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Will the Chinese Dream replace the American Dream? read more
Jul-12th-2012 | Post by expatree

Chinese Dream


China & USA

The American Dream has long been held up as the model for social mobility, allowing people from disparate backgrounds and varying levels of destitution to reinvent themselves. As first identified by a visiting Alexis de Tocqueville in his 1831 treatise, Democracy in America, the United States, unencumbered by class history or ethnic determinism, offered an unparalleled avenue for newcomers to advance in the world. In the years following de Tocqueville’s pithy analysis, tens of millions made the journey, as immortalized in Emma’s Lazarus’s 1883 sonnet, “The Great Colossus”: “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free”.

Many of these immigrants were able to establish highly-successful enterprises, rising from poverty to opulence in a single generation. Andrew Carnegie, born in a weaver’s cottage in rural Scotland, would become America’s greatest steel magnate and philanthropist. More recently, i

Steve Jobs and Manifestation of Creative Genius read more
Jul-2nd-2012 | Post by expatree

(Originally posted on October 21, 2011)

Steve Jobs - Eyes of a genius


Apple logo - Steve Jobs tribute

This month witnessed the passing of legend in the world of technology. Steve Jobs possessed rare combination of charisma, technological  prowess and aesthetic consciousness that made Apple products irresistible and revolutionized the way we used technology. However, more significant than any of these other traits, it was Jobs’ creative genius that allowed him to stand above his peers. While Jobs and Apple were not the first to develop the personal computer or portable MP3 player, the ability to visualize a world in which such products could be sleek, intuitive and user-friendly enabled the firm to successfully bring such technologies to the adoring masses.

Reflecting upon the life of Steve Jobs allows us to pose a number of interesting questions. Where does creative genius come from? Is it genetic or a product of environment? There is a large body of scientific research on what makes a genius, with no definitive consensus. Despite

Real Estate Market: Commercial Bubble Next? read more
Jul-2nd-2012 | Post by expatree

(Originally posted on August 27, 2011)
Shanghai Landscape

With much being made of skyrocketing residential real estate prices in Shanghai, commercial property has received relatively scant attention. Conversation surrounding real estate has largely centered on the prospects of a burst in the housing bubble and preventative efforts taken by the government. 

Measures undertaken by the People’s Bank of China, such as increased reserve requirements and restrictions placed on second mortgages, have had relatively propitious effects and housing speculation has been attenuated. However, these measures have largely been limited to the residential market, with commercial prices continuing to increase and engendering fear of a commercial real estate bubble.


Shanghai’s office rental prices skyrocketed in 2010, increasing to an average of RMB 7.5 per m2per day. Buoyed by strong fundamentals (the city’s economy grew by 9.9% in 2010) and a continued inf

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