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Month: December 2019

What You Control, and What You Do Not

first_img Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Now Most things are outside of your control. Many of these things are also outside of your sphere of influence.You have no control over your government and, unless you have a lot of money and political clout, you have very little influence. This is also true of world affairs.The overall economy, despite the way things are reported in the news, is far beyond anyone’s control. Presidents and Federal Reserve Bankers take credit for a good economy and take the blame for a poor economy, but they have limited influence.You have no control over your clients. If you do exceptionally good work and build your influence, you may have some sway, some share of mind that allows you to nudge them in a particular direction. But you have no real control.Your competitors do things that you don’t believe are possible. They agree to things that you can’t agree to. They price their offerings so low that it would be impossible for you to follow them and make any money. They are way outside of your control and your influence.You don’t control your employees, peers, or the people you lead. At best, you have influence.There are, however, a lot of things that you do control.You control whether you are a positive, optimistic person who inspires others, helping them to grow and making a contribution beyond yourself.You control whether or not you believe producing results requires force or persuasion.You control whether you believe that the world is a dangerous place where people have mostly bad intentions or whether it is a place of abundance and opportunity.You control the values you choose to adopt, and how you live those values.You choose the people with whom you decide to surround yourself. You also control how you treat other people.You choose whether to view problems as opportunities or as obstacles. You control whether you believe that failure defines a person or that it is simply an event from which to learn.You control your life’s work and the contribution you decide to make or withhold.The time and energy you devote to things that are outside of your control is better spent in areas where you have control. We don’t get to choose what happens in the areas where we have no control; we only get to choose our response. The quality of your results is determined by how well you do in the areas you do control, not the areas you don’t.How much of your focus goes to things you cannot control and things over which you have very limited influence?How much control do you exercise over the things that are—or should be—completely in your control?What do you need to do to shift your focus to areas where you should be exercising control? How do you give up focusing in areas that don’t serve you and your goals?last_img read more

We Presentations and You Presentations

first_imgThere are two kinds of presentations you can give. The first is a “we” presentation. That presentation starts with “who we are.” It then moves into “what we do.” It continues into “how we do it,” and “who we serve,” leaving nothing to chance when establishing your company’s credibility.All About UsThere is a very clear indication to anyone who is subjected to a “we” presentation what the presenter believes is most important. It is all about the presenter and their company, nothing about their prospect. In fairness, “we” presenters believe that their prospective client is asking the questions, “Who are you? What do you do? How do you do it? And who do you work with?”Unfortunately, “we” presentations aren’t very compelling. The earlier you provide this type of presentation, the worse the outcome, especially if you want to be relevant. Your dream client isn’t struggling because they don’t know who you are, and once they know who you are, they are left no better than before you found them. We presentations mostly work against you.All About You“You” presentations are different. You presentations answer a different set of questions. They start by describing “Why it is so difficult for you to produce the results you need.” They move forward into “Here is what we know about you?” From there, they share “Here is what you might do about your challenge and your opportunities,” and “Here is how you might do it, and here is what other people like you have done.”“You” presentations are more powerful than “We” presentations. If you deliver an excellent “You” presentation, your dream client is going to be interested in learning about you, and then you can answer the questions about who you are, what you do, why you do it, how you do it, and who you serve. The fact that you know what your dream client is challenged with, why they are challenged, and how they might move forward establishes your credibility better than anything you can say about your company.The order in which you present “We” and “You” here determines how relevant your dream client will find you and your presentation. Get the Free eBook! Learn how to sell without a sales manager. Download my free eBook! You need to make sales. You need help now. We’ve got you covered. This eBook will help you Seize Your Sales Destiny, with or without a manager. Download Nowlast_img read more

