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— January 2021 —

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January 31, 2021

Maserati MC20 receives the 'Most beautiful supercar of the year 2021' award at the Festival Automobile International.

Maserati Cars

Maserati Cars

Maserati Cars

Maserati Cars

Photos: Maserati MC20 wins the “most beautiful supercar of the year 2021” award at Festival Automobile International in Paris. Images provided by & copyright © 2021 Maserati Spa.

Maserati Cars

Photo: Sketch of Maserati Tipo 300 S, which won the Venezuela Grand Prix in 1955. Image provided by & copyright © 2021 Maserati Spa.

PARIS, Jan. 30, 2021 /— At the online awards ceremony for the Festival Automobile International, Maserati took pride of place amongst the winners. The recently launched MC20, which premiered globally last September at the MMXX international show in Modena, received the “most beautiful supercar of the year 2021” award.

Klaus Busse, Maserati Head of Design, said, “We are honored to receive this coveted accolade, which recognizes the work of an entire team who have made a wholehearted commitment to this unique project, creating a car that opens a new chapter in Maserati’s history.”

Maserati said its MC20 is a mix of elegance, sporting prowess, personality, and a genuine masterpiece of style, which inaugurated a new era for the Trident Brand. Designed at the Centro Stile Maserati in Turin, the MC20 marks Maserati’s return to the super sports car segment with a car that combines mind-blowing performance and ground-breaking technology.

The company elaborated that MC20 is a model that identifies itself by its uniquely Italian character. “A tasteful, pure concept, without stylistic excesses: the timeless design that has always been the signature of Maserati cars of all eras. Its lines’ innate class and purity highlight a personality of sheer sporting brilliance: the vehicle’s upper part is a sculpted artwork. At the same time, its lower section is a concentrate of pure technology. The MC20’s design achieves a perfect balance between opposites. The ideal mix between craftsmanship and engineering combines hand artistry’s unique quality and the most advanced production processes’ absolute precision. Developed by the Maserati Innovation Lab and produced at the historic plant in Modena, MC20 is 100% made in Italy,” Maserati added.

According to Maserati, the new super sports car’s most distinctive feature is its exclusive butterfly doors, which are aesthetically stunning and provide the driver and passengers with easier access, both inside and outside the cabin. This supercar is the first Maserati to have vertical headlights: a real revolution in the brand’s design criteria. The broad, low, horizontal rear light clusters are equally distinctive.

MC20’s superb looks conceal an uncompromisingly sporty soul, with the new 630hp V6 Nettuno engine that delivers 0-100 km/h acceleration in under 2.9 seconds and a top speed over 325 km/h — an engine 100% patented, conceived, designed, and built entirely by Maserati.

Source: Maserati North America, Inc.

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January 30, 2021

Chandigarh University becomes the first Indian University to have signed MoUs with 306 Foreign Varsities.

More than 1200 students have benefited from the International Academic Partnership program of Chandigarh University during the last five years.

Chandigarh University

Photo: Chandigarh University Campus building.

Chandigarh, India, Jan. 30, 2021 — Chandigarh University has become the first Indian University to have signed Memorandum-of-Understanding (MoUs) with 306 leading Foreign Universities under its International Academic Alliance (IAA) flagship program, the institution announced today. The institution said it is surging ahead with its commitment to impart quality higher education of international standards.

Chandigarh University is a newly established private educational institution located in the Punjab State. It has its campus near Chandigarh, from which it gets its name. And Chandigarh is a city in India, about 250 kilometers north of Delhi and roughly 200 kilometers southeast of Amritsar.

The students & faculty of Chandigarh University now benefit from Global Exposure, Student Exchange, Faculty Exchange, Semester Exchange, and Joint Research Initiatives. They can become members of international student & faculty research groups and present papers at international conferences.

More than 1200 CU students from Engineering, Law, Hotel Management, Journalism, Management, Agriculture, Forensic Sciences, Applied Health Sciences, and Tourism have benefited under the International Academic Partnership program.

While giving details of the IAA flagship program, Chandigarh University’s Pro-Chancellor said, ” Top-ranked universities including QS World ranked universities from the USA, UK, Canada, Australia, European Union, and SAARC have joined hands with Chandigarh University. The international partnerships are a win-win situation both for the academic institutions and students as they share educational, cultural and research resources.” “Students from 40 countries are currently undergoing their higher education in more than 135 Under-Graduate and Post-Graduate programs at Chandigarh University,” he added.

Besides academic learning, the benefit of the International Academic Alliance program, the students also stand a chance to grab global placement opportunities. “World’s top entertainment and hospitality company, Walt Disney has selected 155 students from Hotel Management, Tourism, Finance & Management programs over the last five years,” said the Pro-Chancellor. Foreign universities have also offered scholarships worth Rs. 15 Crores to CU students, which has provided financial assistance to the students who dream of studying abroad.

Satnam Sandhu, Chancellor, Chandigarh University, said, “Students from India have always dreamed of studying abroad or adding some international exposure to their higher education. The International Academic Alliance program of Chandigarh University has helped the students fulfill their dreams. We have recently seen that many Indian students couldn’t travel abroad due to pandemic. It is during such hard times that the global partnership programs of Chandigarh University come in handy for the student community.” Chandigarh University also offers 2+2, 2+1, 1+2 international articulation programs in collaboration with the universities from the USA, UK, Canada, and Australia. Under these programs, the students can start their academic degrees at CU campus and then shift to foreign varsities to complete their degrees using the Credit Transfer Benefit Scheme. “This arrangement helps save money for the students who wish to travel abroad for higher studies during the middle of the academic tenure. The student is allowed to pay the fee as per the Indian arrangement.”

Source: Chandigarh University

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January 29, 2021

Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings announces Most International Universities in the World Today.

ETH Zurch, University Rankings

Photo: The west facade of ETH Zürich (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich) main building, overlooking the city, was designed by German architect Gottfried Semper and completed in 1864. Image credit: Dystopos.

London, January 28, 2021 — Times Higher Education (THE) World’s Most International Universities 2021, published today, reveals which universities have the essential global links, based on their share of international students, staff, and publications, as well as their international reputations. According to THE, its analysis provides more detail on this last metric, showing which national systems have the most substantial global reputations and how this has changed over the past two years. According to THE, prestige is a measure that has become increasingly important for universities.

Prospective students looking to study in the most international environments should apply to universities in Switzerland, Hong Kong, Singapore, or the UK.

Universities, by their nature, are global institutions. Typically, they are home to communities of students and scholars from all over the world, and they tackle some of the globe’s most pressing problems through research.

This table, compiled using the international student score, global staff score, international co-authorship score, and international reputation metrics shows that the above four countries are home to some of the world’s most international universities.

These institutions all have a high proportion of international students and staff, collaborate on research with scholars from across the world, and have a strong global reputation to match.

Research suggests that students’ diverse communities improve the teaching and learning experience, while students’ opportunities to spend time abroad better prepare them to become global citizens.

