The Epic Boom and Bust of the Ostrich Feather Market

by Kelly Jensen Kelly Jensen Digital Collections Specialist, California Academy of Sciences, gives one of five Shift Ignite talks earlier this year at the Shift Forum. A fascinating tale of tulip-mania (but with feathers!), this five-minute Ignite talk reminds us all what happens when social behaviors rapidly change. Kelly Jensen: Hi, I’m Kelly Jensen. I’m …

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This App Helps African Farmers Secure Their Land Rights

by Karol Boudreaux In Ghana, a for-profit firm called LandMapp is “unlocking land’s value” by helping to secure farmer’s unofficial land rights. These farmers may have customary or traditional rights to their land, but in many cases these rights are not formally recognized. The company uses GPS-enabled smartphones to map the boundaries of farmers’ plots. …

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Want to Go on Safari? There’s an App for That

by Bill Wirtz As the sharing economy develops, the opportunities for cutting out the middle-man seem endless. After Lyft and Uber revolutionized personal transport, BlaBlaCar challenged public transportation and Airbnb overthrew our concept of monetizing our own properties, Safarisource attempts to do the same thing with safaris. Launched at the INDABA tourism trade fair in …

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How Foreign Aid Hurts Famine Relief in Somalia

By Ibrahim B. Anoba The World Health Organization (WHO) recently warned that Somalia is at risk of experiencing their third famine within 25 years. In 2011 famine killed over 260,000 people, but once again the country is facing a humanitarian crisis. Half of all Somalis are in need of urgent assistance. In response, the United Nations …

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Crossing the Congo Is a Journey Across Hell on Earth

by John Tamny “Our hearts just broke – they just wanted to get out of their lives,” but “we had to drive off with Charlie and me hanging off the car literally beating the guys away.” Those are the words of Mike Martin about midway through Crossing the Congo: Over Land and Water in a …

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