Not Selling

first_imgTaking an order when a client reaches out to you to place an order is order-taking, not selling. Asking the questions necessary to create value for that client, shape their order, and cause them to engage with you on a more strategic level is selling.Skipping right to proposing a solution—even when your prospective client asks for a proposal—is not selling. It’s straight pitching. There is a time to pitch, and when you have done the work to put the pitch in context and win, pitching is part of selling.Providing your prospective client with pricing because they asked for it is not selling. It’s giving up the opportunity to sell and is akin to transacting, as if there were no greater value than the product and no compelling differentiation. Pushing for a meeting that would better serve the prospect in helping them make a good decision is selling, and a lot of the time you need to sell a meeting to sell at all.Replying to an unsolicited RFP is not selling. It is sometimes necessary, and it is mostly administrative work, but because there is no real interaction with a human being outside of the written word, it isn’t a conversation, and it isn’t selling. Doing the work to position yourself as the right partner before an RFP is selling, especially when you have shaped the primary questions that make up the RFP.Avoiding the difficult conversations to not have to deal with conflict between what your prospective client wants and what is the right thing to do is not selling. The difficult conversations are important, and the fact that you have to change someone’s mind is why we call it selling.The things that you might do to make selling easier and faster tend to slow things down and make things more difficult. Like any other profession, the best performers work on their effectiveness. That means doing what is right over what seems to be easier. Get the Free eBook! Learn how to sell without a sales manager. Download my free eBook! You need to make sales. You need help now. We’ve got you covered. This eBook will help you Seize Your Sales Destiny, with or without a manager. Download Nowlast_img read more

Dual citizenship: Goa notifies Centre’s order

first_imgPanaji: The Goa government has notified the order of the Central government which seeks to authorise district magistrates to decide the cases of dual citizenship. The government, earlier this week, also invited public suggestions and objections over this notification.According to the notification, all the cases and complaints regarding dual citizenship would be adjudicated by the magistrate of the respective district and a recommendation will be made to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs for the final decision. The ministry issued this order on November 22 last year.The police have been reluctantly registering First Information Reports (FIRs) based on complaints filed by local activist Kashinath Shetye, claiming several politicians, legislators, police officers, bureaucrats, lawyers and thousands of Goans, have over the years applied and availed themselves of the Portuguese identity card, Bilhete. Police initially refused to register FIRs, but later did so on the directions of a local trial court. Many politicians have also used this as a weapon by filing cases against their rivals. The FIR registered on Mr. Shetye’s complaints says people who have Bilhetes should surrender their Indian passports, and such government officers and politicians should resign.The issue became contentious for the BJP government, with two legislators, Glen Ticlo (BJP) and Caitu Silva (alliance party member), being accused of having Portuguese passports and having processed their Bilhetes after registering their birth in Portugal. Both have maintained in court that their documentation in Portugal was processed by agents without their knowledge.While Mr. Silva lost the election on February 4, 2017, Mr. Ticlo continues as BJP MLA. Mr. Silva is facing a petition filed by his political rival in the Bombay High Court at Goa.The BJP coalition government had maintained that the Bilhete alone is not proof of Portuguese identity and the individual continues to be an Indian citizen.last_img read more

Can’t provide security to all: Goa BJP leader on rape

first_imgFacing flak from the Opposition and activists over the increasing number of rape and assault cases in Goa, State BJP Mahila Morcha president Sulakshana Sawant said on Saturday the government cannot provide security to every individual.There has been fresh outrage on the issue of women’s safety following the gang rape of a 20-year-old woman by three tourists at Betalbatim beach on May 25, and a minor being molested by tourists in North Goa a few days later.Ms. Sawant, when asked at a press conference to comment on the issue, said, “If we go through the figures, the thing which is most significant is the mentality [of the criminal]. We need to change the mentality at the earliest. We cannot give protection to an individual. But an individual can act as a protector to any person in distress if he sees something wrong happening around. This does not happen often.”Ms. Sawant said more rape cases are being registered now because more women are coming forward to report such crimes as they know action will be taken against the criminals.She said that the women’s wing of the BJP would request the Tourism Department to install CCTV cameras on isolated beaches.last_img read more

Winds of change in Haryana, says Hooda

first_imgHolding public meetings in around a dozen villages in Panipat on Tuesday on the second leg of his Jan Kranti Yatra, former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda claimed that the “overwhelming response” showed that the winds of change were blowing across the State.Addressing large gatherings at Matloda and Sutana villages, Mr. Hooda reiterated the call to oust the incumbent BJP government and promised to waive the cooperative loans of farmers and the poor. He also announced that old-age pension would be increased to ₹3,000 and hiked every year, if the party was voted to power.Mr. Hooda said the people of Panipat had played a crucial role in bringing about a political change in 2004 when he kicked off his campaign from the district and his party bagged 67 of the 90 Assembly seats. He added that the response to his yatra was indicative of a similar change this time round.‘Drunk on power’ “It seems the people have already made up their mind to rid themselves of this government,” Mr. Hooda said, adding that the State government was drunk on power to give auction notices to farmers who have defaulted on their loans.Mr. Hooda’s vehicle passed through Lohari, Nara, Seenk, Kurana and Ahir villages in the district.Taking on the Chautalas, the former Chief Minister said the Indian National Lok Dal had a tactical understanding with the BJP and the people of the State had seen through its design.last_img read more

