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Michael Seo
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Michael's interests and projects include global health, international development and fashion. In the area of health his projects focus on health innovation initiatives in low resource environments. In fashion he is a co-owner of 51inc, a women's lifestyle and active apparel brand. He writes on a diversity of issues such as global health, social enterprise and entrepreneurship.

Entries by Michael Seo

Poor choices in program design in a poverty context

(0) Comments | Posted May 17, 2016 | 8:01 AM

A fatal flaw in program design is to underestimate the abilities of those we are trying to assist. Programs that are designed to attack systemic challenges seek to realize long lasting improvements through behavior change but may misjudge what that challenge is. An example is the biases implicit in programs...

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The LA River as Community Infrastructure

(0) Comments | Posted April 15, 2016 | 10:47 AM

US infrastructure is in a desperate state. The Senate Budget Committee references a 2013 study , "Report Card for America's Infrastructure American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)," that estimates roughly $3.6 trillion in total investment is needed by 2020 to return the nation's facilities to good repair, which...

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Self-driving Cars and an Underappreciated Impact They Will Bring

(2) Comments | Posted March 18, 2016 | 9:40 AM

The momentum of self-driving cars on the road is accelerating with the question clearly becoming "when" not "if" the widespread use of self-driving cars will be allowed. A 2015 Business Intelligence Report forecasts a compounded annual growth rate of 134% from 2015 to 2020 with at least 10...

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The Living Room and a Space Between

(1) Comments | Posted March 10, 2016 | 9:25 AM

Last year I saw a remarkable documentary, The Space Between, which chronicles the struggle of providing palliative care services in a Kenyan hospice setting through the stories of four individuals receiving care at Kimbilio Hospice (Kiswahili for Refuge). Kimbilio Hospice is a 24-bed, in-patient hospice that provides quality...

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Emoji-cation and Children as Autonomous Health Managers

(2) Comments | Posted February 29, 2016 | 10:38 AM

In 2014 the Bloomberg Administration introduced a New York City Soda Ban that was intended to limit the maximum size of a container for sugary drinks to sixteen ounces. The ban was challenged by the American soft-drinks industry which succeeded in having the measure repealed before enactment. The New York...

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Can You Hear a Flag Coming Down?

(0) Comments | Posted July 21, 2015 | 7:00 AM

Last week I was on a Skype call with a friend in Mozambique (I live in NYC but I am working with persons in sub-Saharan Africa on various initiatives) who asked me what I thought about the Confederate flag debate. It was just over 10 days ago that the Confederate...

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Potty Training a Zero Waste Baby - Parent

(3) Comments | Posted July 15, 2015 | 11:39 AM

As defined by the United States Environmental Agency, "Sustainability is based on a simple principle: Everything that we need for our survival and well-being depends, either directly or indirectly, on our natural environment. Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony that...

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The 'Side Effects' of Good Intentions

(0) Comments | Posted May 22, 2015 | 1:04 PM

Phys Ed Plus (PEP) was founded in 2010 by Brian Semonian a certified physical educator. PEP is a non-profit whose mission is to bring comprehensive Physical Education programs to elementary schools that do not have them. Their programs align the needs of the school (schedule, funds, space access,...

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What If Every Purchase You Made Gave Back?

(0) Comments | Posted December 16, 2014 | 5:31 AM

It is an increasingly asked question and many companies answer this by incorporating a contribution at point of purchase. Companies such as Warby Parker use a buy-one-give-one model; in this case it's buy-a-pair-give-a-pair. To date Warby Parker has distributed a million pairs of eyeglasses. In parallel Warby Parker...

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Scaling Hope

(0) Comments | Posted November 20, 2014 | 12:00 AM

The good news is that the number of Americans who are uninsured (without health insurance) dropped eight percent in the first quarter of 2014 compared to the same period in 2013. The bad news is that this means 41 million Americans are not insured, which often represents a...

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3 Things I Learned as a Shop Girl in Southampton NY That I Brought to My Work in Mozambique

(0) Comments | Posted July 30, 2014 | 12:09 PM

Six years ago my sister, Jin Seo, started a women's luxury active apparel brand called 51inc. It only focuses on women's apparel and women are slightly more than half the U.S. population, thus "51". I help where I can but I am essentially a roadie assisting the talent....

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Leadership in Education -- Enhancing the 'Other' Pipeline

(3) Comments | Posted October 8, 2013 | 9:27 AM

As a sector K-12 education is a $600 billion industry responsible for the second largest workforce in the United States. And for the past 50 years the ratio of teaching to non-teaching positions has remained steady at 1:1. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, Digest of...

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A Seven-fold Return: Investing in Early Childhood Education

(4) Comments | Posted June 19, 2013 | 12:27 PM

President Obama's State of the Union address this past January highlighted the value of investing in early childhood education. He noted that "Every dollar we invest in high-quality early education can save more than 7 dollars later on." Putting words in to action, Obama's budget proposes USD 75 Billion over...

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Made in the Lower East (miLES) -- A Community Incubator

(0) Comments | Posted May 28, 2013 | 10:23 AM

Founded by Eric Ho, miLES (made in the Lower East Side) seeks a better way to utilize underused storefronts and " turn them into vibrant community hubs for working, learning, connecting, and starting up new projects." miLES reports that the Lower East Side of Manhattan has over 200...

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A Developing World Strategy for Personalized Medicines

(0) Comments | Posted April 4, 2013 | 2:24 PM

In 1990, the U.S. National Institutes of Health began an effort to map the human genome. This effort known as the Human Genome Project is considered the genesis of personalized medicine and was successfully completed in 2003. Although the Project was funded by the U.S. government and carried forth by...

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Online Auctions Become More Competitive

(0) Comments | Posted March 11, 2013 | 4:11 PM

Online auctions were supposed to change the way people shop. Technology enabled dynamic pricing would create an efficient way for demand to meet supply by reducing transaction costs (such as setting up a physical auction site) while increasing the pool of potential bidders. Sounds logical but the irony of economics...

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'Portion Distortion': Why the Soda Ban Makes Sense

(9) Comments | Posted February 7, 2013 | 12:12 PM

Nearly six months ago, September 2012, the New York City Board of Health approved changes that:

... would establish maximum sizes for beverages offered and sold in FSEs (food service establishments). The limits would apply to cups and containers used for sugary drinks. The limits would also apply...
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The 25th Anniversary of World AIDS Day: How Water Filters and Bed Nets Can Help Fight HIV

(0) Comments | Posted November 30, 2012 | 11:30 AM

Dec. 1, 2012 marks the 25th annual World AIDS Day. Since the first case of HIV, globally nearly 30 million have died from HIV/AIDS, more than 34 million people now live with HIV/AIDS, and more than 7,000 are newly infected every single day. Couple...

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Labeling, Calorie Counts and Prop 37

(8) Comments | Posted November 26, 2012 | 9:40 AM

"Anyone who thinks we're going to walk away from trying to tell the public what they're eating and what it's doing to them doesn't understand the obligation this city's Health Department has... We have to tell people how to lead better lives." -- New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, September...

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