Religious Diversity Around The World : Half of the Most Religiously Diverse Countries are in Asia-Pacific Region

Based on Pew Research Center’s RELIGION & PUBLIC LIFE PROJECT…

Comparing religious diversity across countries presents many challenges, starting with the definition of diversity. Social scientists have conceived of diversity in a variety of ways, including the degree to which a society is split into distinct groups; minority group size (in share and/or absolute number); minority group influence (the degree to which multiple groups are visible and influential in civil society); and group dominance (the degree to which one or more groups dominate society). Each of these approaches can be applied to the study of religious diversity.religious diversity

This study, takes a relatively straightforward approach to religious diversity. It looks at the percentage of each country’s population that belongs to eight major religious groups, as of 2010. The closer a country comes to having equal shares of the eight groups, the higher its score on a 10-point Religious Diversity Index.

In order to have data that were comparable across many countries, the study focused on five widely recognized world religions – Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam and Judaism – that collectively account for roughly three-quarters of the world’s population. The remainder of the global population was consolidated into three additional groups: the religiously unaffiliated (those who say they are atheists, agnostics or nothing in particular); adherents of folk or traditional religions (including members of African traditional religions, Chinese folk religions, Native American religions and Australian aboriginal religions); and adherents of other religions (such as the Baha’i faith, Jainism, Shintoism, Sikhism, Taoism, Tenrikyo, Wicca and Zoroastrianism).

Religious Diversity Around The World | Pew Research Center’s Religion & Public Life Project.

Gaps in Canada’s gender score show up on syllabus

The Globe and Mail

Every year, the World Economic Forum puts out the Global Gender Gap Report, which measures four key areas of life: economic participation, educational attainment, health outcomes and political participation. According to the 2013 report, Canada has a perfect score for women’s educational attainment; however, all this supposed equality actually measures is enrolment. Because more than 50 per cent of postsecondary students in Canada are female, Canada gets a perfect score.

So is that it? Is the educational gender gap really closed? A number of sources, both popular and expert, would have you believe that the education gap in Canada is indeed closed. If inequality exists on campus, it is only in select fields (science and math), but certainly not the arts and humanities. I would like to suggest that the gender gap is not that simple and, in fact, despite the numbers, a large gender gap remains on our campuses even in the arts and humanities.

Gaps in Canada’s gender score show up on syllabus – The Globe and Mail.

Global Slavery Index 2013 :Walk Free Foundation –

The Global Slavery Index provides a ranking of 162 countries, reflecting a combined measure of three factors: estimated prevalence of modern slavery by population, a measure of child marriage, and a measure of human trafficking in and out of a country. The measure is heavily weighted to reflect the first factor, prevalence. A number one ranking is the worst, 160 is the best.

Walk Free Foundation – Global Slavery Index 2013 | Findings – Walk Free Foundation – Global Slavery Index 2013.


Men, it’s time to get out there and really talk: Men in Crisis?

Based on the Globe and Mail story:

May be…young men lack such an ability, or forums, to share.

But the reality is that people of all ages lack such a venue, as they teeter, off kilter, through life. For the many men who lack intimacy skills and close, whole-life friendships – friendships in which they share all aspects of their being – this avenue can be particularly liberating. Read:

Men, it’s time to get out there and really talk – The Globe and Mail.

‘Visible minority:’ A misleading concept that ought to be retired !

Statscan predicts that one third of Canada’s population will be a visible minority by the year 2031. The largest minority group is projected to be South Asian.

The Globe and Mail

In Canada, anyone who considers themself neither white nor aboriginal is classified by the government, for a number of purposes, as a visible minority. It is an artificial concept that has become unnecessary and counterproductive.

Ultimately, the dividing line is arbitrary. For example, Arabic people from North Africa and the Middle East are counted as “white” in the U.S. Census. Yet anyone who ticks the Arab box on Canada’s National Household Survey is counted as a visible minority – unless they tick both the white box and the Arab box. Then they’re white.Indeed, there is something almost racist about the assumption that whites are the standard against which anyone else is noticeably, visibly different. That may be why the United Nations Council on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination has asked Canada to reflect upon its use of the term visible minority.

‘Visible minority:’ A misleading concept that ought to be retired – The Globe and Mail.

What is the the key to super-happiness ?

The inaugural Forbes 400 Lifetime Achievement Award for Social Entrepreneurship was presented to Dr.Muhammad Yunus this week. Yunus was humble and gracious as he gave thanks for the recognition. Yet the man who is regarded as the godfather of lending to the poor didn’t miss the opportunity to send a gentle, but crystal-clear message to the world’s ultra-rich. “Making money is a happiness. And that’s a great incentive,” he told the billionaires and near-billionaires over dinner in the United Nations Delegates Dining Room. “Making other people happy is a super-happiness.”

Yunus founded Grameen Bank and pioneered the concept of lending to the poor through microcredit, and has been recognized not only with the Nobel, but also the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Congressional Gold Medal, and a host of other prestigious honors. His Grameen Bank began making loans to poor women when no one else would give them credit. Now the women Grameen serves own 97% of the bank themselves.

To read/watch: Nobel Prize Winner Muhammad Yunus: The Key To Super-Happiness [VIDEO] – Forbes.


Transforming the ivory tower:

The case for a new postsecondary education system

The Globe and Mail, Published Friday, Oct. 05 2012.

More students are attending university than ever before, a fact that puts Canada at the top of the world’s most educated countries. But what students are finding are overcrowded classrooms and outmoded teaching methods. And when they leave university, they are likely saddled with debt. In this interactive, The Globe and Mail shows the challenges facing post-secondary education and feature the voices of innovators who are trying to come up with solutions. Video: Our education system is ready for reform – The Globe and Mail.