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There’s potentially good news for South Africa’s skills shortage: Hundreds of expats are seriously considering coming home.

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In 1915, when Einstein proposed his theory of relativity, he postulated gravitational waves, saying that all massive bodies distort space-time, like a heavy ball denting a rubber sheet, and that those distortions give rise to the phenomenon we experience as gravity.

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Last week’s State of the Nation Address was once again overshadowed by the same kind of heckling that South Africans saw last year. But while the Nkandla saga seems to finally be nearing a conclusion, the “Zupta” saga has just begun.

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A few months after South African archaeologists made international news – and history – with the announcement of the discovery of a “new” species of hominid, Homo Naledi, South African scientists have announced that they have successfully bred an animal that looks strikingly similar to the zebra-like horse known as a 'quagga'. The quagga was declared extinct in the 1880's as a result of over-hunting.

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South Africa is preparing itself for tougher economic times on the back of recent data indicating that the country’s growth is not meeting expectations. However, according to a recent column by Corporate Traveller, a company specialising in arranging business travel, not all industries are suffering equally, and spend on business travel indicates which sectors are bearing the brunt of a troubled economy, and which are growing in spite of it.

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A new report by the World Economic Forum, entitled The Future of Jobs, paints an interesting, bleak and futuristic picture of the world a mere four years from now. According to the report, approximately 7 million jobs will be lost by 2020 as a result of developments in genetics, artificial intelligence, robotics and other technological change, with only 2 million gained.

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On the back of last year’s Matric pass rate showing a drop to 70% from 75% in 2014, City Press reports that the school system will be subjected to a major shake-up, dividing pupils into three streams: academic, technical occupational and technical vocational. Mathanzima Mweli, Director-General of the Department of Basic Education, told the newspaper that pupils would be channelled into one of the three streams based on their strengths and weaknesses.

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Last week seemed to be the week of leadership changes. In the same week that saw a cabinet reshuffle by President Jacob Zuma, Sasol has announced the appointment of two internal executives as joint CEOs of the company. Current CEO, David Constable, will become a consultant to Sasol from 2016.

With the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21) on climate change taking place in Paris this month, global warming is once again top of the agenda. While there are high hopes that the conference will see a final deal to reduce emissions of the greenhouse gases that have caused global warming by 2% compared to preindustrial levels, scientists have renewed their efforts to understand how to best limit the effects of climate change.

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Crown Publications, one of South Africa’s largest business-to-business publishing houses, came into existence in 1986. Since then, the company has grown from producing a single magazine, Electricity SA (renamed Electricity+Control), to publishing six monthly magazines, three quarterlies, and a number of engineering handbooks.

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