Friday, 21 October 2016

The Weekend Edition


We publish the Enterprise Morning Edition in English and Arabic from Sunday through Thursday before 7am, with a focus on the business, economic and political news that will move markets each day. What you’re reading now is our Weekend Edition, which is light on news and heavy on stories to read, videos to watch, and podcasts to which you may want to listen on Friday and Saturday (that being the weekend for the vast majority of our readers). The Weekend Edition comes out each Friday between 9:00am and 9:30am CLT. We’re in beta and in English only right now.

We’ll be back on Sunday at around 6:15am with our usual roundup. Until then: Enjoy the weekend.

Speed Round, The Weekend Edition

Speed Round, The Weekend Edition is presented in association with

** Thank you to the hundreds and hundreds of you who took the time to leave us thoughtful, oftentimes lengthy comments, constructive criticism, and suggestions in our first-ever reader survey. We haven’t been able to read everyone’s feedback yet, but we promise we will before we crunch the survey results.

The poll is open until 1pm CLT on Sunday, 23 October, and it takes less than a minute to complete. We’ll have our take on your answers to the economy questions the next morning. If you haven’t yet had time to answer the survey, tap here whenever you have a moment and we’ll enter you into a draw — 20 readers will each take home two Enterprise mugs.

** It’s a short Weekend Edition this morning. It’s been a busy week, news-wise, and we’ve been short-staffed throughout. And the kid has time trials. So we’re going to be brief this morning. We’ll be back at the usual time on Sunday morning.

Have you married or dated outside your tribe? Go read “Foreign Spouse, Happy Life” in the New York Times. Marriage is tough. Marriage outside your social / national / whatever community is tougher. This story is the antidote if you’re questioning the wisdom of your decision. To marry outside the tribe, that is. We can’t help you if you’re questioning the wisdom of marriage in the first place…

“The Anti-Helicopter Parent’s Plea: Let Kids Play” is a fantastic back-and-forth between two neighbors: The author, an average (read: risk averse) mom and author, and her quarry, Mike: “a Silicon Valley dad decided to test his theories about parenting by turning his yard into a playground where children can take physical risks without supervision.” There’s no Psych 103 mumbo-jumbo here as the author struggles with the fact that when most of us were kids, we’d walk to the nadi / go play in the woods / head to the beach while on vacation — without parental supervision. Get past the sexism inherent in Mike’s worldview — our resident nine-year-old is a girl and rightfully convinced “Anything a boy can do, a girl can do better,” including taking physical risks — and the piece will make you think. And think again:

Mike thought I was putting my son at risk of turning into what used to be called a sissy — a concept whose demise he regrets. And I was of the opinion that Mike was putting his son at risk of being a bully, a label Mike thinks is now used to pathologize normal, healthy, boyish aggression.

Mike came out to the yard, his wineglass in one hand and a piece of cheese in another.

“Uh, can you keep an eye on them?” I asked Mike, reluctantly gathering my stuff to leave. “The society of 5-year-olds is fragile and may fall into savagery.”

“Yeah, yeah,” he replied affably. “I’m a believer in that Rousseau theory — what’s it called?”

“Something about a Noble Savage?” I said. “I’m more a believer in the truth of ‘Lord of the Flies.’ ” My smile was thin and conveyed, For the love of God, can you please put your drink down and watch the kids?

His smile told me he wanted me to leave already. Tap here to keep reading in the New York Times Magazine.

Prioritize values and praise character to raise creative kids: “Kids who aren’t creative grow up to become adults who conform all the time, and conformity is dangerous,” according to UPenn Wharton School professor Adam Grant speaking to The Atlantic. He says Nobel prize winners in science are significantly more likely than their peers to have a creative hobby such as drawing or painting, playing a musical instrument, dancing, acting, or writing fiction, and that Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity inspired by Beethoven’s sonatas. Want more? Check out Grant’s book Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World. (run time 2:33)

At least two countries love The Great Satan, but we should all fear the Rise of the Machines. Yeah, we know. Sometimes even we despair of how our brains jump from place to place, but a meditation on love for America took us in about three jumps to the joys and terror of a world without work.

Writes Liam Stack, the New York Times reporter and Cairo veteran: “The presidential campaign has exposed deep divides in American society and left many in every political party anxious about the future. During this time of political tension, our neighbors to the north have one thing to say: America is just great. Some Canadians watching as American politics have hit rock bottom in recent weeks decided that the United States needed a cross-border pep talk. Thus was born a social media campaign called “Tell America It’s Great,” complete with a hashtag, a Twitter account and a series of YouTube videos.” What’s the other country that loves America? Egypt. Or at least the People’s Democratic Republic of Enterprise, after the US Treasury’s Undersecretary for International Affairs Nathan Sheets stepped up to the plate this week and bluntly said the US is working with G7 countries to ensure we have the USD 6 bn in third-party funding we need to close the USD 12 bn IMF facility.

