The kea, a crow-sized parrot that lives in the rugged mountains of New Zealand, is considered by some a playful comic and by others a vicious killer. Its true character is a mystery that biologists have debated for more than a century. Judy Diamond and Alan Bond have written a comprehensive account of the kea's contradictory nature, and their conclusions cast new light on the origins of behavioral flexibility and the problem of species survival in human environments everywhere. New Zealand's geological remoteness has made the country home to a bizarre assemblage of plants and animals that are wholly unlike anything found elsewhere. Keas are native only to the South Island, breeding high in the rigorous, unforgiving environment of the Southern Alps. Bold, curious, and ingeniously destructive, keas have a complex social system that includes extensive play behavior. Like coyotes, crows, and humans, keas are "open-program" animals with an unusual ability to learn and to create new solutions to whatever problems they encounter. Diamond and Bond present the kea's story from historical and contemporary perspectives and include observations from their years of field work. A comparison of the kea's behavior and ecology with that of its closest relative, the kaka of New Zealand's lowland rain forests, yields insights into the origins of the kea's extraordinary adaptability. The authors conclude that the kea's high level of sociality is a key factor in the flexible lifestyle that probably evolved in response to the alpine habitat's unreliable food resources and has allowed the bird to survive the extermination of much of its original ecosystem. But adaptability has its limits, as the authors make clear when describing present-day interactions between keas and humans and the attempts to achieve a peaceful coexistence.
The rise of China is profoundly altering the balance of power in the Asia-Pacific region. This report examines these issues and suggests the course that New Zealand should chart to ensure that its interests in the peace and stability of the Asia Pacific are maintained.
The Prosperity Paradox
Author: Philip Martin
Publisher: Critical Frontiers of Theory, Research, and Policy in International Development Studies
"The Trump Paradox: Migration, Trade and Racial Politics in US-Mexico Relations explores one of the most complex and unequal cross-border relations anywhere in the world, in the light of a twenty-first century political economy generally and the rise of Donald Trump in particular. The book examines current US-Mexico relations through state-of-the-art analysis by scholars from both Mexico and the United States, sometimes working on binational teams. Organized into four sections, the first two chapters frame the trade and migration paradoxes that inform the exploration of these issues in the rest of the book. Politics has paradoxically stirred racial resentment around immigrants just as immigration from Mexico has reached net zero and without consideration for the trillion plus contribution of Latinos to the US GD. Indeed, a dilemma for rich and aging societies like the United States is that for their economies to continue flourishing, they need immigrants"--
"New Zealand had the fifth highest GDP per capita in the OECD in 1960; today we are 27th. The standard explanation for what went wrong involves some nonsense about commodity prices, Rob Muldoon and distance to markets. In The Pine Tree Paradox Michael Parker argues that our economic decline stems simply from our continuing reliance on agriculture. Today, developed countries get richer by capitalising on good ideas, not by growing things. Pine trees grow faster in New Zealand than anywhere else in the world. Yet, pine trees have not made us rich. However, because of the bounty of our land, we continue to believe that agriculture - goats, kiwifruit, venison, wine - will save us. The problem is not with our trees. The problem is that we live in the 21st century. The Pine Tree Paradox sets out a vision for New Zealand driven by innovation, not agriculture. While "being innovative" is orthodox economic thinking in New Zealand today, our approach is not nearly bold enough. A clear-eyed review of our national strengths reveals that we are well-placed to transform our economy into a global centre of innovation. What is required is a world-class university: Stanford on the Waitemata. Parker contrasts our economic experience with that of Northern California and asks: why not us? Building this future will be slow and costly. But - as the last 50 years have proved - not as costly as doing nothing"--Book jacket.