PEST ANALYSIS “ENGLAND” The PEST analysis is a framework that strategy consultants use to scan the external macro-environment in which a firm operates. PEST is an acronym for the following factors: • Political • Economic • Social • Technological  Political Factors(incl. Legal) • Environmental regulations and protection: As the menace of coal smoke receded the society changed its name (to the National Society for Clean Air) and its focus, and in the 1970s began to campaign vigorously on air pollution from industry and, increasingly, transport. During this period membership was mainly (although far from exclusively) drawn from local authorities, with some industrial membership. Perhaps the main achievement of the Society after the Clean Air Acts was the development of the concept of Local Air Quality Management and the incorporation of this in the Environment Act 1995. The original Environment Bill was intended to deal with issues such as the establishment of the Environment Agency, contaminated land, National Parks and waste topics. • Tax policies Britain is becoming a less attractive place to invest and work in because of government tax plans, trade and investment minister Digby Jones said on Friday, the latest non-political appointee to question policy. The ruling Labor party has come under pressure to match opposition plans to raise more tax from wealthy foreigners living and working in Britain. It has proposed to end tax breaks which mean rich residents who are non-domiciled for fiscal purposes pay no UK tax. • International trade regulations and restrictions a. Import Tariffs Customs duty is assessed on the fair market value of imported goods at the time they are landed in the UK. Import prices for products entering the UK from nonEU states generally consist of: Cost, Insurance, Freight and Duty, with VAT of 15% levied on the aggregate value. This sum is the exporter’s “landed cost, duty paid.”The commercial invoice value is usually accepted as the normal price, but if a preferential arrangement has been established between the overseas supplier and the importer, or an unrealistic value has been declared, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) reserves the right to assess a fair market value for duty purposes. The duty is payable at the time the goods are imported, but established importers can defer payment for an average of 30 days. In addition to customs duties on imported goods, an excise tax is levied on in-country sales of alcohol, tobacco, and road vehicles, and on sales of oil and petroleum products. 1 b. Trade Barriers The UK has no significant trade or investment barriers and no restrictions on the transfer of capital or repatriation of profits. The very few barriers that exist are almost all attributable to UK implementation of EU Directives and regulations. Import Requirements and Documentation A limited range of goods requires import licenses, which are issued by the UK Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform’s Import Licensing Branch. These include firearms and explosives, nuclear materials, controlled drugs and certain items of military equipment. U.S. Export Controls U.S. exports to the UK are subject to the normal U.S. export control regulations, administered by the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) for dual-use items and the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) for military end-use items. In June 2007, President Bush and Prime Minister Blair announced a forthcoming bilateral Defense Trade Cooperation Treaty, intended to greatly reduce licensing requirements arising from government-to government defense programs. At the time of writing, the Treaty is under review by the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee. In addition to International Trafficking in Arms Regulations (ITAR), reexports from the UK and the activities of UK-based subsidiaries, are subject to UK export controls. These are managed by the Export Control Organization (ECO), an office of the UK Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR). U.S. companies supplying certain restricted items appearing on the UK Military List, including missile and long-range UAV technology, are encouraged to consult guidance available from the ECO website on the trafficking and brokering provisions contained in the UK Export Control Act 2002. Temporary Entry Raw materials, temporarily imported for incorporation into products for export, may be admitted without payment of duties and taxes. The importer must provide a bank or insurance company guarantee or indemnity for the applicable duties and taxes. Goods intended for unaltered re-export may also be imported free of duty for a period of up to six months by prior arrangement with Her Majesty’s Revenue & Custom (HMRC). Temporary entries and goods imported for technical examination and testing are subject to a VAT deposit scheme with VAT refunded following the re-export of the goods. Products imported for repair, calibration, or incorporation are admitted with conditional relief from duty and VAT pending correct disposal of goods, usually re-export from the European Community. Professional and demonstration equipment may be temporarily imported into the UK free of duty and tax under the Customs Convention on the Temporary Importation of Professional Equipment. Additionally, these goods may also be imported under the above-mentioned VAT deposit scheme for temporary entries. Labeling and Marking Requirements In the UK, origin, weight and dimension, chemical composition and appropriate hazard warnings are required for consumer protection purposes on any product offered for retail sale. If the product cannot be labeled or marked, the data may be included on any packaging, accompanying printed material, or product literature. European and British clothing and shoe sizes are differently marked, and special provision may have to be made for apparel retail labeling. Dual labeling is strongly supported by the UK, which uses the practice as a cost-saving measure in its exports to North America. c. d. e. f. 2 g. Prohibited and Restricted Imports Prohibited imports include AM citizens band radios, switchblade knives, devices that project toxic, noxious or harmful substances (e.g., tear gas), counterfeit coins and currency, certain types of pornography and hormone-treated beef. The UK participates in the Wassenaar Arrangement for the control of dual-use exports; the Australia Group (AG) for the control of chemical and biological weapons; and the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group (NSG) for nuclear-related goods, preventing the export of restricted goods and technology to countries of proliferation concern. The UK also supports United Nations’ sanctions restricting exports to certain other destinations. Although sensitive to the extraterritorial application of U.S. law in export controls, the UK authorities cooperate with the U.S. in preventing the re-export of sensitive goods and technology of U.S.-origin to unauthorized destinations, when the enforcement action is based on multilateral controls. Customs Regulations and Contact Information The documents required for shipments include the commercial invoice, bill of lading or airway bill, packing list, insurance documents, and, when required, special certificates of origin, sanitation, ownership, etc. A copy of the commercial invoice should accompany the shipment to avoid delays in customs clearance. It is worth noting that imprecise descriptions are a common reason for goods being held without customs clearance, meaning that a clear description of the goods is essential and should be worded in such a way as to describe the goods to an individual who may not necessarily have an understanding of a particular industry or article. A clear description of goods should satisfy three basic questions as to what the product is, for what is it used, and of what it is made. No special form of invoice is required, but all of the details needed to establish the true value of the goods should be given. At least two additional copies of the invoice should be sent to the consignees to facilitate customs clearance. Consular documents are not required for shipments to the UK. h. • Contract enforcement law A contract is a promise or a set of promises for the breach of which the law gives a remedy, or the performance of which the law in some way recognizes as a duty. This may be seen as giving three interconnected elements: a. A promise In the context of English law, a reference to a promise here may be seen as misleading. It is often (rightly) stated that English law will not give effect to a mere promise and that an agreement, or meeting of minds, is required. In fact, this is simply a way of distinguishing between two types of promise, namely those which do and don't give rise to a legal duty. Thus, a promise to meet one's other half for dinner at 7pm gives rise to no legal obligation - it is a "mere" promise - whereas a promise to sell someone a car for £5000 gives rise to legal obligation. b. A legal duty arising from that promise Here, English contract doctrine distinguishes between bilateral and unilateral contracts. A bilateral contract gives rise to obligations on both sides. Thus in a contract of sale, the seller has an obligation to transfer title in the thing sold to the buyer, whilst the buyer has an obligation to pay the price. A unilateral contract, by contrast, gives rise to obligations on one side only. Thus "I will give you £100 if you run a marathon" gives rise to a legal duty on the maker of the statement (the promisor) to pay the money if the race is run, whilst the person to whom the statement is made (the promisee) is under no obligation to run in the first place. 