What is America? Or any country, really? In large part, a nation’s identity rests on a collection of popularly-shared myths, and vehicles were central to the making of the American myth, whether you’re talking about horses and Manifest Destiny / the Western frontier, Jeeps in the Second World War, or how the post-war availability of automobiles helped create our modern concept of “the teenager.” You don’t have to be a gearhead or a futurist to enjoy “What Happens to American Myth When You Take the Driver Out of It? The self-driving car and the future of the self.

Which led us immediately to recall last summer’s “A World Without Work,” a look at what the world might be like when Uber replaces the truck drivers and delivery guys on their Vespas, when computerized manufacturing replaces assembly line workers in Beni Suef. The author traveled to a US city that was transformed overnight — in the late 1970s — into a city without work and “a place where the middle class of the 20th century has become a museum exhibit.”

That brought us to a conversation earlier this week about whether a universal guaranteed income might be “a way to ease the transition [to a future with a radically different definition of work]. It’s also a way to provide a floor for people — not necessarily a substitute for work, but a supplement to work that allows them to have a sense of economic security, have consumer buying power. We want to allow people to be entrepreneurs, to take risks and raise kids and do other things without turning the world into the Hunger Games.”

You know something has being “a thing” in Cairo when someone acquires a tawkeel for an international brand. That’s happening now in the co-working segment with the arrival of Urban Station (website, Facebook) in Mohandiseen. The chain joins the ranks of Rasheed22, 302 Labs, Icecairo, Maadi’s District and Muqaddima at The Greek Campus. Urban Station bills itself as a cross between a coffee shop and a co-working space: “The main difference with other co-working spaces is that we are on the ground; eventually, we will be there at every corner. This is the first working space that exists in the retail form,” co-founder Khaled Abdel Razek tells CairoScene. While existing places could offer free drinks, Urban Stations says it’s in talks with TBS and Crave to provide catering for the space — for ‘free’ food. The newly-opened space reminds us of MAKE Business Hub in Dubai, which is currently closed and will re-locate in a few months.

Are co-working spaces facilitating a race-for-the-bottom for freelance workers? Competition between workers in online marketplaces for outsourced tasks is creating a race to the bottom that hurts freelancers and companies alike. That’s our takeaway from Oxford University Associate Professor Mark Graham and Cambridge research student Alex Wood’s piece for openDemocracy UK. Workers accept getting paid poorly because they’re desperate for work — or they want to get good ratings to get more jobs in the future. “What then happens at the same time is that some of the people who do have good scores bid for jobs and then re-assign them to workers with lower scores (usually for a much lower wage),” the article reads. “It is irrational to do tasks yourselves as a worker who has a decent score when you could outsource them for a fraction of the cost you would receive to deliver them.” The authors’ solution? “Digital unions.” Well, good luck with that. Closer to home: Here is a guide on how to survive as a freelancer in Egypt, and you have founder Ameer Sherif’s Wuzzuf recruitment portal to check for opportunities.

“Deep work” jumped the shark in April: Longtime readers know we have been beating the drum for more than a year now about the need to kill multitasking once and for all. As the arrival of foreign brands is to Egypt, so the New York Times is to workplace trends: The paper’s Style section ran “Read This Story Without Distraction (Can You?)”. It tore through our Twitter feed this week after going viral for one reason or another.

Speaking of things that are going to change work with the rise of the machines: Do you know the difference between additive and subtractive manufacturing? As 3D printing technology gets more affordable, and will continue to do so in the near future, the idea of additive manufacturing will become more present, says scientist, TV host, and mechanical engineer Bill Nye in a video for Big Think. Subtractive manufacturing is the current method which cuts something into shape, trimming or forming an object like a sculptor, and discards leftovers. Additive manufacturing will be cheaper, lighter, and produces less waste, and as the business model spreads, can eliminate international freighting. (run time 4:06)

Obituary: Great Barrier Reef (25 Million BC-2016): “The Great Barrier Reef of Australia passed away in 2016 after a long illness. It was 25 million years old. For most of its life, the reef was the world’s largest living structure, and the only one visible from space. It was 1,400 miles long, with 2,900 individual reefs and 1,050 islands. In total area, it was larger than the United Kingdom, and it contained more biodiversity than all of Europe combined. It harbored 1,625 species of fish, 3,000 species of mollusk, 450 species of coral, 220 species of birds, and 30 species of whales and dolphins. Among its many other achievements, the reef was home to one of the world’s largest populations of dugong and the largest breeding ground of green turtles.” Keep reading in Outside magazine.

Russia’s new nuclear rules are rattling Washington: In the 1970s, both countries obeyed clear boundaries and unwritten rules, write Dan De Luce and Reid Standish for Foreign Policy (paywall). Decisions on nuclear weapons, in particular, were kept apart from other issues and disputes around the globe, but the US is growing increasingly concerned with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s “willingness to risk military confrontation and threaten to use his country’s nuclear arsenal over issues the West sees as unrelated and separate.” The next US president will inherit a relationship that has largely failed at deterring Putin from flouting a 1987 arms control treaty, pulling out of a landmark agreement on disposing tons of weapons-grade plutonium, and moving nuclear-capable missiles into Kaliningrad. A conciliatory stance to cut a bargain with Russia focused on Ukraine, would defuse tensions in the short term but ultimately embolden Putin. The more hawkish approach sported by Hillary Clinton would risk escalation, with the chance of a military showdown in Syria or the Baltics.

