Monday links

Here’s a roundup of interesting links I’ve seen this week:

The speed of light is too slow! New Scientist article about traders choosing microwaves to transmit trading instructions ahead of fibre optic cable – light is slowed by a significant amount by the cable.

Giving people permission to fail – an important part of risk management – Harvard Business Review blog post about working out who is responsible for taking a risk ahead of time – means that risky decisions are deliberately taken, and agreed, but if some other risk (not approved) is realised, accountability needs to be reviewed pretty carefully.

Australian long bond yield drops like a stone – not an article, but unless you are managing long fixed interest assets or liabilities (which I’m not any more), you may not have noticed the dramatic recent drop of the Australian 10 year government bond yield. Its dropped faster (both in percentage and almost in absolute terms) than it did during the worst three months of the GFC. Much more dramatic than the stock market.

Admit it chaps, you just prefer other chaps – Allison Pearson (I Don’t Know How She Does It) on why women aren’t in senior roles despite senior men being much more likely to be spotted dozing gently in the early afternoon at the cricket –

the appointment of women to FTSE 350-listed non-executive director roles is being held back by selection processes which “ultimately favour candidates with similar characteristics to existing board members”. Or penises, as they are more widely known.

Woman sentenced to be stoned to death in Sudan – A 20-year-old Sudanese mother is sentenced to death by stoning in the Sudan – for adultery.

Malthusian controls in medieval Europe – a study suggests that plague and war were much more likely to occur as the population got richer in medieval Europe – so were Malthusian effects just as much as starvation.

A Roman version of your car’s GPS – London to Rome in 22 days. Some history scholars have built an interactive map of the Roman empire that lets you work out the quickest and cheapest route from point to point.

  2 comments for “Monday links

  1. dexydog
    June 8, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    “Admit it chaps, you just prefer other chaps ” sounds rather suggestive!
    At the same time, women prefer also prefer women too…I counted only 5 males at Actuaries Institute..based on the article that showcase who did what at the secretariat in the April edition of the Actuaries magazine.

    • Jennifer Lang
      June 8, 2012 at 9:57 pm

      Allison Pearson’s words not mine! I think most people like hiring in their own image…. Which is why it is so important to have diversity in pretty much every measure you can imagine around the boardroom table. Gender, race, culture, sexuality … Diversity leads to better decision making if you harness it right.

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