3 c. A remedy for breach of that duty In considering the development of remedies, a fundamental distinction in English law between common law (often just abbreviated to law) and equity must be understood. For much of its history, England had two separate systems of law working side by side, each of which had different rules. One, administered by the courts of common pleas and King’s Bench, was called "the common law"; the other, presided over by the Lord Chancellor in the court of chancery was "equity". Since the Judicature Acts of the nineteenth century the two systems have been administered by the same courts, although they remain separate sets of doctrine. Most important for our current purposes is that the two systems developed different sets of remedies for breach of contract, although other equitable rules which have application to contracts will be discussed as they arise. Proof of promise: Objective intention Form of promise: Offer & acceptance Form of promise: Certainty Validity of promise: Intention to create legal relations Validity of promise: Consideration d. e. f. g. h. • Consumer protection The United Kingdom, as member state of the European Union, is bound by the consumer protection directives of the EU. Domestic (UK) laws originated within the ambit of contract and tort but, with the influence of EU law, it is emerging as an independent area of law. In many circumstances, where domestic law is in question, the matter judicially treated as tort, contract, restitution or even criminal law. Consumer Protection issues are dealt with when complaints are made to the Director-General of Fair Trade. The Office of Fair Trading [3]will then investigate, impose an injunction or take the matter to litigation. However, consumers cannot directly complain to the OFT. Complaints need to be made to Consumer Direct who will provide legal advice to complainants, or re-direct the individual complaint to Trading Standards for investigation. Due to restrictions within the Enterprise Act 2002, individual complainants are unable to be told whether their case is being investigated or not. In very rare cases, Consumer Direct may direct a very large number of complaints to the OFT to be considered as a systemic complaint. The OFT can also be engaged by consumer groups e.g. The Consumers Association or the statutory consumer protection body - Consumer Focus - via a super complaint. The OFT rarely prosecute companies, however, preferring a light touch regulation approach. Consumer complaints against companies are not published, but investigation work, undertakings and enforcements are located at [2]. Many of the consumer protection laws e.g. Distance Selling Regulations 2000 or Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Act 1997 are actually UK implementations of EU directives. The OFT is one of the bodies responsible for enforcing these rules. This leads to a problem in that these examples of legislation are clearly designed to deal with individual complaints but the OFT will only deal with systemic complaints and will ignore individual complainants redirecting them back to Consumer Direct. The Office of Fair Trading [3] also acts as the UK's official consumer and competition watchdog, with a remit to make markets work well for consumers, and at a local, municipal level by Trading Standards departments. General consumer advice can be obtained from Consumer Direct or via a local branch of the Citizen's Advice Bureau. • Employment laws The law has given employees – and in many cases other workers who might not count as employees – rights and entitlements in relation to how they are disciplined and dismissed, how their grievances are handled, wages, absence from work and sickness, holidays, work breaks and working hours, time off for 4 family emergencies, maternity and paternity leave, the right to apply for flexible working, redundancy and retirement. All workers have the right not to be discriminated against in relation to their gender or orientation, race, age, disabilities, or religion and beliefs. Staff who feel they have been denied their rights have redress by taking their employers to an Employment Tribunal. The chances of this happening have increased three-fold for employers in the past decade or so. There was a year on year increase in Employment Tribunal claims of 56 per cent last year (2009-10) bringing the number of claims received to their highest level ever at 236,100 claims (source: Tribunals Service). In unfair dismissal cases employers can be ordered to pay compensation of more than £76,000. In discrimination cases compensation awards are theoretically unlimited and six-figure payouts are not uncommon. • Government organization / attitude I believe USA and UK knew the truth that no one tried communist system by its strict definition…. China is a State Capitalist while Russia is a totalitarian government that is breaking up into small capitalist states… Karl Marx’ vision has never been achieved yet, and in fact he said, just like those religious icons, it will be a last form of government system globally and it will require complete transformation…- And it is beginning to become evident as climate change is beginning to be so evident as well, and nuclear holocaust is indeed a real threat on society built on greed and mistrust… These two nations are definitely contemplating on such system… • Competition regulation The section 59 of the Competition Act 1998 provides that UK rules are to be applied in line with European jurisprudence. Like all competition law, that in the UK has three main tasks. a. Prohibiting agreements or practices that restrict free trading and competition between business entities. This includes in particular the repression of cartels. b. Banning abusive behavior by a firm dominating a market, or anti-competitive practices that tend to lead to such a dominant position. Practices controlled in this way may include predatory pricing, tying, price gouging, refusal to deal and many others. c. Supervising the mergers and acquisitions of large corporations, including some joint ventures. Transactions that are considered to threaten the competitive process can be prohibited altogether, or approved subject to "remedies" such as an obligation to divest part of the merged business or to offer licenses’ or access to facilities to enable other businesses to continue competing. • Political Stability Some form of cross party collaboration is essential if market confidence in sterling and the UK governments triple A credit rating is to be retained, now that we know that no political party in the new UK Parliament has a majority of seats. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown remains in office until he resigns (as Prime Minister). The leadership of the Labor Party is a separate issue. Conservative commentators continue to insist that their electoral result gives them the right to govern. This is despite their own failure to secure a majority of seats in the new House of Commons. Their spin continues to emphasis their view that Brown has lost a mandate to govern. "Been rejected by the electorate" are the words used by the BBC's political editor, Nick Robinson. That is true on his 5 own, as Leader of the Labour Party. But it doesn't mean that he doesn't have a mandate to take a leading role in a coalition, and in person. The most critical issue facing the country is the state of the economy. We have heard from the leaders of the nationalist parties about their concerns concerning funding from the UK Exchequer. Part of the price of any political understandings will be how their interests are going to be addressed in public spending plans for the future are a consideration. What we know is that Tories plan cuts this year, and Labor and the Lib-Dems do not. Looking a little further out into the future, there is the Greek lesson. The election campaign was littered with uncertainty about the detail of necessary public expenditure cuts. Public unrest in Greece has been a salutary and tragically lethal reminder of the consequences of imposed austerity. Having taken the UK economy through the worst recession in 80 years, Brown to my mind has won the right to see that work through. Evidence that a double-dip recession has been managed away will come in the next twelve months. The other part of a government programme that addresses widespread public concerns is political reform, of which a referendum on electoral reform is Labor Party policy. So as we await the latest dispositions from Tory leader David Cameron and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg, the question arises are we going to have more assertions that Brown has lost any right to govern, or a more considered reflection of the constitutional realities, and economic and social necessities to give the UK a new government by early next week. • Safety regulations Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974: The Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 also referred to as HASAW or HSW is the primary piece of legislation covering occupational health and safety in the United Kingdom. The Health and Safety Executive is responsible for enforcing the Act and a number of other Acts and Statutory Instruments relevant to the working environment. Statutory instruments are the secondary types of legislation made under specific Acts of Parliament. These cover a wide range of subjects, from control of asbestos at work, diving, escape and rescue from mines, ionizing radiation and working at height.  