Global Cultural Heritage Sites, Tourism and the Economy

[Note on the author: Emily Cronin is Business Development & Marketing Coordinator at Barker Langham cultural consultancy. She was a student on the City, University of London Writing for Business short course which ended in July 2018. Emily wrote this blog as part of a homework/in-class exercise on that course.]

What impact will the emerging new cultural heritage sites have on global tourism?

In May of this year, I was intrigued to read about the development of the site and area around al-Ula. An archaeological treasure located in Saudi Arabia, al-Ula was once home to the Nabateans who also inhabited the famous city of Petra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Jordan. The sites are famous for their buildings carved in stone; the architecture representing a rich combination of Roman, Islamic and Byzantine influences.

Is The Lebanese Economy On The Fringe Of Breakdown?

[Note on the author: Carla Haddad is a senior translator, editor and examiner with the Chartered Institute of Linguists. Carla is currently a student on the City, University of London Writing for Business short course which started in May 2018. She wrote this blog as part of a homework/in-class exercise on that course.]

Amid the gloomy picture of an economy in the red, burdened by large deficits and a hefty public debt-to-GDP ratio, will these factors affect the credit rating outlook for Lebanon in the medium to longer term?

Building the Virtual Echo Chamber

[Note on the author: Elma Jenkins works in project support for the RHEA Group. Elma is currently a student on the City, University of London Writing for Business short course which started in May 2018. She wrote this blog as part of a homework/in-class exercise on that course.]

Society is addicted to new media – Google, newsfeeds, tweets and targeted ads – which have been widely blamed for creating more dividing lines in society. Certainly they have brought the psychology of human decision making into politics. No doubt there are groups out there who are being paid to explore this realm. But can new media really manipulate, or is it just clever PR?

More people are sharing their data online than ever before, and the growth is projected to continue into 2020 (Statista, 2017):

Increasingly local knowledge is being digitized, with a proliferation of data portals such as Wikipedia; digital literature collections such as Project Gutenberg; crowd sourcing sites such as Quora; and open data sites such as data.gov.uk. They show a trend towards digitization in government and society but the general public has very little understanding as to how and what gets digitized and, crucially, who decides. A lot of what gets put online is not really useful: it can even be outright misleading. The battle for our attention online has only just begun.

More Than Just An Assistant: Should We Be Concerned About Google Duplex?

[Note on the author: Daria Kravchenko is Group Digital Marketing Manager at Hays Recruitment. Daria is currently a student on the City, University of London Writing for Business short course which started in May 2018. She wrote this blog as part of a homework/in-class exercise on that course.]

Whether you personally are a loyal fan of virtual assistants, trusting Alexa to set your alarm and handle Amazon shopping, or a sceptic avoiding Artificial Intelligence (AI) at all costs, the fact remains that a substantial amount of global effort is going into developing technology that can interact with humans seamlessly, in the same way that we do with each other.

Despite all the technological advances, progress in this field has remained limited so far. Sure, quizzing Siri on the meaning of life can bring on some giggles, but the overall language processing capabilities of existing chatbots are far from advanced. We would never assume there’s a living and breathing person on the other end of the line, when it’s just a machine providing scripted answers in a stilted computerised voice. Right?

Well, that might have been true up until now, but it looks like things have begun to change.