October 2010

A Sustainable Retirement Age

The demonstrations in France over the government's decision to raise the retirement age are a vivid indication of the contentiousness of securing the financial viability of pension systems. We wonder: If the retirement age were set at 85% of life expectancy at birth, what would be the "right" retirement age in the rich OECD countries?

Continue reading

Sizing Up Brazil

Amidst all the hype surrounding its Asian counterparts China and India, Brazil has quietly but firmly established itself as one of the world's most dynamic economies. As the country prepares to elect a new president, we wonder: Which of these statements about Brazil are true?

Continue reading

Nobel Women

Every fall, the Nobel Foundation announces the new crop of Nobel Prize winners. Of the total 813 individual winners between 1901 and 2010, we wonder: In which fields have women received the most Nobel Prizes?

Continue reading

The Young Continent

Many developed countries, particularly Japan and those in Europe, are struggling with rapid aging and projected declining populations. Meanwhile, some of the world's developing countries are facing rising populations and growing numbers of youths. We wonder: By 2050, which continent will be home to one-third of the world's youths?

Continue reading

The Obesity Epidemic

Obesity is fast becoming a major global public health crisis. While it has long been a major problem in developed countries, it is becoming increasingly common in developing countries as well. We wonder: Of the world's 20 major economies, how many have obesity rates of at least 25%?

Continue reading