• Top five most international universities in the world

1. The University of Hong Kong

2. ETH Zurich

3. The Chinese University of Hong Kong

4. University of Oxford

5. Imperial College London

• Most international universities in the world 2021

  1. University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  2. ETH Zurich, Switzerland
  3. Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  4. University of Oxford, United Kingdom
  5. Imperial College London, United Kingdom
  6. National University of Singapore, Singapore
  7. University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
  8. Trinity College Dublin, Republic of Ireland
  9. Nanyang Technological University Singapore, Singapore
  10. UCL, United Kingdom
  11. University of Vienna, Austria
  12. Delft University of Technology, Netherlands
  13. King’s College London, United Kingdom
  14. University of Auckland, New Zealand
  15. Australian National University, Australia
  16. London School of Economics and Political Science, United Kingdom
  17. University of British Columbia, Canada
  18. University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom
  19. University of Zurich, Switzerland
  20. University of Warwick, United Kingdom
  21. UNSW Sydney, Australia
  22. McGill University, Canada
  23. University of Manchester, United Kingdom
  24. University of Melbourne, Australia
  25. Durham University, United Kingdom
  26. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, United States
  27. The University of Queensland, Australia
  28. University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
  29. University of Copenhagen, Denmark
  30. University of Toronto, Canada
  31. Monash University, Australia
  32. University of Sydney, Australia
  33. École Polytechnique, France
  34. University of Groningen, Netherlands
  35. Aalto University, Finland
  36. Leiden University, Netherlands
  37. California Institute of Technology, United States
  38. McMaster University, Canada
  39. University of Cape Town, South Africa
  40. Lund Universit, Sweden
  41. University of Oslo, Norway
  42. Stanford University, United States
  43. Harvard University, United States
  44. Princeton University, United States
  45. Aarhus University, Denmark
  46. Utrecht University, Netherlands
  47. Carnegie Mellon University, United States
  48. Columbia University, United States
  49. KU Leuven, Belgium
  50. Georgia Institute of Technology, United States
  51. Uppsala University, Sweden
  52. Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands
  53. Stockholm University, Sweden
  54. University of Malaya, Malaysia
  55. Paris Sciences et Lettres, Paris, France
  56. Free University of Berlin, Germany
  57. University of California, Berkeley, United States
  58. Johns Hopkins University, United States
  59. Cornell University, United States
  60. The University of Chicago, United States
  61. Technical University of Munich, Germany
  62. Purdue University West Lafayette, United States
  63. Rice University, United States
  64. Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany
  65. Technion Israel Institute of Technology, Israel
  66. Yale University, United States
  67. University of California, Irvine, United States
  68. New York University, United States
  69. University of California, Santa Barbara, United States
  70. Sorbonne University, France
  71. Heidelberg University, Germany
  72. Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany
  73. Boston University, United States
  74. University of California, Davis United States
  75. University of California, Los Angeles, United States
  76. LMU Munich, Germany
  77. Ghent University, Belgium
  78. University of Tübingen, Germany
  79. Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic
  80. University of Paris, France
  81. University of Pennsylvania, United States
  82. The University of California, San Diego, United States
  83. University of Helsinki, Finland
  84. Duke University, United States
  85. University of Southern California, United States
  86. University of Massachusetts, United States
  87. University of Bonn, Germany
  88. Michigan State University, United States
  89. Brown University, United States
  90. RWTH Aachen University, Germany
  91. University of Barcelona, Spain
  92. Northwestern University, United States
  93. Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel
  94. Arizona State University (Tempe), United States
  95. Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russian Federation
  96. North Carolina State University, United States
  97. Tel Aviv University, Israel
  98. Ohio State University (Main campus), United States
  99. Sungkyunkwan University (SKKU), South Korea
  100. University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, United States
  101. Emory University, United States
  102. University of Washington, United States
  103. University of Bologna, Italy
  104. The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, United States
  105. Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, United States
  106. Texas A&M University, United States
  107. Washington University in St Louis, United States
  108. Tomsk State University, Russian Federation
  109. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, United States
  110. University of Notre Dame, United States
  111. Peking University, China
  112. Indiana University, United States
  113. Zhejiang University, China
  114. University of Colorado Boulder, United States
  115. Yonsei University (Seoul campus), South Korea
  116. Sapienza University of Rome, Italy
  117. National Research Nuclear University MEPhI, Russian Federation
  118. University of Wisconsin-Madison, United States
  119. Penn State (Main campus), United States
  120. Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT), Russian Federation
  121. Tongji University, China
  122. University of Warsaw, Poland
  123. East China Normal University, China
  124. University of Virginia (Main campus), United States
  125. Korea University, South Korea
  126. University of Maryland, College Park, United States
  127. University of Pittsburgh-Pittsburgh Campus, United States
  128. Complutense University of Madrid, Spain
  129. University of Georgia, United States
  130. Nanjing University, China
  131. The University of Tokyo, Japan
  132. University of Arizona, United States
  133. Tsinghua University, China
  134. Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China
  135. University of Minnesota, United States
  136. University of Florida, United States
  137. The University of Texas at Austin, United States
  138. Waseda University, Japan
  139. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, United States
  140. Tohoku University, Japan
  141. Vanderbilt University, United States
  142. Kyoto University, Japan
  143. Fudan University, China
  144. National Taiwan University (NTU), Taiwan
  145. Beijing Normal University, China
  146. Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan
  147. Dartmouth College, United States
  148. Seoul National University, South Korea
  149. University of Tsukuba, Japan
  150. Hokkaido University, Japan
  151. Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), South Korea
  152. HSE University, Russian Federation
  153. Osaka University, Japan
  154. Kyushu University, Japan
  155. University of São Paulo, Brazil
  156. Xi’an Jiaotong University, China
  157. Saint Petersburg State University, Russian Federation
  158. Harbin Institute of Technology, China
  159. Novosibirsk State University, Russian Federation
  160. National Tsing Hua University, Taiwan
  161. Nagoya University, Japan
  162. National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan
  163. Wuhan University, China
  164. Sun Yat-sen University, China
  165. National Cheng Kung University (NCKU), Taiwan
  166. Tianjin University, China
  167. Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH), South Korea
  168. University of Campinas, Brazil
  169. Keio University, Japan
  170. University of Science and Technology of China, China
  171. Indian Institute of Science, India

The data in Times Higher Education’s ranking of The World’s Most International Universities 2021 is mainly from the “international outlook” pillar of THE World University Rankings 2021. It considers a university’s proportions of international students, international staff, and journal publications with at least one international co-author. Each of these elements is given equal weighting in calculating the score for this pillar.

• International Reputation

The table adds a fourth component, which makes up 25 percent of the total score: a university’s international reputation. It is a measure of the proportion of votes from outside the home country that the institution achieved in THE’s annual invitation-only Academic Reputation Survey, which asks leading scholars to name the world’s best universities for teaching and research in their field.

Only institutions that received at least 100 votes in the survey were eligible for inclusion.

Metrics and weightings:

Source: Times Higher Education

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Academy announces Animated, Documentary, and International Feature Films eligible for 93rd Oscars.


Photo: Oscar nominee Rosana Sullivan arrives on the red carpet of The 92nd Oscars at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, CA, on Sunday, February 9, 2020. Image provided by & copyright © A.M.P.A.S./ Matt Petit. [File Photo]


Photo: The cast and crew of “Corpus Christi” arrive on the red carpet of The 92nd Oscars at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, CA, on Sunday, February 9, 2020. Image provided by & copyright © A.M.P.A.S./ Valerie Durant. [File Photo]

LOS ANGELES, CA, January 28, 2021 — The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced feature films eligible for consideration in the Animated Feature Film, Documentary Feature, and International Feature Film categories for the 93rd Academy Awards.


Twenty-seven features are eligible for consideration in the Animated Feature Film category for the 93rd Academy Awards. Some of the films have not yet had their required qualifying release and must fulfill that requirement and comply with all the category’s other qualifying rules to advance in the voting process.


Two hundred thirty-eight features are eligible for consideration in the Documentary Feature category for the 93rd Academy Awards. Some of the films have not yet had their required qualifying release and must fulfill that requirement and comply with all the category’s other qualifying rules to advance in the voting process.

Documentary features that have won a qualifying award or have been programmed at qualifying film festivals or submitted in the International Feature Film category as their country’s official selection are also eligible in the class. Films submitted in the Documentary Feature category may also qualify for Academy Awards in other categories, including Best Picture. Members of the Documentary Branch vote to determine the shortlist and the nominees. A shortlist of 15 films will be announced on Tuesday, February 9, 2021.


Ninety-three countries have submitted films that are eligible for consideration in the International Feature Film category for the 93rd Academy Awards. An international feature film is a feature-length motion picture (more than 40 minutes) produced outside the United States with a predominantly (more than 50%) non-English dialogue track. Lesotho, Sudan, and Suriname are first-time entrants.

This year, the Academy’s Board of Governors voted to expand the shortlist from 10 to 15 films. Academy members from all branches can participate in the preliminary round of voting. They must meet a minimum viewing requirement to be eligible to vote in the category. The Academy would announce the shortlist of 15 films on Tuesday, February 9, 2021.

It would announce the Nominations for the 93rd Academy Awards on Monday, March 15, 2021.

The 93rd Oscars will be held on Sunday, April 25, 2021, and will be televised live on ABC and in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.



Listed in alphabetical order by country

Source: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

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January 28, 2021

RENAULT presents KIGER, the New Compact SUV for India

A modern and muscular design — Evoking robustness and dynamism.

Renault KIGER

Renault KIGER

Renault KIGER

Photos: Renault Kiger. Images provided by & copyright © Renault.

Paris / New Delhi, January 28, 2021 — Kiger is a brand new compact SUV designed in India and initially intended for this market before being marketed internationally in a second phase. Accessible and equipped with five seats, this sturdy SUV of fewer than 4 meters in length completes Renault’s offer in India, with Kwid, Duster, and Triber.

Kiger has a powerful personality with its resolutely modern and dynamic design and generous interior space. With equipment and features unheard of at this price level in the segment, and its second choice of engine and transmission, it has all the cards in hand to appeal to Indian customers looking for originality and novelty.

A sporty and muscular SUV, Kiger is a concentrate of energy with two faces: that of urban modernity and that of agility whatever the road. Its muscular bodywork inspires both robustness and dynamism. A genuine invitation to escape into the urban jungle and to new driving experiences.

Measuring just under 4 meters in length, Kiger classifies as an urban SUV. Despite this compactness, it has tangible assets in terms of interior space. The interior design harmoniously combines the robust spirit of an SUV with a sophisticated, technological feel. The creative interior design reflects sharing and friendliness.

On the technology side, Renault Kiger features a large 8-inch (20.3 cm) touch screen compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, with Bluetooth and WIFI connection. The driving experience is enhanced by MULTI-SENSE settings that allow the driver to choose different driving modes, an Auditorium 3D Sound by Arkamys audio system, and speed cameras, and a rearview camera with guidance lines for easy parking.