CBI books Army officer in extra-judicial killings case

first_imgAn Army officer has been booked by the CBI in a case related to the alleged extra-judicial killings in Manipur which are being probed by the agency on the orders of the Supreme Court.This is the first such case in the 29 FIRs registered by the CBI. Major Vijay Singh Balhara, then attached with Assam Rifles, and seven other uniformed personnel have been named as accused in the case pertaining to the killing of a 12-year-old boy, Azad Khan, on March 4, 2009.This case was termed a fake encounter by a Supreme Court-appointed commission led by retired judge Santosh Hegde.Azad, a student of Class VII in Phoubakchao High School with no criminal antecedents, was allegedly picked up from his home before being killed, the commission noted.An FIR was registered nearly two months before the alleged encounter under sections of attempt to murder, Arms Act and other stringent charges. “According to the security forces’ evidence, the deceased was suspected to be a member of the People’s United Liberation Front,” the commission said, adding that PULF was not a banned organisation, according to the Manipur government.Parents witness to murderAzad’s family had alleged that about 30 security personnel came to their house, dragged the boy to a nearby field and beat him up severely. The parents, relatives and friends of Azad were locked in a room by the security forces but they saw through the window when he was shot by one of the commandos and a pistol was thrown near his body, the commission report stated. The police, meanwhile, had claimed that they got inputs of terrorists’ movement in Azad’s village. When they reached there, two persons fired at them from the bamboo groves. An encounter ensued after which the body of the boy was found and a 9-mm pistol was recovered, the police said.After hearing the deposition of Major Balhara, who led the operation, the commission noted that there was “serious contradiction” in his statement with that of the other witnesses. Relying on autopsy reports, witnesses’ statements and statements of police and Assam Rifles, the Hegde Commission submitted its report calling it a case of extra-judicial killing. In July last year, the Supreme Court had handed over 41 cases of fake encounters to the CBI in which 86 people were killed by security forces.last_img read more

Youth sets off cracker in mouth of 3-year-old

first_imgA three-year-old girl was critically wounded in Meerut when a youth, Harpal, put a fire cracker in her mouth and lit it on Deepavali eve, police said on Wednesday. The girl was rushed to a medical facility where her condition is described as serious. The girl has received 50 stitches and her throat has also been infected. The incident happened at Milak village on Tuesday. The police have lodged an FIR against the miscreant and have launched a search for him.Shashi Kumar, the girl’s father, in his complaint has named local youth Harpal, who went to his daughter who was playing outside their house and stuffed a ‘sutli bomb’ in her mouth and lit the fuse.The bomb exploded in the girl’s mouth, causing serious injuries. She has received 50 stitches and her throat has also been infected, further compounding her health condition.last_img read more

