Sahasak Nimavum: Spirit of the creative souls

Published : 12:00 am  November 6, 2014  |  Category: Ajith de Alwis, Columnists  |  Leave a Comment  |  460 views  |  
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It was indeed exciting to witness the products of active minds at the Sahasak Nimavum exhibition held at the Sri Lanka Exhibition and Convention Centre, championed and organised by the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission (SLIC). This year’s event was for the third consecutive time. This is a service extended by the Commission to provide a platform for the creative souls in our society to display their inventions and to explain the value of their idea to the public. Inventor of the automatic rail gate system, Aruna Samarawickrama   The number of footfalls to the precincts did not number much when compared with a consumer fair when various types of trinkets – most of the times brought down... 

Thinking behind the economic policies of the Government and the Budget

Published : 12:00 am  November 5, 2014  |  Category: Columnists, Harsha Gunasena  |  3 Comments  |  565 views  |  
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The Government has presented the Budget for the fiscal year 2015 and there is widespread accusation that it is a giveaway budget aiming at anticipated elections in early next year. At the same time, the Budget is praised by the private sector for its economic direction. While appreciating these criticisms, it is appropriate to examine the thinking behind the economic policies of the Government and the Budget.     Control Previous governments consistently emphasised the point that the private sector was the engine of the growth. This Government, although it has not denied that point, has not emphasised on it either. It appears that the Government would like to control most of the areas... 

Is blogging the future tool of leisure marketing?

Published : 1:38 am  November 4, 2014  |  Category: Columnists  |  Leave a Comment  |  694 views  |  
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Cinnamon Hotels and Resorts to introduce first-ever bloggers conference in Asia on 18 November The experience of travel is changing as tourism grows, the world globalises and technologies shorten temporal and spatial difference. The phenomena of travel blogging adds a post-modern reflexivity to contemporary tourist practices as journey now uploads their personal experiences to the Internet as they go along Viewed collectively, the large volume of travel stories published on the Internet present a detailed picture of our travel habits: what we do, where we go and our thoughts and feelings along the way. It has also been recognised that the blog space produces its own particular recollections... 

The power to recall your MP

Published : 12:26 am  November 4, 2014  |  Category: Charitha Ratwatte, Columnists  |  Leave a Comment  |  444 views  |  
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Empowering the voter Recently, in Britain, the Queen in her speech at the opening of a new session of Parliament announced that legislation will be introduced which will allow voters to sack misbehaving MPs. This landmark legislation, called the Recall of MPs Bill, will allow constituents to force a by-election if an MP, in their view, behaves badly. A petition to Recall, as proposed by the Monarch, will require the signatures of a minimum of 10% registered voters, to be obtained and submitted within an eight-week timeframe. As proposed, the new power of Recall will be triggered only if MPs are given a jail sentence or if the House of Commons is of the view that the MP concerned has engaged... 

Sri Lankan marketers see the power of social media

Published : 12:24 am  November 4, 2014  |  Category: Rohantha Athukorala  |  1 Comment  |  1,643 views  |  
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Last week Sri Lanka witnessed a landmark event when we saw an allegedly controversial advertisement by a top biscuit manufacturer back-benched by the adverse comments on social media. The decision was all the more important given that there was no mention of the same from the traditional media, which included the editorials that I scanned.                           From the social media platforms, Facebook was the lead media that was driving consumer thought creation on the alleged controversial piece of communication, which signifies the power of this media. Incidentally, this was the second time we saw the power of this medium.... 

Army squanders advantage in last quarter

Published : 12:05 am  November 4, 2014  |  Category: Arthur Fernandez, Columnists  |  Leave a Comment  |  239 views  |  
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The much-awaited Club rugby season kicked off over the weekend, with four games being worked off. As expected the pre-match favourites had it their way, albeit a few anxious moments in two of the games. As expected, a strong Navy outfit simply drowned the Sharks in the shallow waters down south, and it must be heart-wrenching to be on the losing side yet again for the Sharks as they were no match for the firepower of the Sailors. Kandy lived up to their pre-season hype and disposed of the Airmen in clinical fashion. In fact the Airmen almost struggled to take off, except for three successful kicks at goal. Once again, the Airmen were on the losing side and did not look like scoring. There is... 

Now that Representative Democracy has become a mockery, the solution may lie in Liquid Democracy

Published : 12:00 am  November 3, 2014  |  Category: Columnists, W. A. Wijewardena  |  1 Comment  |  6,632 views  |  
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Discipline among Parliamentarians in good old days     This writer had an opportunity to observe a Budget debate in the old parliamentary building at Galle Face in 1974 when N.M. Perera, popularly known as NM, was the Minister of Finance. In that Parliament, the Government party had been swollen to such an extent, as it has been today, that some of the Government party backbenchers had to be accommodated in the backbenches of the Opposition side of the House facilitating them to effectively sandwich the Opposition. An Opposition MP was on his feet castigating the Budget and Vivienne Goonewardena, an MP from NM’s party, was trying to interrupt him. Speaker Stanely Tillekeratne looked at... 

GDP risk in building maritime capacity

Published : 12:00 am  November 3, 2014  |  Category: Columnists  |  Leave a Comment  |  540 views  |  
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GDP risk in building maritime capacity Some organisations use the growth of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) as a benchmark to increase Shipboard-Port capacity. As reported in the Financial Times, in a private meeting with the US ambassador to China in 2007, provincial communist party secretary Li Keqiang described his country’s gross domestic product figures as ‘man made’ and unreliable. To get a good idea of what was happening to the economy in his province of Liaoning; Li said he preferred to focus on three alternative indicators: electricity consumption, volume of rail cargo and the amount of loans disbursed. All other figures and especially GDP statistics, were ‘for reference only’,... 

Executive Continuity: Excel or Extinct?

Published : 12:00 am  November 3, 2014  |  Category: Ajantha Dharmasiri, Columnists  |  Leave a Comment  |  1,605 views  |  
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The sudden departure of a person handling a critical task can cripple business operations. That’s why we need to be conscious of executive continuity. I was moderating a panel discussion on new trends in succession planning, recently organised by a leading HR solutions provider. Today’s column is all about executive continuity with relevance to Sri Lankan workplaces. Figure 1: Levels of Succession Planning Source: Deloitte Consulting     Overview ‘Executive continuity: how to build and retain an effective management team’ is the title of a book by Walter Robert Mahler. It opened the eyes of many executives to the vital aspects of succession planning. It is so vital yet does... 

Positioning for electoral success in Sri Lanka

Published : 2:18 am  November 1, 2014  |  Category: Columnists  |  Leave a Comment  |  783 views  |  
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“It’s the battle for your mind, it’s the battle for your mind,” voiced the lanky character in the ‘hampada’ denim and casual T-shirt in classroom No. 4, his husky voice reverberating through the corridor. It was our marketing instructor lecturing in a cramped-up room many years ago in downtown Colombo. I was able to unearth the notes of this exercise kept in a remote section of my house and infested with small insects. The instructor was explaining to the class the concept of positioning in the complex and often absorbing realm of marketing. He continued: “It’s not what you do to the product, but what you do to the mind, not anyone’s mind; it’s the mind of the prospect, voter,... 

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