• India, one of the most attractive markets in the world

The second most populous country globally, India has strong growth potential and remains one of the world’s most attractive markets. As in many other countries, the SUV market has been growing steadily in recent years. Incredibly attentive to its customers, their needs, and their uses, Renault became aware of this growing demand very early. The brand has revolutionized specific segments by developing disruptive products such as Kwid and Triber. As one of the only manufacturers to have gained market share last year in a declining market, Renault has established itself as the leader among European brands distributed in India.

Source: Renault


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January 27, 2021

Global Business Leaders Support Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Convergence by Committing to Stakeholder Capitalism Metrics.

World Economic Forum

Photo: Impressions from downtown at the Annual Meeting 2019 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, January 21, 2019. Image provided by & copyright © World Economic Forum / Walter Duerst.

Geneva, Switzerland January 26, 2021 - A growing coalition of 61 top business leaders across industries announced today their commitment to the Stakeholder Capitalism Metrics, a set of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) metrics and disclosures released by the World Economic Forum and its International Business Council (IBC) in September 2020, that measure the long-term enterprise value creation for all stakeholders.

The Stakeholder Capitalism Metrics, drawn from existing voluntary standards, offer a core set of 21 universal, comparable disclosures focused on people, planet, prosperity, and principles of governance. They are considered most critical for business, society, and the earth, and that companies can report on regardless of industry or region. They strengthen companies and investors’ ability to benchmark progress on sustainability matters, thereby improving decision-making and enhancing transparency and accountability regarding the shared and sustainable value companies create, WEF elaborated.

These leaders and their organizations, including Dow, Unilever, Nestlé, PayPal, Reliance Industries, and Sony, have today committed to:

In making these commitments, business leaders signify that ESG factors are increasingly critical to all businesses’ success and long-term viability. It reflects leading global companies’ intent to integrate sustainability into their core strategy, operations, and corporate disclosures.

“Stakeholder capitalism becomes now really mainstream,” said Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum. “The public commitments from companies to report not only on financial matters but also their ESG impacts are an important step towards a global economy that works for progress, people and the planet.”

“We have to deliver great returns for our shareholders and help drive progress on society’s most important priorities,” said Brian Moynihan, Chairman and CEO of Bank of America and Chairman of the International Business Council. “That is stakeholder capitalism in action. Common metrics will help all stakeholders measure the progress we are making and ensure that the resources capitalism can marshal - from companies, from investors, and others - are directed to where they can make the most difference.”

The World Economic Forum, in collaboration with Bank of America, Deloitte, EY, KPMG, and PwC, curated the set of 21 core and 34 expanded metrics over the past two years with the support of over 140 stakeholders.

The metrics include non-financial disclosures centered around the four pillars: people, planet, prosperity, and governance principles. Intentionally built on existing standards, the posts include metrics such as greenhouse gas emissions, pay equality, and board diversity.

By adopting and reporting these metrics and disclosures, the business community will continue to catalyze greater cooperation and alignment among existing standards and encourage progress in developing a systemic, globally accepted set of common standards for reporting sustainability performance.

The full list of companies that have agreed to implement reporting on the Stakeholder Capitalism Metrics includes:

  1. Accenture
  2. Adecco Group
  3. African Rainbow Minerals
  4. Allianz
  5. Banco Santander
  6. Bank of America
  7. BBVA
  8. Boston Consulting Group
  9. bp
  10. Clifford Chance
  11. Credit Suisse
  12. Dell Technologies
  13. Deloitte
  14. Deutsche Post DHL
  15. Dow
  16. Eni
  17. Ecolab
  18. Ecopetrol
  19. Equinor
  20. EY
  21. Fidelity International
  23. HP
  24. HSBC Holdings
  25. IBM
  26. JLL
  27. Kearney Inc.
  28. KPMG
  29. Mahindra Group
  30. Majid Al Futtaim
  31. Mastercard
  32. McKinsey & Company
  33. Medtronic
  34. Mercuria Energy Group
  35. Mitsubishi Corporation
  36. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc.
  37. Nestlé
  38. Novo Nordisk A/S
  39. Palo Alto Networks
  40. PayPal
  41. Publicis Groupe
  42. PwC
  43. Reliance Industries
  44. Repsol
  45. Royal DSM
  46. Royal Dutch Shell
  47. Royal Philips
  48. Salesforce
  49. Schneider Electric
  50. Siemens
  51. Solvay
  52. Sony
  53. Sumitomo Corporation
  54. Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group (SMFG)
  55. Suntory Holdings
  56. Takeda Pharmaceutical
  57. Total
  58. UBS
  59. Unilever
  60. Yara International
  61. Zurich Insurance Group

“Runaway climate change, environmental degradation, and social inequality are some of the biggest problems that the world faces,” said Alan Jope, CEO of Unilever. “Companies’ annual reports and accounts might not be the first mechanism for change that would spring to mind, but standardized and mandatory non-financial reporting is critical to creating a new form of capitalism that tackles these problems. The Forum’s IBC work is an important step forward, and we are providing our wholehearted support.”

The Davos Agenda is a pioneering mobilization of global leaders to rebuild trust to shape the principles, policies, and partnerships needed in 2021. It features a full week of international programming dedicated to helping leaders choose innovative and bold solutions to stem the pandemic and drive a robust recovery over the next year. Heads of state, CEOs, civil society leaders, and global media will actively participate in almost 100 sessions across five themes.

Source: World Economic Forum

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January 26, 2021

U.S. News & World Report Announces 2021 Best Online Programs Rankings

The latest edition includes new rankings of business and psychology bachelor’s programs.

U.S. News & World Report

U.S. News & World Report

Photo: The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, West Campus. Image Credit: Dan Keck.

WASHINGTON, Jan. 26, 2021 — U.S. News & World Report, a leading global authority in education rankings, today published the 2021 Best U.S. Online Programs rankings. The rankings evaluate more than 1,600 online bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in the USA. They assist learners looking to complete or further their education. These programs offer an alternative option for prospective students looking to fulfill their academic goals while pandemic restrictions remain in much of the country.

The Best Online Programs rankings only include programs administered online. In other words, they do not evaluate schools or programs that are temporarily virtual due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University moves back up to No. 1 this year among Best Online Bachelor’s Programs. For MBAs, Carnegie Mellon University ties with the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill for the top spot. Columbia University has the top-ranked computer information technology master’s program. Tied for No. 1 among Best Online Master’s in Nursing programs are Rush University and the University of South Carolina. Top education and engineering master’s programs are at the University of Florida and Columbia University, respectively.

For the first time, U.S. News published specialty rankings of bachelor’s programs in business and psychology. These complement the master’s level specialty rankings across 18 subject areas such as finance MBA and nursing administration/leadership.

“As in-person gatherings remain limited, we might see more interest in online degrees than in pre-pandemic years,” said Anita Narayan, managing editor of Education at U.S. News. “But online degrees aren’t only practical in the short term - distance education can also be conducive to a schedule that includes full-time work or other commitments.”

U.S. News said it remains the only publication to comprehensively evaluate online degrees at the program level rather than the school level. The rankings assess student services and technology, faculty credentials, and student engagement, using data collected directly from each institution. The report considered only degree-granting programs offered primarily online by regionally accredited institutions. The programs that score the highest are those applying educational best practices specific for distance learners.

• 2021 U.S. News & World Report Best Online Programs

• Bachelor’s Programs (Top Ten)

  1. Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University — Worldwide, Daytona Beach, FL
  2. The University of Illinois — Chicago, Chicago, IL
  3. The University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
  4. Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
  5. Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR.
  6. Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ
  7. The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
  8. CUNY (The City University of New York) School of Professional Studies, New York, NY
  9. SUNY (The State University of New York) — Buffalo, Buffalo, NY
  10. Colorado State University-Global Campus, Aurora, CO. (#10 tie)
  11. The Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC. (#10 tie)
  12. Pennsylvania State University — World Campus, University Park, PA. (#10 tie)
  13. The University of Georgia, Athens, GA. (#10 tie)

• Master’s Programs

• MBA (Top Ten)

  1. Carnegie Mellon University (Tepper), Pittsburgh, PA.
  2. The University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (Kenan-Flagler), Chapel Hill, NC.
  3. Indiana University, Bloomington (Kelley), Bloomington, IN
  4. University of Southern California (Marshall), Los Angeles, CA
  5. University of Florida (Hough), Gainesville, FL
  6. Arizona State University (Carey), Tempe, AZ
  7. Pennsylvania State University — World Campus, University Park, PA
  8. University of Texas, Dallas, Richardson, TX
  9. Rice University (Jones), Houston, TX
  10. Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA (#10 tie)
  11. University of Arizona (Eller), Tucson, AZ (#10 tie)
  12. The University of Maryland, College Park (Smith), College Park, MD (#10 tie)
  13. The University of Mississippi, University, MS (#10 tie)
  14. University of Washington (Foster), Seattle, WA (#10 tie)
  15. University of Wisconsin MBA Consortium, Eau Claire, WI (#10 tie)

• Business, non-MBA

  1. University of Southern California (Marshall)
  2. Indiana University—Bloomington (Kelley)
  3. Arizona State University (Carey)

• Computer Information Technology

  1. Columbia University (NY)
  2. Johns Hopkins University (Whiting) (M.D.) (tie)
  3. University of Southern California (tie)

• Criminal Justice/Criminology

  1. University of California-Irvine
  2. Boston University (tie)
  3. Sam Houston State University (TX) (tie)

• Education

  1. University of Florida
  2. Clemson University (Moore) (SC)
  3. University of Illinois—Urbana-Champaign

• Engineering

  1. Columbia University (Fu Foundation) (NY)
  2. University of California—Los Angeles (Samueli)
  3. Purdue University—West Lafayette (IN)

• Nursing

  1. Rush University (IL) (tie)
  2. University of South Carolina (tie)
  3. Duke University (N.C.) (tie)
  4. Ohio State University (tie)

On Friday, Jan. 29, U.S. News will host a free webinar on the potential benefits of enrolling in an online bachelor’s program, as well as what differentiates these programs from temporary virtual learning.

