By: Edilberto C. de Jesus
As with planned caesarean procedures, we know beforehand this baby’s birthday. On Jan. 21, 2019, the people within the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) will determine in a plebiscite whether to welcome the birth of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region (BAR). But, as with any delivery, we cannot predict with absolute certainty the baby’s health condition at birth, or its future life prospects. It will take many years and much effort before we can proclaim the BAR a success.
The plebiscite to ratify the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) is only one part of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro concluded between the Government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to end nearly 50 years of the separatist insurgency. The “normalization” process requires settling security issues, such as the decommissioning of MILF combatants. A ceremonial decommissioning of 145 combatants took place in June 2015. But by the time of BOL ratification, 30 percent of MILF forces or about 4,000 combatants should already have been decommissioned and absorbed into the government’s security forces, or provided alternative livelihood opportunities.
By: Guillermo M. Luz
The Philippines has had a spotty record of urban planning. What started out as beautifully master-planned cities generations ago have ended up as cities characterized by congestion and traffic, little or poor access to mass transit, few open spaces, parks and public spaces, and many blighted and derelict sections. And yet we’ve also seen some areas beautifully planned and built out in different parts of the country. Whether by design or accident, the parts that have become “liveable” are thriving, booming and driving growth.
Cities are drivers of economic growth and innovation. They are hubs of consumption, resource use and waste. They are also generators of wealth, production and development. The world has been on an urbanization trend for some time now. Over 80 percent of global GDP is generated in cities; 70 percent of greenhouse gas emissions come from cities as well. Over one-half of the people in the world live in cities. And over 30 percent of global city residents live in slums; 75 percent of the global urban population live in a developing country.
By: Ma. Aurora “Boots” D. Geotina-Garcia
Business leaders often receive invitations to regional and international conferences. Sometimes we meet the same personalities or hear the same speakers talk about the same topics. Have you experienced “conference fatigue,” and feel that these gatherings are irrelevant and incapable of bringing about meaningful and fruitful discussions?
However, I would consider the World Economic Forum (WEF) on Asean held in Hanoi, Vietnam, last September as something different than the so-called “more of the same.” The main theme of the Forum focused on how Asean, as a regional community, can embrace the “Fourth Industrial Revolution”—a new and important area that needs to be addressed and requires regional cooperation as Asean is now moving toward becoming a key driver of the global economy and a critical player in international affairs.
By: Ramon Del Rosario, Jr.
Education has historically been the domain of academicians. But that now needs to change, given the fast-changing world of work, advances in technology and economic growth that has not resulted in opportunities for all.
This was the consensus from the recently held 2019 Higher Education Summit organized by Philippine Business for Education (PBEd), an organization I serve as chair.