Project Managers International Luxembourg Chapter and Project Managers Without Borders are hosting a special workshop and brainstorming session on 25 April dedicated to resolving flooding in the Ghanian capital of Accra that have caused chaos and casualties in the city. Part of a global initiative among PMI chapters, the organisers hope that through bringing minds and experience together, a real and lasting solution can be found.
The Accra Flooding Initiative will be led by seasoned facilitators, with briefings and introductions provided at the start of each session, and calls on anyone with knowledge in the area of flooding, surface water handling, experience of working in sub-Saharan Africa, in a government environment or just straight-forward project management skills to participate.
Presented and organised by PMI Lux and PMWB, and represented by Kris Troukens, Director at Large with PMWB, the Initiative brings together workshops and initiatives around the globe with a team of virtual volunteers.
Kris has been involved with PMI for more than fifteen years in various positions around Europe.
The number of participants is limited to 40 people. It is free of charge for PMI Luxembourg Chapter members, though other participants are requested to pay a €20 fee (cash) at registration. Online preregistration is required, before 15:00 on 24 April. Participants are asked to print their tickets so their identity can be validated.
18:00 - Registration
18:30 - Introduction by PMI Chapter Luxembourg
18:40 - Introduction to the Accra Flooding Initiative
18:45 - Workshop / Brainstorming session
20:10 - Wrap-up / Questions
20:30 - Networking / Drinks
21:00 - End of event
The PMIL/PMWB Accra Flooding Initiative will be at the Chambre des Métiers on 25 April, from 18:00 to 21:00. PDUs are offered to PMI members, both Chapter members and non-Chapter members.
Global HR, payroll, tax and legal services company, SD Worx, has posted its annual results for 2016 showing a strong performance with near 40% turnover growth, primarily attributed to two major acquisitions made during the year consolidating the firm’s position as number two in Europe’s payroll market said the company.
Turnover jumped from €284 million to €397 million last year following the acquisition of German firm Fidelis in March and Ceridian UK and Ceridian Ireland in July.
The acquisitions added €90 million to SD Worx’ turnover, with the remaining €23 million showing an organic growth of 8% over the year before.
2016 produced an increased net profit of €47.7 million, up €9.4 million on the year before, and BTEBIT profits of €35.2 million, up €10 million.
Last year, SD Worx also acquired the residual shares of Belgian company Protime and SD Worx Netherlands, both of which are now 100% owned by the SD Worx Group. The company thus now has offices in ten countries: Belgium, Germany, Austria, France, Ireland, Luxembourg, Mauritius, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Switzerland. Through the Payroll Services Alliance, SD Worx provides services to companies around the world.
"For SD Worx, the past year has clearly been that of internationalisation. We still see strong potential for growth in this international market. Our customers are also constantly becoming international. We are responding to this trend by expanding our services. As we combine our international expertise with our knowledge of local companies and markets, we follow our clients in their international growth while remaining very close to them. This combination of local and international presence is an important asset,” said Steven Van Hoorebeke, CEO of SD Worx Group.
International language school network, Berlitz, will be running its customary kids language camps this summer and autumn offering the chance to combine language learning with activities including kayaking, football, volleyball, basketball and trips out, as well as weeks dedicated to swimming, mountain biking and climbing and three newly created camps for horse-riding, creativity and the arts, and one for Halloween.
According to the Berlitz website, the dates for this year’s camps are as follows:
09.04.17 – 15.04.17: French Camp (Vianden)
09.04.17 – 15.04.17: English Camp (Echternach)
16.07.17 – 22.07.17: French Camp, Horse Riding (Luxembourg City)
23.07.17 – 29.07.17: French Camp, Creativity: Theatre, Circus, Magic, Photography (Lultzhausen)
30.07.17 – 05.08.17: French Camp (Lultzhausen)
06.08.17 – 12.08.17: French Camp (Lultzhausen)
30.07.17 – 05.08.17: English Camp (Echternach)
06.08.17 – 12.08.17: English Camp (Echternach)
13.08.17 – 19.08.17: French Camp (Echternach)
20.08.17 – 26.08.17: German Camp (Schengen)
29.10.17 – 04.11.17: French Camp, Halloween (Echternach)
During the working visit to Canada, Prime Minister Xavier Bettel and Minister of Finance Pierre Gramegna met with Finance Minister Bill Morneau for an interview in Toronto for discussions focused on international political, economic and financial news as well as bilateral relations.
