Schools to Close as Teachers Vote for Industrial Action

ASTI Protect Education Standards

Irish Teachers Are Important To The Next Generation ASTI – Protect Education Standards in Ireland Both primary and secondary schools across Ireland will close on 24 November after teachers from the three primary teachers’ unions voted in favor of industrial action in protest over potential public-sector pay cuts in the upcoming December Budget. The result was announced by the ASTI, INTO, and TUI trade unions shortly before lunchtime today, and the news was not well received by teachers. Many are looking for other options, including expanding their own education, in order to help make ends meet in their own homes, as well as being a more valued asset in the community. This includes…

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NAMA delayed by at least two months, says Fine Gael

The Government’s National Asset Management Agency (NAMA) may be delayed by at least two months as EU Commission approval is required before the new agency can go ahead, Fine Gael said today. The Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan TD confirmed to the Seanad today that EU Commission approval is still required before NAMA can start up its operations. This will cause a lengthy delay of at least two months before NAMA is up and running, according to Fine Gael Seanad Justice Spokesperson, Senator Eugene Regan. Regan also said that not only had the Minister confirmed that the NAMA Bill must be formally approved by the Commission, so too must the…

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E-commerce benefiting from economic crisis, says OECD

While the Irish and global retail sector is being pulverised by the ongoing recession, a new report from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) shows that e-commerce has fared well during the economic crisis and has seen continuing growth in many countries. According to the ‘Empowering Consumers in E-Commerce’ report, part of the reason for the improved fortunes of e-commerce is that as consumers have become more cost-conscious, they are increasingly going online to compare products and save money. In the US, for example, while most sectors were experiencing a downturn in the first quarter of 2009, online retail sales for 80 retailers rose by an average of…

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Mark Little to take one year leave of absence

mark little

RTÉ Prime Time presenter, Mark Little, has announced he is to take a year’s leave of absence to pursue a project that combines digital media and global journalism. His leave of absence will begin in the New Year. In a statement issued today, Little said the rise of social media platforms like Youtube, Twitter and Facebook provides an opportunity for journalists to change the way they report the world. “I would like to take a more direct role in that transformation,” he said. “Unfortunately, that means taking a break from my work with Miriam and the Prime Time team who have been like a family to me.  In particular, I…

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Elan/Biogen announce Tysabri’s use in cutting Crohn’s hospitalisations

Irish pharmaceutical firm Elan and its US partner Biogen have today announced that their multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri has been shown to significantly reduce the rate of hospitalisation in patients with moderate-to-severe Crohn’s disease. The data was presented at an oral session at the American College of Gastroenterology Annual Scientific Meeting in San Diego. “Hospitalisation accounts for a large proportion of the cost of Crohn’s disease management,” said Corey Siegel MD, director of the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Centre, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Centre in Lebanon, New Hampshire, and lead author of the analysis. “Therefore, we were encouraged to see that Tysabri reduced hospitalisation rates, particularly in the more difficult-to-treat subsets of patients…

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Paulson revealed US govt policy to Goldman Sachs – report

Goldman Sachs has hit the headlines again today, and for once the story does not concern the generous remuneration packages awarded to its staff. According to Felix Salmon at Reuters, Henry Paulson (pictured), the former US Treasury Secretary who was at the helm when the financial crisis hit in the autumn of 2008, held a meeting with Goldman Sachs’s board in Moscow in which he revealed details of future government policy. The revelation is contained in a new book, Too Big To Fail, written by New York Times columnist Andrew Ross Sorkin, which describes the events leading to the collapse of Lehman Brothers last year. Sorkin’s book alleges that Paulson…

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Twitter about to hit 5 billion tweets

According to tweet-counting website Gigatweet, Twitter is about to hit its five billionth tweet. At the time of writing the number of tweets stood at 4.9 billion and hurtling rapidly towards the magic milestone. Twitter is a free social-networking tool that allows users to ‘micro blog’ or ‘tweet’ in less than 140 characters. According to the GigaTweet counter, the world is hours away from its five billionth tweet. A new communications paradigmThe site has spawned not only a new form of messaging but a new form of openness that transcends media, politics, celebrity and much more. Twitter has also evolved into an impressive search engine that keeps users up to date…

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UCD nanotech lab to target €113bn energy tech market

One of the world’s leading scientific figures in the search for ways to harness the sun’s energy, Nobel prize winner Walter Kohn, will today open a new science lab to support the R&D; of new energy technologies at UCD. Using the facilities, scientists and industry will work together to develop nanotechnologies and products targeted at the global renewable energy market, worth an estimated €113bn by 2015. Nanotechnology involves the study and use of materials on an unimaginably small scale. Nano refers to a nanometre (nm). One nanometre is a millionth of a millimetre or about one eighty thousandth the width of a human hair. “At this scale, materials can behave…

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Financial services research cluster launched

The Government this morning announced its investment of more than €4m in the establishment of a new Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Strategic Research Cluster designed to create a centre of financial research excellence. The Financial Mathematics and Computation Cluster (FMC2) will bring together complementary expertise in financial mathematics, financial economics and computer science. Research at the new cluster, which will be led by Professor Anthony Brabazon of UCD, will initially focus on developing theory and methods for asset management to help enhance the development of the international financial services industry in Ireland and drive future employment in this area. Making the announcement, the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and…

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Bloomberg Buys BusinessWeek from US Publisher McGraw Hill

The US publisher McGraw Hill is to sell its popular business magazine BusinessWeek to Bloomberg . The acquisition will strengthen Bloomberg’s online, television and mobile products, Bloomberg Chairman Peter Grauer said in a statement yesterday. “BusinessWeek will be a powerful addition to our portfolio of leading news and information services,” he added. McGraw-Hill said the transaction would enable it to continue focusing resources on building the size, scale and global presence of its brands. Details of the deal were not disclosed. However, BusinessWeek cites “knowledgeable sources” in its story on the deal, saying that Bloomberg’s cash offer is in the US$2m to the US$5m range and that it has agreed to assume liabilities,…

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