U.S. News & World Report is a global leader in quality rankings that empower people to make better, more informed decisions about important issues affecting their lives. A digital news and information company focused on Education, Health, Money, Travel, Cars, and News, provides consumer advice, rankings, and analysis to serve people making complex decisions. Founded in 1933, U.S. News has its headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Source: U.S. News & World Report

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 6:25 AM | View the original post

January 25, 2021

Daimler Trucks unveils BharatBenz Reefer Truck for Vaccine Transportation in India.

Daimler Trucks

Daimler Trucks


Photos: Daimler Trucks unveils BharatBenz Reefer Truck for Vaccine Transportation in India. Images provided by Daimler AG.

Chennai, India / Stuttgart, Germany, January 25, 2021 — Daimler India Commercial Vehicles (DICV) has unveiled the BharatBenz’ BSafe Express’, a specialized reefer truck designed for the safe transportation of COVID-19 vaccines. Equipped with state-of-the-art connectivity, the BSafe Express uses newly developed refrigeration units to ensure the vaccines’ temperature and stability are accurately monitored and maintained at all delivery stages. The reefer is mounted on the BharatBenz 2823R heavy-duty chassis.

Mr. Satyakam Arya, Managing Director, and CEO, Daimler India Commercial Vehicles, was present at the truck’s premiere in the Indian capital Delhi. According to him, “The combination of a strong, reliable chassis with a lightweight, insulated reefer and state-of-the-art connectivity device makes BharatBenz’s ‘BSafe Express’ the perfect solution to India’s cold-chain infrastructure challenge. With this truck, we can deliver vaccines in perfect condition to even the most remote destinations, bringing the hope of a return to normalcy to over 1.3 billion people.”

India has recently started its corona vaccination campaign to vaccinate 300 million people by July 2021. The BharatBenz BSafe Express offers a solution to Indian logistics companies to contribute to the nation’s goal of bringing COVID under control as quickly as possible. A daunting challenge in the second-most populous country in the world.

• Refrigerated container and digital solutions enable quick and safe transportation of vaccines across India.

Automotive system solutions provider Motherson Group supplies the refrigerated container. It is made from Glass Reinforced Plastic, XPS Foam, and other carefully-chosen materials that ensure the product is strong, water-resistant, and non-corrosive, yet lightweight and highly insulated. The container can be assembled locally in as little as 96 hours, making it a much more practical solution than conventional products, which can take three or more weeks to deliver.

With purpose-built IoT sensors integrated inside the container, fleet managers can monitor temperature, humidity, shock, tilt, and tamper. They can also adjust the temperature as required and sound the alarm if a problem occurs. It further integrates with QR Code tracking of all stock on board so that users can check the location, status, and history of each package. Paired with BharatBenz’s ‘Truckonnect’ telematics platform, the BSafe Express offers vaccine distributors absolute peace of mind with real-time tracking of both the vehicle and its precious cargo.

Source: Daimler AG

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 1:17 PM | View the original post

UNCTAD Global Investment Trends Monitor: Global Investment down 42% in 2020, Further Weakness expected in 2021.

UNCTAD has published its 38th Global Investment Trends Monitor.

UNCTAD, Geneva

Photo: Mia Mikic, speaking at UNCTAD’s Non-tariff Measures Week, held at the Palais des Nations, Geneva. 14 October 2019. Photo: Tim Sullivan (UNCTAD).

UNCTAD, Geneva

Photo: James Zhan, director of UNCTAD’s division on investment and enterprise. Speaking at the UNCTAD Investment and Enterprise Commission on 11 November 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland. Photo: Tim Sullivan (UNCTAD).

UNCTAD, Geneva

Photo: UNCTAD Debt Management Conference. UNCTAD held its 12th Debt Management Conference at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, from 18 to 20 November 2019. Photo: Jean-Philippe Escard (UNCTAD).

UNCTAD, Geneva

Photo: UNCTAD Centres of Excellence workshop. UNCTAD held its annual Centers of Excellence strategic meeting in Geneva, Switzerland. 29 October 2019. UNCTAD Centers of Excellence serve as network hubs for capacity building in the African and Asian regions. Photo: Tim Sullivan (UNCTAD).

Geneva, 25 January 2020 - Global foreign direct investment collapsed in 2020, falling by 42% to an estimated $859 billion from $1.5 trillion in 2019. FDI finished 2020, more than 30% below the trough after the global financial crisis in 2009 and back at a level last seen in the 1990s.

The decline was concentrated in developed countries, where FDI flows fell by 69% to an estimated $229 billion. Flows to Europe dried up entirely to -4 billion, including large negative flows in several countries. The United States recorded a sharp decrease (-49%) to $134 billion.

The relative decline in developing economies was -12% to an estimated $616 billion. The share of developing economies in global FDI reached 72% - the highest percentage on record. China topped the ranking of the largest FDI recipients.

The fall in FDI flows across developing regions was uneven, with -37% in Latin America and the Caribbean, -18% in Africa, and -4% in developing countries in Asia. East Asia was the largest host region, accounting for one-third of global FDI in 2020. FDI to transition economies declined by 77% to $13 billion.

• Trends in selected economies

FDI in the EU fell by two thirds, with significant declines in all the largest recipients; flows to the United Kingdom decreased to zero.

• FDI trend expected to remain weak in 2021

The FDI trend may remain weak in 2021. Data on an announcement basis, an indicator of trends, provides a mixed picture and point at continued downward pressure:

For developing countries, the trends in greenfield and project finance announcements constitute a significant concern.

Although overall FDI flows in developing economies appear relatively resilient, greenfield announcements fell by 46% (-63% in Africa; -51% in Latin America and the Caribbean, and -38% in Asia) and international project finance 7% (-40% in Africa).

These investment types are crucial for the productive capacity and infrastructure development and thus for sustainable recovery prospects.

Risks related to the latest pandemic wave, the pace of the roll-out of vaccination programs and economic support packages, fragile macroeconomic situations in major emerging markets, and uncertainty about the global policy environment for investment will all continue to affect FDI in 2021.

Source: UNCTAD

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 5:09 AM | View the original post

January 23, 2021

COVAX announces new Agreement and Plans for Pfizer and Oxford Vaccine Deliveries.

Covax, Geneva, WHO

Photo: UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, with Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of World Health Organization (WHO), and Dr. Sylvie Briand, Director, Global Infections Hazard Preparedness of WHO, during a strategic briefing on COVID-19 at Strategic Health Operations Centre (SHOC) in the headquarters of WHO in Geneva. 24 February 2020. UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré.

Geneva/Oslo 22 January 2021 - COVAX, the global initiative to ensure rapid and equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines for all countries, regardless of income level, today announced the signing of an advance purchase agreement with Pfizer for up to 40 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine candidate, which has already received WHO emergency use listing. The rollout will commence with the successful negotiation and execution of supply agreements.

COVAX also confirmed that it would exercise an option via an existing agreement with India’s Serum Institute (SII). It would receive its first 100 million doses of the AstraZeneca/Oxford University-developed vaccine manufactured by SII.

Of these first 100 million doses, most are earmarked for delivery in the first quarter of the year, pending WHO Emergency Use Listing. The WHO review process, which is currently underway, follows approval for restricted use in emergencies by the Drugs Controller General of India earlier this month and is a critical aspect of ensuring that any vaccine procured through COVAX is fully quality assured for international use.

COVAX also anticipates that, via an existing agreement with AstraZeneca, at least 50 million further doses of the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine will be available for delivery to COVAX participants in Q1 2021, pending emergency use listing by WHO of the COVAX-specific manufacturing network for these doses. A decision on this candidate is also anticipated by WHO in February.

