The Virgin Mary may not be able to pull Brazil out of a deep recession, but her church-sponsored house calls do wonders to ease economic malaise among participating Catholic families. Pilar Olivares/Reuters

This old Catholic ritual is giving Brazil’s economy a small boost, one Virgin Mary statuette at a time

For a century, Brazil's Catholic Church has sent holy statues out to parishioners' homes. A new study finds that these visits create a local subeconomy, benefitting families and the church.
Cutting off the Maduro regime’s cash flow won’t help the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela, where hunger, poverty and sickness are deepening the nation’s plunge into chaos. AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos

Venezuela: Why Trump’s sanctions won’t work

New US sanctions against Venezuela deliver a clear condemnation of the Maduro regime's authoritarian maneuvering but overlook two key problems: Russian meddling and the humanitarian crisis.
NATO forces board a suspected pirate vessel. UK Ministry of Defence

NATO at sea: deeper role for alliance in maritime security

As NATO meets in Wales, the public’s attention is bound to be on how the organisation will handle the conflict in Ukraine. But the meeting is also an important window of opportunity to develop a long term…
Is freelancing the future of employment? Pixabay

Is freelancing the future of employment?

Freelancing is hardly the glamorous, coffee-fueled industry shown on TV. In OECD countries, most gig workers are in the service sector.
Tax sheltering is not just the domain of exotic Caribbean isles. Major world powers, including the United Kingdom, play a critical and previously undisclosed role in global tax avoidance. CORPNET

These five countries are conduits for the world’s biggest tax havens

The Netherlands, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, Singapore and Ireland are among the rich countries that funnel major corporate money into secret offshore tax shelters, according to a new study.
Phone manufacturers, like the Dutch company Fairphone, require suppliers of raw materials used in their phones to improve employment conditions for their workers. Mike Hutchings/Reuters

What businesses can do to stamp out slavery in their supply chains

Businesses can use their purchasing power to change the actions of their suppliers and help to eradicate slavery - both in Australia and across the world.
In the seventeenth century lawyers, civil servants and other new professionals began to work from offices in Amsterdam, London and Paris. British Museum/Flickr

A short history of the office

The history of the office illustrates not only how our work has changed but also how work's physical spaces respond to cultural, technological and social forces.
In Cuba, unlike in many Latin American countries, when you see children on the street, they’re not begging; they’re playing. And therein lies Castro’s dilemma: how to reform Cuba’s stagnant economy without losing what’s working? Dan Lundberg/flickr

Castro’s conundrum: finding a post-communist model Cuba can follow

Cuba won't tolerate the high social costs paid by China and Vietnam in their shift to market capitalism, but its economy desperately needs a reboot.

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