"Cooperation between Luxembourg and Canada is exemplary in financial matters," Xavier Bettel said at the end of the interview with Bill Morneau. "Several Canadian financial institutes are present in Luxembourg and have become fully integrated into the Luxembourg financial community."
With Bill Morneau we discussed the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), as well as the Brexit and its potential impact on global economic and financial exchanges.
"The good health of the Canadian financial sector and the attractiveness of Luxembourg's financial marketplace, especially in the context of the Brexit, are opening up new opportunities between our two countries for both Canadian banks and fintech players," said Minister Gramegna.
The prime minister also had an interview with Ontario Lieutenant Governor Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Her Majesty the Queen's representative, for discussions focused on bilateral relations and shared values and traits shared by Canada and Luxembourg, such as openness or multilingualism.
During their visit, Xavier Bettel and Pierre Gramegna also visited several companies in the field of innovation, research and finance.
Image: Xavier Bettel, Bill Morneau, finance minister for Canada, Pierre Gramegna.
The Pavement Administration will carry out underground wiring work on the Kirchberg A1 interchange from 19:00 on Friday 21 April until 06:00 Monday 24 April.
The following blocks and deviations will be in place:
Closure of the access ramp of the Kirchberg interchange from the A7 motorway;
Closure of the Kirchberg interchange ramp from Trier on the A1 motorway;
Closure of the by-pass roundabout "Richard-Serra" from the A1 and A7 motorways and towards the circuit of the International Fair.
Traffic from Trier to the A1 motorway and the A7 motorway and to the Kirchberg is diverted via the Hamm interchange to the Kirchberg interchange.
Aurea, a 14-storey, 58-metre tower with 138 apartments in Differdange, will be presented by developers Ikogest at the Urban Living fair in Oberkorn this weekend.
The first residential tower in Differdange, Aurea is in the Arboria district in the town centre, near to the Opkorn shopping centre, due to open later this year, the international school, and Chiers Park.
The apartments range from studios to four-bedroom duplexes and are going under Carré Immo’s and Dan Beck Immobilière’s hammers.
To see the launch and find out more, interested parties should go to the Oberkorn sports centre on Friday 21 April between 16:00 and 21:00, in the presence of the developer and the architect, and Saturday 22 April between 14:00 and 19h00, and Sunday 23 April from 10:00 to 18:00.
A first simplified version of the application can be downloaded from the website: www.aurea-differdange.lu.
La Fondation Cancer (The Cancer Foundation) is hosting a pair of lectures aimed at helping cancer patients and their carers to address some of the issues that arise when a diagnosis has been given.
On 11 May, for “Where Do I Stay?”, Charlotte Pull, psychologist and psychotherapist, helps families of cancer patients to better recognise their own stress and how they can keep in mind and meet the personal needs of their family member who is living with cancer, avoiding the risks of over-stress and burn-out.
On 27 June, for “Mum?!? Father?!? What’s Happening?”, Martine Risch, psychologist and psychotherapist, aims to help affected parents communicate with their children openly and protectively.
Both lectures are at the Foundation’s premises on Route d’Arlon, starting at 18:30, and admission is free. They will be conducted in Luxembourgish. Parking is available at the "Stade" car park or the bus (lines 22 & 28) to Stade Josy Barthel station.
The Pierre Werner Institute and the University of Luxembourg are hosting a symposium exploring the historical, social and political contexts in Europe at the time of the Reformation at Neumünster Abbey on 25 and 26 April.
This two-day symposium will bring together researchers from six countries (Germany, Belgium, France, Luxembourg, the United Kingdom and Switzerland) to present their latest research.
On Tuesday 25 April at 19:30, Danielle Cohen-Levinas (Prof. University of Paris-Sorbonne) will give a lecture entitled "The singular and the universal in Judaism: a paradigm of modernity", followed by comments by Guy Kirsch, Professor Emeritus at the University of Friborg and Robert Legros, Professor Emeritus at the University of Caen, Catholic Institute of Paris.
