Archive | risk

Fear of using nuclear energy might be contributing to global warming

Remember the Chernobyl nuclear reactor disaster? In 1986, there was an accident during a test at the Chernobyl nuclear plant in the Ukraine and the resulting explosion released at least 5% of the radioactive reactor core into the atmosphere. The radiation released was 400 times the radiation produced by the bombing of Hiroshima during World…

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Change Is The Only Constant

Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened. This optimistic quote is frequently attributed to Theodor Geisel (aka the popular children’s author, Dr. Seuss). In fact, the saying likely pre-dates him by 100 years and should be attributed to the poet Ludwig Jacobowski. Regardless of the true origin, it’s a useful quote to pull…

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The Poison of Food

For reasons I’d rather not go into, I decided to do a little research into food poisoning with a seemingly simple question: How does food get poisoned? It turns out that most food-related illnesses can be separated into two types: toxins and infection. The traditional use of the term food poisoning stems from the existence…

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Are Your Co-Workers Good For Your Health?

Last week I wrote about Pret A Manger which rewards employees on behaviors such as niceness and teamwork, not just traditional measures of performance. Pret believes incenting these behaviors improves the health of the organization which leads to more sustainable performance. A 2011 research study from Tel Aviv University backs them up and suggests having…

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The Nocebo Effect is Serious Medicine

A decade ago I read an intriguing article entitled “The Nocebo Effect: Placebo’s Evil Twin” which argued a patient’s pessimistic attitude could have negative consequences on their health. Research showed that patients who were warned of gastrointestinal side effects from repeated use of aspirin were almost three times as likely to exhibit the side effects…

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The Upside of the Downturn

As a sound bite example of the Upside of the Downturn, Geoff Colvin suggested that death rates go down in a recession.  Regardless of the accuracy of the claim, it’s worth remembering that the recession provides new opportunities for companies willing to take risks.  To emphasize this point, Colvin subtitled his book “Ten Management Strategies to…

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