Morning Advantage: Gender Wars, Chinese Style

China’s one-child policy has changed the expectations of professional women, according to this excellent Wharton report based on extensive interviews. As Alice Au, a senior executive at the search firm Spencer Stuart, in Beijing puts it: "You can have your one child and you're done, so you can basically go on with your life." But although China's rapid industrialization, inflation, and the Communist Party's efforts to promote gender equality have propelled more women into the workplace, traditional gender roles prevail.

On the one hand, says real estate executive As Li Hong, “When I come home, my husband expects me to take care of household duties and raise our son, even if I make more than he does." But on the other, 80% of the women surveyed said a man does not deserve to have a girlfriend if he makes less than the equivalent of $650 a month. That’s harsh, considering the average urban salary was only $300 in 2010.

WHAT YOUR VENDOR DOESN'T WANT YOU TO KNOW

How to Build a Private Cloud (Datamation)

Don’t build a whole new IT infrastructure from scratch, like the vendors want you to. A better approach, though one many vendors will tell you won’t work, warns Jeff Vance in this smart piece, is to augment your existing physical systems by building additional cloud-based capacity. Vance further suggests taking a more sophisticated approach to ROI than many companies did when they first switched from mainframes to servers — merely upping the cost of the initial conversion. Any measure of success should also include demonstrable increases in end-user productivity and decreases in the time spent on administrative tasks.

TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE?

Will Thorium Nuclear Energy Save Us All? (The Telegraph)

To the tune of $350 million, China’s National Academy of Science is bankrolling an effort to develop nuclear energy from thorium. The U.S. has buried tons of the stuff, which is a naturally occurring radioactive byproduct of rare-earth mining. China has enough to power its electricity needs for 20,000 years. In theory, thorium-powered molten salt reactors would produce less waste and carbon-dioxide emissions than traditional uranium-fueled water reactors. And since they don’t get super hot, they can’t melt down. “If the Chinese can crack thorium,” the Telegraph concludes, “the world will need less oil, coal, and gas than feared. Wind turbines will vanish from our landscape. There will less risk of a global energy crunch, less risk of resource wars, and less risk of a climate tipping point.”

BONUS BITS:

Good News, Bad News, Sad News

How the World Won the War on Pirates (Foreign Policy)
The True Cost of a Bad Boss (YouTube Minute MBA)
How Eco-Consumers Undermine Green Products (Network for Business Sustainability)

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