Yoga exponent Geeta Iyengar, daughter of B.K.S. Iyengar, passes away

first_imgDr. Geeta S. Iyengar, the eldest daughter of legendary Yoga guru, B.K.S. Iyengar and a noted exponent of the yogic science in her own right, passed away at her residence on Sunday, aged 74.The cause of death was myocardial infarction, said family sources.Dr. Iyengar’s sudden death comes barely two days after the conclusion of the birth centenary celebrations of ‘Yogacharya’ Iyengar held at the city’s Balewadi sports complex. Described in the world press as the world’s “leading female yoga exponent” and a “pioneer” who blazed a trail for women in Yoga, she carved out a niche in adapting yogic principles for women.Her book ‘Yoga: A gem for women’ became the primer for women across the world and was translated in half-a-dozen European languages.Ms. Iyengar, who jointly directed the Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute (RIMYI) along with her brother Prashant, began imbibing the precepts of yoga from her father at a tender age.Already a recognized teacher by the age of 16, she began instructing in the early 1960s. With a doctorate in Ayurveda, she melded her knowledge of the medicinal system with the principles of yoga. Adhering closely to her father’s emphasis on classical sources and ritual practices of yoga, she soon emerged out of the Yogacharya’s shadow to spread the ‘Iyengar brand’ in countries across the globe.She believed that the aim of yoga was ultimately to reach the core of eternal truth, which involved a long process of transformation.Maintaining a punishing schedule till her last breath, Ms. Iyengar kept instructing and touring the country’s hinterland extensively for the past year in anticipation of the 10-day exposition (which began on December 3) and the birth centenary celebrations of Yogacharya Iyengar, which concluded on December 14 last week.“Geetaji’s death comes as a shock to all of us…she was an extremely vibrant person and was the moving force behind the 10-day practical yoga exposition to mark the Yogacharya’s birth centenary. She even took classes on the occasion,” said Shael Sharma, one of Yogacharya’s disciples.Like her father, she was a noted expounder of Patanjali’s ‘Yoga Sutra’, which she held was the foundation of the art and science of yoga.Touring the globe extensively, she held inspirational retreats and conventions in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia and South Africa among other places in the world.Her retreats blended rigorous instruction with humour and compassion. They aimed at a unity of the body and the mind and often transcended the asanas, the pranayama and mere remedial teaching to include chanting and Sanskrit pronunciation.“Yoga,” she once said in a 2011 interview, “was like an elixir of life to me.” Yet, like her father, Geeta Iyengar kept ill-health through much of her childhood.At the age of nine, she suffered from nephritis (kidney inflammation) and had to be hospitalized as a result.This caused her father great consternation, as he was not able to afford the high cost of medication; he instead recommended that she practice asanas to improve her health, spurring her lifelong devotion to Yoga.She is survived by her brother Prashant and her four sisters.last_img read more

Punjab Assembly session: Sidhu, Majithia exchange sharp words

first_imgSharp words were exchanged between Tourism Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu and former Shiromani Akali Dal Minister Bikram Singh Majithia in the Assembly on Monday as Akali-BJP MLAs targeted Mr. Sidhu over his recent remarks on the Pulwama terror attack.Wearing black badges on their arms to register their protest, SAD-BJP MLAs shouted slogans against Mr. Sidhu for his recent remarks on the Pulwama terror attack and demanded his ouster from the Cabinet.As SAD-BJP members continued their sloganeering in the House, Mr. Sidhu and Mr. Majithia were seen involved in an agitated verbal duel, personally attacking each other even as Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal stood up to present the annual Budget.While Mr. Majithia repeatedly kept asking for the sacking of Mr. Sidhu from the Cabinet for his “anti-national stance”, Mr. Sidhu was seen shouting at Mr. Majithia, directing remarks on his alleged involvement in the illegal drugs trade.Speaker K.P. Rana asked Akali Dal-BJP members not to disrupt the House proceedings, but they continued to shout slogans. They also flashed photographs of Mr. Sidhu in which he is seen hugging the Pakistan Army General Qamar Javed Bajwa. Amid the uproar, the Speaker named Akali Dal-BJP members present in the House and asked the marshals to escort them out of the House. The House was then briefly adjourned.Earlier, before the session started, the Akali Dal-BJP MLAs staged a protest outside the Assembly and burnt Mr. Sidhu’s pictures with General Bajwa on his visit to Pakistan last year.“The Congress party should come clean on its stance on the Pulwama terror attack. While a unanimous resolution was passed in the Assembly condemning the attack, Mr. Sidhu is saying Pakistan can’t be blamed,” said Mr. Majithia.Mr. Sidhu, later told the media, “Terrorism has no religion, no nation. Terrorism will not be tolerated and all those responsible should be punished.”Referring to the 1999 hijack of an Indian Airlines flight and the Kandahar episode, Mr. Sidhu said, “Who released those involved in the 1999 Kandahar incident? Whose responsibility is it? Why can’t there be a permanent solution? Our fight is against those who were responsible for the 1999 attack and it’s my fight as well.”Later, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh hit out at the Akalis for targeting Mr. Sidhu, saying the Akali Dal had clearly lost all sense of morality, as evident in their efforts to reduce the House proceedings to a mockery.“Instead of playing the role of a constructive opposition, they are repeatedly resorting to petty political tactics to remain in the media glare,” said the Chief Minister.“The rowdy behaviour of the attention-seeking Akali leaders and members in the Assembly has become a routine thing, suggesting that it is nothing but a drama aimed at garnering public support and votes,” he added.Former chief minister and SAD patron Parkash Singh Badal, meanwhile demanded a sedition case to be registered against Mr. Sidhu, besides expelling him from the State Cabinet for giving a ‘clean chit’ to Pakistan in the Pulwana terror attack case.Talking to journalists, Mr. Badal said that Mr. Sidhu had committed an anti-national act by stating Pakistan could not be held responsible for the act of terror despite the Pakistan government’s open patronage to the Jaish-e-Mohammed outfit which has claimed responsibility for the same.last_img read more