“Today marks another milestone for COVAX: pending regulatory approval for the AstraZeneca/Oxford candidate and pending the successful conclusion of the supply agreement for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, we anticipate being able to begin deliveries of lifesaving COVID-19 vaccines by the end of February. It is not just significant for COVAX; it is a major step forward for equitable access to vaccines and an essential part of the global effort to beat this pandemic. We will only be safe anywhere if we are safe everywhere,” said Dr. Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, which leads COVAX procurement and delivery.

Preparations, led by WHO, UNICEF, and Gavi, are already well underway for COVAX to deliver vaccines to economies eligible for support via the COVAX AMC, with Gavi making US$ 150 million available from its core funding as initial, catalytic support for preparedness and delivery.

“The urgent and equitable rollout of vaccines is not just a moral imperative, it’s also a health security, strategic and economic imperative,” said Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization.

“Country Readiness Portal” will be launched by WHO this month, which will allow AMC participants to submit final national deployment and vaccination plans (NDVPs).

“These purchase agreements open the door for these lifesaving vaccines to become available to people in the most vulnerable countries,” said UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore. “But at the same time we are securing vaccines, we must also ensure that countries are ready to receive them, deploy them, and build trust in them.”

The COVAX Facility intends to provide all 190 participating economies with an indicative allocation of doses by the end of this month. This indicative allocation will provide interim guidance to participants - offering a minimum planning scenario to enable preparations for the final portion of the number of doses each participant will receive in the first rounds of vaccine distribution.

COVAX, the vaccines pillar of the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT), is co-led by CEPI, Gavi, and WHO, operating with vaccine manufacturers, UNICEF, the World Bank, and others. It is the only global initiative working with governments and manufacturers to ensure COVID-19 vaccines are available worldwide to both higher-income and lower-income countries.

The Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT) is a new, ground-breaking global collaboration to accelerate the development, production, and equitable access to COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines. It was set up in response to a call from G20 leaders in March and launched by the WHO, European Commission, France, and The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in April 2020.

The World Health Organization (WHO) provides global leadership in public health within the United Nations system.

Source: World Health Organization (WHO)

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 3:56 AM | View the original post

January 22, 2021

David Yurman Introduces Spring 2021 Campaign, "My New York"

David Yurman, New York

Photo: David Yurman Introduces Spring 2021 Campaign, “My New York.”

NEW YORK, Jan. 22, 2021 — America’s foremost luxury jewelry brand, David Yurman, presents their Spring 2021 campaign, “My New York.” Creative directed by Chief Creative Officer, Evan Yurman, shot by Manhattan-based photographer Lachlan Bailey and styled by Anastasia Barbieri, the campaign features David Yurman brand ambassadors and returning models Joan Smalls and Taylor Hill. The campaign celebrates “My New York” as the brand and founders’ home and a constant source of inspiration and creativity for the Yurman family.

According to the brand, David Yurman, whether you have visited once or lived here all your life, New York is the city of dreams and endless possibilities, no matter where you are in the world. The city’s creative pulse—its people, diversity, cultural institutions, neighborhoods, landmarks—is what gives New York its eternal spirit and continues to inspire us anew. The David Yurman campaign  pays homage to the  real  heart and soul of  New York City.

“Sybil, Evan, and I were all born in New York City. It’s our home and in our DNA—its creative energy courses through our veins,” said co-founder and CEO, David Yurman. “We want to celebrate and support our hometown—what this city was, is, and will always be. It’s our New York.”

The campaign features a mix of classic and iconic pieces from David Yurman Cable, Pinky Ring, Stax, Lexington, and Renaissance collections pieces from the brand’s upcoming launch—the new Elements collection. Inspired by the circular form, the Elements collection represents perfect balance, harmony, and unity—the ultimate amulet, the company elaborated.

David Yurman announced that in February 2021, it would expand on the “My New York” campaign concept with a social media initiative featuring iconic individuals from across the country. They include actors, musicians, artists, philanthropists, athletes, entrepreneurs — each with a unique and personal story to tell about the city.

Spring 2021 campaign images will appear in digital and print media, out of home advertising, video streaming, and social media platforms throughout the Spring.

David Yurman is an American jewelry company founded in New York by David Yurman and his wife, Sybil. David Yurman collections are available at 49 retail stores throughout the United States, Canada, Hong Kong, and France and at over 300 locations worldwide through their exclusive authorized fine jewelry retailers’ network.

Source: David Yurman

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 1:56 PM | View the original post

January 21, 2021

Porsche Studio Delhi, located in Connaught Place, brings a new brand experience to India.

The first in India, Porsche Studio personalizes the customer experience.

Porsche Delhi

Photo: The opening of Porsche Studio Delhi is the first-of-its-kind in India. Image provided by & copyright © Porsche India.

Porsche Delhi

Photo: The center stage area with its LED wall is an integral part of the Porsche Studio concept. Image provided by & copyright © Porsche India.

Porsche Delhi

Photo: The Heritage Wall presents milestones of Porsche’s unique history. Image provided by & copyright © Porsche India.

New Delhi, India. January 21, 2021 — Porsche is strengthening its presence by opening a new, interactive showroom concept in Delhi, the first of its kind in India. The Porsche Studio Delhi joins the line-up of exclusive locations worldwide to embrace an innovative retail environment that enables the sports car manufacturer to interact with a broad spectrum of target groups in an intimate atmosphere. Located in the prime position of Connaught Place, the Studio opens up onto the high street as a perfect addition to the recently launched Porsche showroom in Gurugram, Delhi-NCR. Given the present situation regarding health and safety protocols, Porsche Studio Delhi is open by pre-scheduled appointments only.

The Principal Dealer of Porsche Centre Delhi Dilmohan Singh said, “Porsche Studio Delhi presents a new way for customers and fans to explore and immerse themselves in the brand through a welcoming and engaging environment right in the middle of one of the busiest neighborhoods in Delhi. I am very proud of our new destination as the first in India.”

The Studio is a futuristic showroom concept in city centers: a new brand space beyond the traditional showroom format by offering a wide range of experiences in customers’ daily lives.

The lifestyle boutique store links Porsche craftsmanship, aesthetics, and urban lifestyle with a center stage area and LED screens that will feature the latest Porsche models. A dedicated Configuration Lab and Trimming Area for customers to tailor their car with inspiration provided by materials and large interactive screens on the Exclusive Manufaktur wall. Customers can learn about the latest hybrid models and the soon-to-arrive Taycan in the so-called E-Performance booth.

The recently appointed Brand Head - Porsche India, Manolito Vujicic, describes Porsche Studio Delhi’s opening as an essential pillar of the brand’s global Future Retail strategy. “It is an innovative and exciting new approach to interact with our Porsche family of customers and enthusiasts through a combination of personal interaction and the use of the latest technology. Displays and digital touchpoints offer diverse attractions beyond just products, ranging from heritage and lifestyle to the future of the brand,” he added.

Adjacent to the center stage, visitors can relax in the Driver’s Club fitted with large panorama screens to watch Porsche’s latest videos. A private sales suite offers complete discretion for the purchase process with a personal consultant. Its library style interior holds a selection of samples and trimmings for any design tweaks during the consultation.

The Porsche Studio in Delhi reflects Porsche Centre Delhi’s commitment towards its current and future customers in the region. The company said it looks to a promising 2021 with a full complement of new models, including the new Panamera, the all-new Taycan electric sports saloon, and the latest 911 Turbo.

Source: Porsche India


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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 9:56 AM | View the original post

January 19, 2021

Automobili Lamborghini closes 2020 with 7,430 cars delivered and six new product launches.







Photos: Lamborghini in 2020. Images provided by & copyright ©, Automobili Lamborghini.

Sant’Agata Bolognese, Italy, January 18, 2021 - Automobili Lamborghini responded to a year marked by the global pandemic’s significant challenges with enormous energy and determination. The company delivered 7,430 cars worldwide in 2020, a decrease of only 9% compared to the previous year. The slight drop is attributable to the 70-day production shutdown in the spring, in compliance with Italian government directives and to protect workers’ health during the first emergency phase. In contrast, the second six months saw record sales figures, resulting in the best second half-year for deliveries-to-customers in the company’s history.

The United States was the top market with 2,224 cars, followed by Germany (607), mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau (604), Japan (600), the United Kingdom (517), and Italy (347). The two countries with the highest growth were South Korea (303 units, + 75%) and Germany (607 cars, +8%). The Urus SUV, which just last year set a production record of 10,000 units, was the most successful model, with 4,391 vehicles delivered. Both the super sports car lines significantly contributed to global volumes: the V10 Huracán recorded growing numbers with 2,193 cars sold (+3%), alongside 846 V12 Aventador units delivered worldwide.

The new 2021 year gets off to a positive start with a robust order portfolio: so much so that the company has already assigned more than half of 2021’s planned production.