Economical Factors • Economic growth The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the United Kingdom expanded 0.50 percent in the first quarter of 2011 over the previous quarter. From 1955 until 2010 The United Kingdom's average quarterly GDP Growth was 0.59 percent reaching an historical high of 5.30 percent in March of 1973 and a record low of -2.50 percent in March of 1974. The United Kingdom is among the world's most developed economies. Services, particularly banking, insurance, and business services, account by far for the largest proportion of GDP while industry continues to decline in importance. Over the past two decades the government has greatly reduced public ownership and contained the growth of social welfare programs. • Interest rates & monetary policies Sentance, who voted for a half-point increase in rates at the last Bank of England monetary policy committee (MPC) meeting, told an audience of business people: "The risk of delaying interest rate rises too long is that this gradual approach may cease to be an option in the future."Minutes of the MPC this week revealed a four-way split. Five members were content to keep rates on hold, two favoured a quarter-point rise, Sentance opted for double that and one member argued for further monetary easing. 6 Sentence said 10 reasons for an interest rate rise were: a. b. c. d. e. f. g. h. i. j. UK inflation, which is double the 2% Bank of England target. Global inflationary pressures. Global demand, which is fuelling inflation. Stronger underlying UK demand and growth than many economists believe. An artificially depressed currency, which should be allowed to rise. Less spare capacity than some economists estimate. Companies exploiting high inflation by raising prices further. A loss of credibility with the markets if inflation persists. Artificially low interest rates. Gradual tightening needs to start now to be effective. Sentance said the decision to cut rates in the recession was "right and proper", but the time had come to increase them. While the CBI finding of rising retail prices appeared to support Sentance's view, the employer’s organization also pointed to the weakest level of high street sales growth since last June. Its monthly snapshot of the retail sector shows a balance of 6% of shops reported higher sales this month, compared with 37% in January. Retailers expect sales to grind to a halt in March. This lackluster performance by retailers and dire consumer confidence figures are expected to fuel concerns that a rate rise will tip the economy into recession. Consumer confidence remained at historically low levels in February, according to a survey by GfK NOP.Higher VAT bills, rising inflation and an uncertain economic outlook were blamed for the failure to reverse the survey's worst-ever poll readings in January. A confidence scorecard rose from -29 to -28, revealing that consumers continued to be worried about spending their earnings. Consumer accounts for about 65% of the economy and is a key indicator of the likely growth in GDP this year. • Government spending Total Spending Fiscal Years 2010 to 2014 Total Spending -total £ billion 660.90 681.42 701.80 713.00 724.20 b g g g g Year 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 GDP 1474 1539 1620 1710 1803 Legend: b - estimated outturn in HM Treasury 2010 budget e - estimate in HM Treasury 2010 budget g - "guesstimated" projection by ukpublicspending.co.uk • Unemployment policy policies to reduce unemployment 7 In the long term, effective policies to reduce the total level of unemployment need to encourage An improvement in the employability of the labour supply - so that the unemployed have the right skills to take up the available job opportunities. Policies should focus on improving the occupational mobility of labour An improvement in the incentives for people to search and then accept paid work - this may require some reforms of the tax and benefits system A sustained period of economic growth so that new jobs are being created - this requires that aggregate demand is sufficiently high for businesses to be looking to expand their workforces Improving skills and reducing occupational immobility Policies should provide the unemployed with the skills they need to find re-employment and improve the incentives to find work. Structural unemployment is the result of workers being occupationally immobile - improvements in education and training will increase the human capital of these workers, and therefore give them a better chance of taking the new jobs that become available in the economy. Reflating Aggregate Demand The government can also use macro-economic policies to increase the level of aggregate demand. These policies might involve lower interest rates or lower direct taxes. It might also encourage foreign investment into the economy from foreign multinational companies. In the diagram below we see an increase in aggregate demand leading to an expansion of aggregate supply. Because of the increase in demand for output, the demand for labour at each wage rate will grow - leading to an increase in total employment. 8 Not every increase in demand and production has to be met by using more labor. Each year we expect to see a rise in labor productivity (more output per worker employed). And, businesses may decide to increase production by making greater use of capital inputs (machinery and technology). Benefit and Tax Reforms Reducing the real value of unemployment benefits might increase the incentive to take a job - particularly if the real worth of unemployment benefits is well below the national minimum wage rate. Targeted measures are designed to help the long-term unemployed find re-employment (including the Government's "Welfare to Work Schemes" - see New Deal Employment Subsidies Government subsidies for those firms that take on the long-term unemployed will create an incentive for firms to increase the size of their workforce. Employment subsidies may also be available for overseas firms locating in the UK. Economic Growth and Unemployment A growing economy creates jobs for people entering the labor market for the first time. And, it provides employment opportunities for people currently unemployed and looking for work The chart above shows the level of real national output (GDP) and total employment in the economy since 1980. In both of the last two recessions (1980-81 and 1990-92), the number of people in work has fallen 9 sharply. But a period of sustained economic growth (as experienced by the UK from 1993-2001) has led to a significant increase in employment levels. Indeed by the summer of 2001, employment in the British economy was at record levels. This has helped reduce the official measures of unemployment to a level not seen for over twenty-five years. • Taxation Taxation in the United Kingdom may involve payments to a minimum of two different levels of government: The central government (HM Revenue and Customs) and local government. Central government revenues come primarily from income tax, National Insurance contributions, value added tax, corporation tax and fuel duty. Local government revenues come primarily from grants from central government funds, business rates in England and Wales, Council Tax and increasingly from fees and charges such as those from on-street parking. In the fiscal year 2007-08, total government revenue was 39.2 per cent of GDP, with net taxes and National Insurance contributions standing at 36.9 per cent of GDP approximately £600 billion (using 2008 nominal GDP measured in dollars, and converting using 2009 conversion rate). • Exchange rates GBP EUR GBP USD GBP NZD GBP AUD GBP CAD GBP JPY GBP ZAR GBP AED GBP INR 1.134 Pounds to Euros 1.623 Pounds to Dollars 4 2.051 Pounds to New Zealand Dollars 5 1.522 Pounds to Australian Dollars 1 1.569 Pounds to Canadian Dollars 5 132.5 Pounds to Yen 7 11.13 Pounds to South African Rands 9 5.957 Pounds to Dirhams 7 72.67 Pounds to Rupees 9 10 UNITED KINGDOM INFLATION RATE The inflation rate in United Kingdom was last reported at 4.5 percent in April of 2011. From 1989 until 2010, the average inflation rate in United Kingdom was 2.72 percent reaching an historical high of 8.50 percent in April of 1991 and a record low of 0.50 percent in May of 2000. Inflation rate refers to a general rise in prices measured against a standard level of purchasing power. The most well known measures of Inflation are the CPI which measures consumer prices, and the GDP deflator, which measures inflation in the whole of the domestic economy. UK INFLATION RATE RAISES TO 4.5% IN APRIL • Inflation rates United Kingdom CPI annual inflation stands at 4.5 per cent, up from 4.0 per cent in March. The timing of Easter 2011 had a significant impact on these data. Air transport, alcohol and tobacco and gas were the most significant drivers behind the increase in annual inflation between March and April. The main downward pressures to annual inflation came from petrol and diesel, miscellaneous goods and services, clothing and footwear and communication. Annual inflation as recorded by the retail prices index (RPI) stands at 5.2 per cent in April, down from 5.3 per cent in March. The business cycle or economic cycle refers to the periodic fluctuations of economic activity about its long term growth trend. The cycle involves shifts over time between periods of relatively rapid growth of output (recovery and prosperity), alternating with periods of relative stagnation or decline (contraction or recession). The recurring and fluctuating levels of economic activity that an economy experiences over a long period of time. The five stages of the business cycle are growth (expansion), peak, recession (contraction), trough and recovery. At one time, business cycles were thought to be extremely regular, with predictable durations. But today business cycles are widely known to be irregular - varying in frequency, magnitude and duration Activity within the economy fluctuates over time. This is called the business cycle. The Davis Service Group provides textile maintenance, hotel laundry and washroom services in the UK and Europe. Just like any other business, it is affected by the changes in the business cycle from boom to recession and back again. Throughout the business cycle it has to respond to the economic challenges it faces. For example, people have cut back on holidays, so the need for hotel linen services has reduced. Davis has however, enjoyed rapid growth in emerging markets, such as the Czech Republic, which are at different stages of the business cycle. By balancing resources to meet customers' needs, Davis Service Group has been able to invest in the business where necessary to be ready for recovery. Like hotels, the magazine publishing industry was expecting a decline in subscribers during recent difficult economic times because this is a 'nice to have' item rather than a necessity. • Stages of the business cycle The most closely-watched barometer of consumer confidence revealed an "astonishing collapse" in January as the VAT rise took effect, according to market research group GfK NOP. The first taste of the fiscal tightening to have a widespread impact on consumers appeared to have hit sentiment hard, researchers said, even before the full impact of the public spending cuts is felt. "In the 35 years since the index began, confidence has only slumped this much on six occasions, the last being in the midst of the 1992 recession," said Nick Moon, managing director at GfK NOP Social Research. "Today's figures, when combined with the bleak economic forecast, will make talk of a double-dip recession unavoidable." The eight-point plunge in optimism took the barometer's headline reading to -29, the lowest since March 2009, when the UK was mired deep in the last recession. • Consumer confidence 11 Their findings will prompt more questions as to whether the Coalition risks tipping the economy back into recession through its programme of tax rises and spending cuts to reduce the budget deficit  Social Factors • Income distribution Sources of income: The Family Resources Survey is a document produced by the Department for Work and Pensions. This details income amongst a representative sample of the British population. The 2005-2006 report can be found here. This report tabulates sources of income as a percentage of total income. Other Other Employme Disabili Social Self Investme Workin State Occupatio Incom nt ty Securit Region Employ nt g tax Pensio nal e (Salaries Benefit y ed Income credit ns Pensions Source & Wages) s Benefit s s UK 64% 11% 2% 1% 6% 7% 2% 5% 2% Norther n 60% Ireland 11% 1% 2% 7% 5% 4% 7% 3% Scotlan 66% d 7% 2% 2% 7% 7% 3% 5% 2% Wales 60% 8% 2% 2% 8% 8% 4% 6% 1% England 64% 11% 2% 1% 6% 7% 2% 5% 2% North East 64% England 5% 2% 2% 8% 6% 4% 7% 2% North West 59% England 13% 2% 2% 7% 7% 3% 6% 2% 12 Yorkshir 64% e 7% 2% 2% 7% 7% 2% 5% 3% East Midland 65% s 9% 2% 1% 7% 6% 2% 5% 3% West Midland 62% s 8% 3% 2% 8% 6% 2% 5% 3% Eastern 56% England 22% 2% 1% 5% 7% 1% 3% 2% London 71% 10% 2% 1% 4% 4% 1% 5% 3% South East 66% 9% 4% 1% 7% 8% 1% 4% 2% South West 60% England 9% 4% 1% 7% 10% 2% 4% 2% • Demographics, Population growth rates, Age distribution The demography of England has since 1801 been measured by the decennial national census, and is marked by centuries of population growth and urbanization. Due to the lack of authoritative contemporary sources, estimates of the population of England for dates prior to the first census in 1801 vary considerably. Population The population at the time of the 2001 census was 49,138,831     Male: 23,922,144 Female: 25,216,687 Total: 100 Total Fertility Rate: 1.97[1] (higher than Germany - 1.38 & Italy - 1.40, lower than France 2.02) Age 13 The data below is based on the 2001 census.[12] In 2001, the mean age of England's population was 38.60, and the median age was 37.00. Ages attained (years) Population % of total population % per year of age band 0-4 2,926,238 5.96 1.19 5-7 1,838,668 3.74 1.25 8-9 1,283,861 2.61 1.31 10 - 14 3,229,047 6.57 1.32 15 623,767 1.27 1.27 16 - 17 1,231,266 2.51 1.25 18 - 19 1,177,571 2.40 1.20 20 - 24 2,952,719 6.01 1.20 25 - 29 3,268,660 6.65 1.33 30 - 44 11,127,511 22.65 1.51 45 - 59 9,279,693 18.88 1.26 60 - 64 2,391,830 4.87 0.97 65 - 74 4,102,841 8.35 0.84 75 - 84 2,751,135 5.60 0.56 85 - 89 637,701 1.30 0.26 90+ 316,323 0.64 - 14 • Labor / social mobility Societies which use slavery are an example of low social mobility because, for the enslaved individuals, upward mobility is practically nonexistent, and for their owners, downward mobility is practically outlawed. Social mobility is normally discussed as "upward only", but it is a two-sided phenomenon - where there is upward mobility, there can also be relative downward mobility. If merit and fortune play a larger role in life chances than the luck of birth, and some people can manage a relative upward shift in their social status, then some people can also move downward relative to others. This is the risk that motivates people in power to increasingly devise and commission political, legal, educational, and economic mechanisms that permit them to fortify their advantages. However, by controlling that inclination, it is possible in a growing economy for there to be greater upward mobility than downward - as has been the case in Western Europe. Official or legally recognized class designations do not exist in modern western democracies and it is considered possible for individuals to move from poverty to wealth or political prominence within one generation. Despite this formal opportunity for social mobility, recent research suggests that Britain and particularly the United States have less social mobility than the Nordic countries and Canada. These authors state that "the idea of the US as ‘the land of opportunity’ persists; and clearly seems misplaced.Not only does social mobility vary across types of countries, it can also change over time. Comparing the United States to the United Kingdom, there was social mobility of different degrees existing between the two countries during different historical periods. In the United States in the mid-19th century inequality was low and social mobility was high. In the late 19th century, the U.S. had much higher social mobility than in the UK, due to the common school movement and open public school system, a larger farming sector, as well as higher geographic mobility in the United States. However, during the latter half of the 20th and early 21st centuries, the difference between the social nobilities of the two countries has narrowed, as social inequality has grown in both countries, but particularly in the United States. In other words, the individual's family background is more predictive of social position today than it was in 1850 • Lifestyle changes (Reuters) - Britons are starting to change their lifestyles in response to global warming, but few are making the tough choices and in many cases the motivation is fear of punishment, according to a new survey. Top of the list of environmental activities is recycling, with 90 percent of the people surveyed saying they were doing it more than a year ago. But the reasons given were mostly connected with council schemes and punishments rather than altruism, according to the survey by advertising firm Euro RSCG. "While people from all walks of life now see climate change as one of the key challenges that they face, for many the motivation to reduce their environmental impact is directly related to cost savings - or local councils prompting them into action, said Russ Lid stone of Euro RSCG London. Second most popular activity was switching off electrical appliances rather than leaving them on standby, followed by switching over to low energy light bulbs and turning the central heating thermostat down slightly and using less water. But when it comes to the tougher lifestyle choices, action was far less popular. Only 33 percent said they were driving their cars less than a year ago and half that number had decided to take fewer international flights -- a booming source of climate changing carbon emissions. Highlights of recently conducted polls show: • Work/career/leisure attitudes & entrepreneurial spirit a. Work satisfaction is high. Only small proportions (usually less than 10 percent) tell 15 b. c. d. e. f. g. h. i. pollsters they are very dissatisfied with their jobs. There has been little change in these responses over the past quarter century. (Gallup/Harris/Roper/National Opinion Research Center) Solid majorities of workers tell pollsters they would take the same job again "without hesitation." (Univ. of Michigan/Harris) Huge majorities (85 percent/Gallup, 2004) say they have a strong sense of loyalty to the company they work for. This has changed little in the last decade. Smaller, but still robust majorities say the company they work for has a strong sense of loyalty to them (67 percent). As for the work load, most workers tell the pollsters they are satisfied. In Gallup's latest question, 86 percent of workers are satisfied with the amount of work required of them and 19 percent are dissatisfied. As for vacation time, 79 percent are satisfied with the amount they have, and 17 percent dissatisfied (2004). Stress is over-stressed. Twenty-seven percent of workers are completely satisfied with "the amount of on the job stress," and 37 percent are somewhat satisfied (2004). Workers are happiest with their coworkers. (Gallup/Roper/NBC,WSJ) They are least happy with the amount of money they earn. As for today's economy, in most polls, around 20 percent of workers fear being laid off "in the near future." Around 80 percent do not. More than 80 percent of workers are not worried that their hours or, separately, wages, will be cut (Gallup, 2004). About 90 percent are not worried that their company will move jobs overseas (Gallup, 2004) A third say it's a good time to find a quality job, and 63 percent a bad time (Gallup, 2004). Twenty-six percent say their employer has laid off someone in the past six months. Today, a quarter of workers say their job "never" requires them to be in an office; 40 percent say it "always" does. • Education UK life is an incredible mix of international cultures and contemporary thinking, held together by a strong sense of identity and tradition. Study in the UK and you’ll find an array of exciting experiences to discover - music, celebrations, accents, people to meet, places to visit – the list is endless. As the UK is such a cosmopolitan society you’ll find that many UK customs are already familiar to you – so you’ll settle in faster than you think. Get a head start in your career with a UK postgraduate degree. The UK is a world-leader in innovation and many university facilities are state-of-the-art. A UK postgraduate education will give you an edge over the competition. With a UK degree you can specialize in the subject that interests you, in a country renowned for the quality of its research and the reputation of its academics. Many UK education institutions work with local agents/representatives in Pakistan. The university, college or school enters into an agreement with an agent to represent their institution to students in Pakistan who are considering an overseas education. Education UK, British Council Pakistan has produced a TV programme which is a series of four talk shows that will be re - aired on Indus Vision between the 16 to 19 of May 2011 at 6:00 p.m. to 6: 30 p.m. Some people say when they hear the word Jamaican they think of loud, ruff and aggressive people. We are all obligated to our opinions but rest ah sure Jamaicans are always a couple of things which is fashionable, self-confident, hard-working and over comers. When Jamaicans go out they don’t just go out they dress to impress from head to toe. Yes at times it may me a little much for some or SHOCKING but hey at the end of the day the outfit caught your eye right. At a young age Jamaicans are taught to have pride in their appearance no matter where they are going. When you see them all up in the video light is not to make up noise no its to big up their hard work and what they have achieve in life and giving praise to the man upstairs for life and family. Want to see for yourself you say not a problem watch and enjoy the JAMAICAN flavor in the UK… • Fashion, hypes 16 OH!!! • Health consciousness & welfare, feelings on safety The event of an incident at work (such as legal fees, fines, compensatory damages, investigation time, lost production, lost goodwill from the workforce, from customers and from the wider community). Legal - Occupational requirements may be reinforced in civil law and/or criminal law; it is accepted that without the extra "encouragement" of potential regulatory action or litigation, many organizations would not act upon their implied moral obligations. Occupational health and safety officers promote health and safety procedures in an organization. They recognize hazards and measure health and safety risks, set suitable safety controls in place, and give recommendations on avoiding accidents to management and employees in an organization. This paper looks at the main tasks undertaken by OHS practitioners in Europe, Australia and the USA, and the main knowledge and skills that are required of them. “Like it or not, organizations have a duty to provide health and safety training. But it could involve much more than you think.” (Damon, Nadia. 2008. ‘Reducing The Risks’, Training and Coaching Today, United Kingdom, pg.14)An effective training program can reduce the number of injuries and deaths, property damage, legal liability, illnesses, workers' compensation claims, and missed time from work. A safety training program can also help a trainer keep the required OSHA-mandated safety training courses organized and up-to-date. Safety training classes help establish a safety culture in which employees themselves help promote proper safety procedures while on the job. It is important that new employees be properly trained and embrace the importance of workplace safety as it is easy for seasoned workers to negatively influence the new hires. That negative influence however, can be purged with the establishment of new, hands-on, innovative effective safety training which will ultimately lead to an effective safety culture. A 1998 NIOSH study concluded that the role of training in developing and maintaining effective hazard control activities is a proven and successful method of intervention.  • Living conditions Embassy You have to register at your country's embassy, giving your address. When you move to a new address or you return to your country, you are required to inform the embassy. Police If you have to register with the police you must register within seven days of your arrival in the UK. Check in your passport to find out if this is necessary. To register you will need your passport and two passport-size photos of yourself. Currency The unit of currency in Britain is the pound sterling (?), divided into 100 pence (p). There are 1p, 2p, 5p, 10p, 20p, 50p, and? 1 coin. Banknotes are issued in? 5, 10, 20, and? 50 denominations. Driving You must hold a valid driving license. International students who are in the UK and intend to study for more than twelve months are obliged to obtain a UK license by taking a driving test. The vehicle you drive must be registered, insured, taxed and if it is over three years old it must have an MOT certificate. The application forms for tax and vehicle registration can be obtained from a post office. 17 Drunken driving laws are very strict and rigorously enforced. Unless you want to pay a large fine or spend some time in prison, do not do it. Climate Britain is warmed by the Gulf Stream, an ocean current that flows from the Gulf of Mexico to Europe. The climate is changeable through the seasonal cycle. The winter months from December to February are the coldest, with the shortest hours of daylight. The temperature rises through the spring months of march to may, and is highest throughout the summer months from June to August. During the autumn, September to November, temperatures gradually fall again. The average annual rainfall is more than 1,600 mm (over 60 inches) in the highland areas of the west and north, but less than 800 mm (30 inches) over the more fertile lowlands of the south and east. Transport People travel on average about 200 km (125 miles) a week. Travel by car has grown a lot. The Channel Tunnel, opened in 1994, has improved links to the European mainland. There are about 80 seaports. Also British Airways is one of the world’s leading airlines. Heathrow airport is the world's busiest airport for international passengers. Food Fresh fruit, fish, poultry, skimmed milk and fast foods are the popular courses for many people. The British have cut back on butter, potatoes, eggs, and red meat. Small traditional shops have had to close their doors because people are now buying from new, large supermarkets. There has also been a shift towards ready-made meals, frozen foods, and other convenience made products. Entertainment The main leisure activity in Britain is watching television. Other popular activities are reading, home improvements, gardening, and going out for meals, or the cinema. Over half of the population takes part in some kind of sport. Some of the most popular are swimming, cycling, and yoga. One of the most popular socializing activities in Britain is eating out or visiting a local public house - known as a 'Pub'. Pubs serve both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. To buy alcohol in Britain you must be over eighteen years of age. A huge variety of cuisine's are available in Britain and there is usually a type of restaurant to suit everybody's taste and budget. All British universities have a wide range of clubs and societies like cinema, music, drama and more. There are libraries, careers advice centers, sports facilities and cafes as well as plenty of entertainment. There are many international associations for you to join. And, as a student in Britain you benefit from subsidized entry to many venues like theatres and cinemas as well as having the opportunity to benefit from reduced price travel. Shops and shopping Shops are usually open from 0900 until 1800 except local shops which may have their own more specific opening hours. Most shops are closed on Sundays except those in big cities. Bargaining is not customary - you are expected to pay the price marked on the goods, you are also expected to stand in line for services if a shop is busy. In general, supermarkets and street markets are the cheapest places to buy food, street markets are particularly good for fresh fruit and vegetables. 