Ex-Minister Manju Verma granted bail by Patna HC

first_imgFormer Bihar Social Welfare Minister Manju Verma, arrested under the Arms Act in connection with the Muzaffarpur shelter home abuse case, was on Tuesday granted bail by the Patna High Court. Her husband Chandrashekhar Verma is currently lodged at Begusarai jail in the same case.After hearing arguments from both sides, a Single Judge Bench of Justice Dinesh Kumar Singh granted regular bail to Manju Verma. She had surrendered before a local court in Begusarai in connection with an Arms Act case and was sent to jail on November 20, 2018. Illegal cartridgesThe CBI, which was investigating the Muzaffarpur shelter home abuse case involving 34 minor girls, had conducted raid at the ancestral house of Manju Verma and her husband Chandrashekhar Verma. As many as 50 illegal cartridges were recovered from the residence. They were later booked under the Arms Act at the Cheria Bariyarpur police station in Begusarai district.Phone call detailsAfter the phone call details of Chandrashekhar Verma established his links with shelter home case accused Brajesh Thakur, he had gone underground. Later, he had surrendered at a local Majhaul court and was sent to jail on October 29, 2018. No bail yet Chandrashekhar Verma is yet to get bail in the case. Manju Verma too was declared an “absconder” in the case and after she evaded arrest, her property was attached by the Begusarai police. Earlier, after as many as 17 phone call details of Chandrashekhar Verma with Brajesh Thakur were made public, Manju Verma was forced to resign as a Minister from the Nitish Kumar government. Later, she was suspended from the JD(U).While facing trial in the case, Manju Verma in December 2018 had alleged that she was being harassed for being a woman and belonging to the weaker ‘Kushwaha’ community.last_img read more

Science Nominees Are Home for the Holidays

first_imgOn Friday, the U.S. Congress made sure that France Córdova and several other scientists would be spending the holidays with family and friends rather than house-hunting in Washington, D.C.Córdova, a 65-year-old astrophysicist, was nominated on 31 July to be the next director of the National Science Foundation (NSF). But the process of having the U.S. Senate confirm a president’s choices to serve in his administration is broken. And even though Córdova and her colleagues aren’t the ones who have fueled the recent headline-grabbing congressional battles over presidential nominees, the fallout has slowed the process for everyone.In Córdova’s case, her nomination is so noncontroversial that the Senate panel responsible for vetting her, the Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP), didn’t even hold a hearing on her qualifications and plans to run the $7 billion agency. Still, it took the Democratic-led panel until last Wednesday—some 140 days after her name was announced—to give its approval. And that step came during an emergency session conducted in an anteroom off the Senate floor, as legislators rushed to complete work on an overall budget deal and a spending plan for the Department of Defense before taking a 2-week recess.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)“NSF had advised me a while ago that the most likely scenario was [approval] in time for the December recess,” Córdova tells ScienceInsider from her home in Santa Fe. “The HELP committee asked a number of very fair questions, and I had the opportunity to discuss my answers” with members and committee staff during a visit this fall to Washington.Córdova said she understands how the process works. But she still sounded wistful. “The unexpected thing was that they didn’t go ahead with a floor vote.”In past years, “routine” nominations such as Córdova’s often have been bundled together and adopted by unanimous consent by the full Senate during a break from other business. But the political atmosphere surrounding nominations is so poisonous at the moment that Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), the majority leader, chose not to take that route.Cordova hasn’t been waiting nearly as long as Ken Kopocis, who has been in line to head the water office at the Environmental Protection Agency since June 2011. He was voted out by the relevant Senate panel in September, but his nomination has stalled.Several other nominees who took the penultimate step to their jobs well before Córdova are still awaiting confirmation. Frank Klotz, nominated 1 August to lead the National Nuclear Security Administration, was reported out in September by the Armed Services Committee. Elizabeth Robinson, chosen in July to be the first undersecretary for management at the Department of Energy (DOE), was reported out in October. On 12 November, the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee reported out the nominations of Jo Handelsman and Robert Simon to oversee science/education and energy/environment programs, respectively, at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, as well as Kathryn Sullivan to lead the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). (Sullivan, who was nominated on 1 August, has been acting NOAA administrator for 10 months.) Rose Gottemoeller, nominated in May to be undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, was voted out by the foreign relations panel in October. (She’s already acting undersecretary.)Finally, two scientists chosen only last month for DOE science posts came before the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee last week for their confirmation hearing. They are Marc Kastner, to lead the Office of Science, and Ellen Williams, to head the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy. Kastner was nominated on 14 November, and Williams on 6 November.*Correction, 24 December, 10:30 a.m.: A previous version of this article stated that Elizabeth Robinson was nominated to be the first undersecretary of energy at the Department of Energy. She was nominated to be the first undersecretary for management.last_img read more