Stephan Winkelmann, President, and CEO of Automobili Lamborghini, commented: “The 2020 results are a clear demonstration of the excellent work that, despite the difficulties of a year of global challenges, was carried out by the entire Lamborghini team with enormous dedication and a spirit of resilience. It is a great honor for me to be part of our future again. The sense of community felt so strongly during the past year, along with the values of social responsibility and the drive toward innovation that has always distinguished Lamborghini will be the basis for confronting a challenging 2021. It would consolidate the product range, seek new business prospects, and further strengthen the brand.”

Source: Automobili Lamborghini

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 5:24 AM | View the original post

January 18, 2021

World Economic Forum: World Leaders to Meet During Davos Agenda in a Crucial Year to Rebuild Trust.

World Economic Forum

Photo: Impressions from the Annual Meeting 2017. The Conference Center from the outside. At the Annual Meeting 2017 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, January 15, 2017. Image provided by & copyright © World Economic Forum / Benedikt von Loebell. [File Photo]

World Economic Forum

Photo: Actor Forest Whitaker and Popstar Shakira at the Media Welcome Reception at the Annual Meeting 2017 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, January 16, 2017. Image provided by & copyright © World Economic Forum / Ciaran McCrickard. [File Photo]

World Economic Forum

Photo: Joe Biden, Vice President of the United States at the Annual Meeting 2017 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, January 17, 2017. Image provided by & copyright © World Economic Forum / Ciaran McCrickard. [File Photo]

World Economic Forum

Photo: Opening Performance at the Annual Meeting 2018 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, January 22, 2018. Image provided by & copyright © World Economic Forum / Valeriano Di Domenico. [File Photo]

Geneva, Switzerland, January 18, 2021 - The World Economic Forum Davos Agenda, taking place virtually on 25-29 January, will bring together the world’s foremost leaders to address the new global situation. Heads of state and government, chief executives, and civil society leaders will convene under the theme: A Crucial Year to Rebuild Trust.

The meeting will create impact, rebuild Trust, and shape the policies and partnerships needed in 2021.

“In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the need to reset priorities and the urgency to reform systems have been growing stronger around the world,” said Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum. “Rebuilding trust and increasing global cooperation are crucial to fostering innovative and bold solutions to stem the pandemic and drive a robust recovery. This special meeting will be an opportunity for leaders to outline their vision and address the most important issues of our time, such as the need to accelerate job creation and to protect the environment.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated that no institution or individual alone can address our complex, interdependent world’s economic, environmental, social, and technological challenges. The pandemic has accelerated systemic changes that were apparent before its inception. The fault lines that emerged in 2020 now appear as critical crossroads in 2021. The Davos Agenda will help leaders choose innovative and bold solutions to stem the pandemic and drive a robust recovery over the next year, the WEF announcement stated.

The five program themes are:

Addresses from G20 heads of state and government and international organizations will provide crucial insights into a range of essential issues in the year ahead. Participants will hear first-hand how these public figures will demonstrate leadership and drive action in areas such as the environment, jobs, and advances in innovation brought by the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Heads of state and government include:

Many other world leaders may confirm later.

Leaders from international organizations, government agencies, and central banks include:

More than 1,000 leaders from the Forum’s member and partner organizations will represent the private sector. Seven of the top ten companies by market capitalization are engaged year-round with the Forum, and many will participate in The Davos Agenda week. As a working meeting to advance ongoing project work, more than 500 chief executives and chairpersons will participate in sessions throughout the week.

Leaders from civil society are a critical voice in shaping the agenda. Those taking part in the meeting include:

• Flagship reports, initiatives, and the latest book on Stakeholder Capitalism

Source: World Economic Forum

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 2:33 PM | View the original post

January 17, 2021

Deutsche Bank and Google Cloud Sign Pioneering Cloud and Innovation Partnership

Deutsche Bank

Photo: Deutsche Bank Towers - Looking through the Sphere. Headquarters in Frankfurt am Main. Image provided by & copyright © Deutsche Bank.


FRANKFURT, Germany and SUNNYVALE, Calif.,— Deutsche Bank and Google Cloud announced that they had finalized a strategic, multi-year partnership to accelerate the bank’s transition to the cloud and co-innovate new products and services. It is the first partnership of this kind for the financial services industry.

For Deutsche Bank’s clients, the agreement will reshape how products and services are designed and delivered. With faster application development and the use of advanced artificial intelligence and data analytics tools, the bank will be able to respond more flexibly and more accurately to the most pressing challenges, trends, and client needs.

“Today marks a new chapter for Deutsche Bank,” said Bernd Leukert, Deutsche Bank’s Chief Technology, Data and Innovation Officer and Member of the Management Board. “With Google Cloud by our side, we have a strategic partner that will accelerate our technology transformation, enable us to use data more intelligently, and provide a flexible and safe environment for us to deliver new products and services quickly. This is the blueprint for bringing together the relative strengths within banking and technology for the benefit of our clients.”

“Mobile self-service options, artificial intelligence-based recommendations, and other innovations are transforming the banking experience for businesses and consumers around the world,” said Rob Enslin, President, Google Cloud. “Our partnership with Deutsche Bank will bring innovations to life and further establish the financial services industry as an early technology adopter. Deutsche Bank is a trailblazer in the industry, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to partner with such an important market leader.”

Several use cases for the partnership are already being explored, including:

As a further step, Deutsche Bank and Google Cloud intend to selectively co-innovate with promising start-ups and fintech that can support the bank’s client and transformation goals. Deutsche Bank plans to list its Google Cloud products on Google Cloud Marketplace to expand customer reach to drive broader adoption of its new cloud-native services and solutions.

Moving to the cloud will enable Deutsche Bank to take advantage of an up-to-date and fully managed environment for applications. Flexibility and resilience will improve, with an uncompromising focus on data privacy and security to safeguard customer data and Deutsche Bank’s information assets.

Deutsche Bank applications will encrypt data at rest and in transit. Google Cloud will provide Deutsche Bank with functionality to allow the bank to manage its encryption keys.

Deutsche Bank provides commercial and investment banking, retail banking, transaction banking, and asset and wealth management products and services to corporations, governments, institutional investors, small and medium-sized businesses, and private individuals. Deutsche Bank is Germany’s leading bank, with a strong position in Europe and a significant presence in the Americas and the Asia Pacific.

Google Cloud provides organizations with leading infrastructure, platform capabilities, and industry solutions.

Source: Google Cloud

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 1:27 AM | View the original post

January 16, 2021

India starts Vaccination with Priority to Healthcare & Frontline Workers

Oxford University

Oxford Vaccine


• January 16, 2021.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India launched the pan India rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination drive via video conferencing. It is the world’s most extensive vaccination program covering the entire length and breadth of the country.

Oxford Vaccine

Photo: Health care workers celebrate the 1st phase of the pan India rollout of COVID-19 vaccination drive at Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, New Delhi, on January 16, 2021.


• January 09, 2021.

• Oxford Vaccine: India starts Vaccination on January 16, 2021, with Priority to Healthcare & Frontline Workers followed by those above 50 Years and Under-50 with Co-morbidities.

Oxford Vaccine

New Delhi, January 09, 2021 — Prime Minister Modi chaired a high-level meeting to review the status of COVID-19 in the country and the preparedness of the State/UTs for COVID vaccination today.

The Prime Minister took a detailed and comprehensive review of COVID management’s status, covering various issues.

The Prime Minister reviewed the center’s preparedness status in close collaboration with the State and UT Governments for the vaccine’s roll-out soon.

According to the India Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the vaccination exercise comprises the principles of people’s participation (Jan Bhagidari); utilizing the experience of elections (booth strategy) and Universal Immunization Program (UIP); no compromise of existing healthcare services, especially national programs and primary health care; no compromise on scientific and regulatory norms, other SOPs; and an orderly and smooth implementation driven by technology.

The roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccine will prioritize healthcare and frontline workers. They are estimated to be around three crores, followed by those above 50 years of age and the under-50 population groups with co-morbidities, numbering about 27 crores.

The Prime Minister got apprised about the Co-WIN Vaccine Delivery Management System. The unique digital platform will provide real-time information on vaccine stocks, their storage temperature, and individualized tracking of the COVID-19 vaccine beneficiaries. This platform will assist the program managers across all levels through automated session allocation for pre-registered beneficiaries, their verification, and generating a digital certificate upon completing the vaccine schedule.

The vaccinators and vaccine administrators comprise a crucial pillar of the vaccination exercise. Two thousand three hundred sixty participants were trained during the national level Training of Trainers, including state immunization officers, cold chain officers, IEC officials, and development partners. More than 61,000 program managers, 2 lakh vaccinators, and 3.7 lakh other vaccination team members have trained so far as part of training at States, Districts, and Block levels, the Health Ministry elaborated.

After the detailed review, the Government of India decided that because of the forthcoming festivals, including Lohri, Makar Sankranti, Pongal, and Magh Bihu, the COVID19 vaccination will start on January 16, 2021.


• January 03, 2021.

• People of India receive their New Year Gift; Prime Minister Modi congratulates the Nation as Drugs Controller General of India approves the Oxford Vaccine for emergency use; The University of Oxford welcomes Regulatory Authorisations.