18 Accommodations In many areas of the UK there is a shortage of student accommodation, so start making arrangements as soon as you have been accepted on your course. There are two main types of accommodation: · accommodation owned, managed and provided by your institution. This is usually, but not always, situated on the premises of the institution; · private accommodation, which you will have to find and arrange either by yourself or with the help of advice and suggestions from the accommodation office at the institution. Institution Accommodations Accommodation provided by the institution might be the most suitable type if you are coming to the UK for the first time. There are two main types: · Halls of residence: These are large buildings occupied by many students. Residents live in study bedrooms, either alone or sharing with another student. Bathrooms and other facilities are usually shared. Telephones are normally provided on each floor, but some institutions may provide one in each room. Halls can be single sex (male or female only) or mixed (taking both male and female students). Halls of residence usually provide breakfast and an evening meal, but the food may be basic. · Self-catering halls: This accommodation is similar to halls of residence, but you can buy and prepare your own food. Some institutions have a small number of self-catering flats for students with families. Applying for Accommodations In most cases accommodation provided by the institution has to be arranged before you come to Britain. When you are offered a place on your course, you will usually be asked if you would like your institution to provide accommodation or to arrange alternative private accommodation for you. Make sure that you follow the college's application procedures, and in particular, that you meet deadlines for booking accommodation. These are the questions you should ask your institution about accommodations: · What types of accommodation do you have? · Will I be offered accommodation each year? · Will I have to leave my accommodation during the vacations? · Will I have to provide my own linen and kitchen utensils? · How much will the accommodation cost? · Will accommodation be available for my family? *Do not travel to Britain with your family unless you have accommodation in advance. Private Accommodations: · Hostels: This is the best alternative if you are unable to get a place in a hall of residence or you are coming to Britain for the first time. Some hostels provide rooms for both single and married students. They usually provide some meals or have cooking facilities and allow students to prepare their own food. Staying in a hostel can give you the opportunity to become familiar with the area where you are studying and this is an advantage if you want to find private accommodation later. *Apply in advance. Your booking will only be secure after you have paid a deposit. · Lodgings: This is a rented room in a private house. The landlord/landlady will also live in the house, perhaps with their family. Meals may be provided or you may be able to use the kitchen to cook your own food. · Bedsits: This is a single room, in which you will have to live and sleep. The house/block will be divided into several bedsits which will be rented by other people who may not be students. Cooking facilities may be in the bedsit or elsewhere in the building, in which case, you will have to share them. You will also have to share a bathroom with the other people living in the same house/block. You will have to clean your own room, do your own laundry and provide your own bed-linen and towels. Bedsits vary in size and quality so you should never take a room without 19  Technological Factors • Government research spending The UK R&D Scoreboard The UK Government's annual R&D Scoreboard, which is endorsed by the R&D Society, reports on the patterns and trends of the 850 largest corporate spenders of R&D in the UK and the 1,400 companies in the world most active in R&D, based on R&D expenditure reported in company accounts. Note that as company accounts do not distinguish between expenditure in the UK and outside the UK, the figures reported by the Scoreboard do not either. The latest scoreboard, the 2008 DIUS R&D Scoreboard, published 26 January 2009 is based on companies' reported performance up to June 2008 - before the current recession. The Scoreboard reports that the 850 top-spending UK firms spent £21.6 billion on R&D - a rise of 6.4 per cent on the previous scoreboard. The 1,400 companies in the world that spent the most on R&D increased their expenditure by 9.4% to £274 billion. 79% of this expenditure was by companies based in the USA, Japan, Germany, France and the UK. The top 88 UK companies, who also rank in the top 1,400 global investors of R&D, increased their R&D investment by 10.3% - a faster rate than the rest of the top 1,400 companies. The remaining UK companies outside the top 88 grew their R&D by just 1.2% - a fall in real terms. The biggest UK sector by spend remains pharmaceuticals and biotechnology (37%), with aerospace and defence, software, automobiles and parts, and fixed line telecommunications the next biggest, each with 6% share. Globally, the five biggest sectors were pharmaceuticals and biotechnology, technology hardware, automobiles and parts, software, and electronics. The UK sectors that increased their R&D expenditure the most were oil and gas, banking, pharmaceuticals and fixed line telecommunications. In the UK 850, 338 companies have sales of less than £50M, spending an average of 29% of their sales on R&D. This is significantly more than the larger UK firms, reflecting the tendency for smaller firms to be in R&D intensive sectors, with larger firms with larger absolute values of R&D spend being in less-intensive sectors. Listed companies (ie those with shareholders) increased their R&D by 9.8% compared with a 2.7% reduction for unlisted companies. The Government also publishes the 2007 DTI Value Added Scoreboard lists the top 800 UK companies and the top 750 global companies by Value Added - the amount of wealth created by a company in a year. It gives R&D intensity for companies listed by value added • New inventions and development The Industrial Revolution, one of the most vital periods of change in Great Britain, occurred because of the stable economic, social, and political stance of the country, as well as brought lasting effects in Britain in each of these areas. With its fast growing monopoly on ocean trade, its renewed interest in scientific discovery, and its system of national banks holding tight to its financial security, Britain was, at the time of the Industrial Revolution, ripe for change. It was the great historical epoch we call the Industrial Revolution which would forever change city life, social class structure, the power of the British nation amongst others of the world, the production of machinery, and the strength of the economy of Britain. Because of the Industrial Revolution, 20 never again would the British have to suffer the results of no changes regarding the inequalities of the working world, nor doubt the strength of their country, yet come to view the word "technology" in a completely new way. Due to its sturdy financial and economic conditions, Great Britain was the leading figure in the Industrial Revolution. First of all, its domination of the seas via a strong military force gave it control of ocean transportation and trade. Ongoing British trade of tobacco, sugar, tea, and slaves internationally was largely a result of this control. Secondly, Britain’s national banking system provided it with capital from investments and a surplus of finances for which to use in commerce on the international scale. New inventions of the time included John Kay’s "flying shuttle" weaving device and George Stephenson’s "Rocket" railway train, along with innovations such as Abraham Darby’s thought to use coal instead of charcoal in order to create fuel, as well as Henry Bessemer's renovation of steel production. Each of these improvements aided both the production and transportation of products and materials used for trade and in industrial factories. Other new developments included a seed drill, which enabled farmers to plant seeds in straight rows, along with the introduction of mechanical reapers and threshers. These and other devices greatly increased farm production in Britain, promoting the growth and trade of the country. The improved cultivation of healthier fruits, vegetables, and other foods grown on British farms using the new inventions bettered the health and growth of the population, which meant there were more workers to help run industrial factories. Great Britain was also rich in natural resources such as water and coal. These could provide an ample energy supply for trains, factories, steam ships, and other devices which increased transportation and also the movement of workers and new industrial ideas as well. In fact, Britain’s American colonies played an important role in providing the country with such vital raw materials. The enclosure movement restricted the ownership of public farmlands specifically to the wealthy landowners. As a result of this movement, an influx of unemployed farm workers was created, adding to Britain’s strong labor force in cities. An increase in the number of workers in industry meant that factories could run more efficiently and produce more goods than ever before, helping to manufacture a much greater amount of new machinery. It was this expanded variety of mechanical tools that would fuel the continuation of the Industrial Revolution. The Industrial Revolution was a positive era to have occurred in Britain. In the beginning, however, the Industrial Revolution appeared to bring no benefits at all to the country. Living conditions in cities became unsanitary, as well as cramped and impoverished. Factories subjected