Italian Geologist Reflects on Tragedy of 2009 Earthquake

first_imgThis weekend, it will be 5 years since a massive earthquake, centered on the town of L’Aquila, killed 309 people in the Abruzzo region of central Italy. The aftershocks of that tragedy included a controversial court case in which a judge found four scientists, two engineers, and a former government official guilty of manslaughter for having misleadingly reassured the citizens after a series of earlier tremors; the prosecution argued that residents would have otherwise followed the traditional practice of fleeing houses before a major quake hits. Each was sentenced to 6 years imprisonment, but the judgment is still under appeal.The earthquake on 6 April 2009 has also led to new research. Gianluca Valensise, a geologist at the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (INGV), is the scientific coordinator of Progetto Abruzzo, which involved opening a research center in the “red zone” of L’Aquila—the devastated area of the city’s historical center that is largely uninhabited and restricted to traffic. Valensise recently spoke with ScienceInsider about the effort, which has been funded since 2012 by Italy’s research ministry, and the general relationship between Italy’s geoscientific community and citizens since the trial. While some progress has been made, problems remain in his view. Despite their crucial role in a hazard-prone country like Italy, and the demand for effective communication to the public, Italian scientists “have never received any formal training in the communication of science and of natural hazards,” he notes. Valensise’s remarks have been edited for brevity and clarity.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)On how the Italian public views earth scientists now and vice versaMost people do [believe] that some top-level scientists were caught in a communication jam orchestrated by others. I have no evidence of disrespect for what INGV scientists do. Instead, people do expect scientists to make statements on how current earthquake sequences will evolve—but many scientists have been severely distressed by the outcomes of the L’Aquila trial and tend to share critical information only among themselves.What is Progetto Abruzzo?Our research focuses on the entire Abruzzo [region] for producing high-resolution seismic hazard data and elaborations that are normally unavailable for other parts of Italy. It also aims to provide institutions with a database of geological features that may interact with buildings and infrastructures, including active and inactive faults, shallow landslides, deep gravitational slides, and karst collapse. … We also run various initiatives for communicating science and spreading the awareness of geological risks.On whether the court decision changed the trust and cooperation between scientists and the publicUnlike before the earthquake, today it seems we all share the same goals: completing the reconstruction, preventing future catastrophes, increasing everyone’s awareness of natural hazards. … [Yet] many seismologists have changed their approach toward communicating their findings. It is not just a question of fear, although that indeed is a major aspect of this change. There is a sense of confusion about the role of all actors involved: scientist, civil protection authorities, local administrators, citizens.On whether Italy would handle the same incident better now Following the L’Aquila trial, the Italian Civil Protection [Department] has reorganized the Italy’s National Commission for the Forecast and Prevention of Major Risks [Commissione Grandi Rischi], fostering profound changes in its structure, responsibilities, and procedures. It is unquestionable that things are now clearer, and that if a new 6 April earthquake occurs anywhere in the country the response will be different.Will another tragic event like the 2009 earthquake happen?L’Aquila earthquake is a midsize event that Italy may experience every 5 years or so. Even such events may be locally catastrophic, and they may come unexpected over one-third of the national territory. When combined with the concentration of the Italian population, this circumstance may result in frequent “minor” earthquakes having a significant yet largely unexpected impact. Many of us suspect the next damaging Italian earthquakes will again be a surprise, at least for citizens and administrators.last_img read more

