurance Regulation in the United States gathers some of the country's leading experts on financial regulation to assess the case for an enhanced federal role in the insurance sector. They pay particular attention to the merits of an OFC and how it might be designed. They also consider the principles that should guide insurance regulatory policies, regardless of the institutional framework, and examine the implications of financial convergence and the internationalization of insurance markets for an optimal regulatory structure.
The debate over insurance regulation has only grown in complexity and intensity since the financial crisis began in the fall of 2008. This book will both inform and help to shape those critical discussions.
Contributors: John A. Cooke (International Financial Services London), Robert Detlefsen (National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies), Martin F. Grace (Georgia State University), Robert W. Klein (Georgia State University), Robert E. Litan (Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and Brookings Institution), Phil O'Connor (PROactive Strategies), Hal S. Scott (Harvard Law School), Harold D. Skipper (Georgia State University), Peter J. Wallison (American Enterprise Institute).
Que pouvons-nous apprendre?
Les projets en environnement extrême, telles les expéditions polaires, peuvent être une source d’enseignement pour les projets plus classiques au sein des entreprises dans le contexte économique d’aujourd’hui. En effet, ils présentent un fort potentiel d’apprentissage sur la gestion des situations inattendues et imprévisibles. Cet ouvrage rassemble les communications de chercheurs français, suédois et québécois sur le thème Gestion de projet et expéditions polaires : que pouvons-nous apprendre ? tirées d’un colloque tenu en juin 2009 à l’Université du Québec à Montréal.