men, women, and even children workers to low wages, harsh punishments, and unprotected work around dangerous machinery. The tremendous use of coal in industrial production polluted the atmosphere, as well as people’s lungs, and workers’ conditions in the coalmines were not much better than in factories. Food was expensive for poor factory workers, and thus they could afford only to eat rancid meats, fatty fried foods, and stale bread, which contributed to the extreme malnutrition and sickness in the cities. However, the positive outcomes of the Industrial Revolution rivaled the damage of its more negative effects. Britain obtained much capital from its many new international trading ventures with major nations, all largely dealing with the exchange of new and improved industrial machinery. Thus, Great Britain grew to become the most powerful manufacturing nation, and the strongest economically, in all of Europe. As Britain’s incoming finances grew and increased, citizens were able to move up the rungs of the social class ladder in British society, thus improving their financial and educational statuses. Alongside new inventions came exciting discoveries in medicine, providing for better treatments of diseases and thus promoting the overall health of British society. Scientific advancements of the time included new metalproduction techniques, which aided a greater production of more durable metals, such as stronger steel, now made cheaper to produce. The improvement of steel production specifically helped cities to construct sturdier buildings which had fewer fire and other safety hazards. Along with construction improvements in cities, electricity was used, instead of gas power, to light city street lamps. This increased the efficiency of streetlight in Britain, as well as lessened the fire hazard gas lamps had proposed. Better lit cities also contributed to a decreased urban crime rate. Also, the new use of electric engines in cars improved the rate of transportation in British cities, as well as decreased the pollution level formerly heightened by older engines, which had created many fumes. As city populations grew due to the advancement of industry, a new water system, which included a sewer and provided for running water in individuals’ homes, improved the city’s sanitary conditions. Similar improvements included the expansion of public services such as a fire department and police force, each which increased the level of safety in cities. Public education also developed, so that all British citizens, not only the wealthy and upper class, could rid 21 themselves of ignorance and illiteracy. Because of the increased production of machinery which further forwarded industrial advances in technology, the products of city factories became cheaper and more available. As a result, industrial businesses received more income from consumers’ purchases. Thus, the theory of capitalism developed, in which British factory owners, entrepreneurs, and other businessmen worked to increase Britain’s production of goods, promoting more international commerce for Britain and supporting an increase in profits on Britain’s industrial goods. As a result, factory owners were able to provide their workers with higher wages and better working conditions. The development of new machinery in factories added to the safety of working there, and decreased the need for so many workers to labor for strenuous hours. Thus, a new labor code was made, lessening worker’s hour requirement to eight hours, instead of the usual twelve to sixteen. Thus, it can be concluded that, because of Britain’s national economic, political, and social state, the country was ready to surmount on its shoulders the immense change of the Industrial Revolution. Due to this era in Great Britain, new inventions and innovations contributed to a more modern outlook on life, self-improvement in the workplace, and proved the benefits of a futuristic way of thinking. The Industrial Revolution caused the people of Britain to turn away from the past, and instead to look toward improvements in their way of life which would last through upcoming years. In this respect, the Industrial Revolution was, indeed, revolutionary. We examine the roles played by research and development (R&D), international trade, and human capital in stimulating each source of productivity growth. Technology transfer is statistically signi8cant and quantitatively important. While R&D raises rates of innovation, international trade enhances the speed of technology transfer. Human capital primarily reflects output through private rates of return (captured in our index of labor quality) rather than measured TFP. University to business technology transfer offers specific challenges, beyond those encountered in industry more widely. This paper examines the issues in university to business technology transfer in the UK and USA and presents the results of a survey of UK and US university technology transfer officers. Findings indicate significant differences in the motivations of universities in each country to transfer technology, the consistency of university technology transfer policies and the accessibility of university technologies to business. The study also looks at perceived barriers to university to business technology transfer and offers suggestions for possible improvements to the process. • Rate of technology transfer • Life cycle and speed of technological obsolescence Traditional mortality studies alone are insufficient to assess the depreciation of utility property that is subject to technological obsolescence. There are two principle reasons for this. First, technological obsolescence is having a more profound impact on the future economic life of utility property today than it had in the past. Second, the current mortality analysis process, i.e., using a single mortality survivor curve for all vintage for all future years, grossly understates the true impact of technological obsolescence. Several writings, published in the early 1980's, document this fact; yet, the current process, developed in the first half of this century, remains unchanged today a. Assessing Technological Obsolescence Obsolescence is a measure of an asset’s loss in value resulting from a reduction in the utility of the asset relative to market expectations. It should be noted that while the absolute usefulness of an asset may remain constant, if market expectations increase, the property may realize a corresponding reduction in value. Such a loss in value is said to be the result of obsolescence. There are two forms of obsolescence, external obsolescence and functional obsolescence. b. Functional Obsolescence Functional obsolescence results from a flaw in the structures, materials, or design that diminishes the function, utility, and value of an asset. The term ‘flaw’, in this context, refers to any deficiency in the asset which negatively impact its ability to perform the 22 desired function. Flaws are relative to need; this is, if the need evolves over time and the asset can no longer meet the need, then the asset’s value is impaired. Customer expectation is a typical example: New and more powerful generations of personal computers increased customer expectations for personal computing power. While the power of older PCs remain constant, consumer needs increase. Relative to customer expectations (needs) older PCs have a flaw or relative deficiency. The loss in value resulting from this deficiency is a form of functional obsolescence, called Technological Obsolescence. Technological obsolescence is one form of functional obsolescence. With the rapid pace of technological change, technological obsolescence is the principle cause of functional obsolescence today. In fact, when technological obsolescence is occurring, it generally overshadows all other causes of obsolescence. In this paper, technological obsolescence is the principle focus of the obsolescence analysis. Conclusion: Both technological obsolescence and traditional life cycle factors affect the useful life, and they do so simultaneously. As such, both should be taken into account. Ignoring technological obsolescence and its unique mortality characteristics will result in a gross overstatement of the life. BUSINESSES across the country are heading into annual negotiations with their power suppliers, facing the prospect of a 100% rise in their annual bills. About half of UK small and mid-sized firms strike annual energy contracts that expire in October, and are beginning to enter talks about new deals. Wholesale electricity prices for this winter have jumped to more than £90 per megawatt hour, according to Supplierswitch.com’s figures – an increase of 110% on last winter. Gas prices have jumped 130% over the same period. The soaring costs, which are hammering company finances across the length and breadth of the country, provide further evidence of the inflationary pressures on the economy. Even some household names are complaining about soaring power bills, behind closed doors. Tesco has seen all the financial advantages of an eight-year programme to halve its power consumption through green initiatives wiped out by soaring prices. James Griffin, a director of Star, an internet services company that employs 250 people in Gloucester, London and Manchester, said energy costs made up 30% of his total overheads. His energy bills had jumped 70% in the past 18 months, with his three data centres alone now consuming £1.5m worth of electricity a year. “I used to worry about how much revenue I could generate from each of my servers,” said Griffin. “Now I worry about how much I can squeeze