The symposium will be illustrated by an exhibition "Here I stand. Martin Luther, The Reformation and its consequences.”
Five hundred years ago, Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of the church in Wittenberg, an act that made him known not only throughout Christendom, but throughout Europe. His influence across the whole of European history and culture is still valid in theology, philosophy and history as well as in economic, social, moral and political thought.
The Federal Republic of Germany celebrates the half-millennium of Luther's theses with more than a thousand demonstrations from West to East and from South to North in about 100 localities with seminars and symposia in several universities, parishes and foundations to commemorate 1517, the year of the Reformation.
The objective of the colloquy in Luxembourg is to rethink this multi-dimensional event, to try to grasp some aspects of our contemporary culture in order to open up new avenues for the future. It is, in a way, an evaluation of the profound social transformations, in the broadest sense, of which we are the heirs
The colloquium and the conference are organised with the support of the IPSE (Identities, Policies, Societies and Spaces - University of Luxembourg), as well as the Robert Schuman Institute of European Affairs and the Institute of Philosophy at the University of Luxembourg.
The exhibition of the German Foreign Office is organised by the German Embassy in Luxembourg.
The creation of banking executive and Luxembourg resident, Rosa Villalobos, Impashion is a socially conscious clothing brand with the aim of fighting child labour and supporting children’s education, and is now available through their online store.
Founded in July 2016 by Rosa Villalobos, an experienced Investment banking executive, the company sells socially responsible clothing. The online range will start with basic products such as T-shirts, polos, and hoodies all made from organic materials, recycled polyesters, tencel, and bamboo.
Impashion works with local artists such as Frank Jones, Francoise Ley and Filip Markiewicz to designs the Tshirts, each one carrying a special story. All the printing is done in Atelier Kraizerberg, in Dudelange.
As an innovative approach to social impact, Impashion gives on average 30% to 40% of the profit from each sale to specific organisations engaged in the fight against child labour.
“When founding Impashion, I felt that there was a clear need on the marketplace for socially conscious products, with full transparency at all steps of the value chain including disclosure of all costs. Impashion fills that need and at the same time defends a fantastic purpose,” said Villalobos.
Impashion clothing can be found online at: www.impashion.com.
Research by Professor Thorsten Lehnert and PhD candidate Sara Abed Masror Khah from the Luxembourg School of Finance led them to conclude that the free circulation of information in a country can lead to more volatile stock prices due to more frequent price jumps. At the same time, however, countries with greater press freedom are known to experience more economic growth.
The authors analysed the relationship between press freedom, measured by the PFI published annually by Reporters without Borders, and stock market characteristics, using data from a balanced panel of 50 countries.
In “free” environments, news and information are broadly available and are picked up immediately by markets, leading economic agents, such as households, companies, investors or politicians, to become better processors of information. On the other hand, in “unfree” environments, in which governments usually have tight control on the media, economic news can be withheld or their dissemination delayed leading to fewer sudden impacts on the stock market.
However, press restriction is not in fact positive for the overall economy. Professor Lehnert expanded “Press freedom in a country contributes positively to what economists would call the ‘good’ volatility of stock markets. This refers for instance to conditions that make it advantageous for firms to take risks that is necessary to greater economic growth. This is why it should certainly not be understood as an argument to reduce the freedom of press. On the contrary, freedom of press creates more welfare and economic growth.”
The researchers also refer to an interesting relationship between press freedom and economic crises. Several member states of the European Union saw their PFI ranking drop significantly since the 2008 financial crisis. Greece, for example, dropped 64 places between 2009 and 2013, when it fell on the 99th position of 180 countries assessed. Hungary, too, saw its PFI drop by 41 places, from 25 in 2009 to 64 in 2013. Luxembourg, on the other hand, a politically stable country, which was less affected by the crisis, initially ranked 20th in 2009, but steadily improved its ranking to 4th place in 2013.
“Despite creating some volatility on stock markets, a free press is not only good for the overall economy but is an essential part of democratic societies and policymakers should encourage an independent and fair press”, concluded Professor Lehnert.
Image: PhD candidate Sara Khah. © Michel Brumat