Oxford University

Oxford University

Photo: St. Mary’s College, University of Oxford, Oxford. Image Credit: Billy Wilson.

Oxford / New Delhi, January 03, 2021 — The Drugs Controller General of India today approved the Oxford Vaccine for emergency use. Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated the nation and called it a decisive turning point to strengthen a spirited fight against Corona. The approval accelerates the road to a healthier and COVID-free country, he added.

India’s Home Minister Amit Shah hailed the approval of the COVID-19 vaccine granted by the Drugs Controller General of India (DGCI) today. He said the permission to ‘Made in India’ vaccines would prove to be a game-changer. It is a momentous achievement for India, he remarked.

The Serum Institute of India, Pune, is the manufacturing partner of the vaccine candidate named Covishield, developed jointly by the University of Oxford’s Jenner Institute and AstraZeneca.

The Serum Institute of India had selected 17 sites in India to conduct the trial. A total of 1,600 candidates took part in the study.

• The University of Oxford welcomes Regulatory Authorisations:

Meanwhile, the University of Oxford has welcomed the news that the UK Government has accepted the recommendation from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) to authorize the emergency use of the coronavirus vaccine in the UK.

Professor Andrew Pollard, Director of the Oxford Vaccine Group and Chief Investigator of the Oxford Vaccine Trial, said:

‘The regulator’s assessment that this is a safe and effective vaccine is a landmark moment, and an endorsement of the huge effort from a devoted international team of researchers and our dedicated trial participants.’

‘Though this is just the beginning, we will start to get ahead of the pandemic, protect health and economies when the vulnerable are vaccinated everywhere, as many as possible, as soon as possible.’

Professor Sarah Gilbert, Professor of Vaccinology at the University of Oxford, said:

‘This is a day for the team developing the vaccine to celebrate, after a year of tough work under difficult circumstances. The first authorization or use of the vaccine outside of clinical trials has been granted. We still have more to do and will continue to provide more data to multiple regulatory authorities until we can see the vaccine being used to save lives around the world.’

The Oxford vaccine is stable, easily manufactured, transported, and stored at domestic fridge temperature (2-8 degrees C). It can be easily administered in existing healthcare settings, allowing its rapid deployment.

Oxford University’s collaboration with AstraZeneca has been crucial to the successful development of the vaccine and vital for its global manufacturing and distribution across the world. AstraZeneca already has international agreements to supply three billion doses of the vaccine, with access through more than 30 supply agreements and partner networks.

A key element of Oxford’s partnership with AstraZeneca is the joint commitment to provide the vaccine on a not-for-profit basis for the duration of the pandemic across the world and in perpetuity to low- and middle-income countries.

Professor Louise Richardson, Vice-Chancellor at the University of Oxford, said:

‘This is a great day for British science and a great day for universities everywhere. Above all, it is a great day for the many people whose lives will be saved by this vaccine. We are greatly indebted to those who have designed, developed, manufactured, and evaluated it.

Sources: Prime Minister’s Office, New Delhi. The University of Oxford.


— The editor holds an Oxford Alumni Card and is a member of the ‘Oxford and Cambridge Society of India.’ StumbleUpon reddit Facebook Google Plus Tweet This Seed This on Newsvine

Edited & Posted by the Editor | 6:03 AM | View the original post

January 15, 2021

World Intellectual Property Indicators Report: Trademark and Industrial Design Filing Activity Rose in 2019; Patent Applications Marked Rare Decline

Wipo Report 2020


Photo: The Thirty-First Session of WIPO’s Standing Committee on the Law of Patents (SCP) took place in Geneva, Switzerland, from December 2 to December 5, 2019. Image provided by & copyright © WIPO. Photographer: Emmanuel Berrod.


Photo The Delegate of Finland at the Opening of the WIPO Assemblies 2020. The Sixty-First Series of Meetings of the Assemblies of WIPO Member States took place in Geneva, Switzerland, from September 21 to 25, 2020. Image provided by & copyright © WIPO. Photographer: Emmanuel Berrod.


Photo The Delegate of India at the Opening of the WIPO Assemblies 2020. The Sixty-First Series of Meetings of the Assemblies of WIPO Member States took place in Geneva, Switzerland, from September 21 to 25, 2020. Image provided by & copyright © WIPO. Photographer: Emmanuel Berrod.


Photo The Delegate of Moldova at the Opening of the WIPO Assemblies 2020. The Sixty-First Series of Meetings of the Assemblies of WIPO Member States took place in Geneva, Switzerland, from September 21 to 25, 2020. Image provided by & copyright © WIPO. Photographer: Emmanuel Berrod.


Photo The Delegate of France at the Opening of the WIPO Assemblies 2020. The Sixty-First Series of Meetings of the Assemblies of WIPO Member States took place in Geneva, Switzerland, from September 21 to 25, 2020. Image provided by & copyright © WIPO. Photographer: Emmanuel Berrod.


Photo The Delegate of China at the Opening of the WIPO Assemblies 2020. The Sixty-First Series of Meetings of the Assemblies of WIPO Member States took place in Geneva, Switzerland, from September 21 to 25, 2020. Image provided by & copyright © WIPO. Photographer: Emmanuel Berrod.


Photo The Delegate of USA at the Opening of the WIPO Assemblies 2020. The Sixty-First Series of Meetings of the Assemblies of WIPO Member States took place in Geneva, Switzerland, from September 21 to 25, 2020. Image provided by & copyright © WIPO. Photographer: Emmanuel Berrod.

Geneva, Switzerland — Worldwide trademark and industrial design-creation activity rose in 2019 even as the number of global patent applications dipped slightly on weaker demand in IP powerhouse China, WIPO’s benchmark World Intellectual Property Indicators (WIPI) report showed.

Trademark and industrial design filing activity increased by 5.9% and 1.3%, respectively. A 3% decline in global patent applications, the first fall in a decade, was driven by a drop in filings by Chinese residents. Excluding China, international patent filings rose 2.3%.

The annual WIPI report collects and analyzes IP data from some 150 national and regional offices to inform policymakers, business leaders, investors, academics, and others seeking macro trends in innovation and creativity.

The WIPI’s 2019 figures, which pre-date the COVID-19 pandemic, underline the long-building growth in demand for the intellectual property tools that incentivize an increasingly global and digital-focused economy, said WIPO Director General Daren Tang.

“The robust use of intellectual property tools shows high levels of innovation and creativity at the end of 2019, just at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Mr. Tang. “The pandemic has accelerated long-building trends by fostering the adoption of new technologies and accelerating the digitization of everyday life. Because IP is so connected to technology, innovation, and digitalization, IP will become even more important to a greater number of countries in the post-COVID world.”

World Intellectual Property Indicators - 2020

(An authoritative annual survey of IP activity around the globe)

• Patents

China’s IP office received 1.4 million patent applications in 2019, more than twice the amount received by authorities in the second-busiest country, the United States (621,453). The U.S. was followed by Japan (307,969), the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO; 218,975), and the European Patent Office (EPO; 181,479). Together, these five offices accounted for 84.7% of the world total.

Among the top five offices, the Republic of Korea (+4.3%), the EPO (+4.1%), and the U.S. (+4.1%) recorded growth in applications, while both China (-9.2%) and Japan (-1.8%) saw declines.

Filings in China declined for the first time in 24 years due to a 10.8% drop in resident applications amidst an overall shift in regulations there, aiming to optimize application structures and improve applications’ quality.

Germany (67,434), India (53,627), Canada (36,488), the Russian Federation (35,511) and Australia (29,758) also featured among the top 10 offices. These offices saw mixed performance. Canada (+0.9%) and India (+7.1%) exhibited growth in filings in 2019, while Australia (-0.7%), Germany (-0.7%), and the Russian Federation (-6.4%) recorded declines.

Offices located in Asia received close to two-thirds (65%) of all applications filed worldwide in 2019 - a considerable increase from 50.9% in 2009 - primarily driven by long-term growth in China. Offices located in North America accounted for just over one-fifth (20.4%) of the world total, while those in Europe accounted for slightly above one-tenth (11.3%). The combined share of offices located in Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean, and Oceania was 3.3% in 2019.

In terms of filing abroad, which indicates a desire to expand in new markets, U.S. residents continue to lead with 236,032 equivalent patent applications filed abroad in 2019. The U.S. was followed by Japan (206,758), Germany (104,736), China (84,279), and the Republic of Korea (76,824).

Patents in force worldwide grew by 7% to reach around 15 million in 2019. The highest number of patents in force was recorded in the U.S. (3.1 million), followed by China (2.7 million) and Japan (2.1 million). More than half of all patents in force in the U.S. originate from abroad, while domestic applicants accounted for around four-fifths of all patents in force in Japan.

• Trademarks

An estimated 11.5 million trademark applications covering 15.2 million classes were filed worldwide in 2019. The number of types specified in applications grew by 5.9% in 2019, marking a 10th successive growth year.

