• Alumni

Activity Feed

On November 20, 2016, J commented on Digital Farming :

Nice post,

I agree with your point that digital solutions can help farmers have greater yields at a lower cost. Moving forward I am concerned about the economical viability of these solutions in both:
– countries that are developing
– plants that do not have high economical yields per unit of land
In these cases, it seems unlikely that anybody would invest in current digital solutions. How do you envision the market of digital agricultural solutions moving forward? Will it become a commodity or something only available in a few developed countries?

On November 20, 2016, J commented on Clear (jet)Blue Skies :


Very interesting post. In the last years the aerospace industry has been evolving with incremental improvements to reach excellence standards. The examples that you outline in the post are some examples of incremental improvements.

However the aerospace industry is directly impacted by both the digital challenge and the environmental challenge [1]. They will have to solve both equally well to be sustainable in the long term. As far as I am concerned, incremental improvements are not enough but disruptive improvements should be put in place. Is JetBlue spending time and resources to solve problems likely to arise in the short term without devoting time to those that will impact the company harshly in the long term?

[1] Air Transport Action Group . 2016. Facts and figures about air transportation. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.atag.org/. [Accessed 20 November 2016].

On November 20, 2016, J commented on Are smart cribs the solution for exhausted parents? :

Great post Coff,

It seems that there are lots of companies trying to ease parents’ lives and Google is no exception. However, I am a bit skeptical about these innovations since it somehow erodes the relationship between kids and their parents. Researchers have shown that parents’ presence is fundamental to foster kids’ development. If parents are present but absent the impact in the development of the kids can even be negative.
In the 21st century it is becoming more and more difficult for parents in developed countries to balance family life with work life. I will therefore be very cautious about innovative solutions that disintermediate the relationship between parents and their kids.

[1] A Mother Far from Home. 2016. The Dangers of Present But Absent Parenting. [ONLINE] Available at: http://amotherfarfromhome.com/present-but-absent-parent/. [Accessed 20 November 2016].
Add to My References

Great post!

It is clear that the use of digital resources in the world of education will be mainstream in the following decades. However, I am a bit skeptical about how much digital resources can improve the learning experience. I received a traditional education that did not use digital resources at all, yet I think that the education I received was great not only because all the knowledge that I acquired but more important because it taught me values such as: effort, sacrifice, discipline, etc.
Since I have the impression that digital is similar to gaming or fun among kids, I think that it will be hard to transmit these same values to the generations to come. Digital resources can make learning fun, but will it be able to force kids to put time in studying topics that require effort, discipline and sacrifice?

On November 20, 2016, J commented on bKash, BRAC’s venture into mobile banking :

Interesting post!

It seems that the expansion of bKash is best in class when compared to similar platforms in other countries. However I am a bit concerned by how their fees structures can affect their market penetration if attacked by competitors charging smaller fees (or even no fees). The main difference between bKash and Venmo is that bKash can be used as a savings account. Since it is free to perform most common operations in Venmo, (https://venmo.com/about/fees/) do you think that bKash should evolve towards a free model? They are in a business that hinges on the network effect and they are clearly the leader, but will this competitive advantage allow them to charge a premium for their services?

On November 7, 2016, Jaime G. commented on Airbus: more value, less impact :


On the contrary Airbus claims that their A350 XWB provides a 25 per cent step-change in fuel efficiency compared to its current long-range competitor (http://www.a350xwb.com/eco-efficiency/). It seems that it all depends on what they consider as competitors.

As far as I am concerned, the 787 dreamliner and the A350 xwb have similar performances.

On November 7, 2016, Jaime G. commented on Preparing for Impact: Will Airlines Survive Climate Change? :


I am with you that a more profound reflection is needed to tackle the environmental issues in the aerospace industry. Not only are jetliners pollutant in terms if CO2, there are many other pollutants that are present in the jet exhausts. Therefore, in order to really combat this problem, the whole industry has to be reinvented. The question that arises is, why have no changes taken place in the last decades?
The aerospace industry is highly regulated and certification requirements are extremely demanding. As a result, high upfront investments have to be made before the development of a new idea starts. It seems that main aircraft manufacturers (e.g. Airbus and Boeing) still do not want to really invest on disruptive technologies. Until then, airlines will have a hard time to make the desired profit.

On November 7, 2016, Jaime G. commented on Future of Small Farms in Big Texas :

I love to hear that Wickman farm has grown so much since 1985 and I hope that it continues to grow in the following years. I like that Wickman farm has started to take action to fight climate change. There is a company called Indigo Agriculture (https://www.indigoag.com/) that is working hard to leverage natural capabilities of microbes to enhance crop yields under non-favorable circumstances such as droughts or heat excess. They will harvest their first optimized cotton first and it seems that yields will be around 10% more than conventional cotton. They still do not have alfalfa but it is likely that it will be available in the short term. Keep an eye on it!

On November 7, 2016, Jaime G. commented on U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service: Responding to an Existential Threat :

I am happy to learn that there is such a powerful association in America capable of creating environmental awareness among a sector of the population that is very attached to the nature. At a more granular level, the Fish & Wildlife Service (“FWS”) has the challenge of advising states on the strategies they should pursue in this field. As well as that, there are many businesses and individuals who earn a living performing activities related to hunting or fishing. The FWS should also concentrate on them, explaining the potential impact of climate change in their business so that they are able to react on time and continue to be sustainable (e.g. through a change in the business model or in the game they are focused on)

I like to see that McDonalds France is taking action to make its logistics environmentally friendly. I also like their electrical trucks and the renewable oil to power their fleet. On top of that, I think that they should also concentrate on the sustainability of the food they are serving. Producing meat has a considerable impact in the environment in terms of CO2 generation and water consumption. Initiatives in these lines could provide sustainability in the long term completing the end to end process from raw materials creation to food delivery to customers.

On November 7, 2016, Jaime G. commented on Boeing: Dreaming Big to Fight Climate Change :

Aerospace industry is an industry that is not very dynamic due to regulatory constraints. It takes a considerable amount of time and money to develop and certify any kind of product that will be used in this industry. Furthermore, not only the objects that fly have to be certified, but also all the machines and labor used in the end-to-end process. This fact has maybe hindered disruptive innovation in the aerospace industry and as you state in the post, main manufacturers have followed incremental improvement strategies in the last decades.
Moving forward, I think that a disruptive technology has to be developed to overcome the climate change related hurdles associated with conventional air travel. I do not know it it will be the electric plane, a totally different design to merge fuselage and wings in one piece, environmentally neutral fuels, innovative ways of propulsion or even long-haul sub orbital flights. Lots of investment is put in this field and I hope to see real results soon that will benefit all societies worldwide.

On November 7, 2016, Jaime G. commented on The Death of the Ski Industry? :

I agree that the ski resort industry is one of the industries that is going to suffer in the short term. Artificial snow does not match natural snow in terms of quality and experience (experience skiers usually enjoy more skiing outside the tracks within forests than in crowded regular tracks) and therefore, I think that putting additional artificial snow facilities is not a solution in the long term. In addition, no matter how advanced these artificial snow solutions are, certain weather conditions will have to be met to actually produce the snow.
Therefore, I believe that the future of ski resorts hinges on identifying the limitations and diversifying the risk of not having snow through the development of parallel activities such as sightseeing, trekking, hiking, mountain biking, animal reserves, etc. It is true that these activities are usually not as profitable as high-end exclusive skiing but at the end of the day, it is not better something than nothing?