Are you a runner and a tech geek? This one is for you. If you enjoy a morning run, your two basic metrics are probably how far and for how long, which can now be done by smart watches, writes Charles Wallace for the Financial Times (paywall). But advances in tech open up doors that previously required personal trainers. The most recent research by Nicholas Romanov on running suggests high cadence (steps per minute) is the most efficient, with devices like the Lumo Run and MilestonePod can track cadence, bounce, pelvic rotation, pelvic drop, pace, foot strike, and stride length, and then recommend correctional exercises. Other devices like the Stryd can track horizontal, vertical, and lateral power. Using a power meter, runners can decrease vertical and lateral power for a given pace and measure an increase in power in watts over a race distance.

“When you make changes to your running form, if you can see an increase in your horizontal power while at the same time you see decreases in vertical and lateral power,” says former US track coach Jim Vance.

It doesn’t matter what time you eat. You don’t need a hearty breakfast, and failing to scarf down a protein shake after lifting won’t see your muscles or gonads shrink. Eating small meals every 2-3 hours is nonsense. And go ahead and have that piece of cheese before bed — as long as you don’t have GERD and brush your teeth before you hit the sack. Or so argues LifeHacker, with links to the scientific research underpinning its argument thatit doesn’t matter when you eat.

Hitler’s birth house is going to be razed to the ground to prevent it from becoming a pilgrimage site for neo-Nazis, the Wall Street Journal tells us — if Austrian authorities can pry the place from a publicity-shy 60-something woman whose grandmother sold the place to Hitler henchman Martin Bormann just before the outbreak of the Second World War.

DOCUMENTARY OF THE WEEK(s) – Niall Ferguson’s The Ascent of Money: You probably already have the Niall Ferguson book on which it based somewhere on your office or home shelf collecting dust because of a hectic work schedule. So to you, we say: “You’re welcome.” For those unacquainted, the film and the book by the notable economics and finance historian traces the evolution of finance from Babylonian clay tablet money to Great Recession. The six episodes center around the themes of banking and credit, the bond market, stocks and bubbles, insurance and hedging, mortgages and the housing market, and globalization. And as daunting a task as condensing the entire economic history of humanity may seem, Ferguson is unassuming and provides a compelling narrative on just how immensely finance has shaped the human story. If you think you’ve mastered it all? The series is still peppered with arcana to interest the law watcher — and maybe even give you a new nugget or two. Episode 1: Dreams of Avarice (runtime: 47:44); Episode 2: Human Bondage (runtime: 48:07); Episode 3: Blowing Bubbles (runtime: 48:12); Episode 4: Risky Business (runtime: 47:56); Episode 5: Safe as Houses (runtime: 48:13); Episode 6: Chimerica (runtime: 48:07). You can also watch the four-hour edited version here.

COME WORK WITH US. We’re looking for bright, talented writers and analysts to join our team to work on the current Enterprise Morning Edition and new products we have in the pipeline. You’re likely an equities / macro / research analyst, IR professional or journalist, but we’re less interested in your formal education than we are in your writing and storytelling skills, intellectual curiosity, fluency with numbers and passion for business / finance / economics / politics. Bilingual candidates preferred (English-Arabic), but we’ll consider particularly talented unilingual English speakers. A sense of humor is a must, as is healthy skepticism. We prefer Egyptian nationals, but can sponsor work permits for particularly talented foreign applicants. Want to get the conversation started? Send a great cover letter and an updated CV to Bonus points for not starting your cover letter with “Dears.” We’ll be reply by Halloween day to folks we’d like to interview.

The Week’s Most-Clicked Stories

The most-clicked stories in Enterprise in the past week were:

  • Price sheet for European car brands (Al Borsa)
  • Mohamed El Erian, interviewed by Lamis El Hadidi (Youtube, in English after the intro)
  • 170 Birell’s draft-dodging ad (Twitter, image)
  • IMF’s MENAP Economic Outlook (Enterprise story) tie
  • IMF’s MENAP Economic Outlook (pdf download) tie
  • Tuktukman on the economy — copy of the original video pulled from Al Hayah’s Youtube channel (Facebook)

Enterprise is a daily publication of Enterprise Ventures LLC, an Egyptian limited liability company (commercial register 83594). Summaries are intended for guidance only and are provided on an as-is basis; kindly refer to the source article in its original language prior to undertaking any action. Neither Enterprise Ventures nor its staff assume any responsibility or liability for the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, whether in the form of summaries or analysis. © 2016 Enterprise Ventures LLC.