China’s IP office had the highest volume of filing activity[1] with a class count of around 7.8 million; followed by the IP offices of the U.S. (672,681) and Japan (546,244); the IP office of the Islamic Republic of Iran (454,925) and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO; 407,712).

Among the top 20 offices, the largest increases between 2018 and 2019 were in the IP offices of Brazil (+22.3%), Viet Nam (+19.3%), the Islamic Republic of Iran (+18.4%), the Russian Federation (+16.5%), and Turkey (+15.5%).

Offices located in Asia accounted for 70.6% of all trademark filing activity in 2019, up from 38.7% in 2009. Europe’s share declined from 36% in 2009 to 15.4% in 2019. North America accounted for 5.7% of the world total in 2019, while the combined share of offices located in Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean, and Oceania was 8.3% in 2019.

There were an estimated 58.2 million active trademark registrations worldwide in 2019 - up 15.2% in 2018, with 25.2 million in China alone, followed by 2.8 million in the U.S. and 2 million in India.

• Industrial Designs

An estimated 1.04 million industrial design applications containing 1.36 million designs were filed worldwide in 2019, representing a 1.3% year-on-year increase. China’s IP office received applications containing 711,617 procedures in 2019, corresponding to 52.3% of the world total. It was followed by the EUIPO (113,319) and the IP offices of the Republic of Korea (69,360), the U.S. (49,848), and Turkey (46,202).

Among the top 20 offices, the following three offices reported double-digit growth in design counts: the Russian Federation (+22%), the Islamic Republic of Iran (+19.3%), and Australia (+10.3%).

Offices located in Asia accounted for more than two-thirds (68.4%) of all designs in applications filed worldwide in 2019, followed by Europe (24.3%) and North America (4.2%). The combined share of Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Oceania was 3.1% in 2019.

Designs related to furnishings accounted for 9.4% of global filing activity[2], followed by those related to clothing (8.1%) and packages and containers (7.3%).

The total number of industrial design registrations in force worldwide grew by 7.3% to reach around 4.1 million. The largest number of registrations was in China (1.8 million), followed by the Republic of Korea (358,803), the U.S. (357,959), and Japan (261,669).

• Plant Varieties

China’s relevant office received 7,834 plant variety applications in 2019, up 36% in 2018. It now accounts for over one-third of the plant variety applications filed worldwide. China was followed by the Community Plant Variety Office of the European Union (CPVO; 3,525) and relevant offices of the U.S. (1,590), Ukraine (1,238), and Japan (822). Among the top five offices, China (+36%) and Ukraine (+1.1%) saw growth in filings 2019, while Japan (-6.6%), the U.S. (-1.2%), and CPVO (-0.8%) saw a drop in filings.

• Geographical Indications

In 2019, there were around 55,800 GIs in force worldwide. GIs are signs used on products with a specific geographical origin and possess qualities or a reputation due to that origin, such as Gruyère for cheese or Tequila for spirits. Germany (14,289) reported the largest number of GIs in force, followed by China (7,834), Hungary (6,494), and the Czech Republic (6,071).

GIs in force relating to “wines and spirits” accounted for around 56.6% of the 2019 world total, followed by agricultural products and foodstuffs (34.2%) and handicrafts (3.5%).

• Publishing Industry

Revenue generated by the trade and the educational sectors of the publishing industry of 21 countries amounted to USD 67.3 billion in 2019. The U.S. (USD 23.5 billion) reported the most considerable net revenue, followed by Japan (USD 16.1 billion), the Republic of Korea (USD 6.2 billion), Germany (USD 5.6 billion), the U.K. (USD 5.4 billion), and France (USD 3 billion).

Online sales generated more than half of total trade sector revenue in Sweden (50.1%) and the U.K. (55.2%). The U.S. (43.5%) and Turkey (22%) also had a large proportion of their total trade sector revenue generated by online sales.

The U.K. reported a combined total of around 202,000 published titles covering the trade and educational sectors in 2019. It was followed by the Russian Federation (115,171), France (107,143), Italy (100,266), and Spain (95,849).

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is the global forum for intellectual property policy, services, information, and cooperation. A specialized agency of the United Nations, WIPO assists its 193 member states in developing a balanced international IP legal framework to meet society’s evolving needs. It provides business services for obtaining IP rights in multiple countries and resolving disputes. It delivers capacity-building programs to help developing countries benefit from using IP. And it offers free access to unique knowledge banks of IP information.

Source: The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)


(The Editor is an Alumnus of the World Intellectual Property Organization Academy (WIPO Academy), Geneva, Switzerland.) StumbleUpon reddit Facebook Google Plus Tweet This Seed This on Newsvine

Edited & Posted by the Editor | 8:49 AM | View the original post

January 14, 2021

Indian Army signs a $20 million contract with ideaForge to procure SWITCH UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle)

idea Forge UAV

Photo: Indian Army signs a $20 million contract with ideaForge to procure SWITCH UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle).

MUMBAI, India, Jan. 14, 2021 — The Indian Army has signed an approximately $20 million contract for unknown quantities of a high-altitude variant of ideaForge’s SWITCH UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) to be delivered over one year. The Indian Army awarded ideaForge this contract after it emerged as the only vendor that qualified the operational requirements in an evaluation done in real-world conditions for a fast-track procurement. The deal marks a strategic shift in the Indian defense procurement process as the Indian Army goes on an aggressive modernization drive. It has also cemented ideaForge’s position as India’s largest manufacturer of drones for defense, homeland security, and industrial applications.

SWITCH UAV is an indigenous system built to cater to the most demanding surveillance operations of the Indian Forces. This Fixed-Wing VTOL (Vertical Take-off and Landing) UAV can be deployed at high altitude and harsh environments for day and night surveillance in Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) missions. It is man-portable and has the highest time on target compared to any other UAV in its class.

Speaking on the development, ideaForge CEO Ankit Mehta said, “SWITCH UAV is the culmination of insights and knowledge we have gained over years of experience in helping the Indian Forces operationalize UAVs in their ranks. The trials saw about a dozen national and global players compete to meet the operational requirements. SWITCH UAV is the only product that cleared the Indian Army’s stringent product trials and surpassed expectations. It is a testimony that our systems are built like a bird and tested like a tank. Our systems are fully ready to serve nations that seek to protect their territorial sovereignty.”

“A combination of world-class technology and a deep understanding of customer requirements has resulted in ideaForge bagging this contract against global competition. With the backing of reputed institutional investors such as WRVI, Infosys, and Qualcomm, ideaForge is set to grow. We plan to work with like-minded investors and partners to achieve our vision of premier drone company serving enterprise, security, and surveillance market globally,” said Ganapathy Subramaniam, Partner - WRVI Venture Capital, who also serves as Executive Chairman - ideaForge.

Source: ideaForge Technology

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 8:49 AM | View the original post

January 13, 2021

US Postal Service will issue new 2021 Stamps in January — Barns, Castillo de San Marcos.

US Postal Service

Photos: Barns - Pane of four stamps showing different barns. At the bottom of each stamp is the word “postcard.” “USA” is stacked vertically and printed at the top on the left-hand or right-hand side. Castillo de San Marcos - The stamp shows the Florida fortress’s digital image, with its name at the bottom and the value in the upper right-hand corner.

WASHINGTON, Jan. 13, 2021 — The U.S. Postal Service will release three new stamps as part of the 2021 price change: Barns, a 36-cent postcard stamp; Brush Rabbit, a 20-cent additional ounce stamp; and Castillo de San Marcos, a $7.95 Priority Mail stamp.

• Barns

The U.S. Postal Service has four new postcard stamps that celebrate the beauty and history of American barns. The artist created digital paintings of four types of iconic barns found in the rural American landscape. With differing qualities of light and color, each piece reflects one of the four seasons:

Ashley Walton designed the stamps with original artwork by Kim Johnson. Greg Breeding was the art director.

• Castillo de San Marcos

The latest Priority Mail stamp, which bears the new price, celebrates the oldest masonry fortification in the United States, the Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine, FL.

The stamp art features a digital illustration of the fortress based on a contemporary photograph. With a view toward the fort’s northeast corner, the artwork captures it in the golden glow of sunrise over Matanzas Bay. Art director Greg Breeding designed the stamp with art created by Chicago-based graphic illustrator Dan Cosgrove.

Source: U.S. Postal Service

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 8:49 AM | View the original post

January 11, 2021

Redesigned TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Collection features Fresh Racing Look.

TAG Heuer Carrera

TAG Heuer Carrera

TAG Heuer Carrera

TAG Heuer Carrera

As the luxury watchmaker celebrates its 160th anniversary, the iconic TAG Heuer Carrera, original racing chronograph, is relaunched with a range of sporty watches that bring the collection back to its roots.

TAG Heuer, founded in 1860 by Edouard Heuer in Switzerland’s Jura Mountains, is a luxury watch brand. Based in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, and with four production sites, TAG Heuer is active in 139 countries.

Source: TAG Heuer

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 3:12 AM | View the original post

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