Category — Education

European Researcher Concludes that Vedas Improve Brain Function

Among India’s ancient learning methods, textual memorization is the norm: traditional scholars (“pundits”), master many different types of Sanskrit poetry from the Vedas, the oldest scriptures of Hinduism. Pundits train for years to orally memorize and exactly these texts ranging  over 100,000 words.

Dr. James Hartzell, a postdoctoral researcher at the Basque Center on Cognition, Brain and Language, in Spain, entered the cognitive neuroscience doctoral program at the University of Trento, Italy in 2011, to study whether there were cognitive benefits from exercising verbal memory. He says that through the India-Trento Partnership for Advanced Research, “we recruited professional Vedic pundits in the Delhi region; then we used structural magnetic resonance imaging at India’s National Brain Research Center to scan the brains of pundits and controls matched for age, gender, handedness, eye-dominance and multilingualism.”

A man reciting mantras at the bank of a river

The study found something specific about intensive verbal memory training: the pundits’ right hippocampus—a region of the brain that plays a vital role in both short and long-term memory—had more gray matter than controls across nearly 75 percent of this subcortical structure. The pundits also showed substantially thickening of right temporal cortex regions that are associated with speech prosody and voice identity.

Hartzell wonders if the substantial increase in the gray matter of critical verbal memory organs means they are less prone to Alzheimer’s, and if so, this raises the possibility that verbal memory “exercising‘ or training might help elderly people at risk of mild cognitive impairment retard or, even more radically, prevent its onset.  The study was published in the scientific journal, Neuroimage

January 6, 2018   No Comments

India Tops Kearney’s Global Services Location Index

Extending its lead over other countries, India topped management consulting firm A.T. Kearney’s 2017 Global Services Location Index for the eighth consecutive year since its inception in 2004. Currently there are 200 multinational corporations operating in India and 1.1 million employees in Business Process Outsourcing, though the sector does face challenges from automation.

Live Mint reports that the index is based on metrics in three categories: financial attractiveness, people skills and availability, and business environment. Asian countries continue to dominate the Index with China and Malaysia at second and third spots, while Indonesia rose one place to rank fourth.

map of the world with 'outsource' written across it

According to Kearney, India’s overall financial competitiveness is due to the English-speaking skilled labor that none of the other low-cost countries can match, as well as an improved policy environment.

Ajay Gupta, partner at A.T. Kearney India, said, “Its [India’s] attractiveness as a global services destination continues to increase with its growing cost advantage against the United States, and the improving performance of Indian students on standardized tests.”

September 29, 2017   No Comments

Global Entrepreneurship Summit Will Showcase U.S.-India Partnership

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said that the Global Entrepreneurship Summit to be held in Hyderabad, India, will be another demonstration on how India and the U.S. can work together to advance the digital economy and entrepreneurial skills of their citizens.

To be hosted jointly by India and the U.S. from November 28-30 this year, the theme of this Summit is “Women First, Prosperity for all” and it will focus on supporting women entrepreneurs and fostering economic growth globally. Ivanka Trump will lead the United States delegation to the Summit, reports India Today.

GES Logo

India’s ambassador to the U.S., Navtej Sarna said, “The focus of the summit will be on four key areas: energy and infrastructure, health care and life sciences, financial technology and the digital economy and media and entertainment. This is the first time GES will be hosted in South Asia.”

GES will help participating U.S. companies better understand how to play a role in India’s new business start-up culture, said Alice Wells, Acting Secretary of State for South and Central Asia.

September 22, 2017   No Comments

‘Made in India’ LinkedIn Lite Extends to 60 Countries

 Sunnyvale, CA-based LinkedIn announced the roll out of its LinkedIn Lite app to Android users in India. Akshay Kothari, Head, LinkedIn India, said, “We have now been able to take all the LinkedIn experience and package it into an app that is less than 1 megabyte. This app will soon be extended to more than 60 countries.”

LinkedIn Lite, a mobile website for faster connectivity in weak network areas, was launched during CEO Jeff Weiner‘s visit to Bangalore in September last year, and is entirely developed by the company’s R&D unit in Bangalore. “We are seeing a lot of growth coming from tier-2 and tier-3 towns due to this initiative. In the past six months, unique visitors to our mobile site has doubled while the engagement on our site has gone up threefold,” Kothari added. The Economic Times reports that students have also been a key growth area for LinkedIn India, due to another India-made product, LinkedIn Placements, that has helped the company improve signups among students in the country, Kothari said.

LinkedIn is investing a lot of time in the learning space, developing more student-oriented content on its platform and on its online learning company Lynda.

LinkedIn Logo

August 9, 2017   No Comments

India Dominates Online Work Space

The Online Labor Index published by the ‘iLabor’ project of the Oxford Internet Institute, an affiliate of U.K.’s  University of Oxford, notes that India is the largest supplier of online labor. This report analyzed data for the first week of July, and reported that India is followed by Bangladesh, U.S., Pakistan, Philippines and the U.K. in what is being termed “digital gig work” or freelance work offered online.

The report analyses data from four online platforms – Fiverr, Freelancer, Guru, and PeoplePerHour. “Based on traffic statistics, we can estimate that these four sites represent at least 40% of the global market for platform-based online work,” says senior Oxford Internet Institute’s research fellow Vili Lehdonvirta.

Freelancing from home

Over half of the online work carried out in India is dominated by software development and the technology sector, followed by creative and multimedia services, and sales and marketing support, reports the Times of India.

 

July 22, 2017   No Comments