out of each unit of power.” Griffin’s fears reflect the experience of firms across the UK. One chain of six small car dealerships in South Yorkshire has seen its electricity bill jump to £60,000 a year, from £30,000 a year ago. A specialist baker in Surrey, producing muffins and cakes, has seen its bill jump from £250,000 to £500,000 – the firm has already been hit by soaring wheat costs. A car-parts manufacturer in Manchester, meanwhile, has seen its power bill climb from £70,000 to £160,000. Jon Davies, managing director of Supplier switch, said: “Clearly it’s not going to be easy for companies to pass all of those increased costs on to their customers, given the economic conditions. The only way round it is to take advantage of any opportunities. You can’t just wait until your contract is about to expire before you start shopping round for deals.” Laurence Dupree at consultancy Bearing Point said: “In the past three months we have seen a massive increase in companies looking for savings across the supply chain. It is no longer about improving brand image; it is about looking for efficiency savings in the face of rising costs.” • Energy use and costs 23 • (Changes in) Information Technology The term “Technology” is derived from the Greek word “Technologia” and “techne” means “craft” and “logia” means the “study of something”. Technology is a very broad concept and is used to refer to several braches of science and study. Some examples are information technology, medical technology, biotechnology, etc. As the term technology branches into various fields of science and study, so do its benefits. Let us look at the benefits of technology in some major areas of day-to-day life: Benefits of Technology in Business: The days when the Chief Information Officer (CIO) took implementation decisions and passed the responsibility down the line are passed. Today, the CIO is an individual who possesses business as well as technical skills, understands the new IT issues facing a business, and drives the IT changes from the top down. This is a clear indicator of the benefits businesses are enjoying through the implementation of technology. Today technology is an integral part of any business right from the purchase of computers and software to the implementation of network and security tools. This helps businesses to: • Remain up-to-date • Drive business forward • Sustain and survive competition In short, technology has become one of the significant factors that maximize an organization’s ROI. Benefits of Technology in Communication: 24 From hand-held computers to touch phones, technological advancements in the field of communication are endless. The means and the modes of communication are unlimited. Some of the benefits of technological advancements in the field of communication are: • Speed : time is no longer a constraint in communication • Clarity : With megapixel images and video, and high fidelity audio systems clarity in communication has become a never-before experience • Proximity : technological advancements have made the world a smaller place to live in • Dissemination : whether spreading information, broadcasting news, or sharing knowledge, technology has made it faster, easier, and smarter Benefits of Technology in Education: Technological advancements in the field of education are fast evolving. Today, e-learning is a familiar and popular term. Some of the benefits of technology in this field are: Personalized learning experience: Learners are able to take control and manage their own learning. They set their own goals, manage the process and content of learning, and communicate with peers. Immediate response: Most e-learning programs provide immediate feedbacks on learner assessments. Similarly there are features such as chat, discussion boards, e-libraries, etc that allow clarifications at a faster pace than in traditional classrooms. Self-paced: Learners can chart courses at their own pace. This ensures higher levels of motivation both in terms of completing the course as well as in performance. Greater access: Technological advancements have opened education to learners with learning disabilities and in remote locations. Benefits of Technology in Healthcare: The marriage between medicine and technology has reshaped healthcare and revolutionized the medical profession. Some of the major benefits are: Secure environment: Technology allows physicians and patients to interact in a secure and comfortable environment to discuss sensitive issues. Flexibility: Physicians can answer routine and less critical queries at a convenient time. Cost- and time-saving: Physicians can follow-up, provide advice, and re-direct patients to resources on the Internet. This saves cost and time by reducing office visits. Medical devices: Medical aids allow patients to continue recovery at home reducing their hospital stay. Vulnerable population: Technology aids the very young, elderly, and patients with complex birth defects, chronic illnesses, and disabled children by alleviating their problems so that they can continue living in their homes Benefits of Technology in Society: Today technology pervades almost all aspects of our daily life from shopping, banking, making travel arrangements to university admissions. Some of the benefits are: Convenience: Provides a great deal of convenience in expediting personal and business transactions be it shopping, banking, or simply paying bills. Speed: From sending gifts to making payments everything gets a done with a few clicks. Communication: The world is a smaller place and technology allows everyone to keep in touch with their families and friends at a more affordable cost. Accuracy: Technology has reduced errors in mundane and monotonous chores, saving time and cost. Development: Technology has brought about development in many fields such as medicine, 25 government, business, education, etc. Technology has evolved and transformed our lives and society. Overall, it has brought about tremendous growth and benefit to mankind. • (Changes in) Internet Top concerns for CEO's in today's business environment are: a. b. c. d. e. the threat posed by competitors; controlling costs; finding new opportunities; and improving responsiveness; Better customer focus and service. E-business online is itself capable of delivering these benefits. Business of all sizes in all sectors are using the Internet in many different ways - to work with partners and suppliers, for procurement, for internal activities such as knowledge sharing and new product development, and much more. Companies such as United Technologies, J. Sainsbury, General Electric and many others are reporting benefits from the use of the Internet. These benefits include: a. b. c. d. e. f. g. h. i. improved speed of response; cost savings; improved communications, information and knowledge sharing; reductions in inventory; improved efficiency and productivity; harmonization and standardization of procedures; better transfer of best practices; acquisition of new customers and increased sales; Improved customer service. However the benefits are achieved not by technology (which is an enabler) but by addressing strategy, technology, organization, people and business processes as an integrated whole and making changes in all these dimensions. The Internet is just like other information technologies - change management, good implementation practices and clear business objectives are required in order to reap the full benefits. Mobile technology is exactly what the name implies - technology that is portable. Examples of mobile IT devices include: • (Changes in) Mobile Technology a. b. c. d. e. laptop and notebook computers palmtop computers or personal digital assistants mobile phones and 'smart phones' global positioning system (GPS) devices wireless debit/credit card payment terminals Mobile devices can be enabled to use a variety of communications technologies such as: a. wireless fidelity (Wi-Fi) - a type of wireless local area network technology b. Bluetooth - connects mobile devices wirelessly 26 c. 'third generation' (3G), global system for mobile communications (GSM) and general packet radio service (GPRS) data services - data networking services for mobile phones d. dial-up services - data networking services using modems and telephone lines e. virtual private networks - secure access to a private network It is therefore possible to network the mobile device to a home office or the internet while travelling. Benefits Mobile computing can improve the service you offer your customers. For example, when meeting with customers you could access your customer relationship management system - over the internet - allowing you to update customer details whilst away from the office. Alternatively, you can enable customers to pay for services or goods without having to go to the till. For example, by using a wireless payment terminal diners can pay for their meal without leaving their table. More powerful solutions can link you directly into the office network while working off site, for instance to access your database or accounting systems. For example, you could: a. set up a new customer's account b. check prices and stock availability c. place an order online This leads to great flexibility in working - for example, enabling home working, or working while travelling. Increasingly, networking 'hot spots' are being provided in public areas that allow connection back to the office network or the internet. The growth of cloud computing has also impacted positively on the use of mobile devices, supporting more flexible working practices by providing services over the internet.. 27