Curiosity rover detects methane burps on Mars

first_imgSAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA—New data from the Curiosity rover exploring Mars (seen above) demonstrate that not only is methane present on Mars, but the planet may also be periodically belching it out. In 2009, NASA researchers claimed to observe Mars spurting out plumes of the gas, hinting at the possibility of life forms actively chugging it out. But contradictory findings later left researchers dubious of the presence of martian methane at all. Now, according to data published online today in Science and presented here at a meeting of the American Geophysical Union, the gas is present in the martian atmosphere at concentrations of roughly 0.7 parts per billion—about 4000 times less than in Earth’s atmosphere. The determination arose from nearly 2 months of air chemistry analyses on board the rover, during which time it also observed dramatic spikes in methane concentrations. At their highest, the bursts contained about 10 times more methane than the background in the atmosphere. Methane is a known byproduct of microbial life, but it can also arise when water alters minerals below the surface or by escaping from gas-trapping ice cages called clathrates. Researchers caution that more research is necessary to determine the gas’s precise origins. As Curiosity carries on, researchers plan to analyze soil and sediment samples for organic material and to team up with Mars orbiters to search for methane patterns in the atmosphere.*Correction, 17 December, 12:07 p.m.: This item originally contained a picture of the Opportunity rover. We have swapped it with a picture of the Curiosity rover.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)last_img read more

Duke University officials rebuffed medical student’s allegations of research problems

first_imgIn a coda to a major case of alleged research misconduct at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, in the late 2000s, newly revealed documents suggest that Duke officials dismissed a medical student’s concerns about cancer researcher Anil Potti’s work.Potti came under scrutiny for problems with data in several papers that reported on using tumor gene signatures to assign cancer patients to different chemotherapies in clinical trials. Although outside biostatisticians had raised questions about Potti’s work, Duke canceled the trials and put Potti on administrative leave only after The Cancer Letter, a Washington, D.C.–based newsletter, pointed to false information in his resume. Potti left Duke in 2010. Many of Potti’s papers have since been retracted, and a 2012 Institute of Medicine (IOM) report found problems with Duke’s handling of the case as well as the field of “omics” cancer research. Duke officials told the IOM panel that there was never a whistleblower in the Potti case, according to The Cancer Letter. But that claim is contradicted by documents that the newsletter obtained as part of a lawsuit filed against Duke by patients in the clinical trials. According to the newsletter’s 9 January issue, as the trials were starting in 2008, a medical student in Potti’s lab named Bradford Perez raised concerns about the statistical analyses in Potti’s papers in e-mails and a memo to Duke officials. Perez noted that he had removed himself as co-author of several of Potti’s papers and asked to change labs at the risk of harming his career. “In raising these concerns, I have nothing to gain and much to lose,” he wrote in the memo.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)Potti’s mentor, cancer geneticist Joseph Nevins, pleaded with Perez not to send a letter about his concerns to the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, which was supporting him, because it would trigger an investigation at Duke, according to a deposition cited in court documents. Perez is now a resident at Duke.Duke officials told The Cancer Letter that the university “supported Dr. Perez as he raised his concerns during 2008 and thereafter” and that Duke “acknowledged years ago there are many aspects of this situation that would have been handled differently had there been more complete information at the time decisions were made.”last_img read more

Illegal Immigrants From India Will be Nervous in Trump Regime

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Nirav Modi Aide To Share Confidential Information In PNB Case

first_imgAfter the success in Christian Michel and Vijay Mallya case, another positive development overseas is set to provide a boost to Indian investigative agencies.Absconding diamond merchant Nirav Modi’s trusted aide Mihir Bhansali, has agreed to share confidential information related to the case with the Punjab National Bank (PNB). An agreement has been signed between Bhansali, who is in-charge of Nirav Modi’s business in United States, and PNB in New York. According to the agreement, the former president of Nirav Modi-owned Firestar Diamond Inc will be sharing documents and information related to the case which is not available with PNB.Read it at India Today Related Itemslast_img read more

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