On Interest Rates and Mortality
A limited time on this earth makes time precious.
Sometimes the noise is more important than the signal.
On that Moment of Choice
No matter how rationally we try to act, that one moment of choice is still a purely emotional exercise.
On Moving People, not Cars
With the rainy season in full swing, monstrous traffic jams yet again plague the Philippine capital. There is a lot of blame to go around - some say we're too reliant on private transportation, and others say undisciplined, unregistered, and reckless buses are the real culprit. Let's take a closer look at the data and see if it can provide some clarity.
On True Filipino Resilience
Super Typhoon Yolanda (international codename Haiyan) struck the Philippine central islands last November 8, 2012.
On Philippine Foreign Trade
: USA vs China
The world is in the middle of an epic struggle for political influence between the USA and China, but what does this mean for Filipinos, who are trapped in the middle, both in the geographic and political sense? We can take a look at the data on one of the avenues of influence, foreign trade, and find out a little bit more.
On Getting to Know the Filipino Informal Settler
How well do you know the Filipino informal settler? Is he poor and underprivileged? What happens if you force him to pay rent? Well, short of actually starting a conversation with one, we can get to know the Filipino informal settler through data. Read on to find out more.
On Presidents and Priorities
: Distilling the Numbers out of the State of the Nation Address
The President's annual State of the Nation Address (SONA) is a strong indicator of an administration's priorities and accomplishments, but how do we compare across presidents? We can distill the SONA into numbers and count instances of national issues mentioned in the speech to find out and compare. You can also explore the speeches yourself using an interactive SONA word counter.
On Fraud and Fake Ballots
: Detecting election fraud through data
Election fraud in the Philippines is almost always alleged, but never really proven. We can explore an approach that can identify voting data patterns those most likely to be associated with vote padding - adding fake ballots - and find out how the sanctity of the ballot can be preserved by the thoughtful use of election data.
On Delays and Dropouts
: A Data Primer on Education
Using new data from the Department of Education, we can take a look at the current state of Philippine education. Is everyone being educated, is it inclusive, and teachers being paid enough? Find out in this article.
On What It Means to Be Filipino
: Quantifying the Filipino Psyche
What's important in life? What do you want in a job? Is suicide justifiable? Would you want a drug addict as a neighbor? How many children would you like to have? Do you have confidence in the church? Find out how Filipinos responded to these types of questions using data from the World Values Survey.
On the Filipino Migration and Remittances
: The grass is still greener on the other side
The Filipino diaspora has been a relatively well-documented phenomenon, as poor circumstances in the domestic economy nudge others to seek greener pastures abroad. But where exactly do these people go, and how have the trends changed since 1990? Also, are there any people coming in to the country? Let's take a look at the data.
On the S&P Credit Rating Upgrade
: The Numbers Behind BBB
Ratings agency Standard & Poor's (S&P) has raised the Philippines sovereign credit rating from BBB- to BBB, making it fully in the ranks of investment-grade sovereign debt. Let's look through those three B's and look at the data behind their decision.
On Pork and Plunder
: The numbers behind the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) scam
In one of the rarest moments in Philippine history, three high-ranking lawmakers were arrested on charges of plunder related to the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), or pork barrel scam.
On Presidential Priorities (July 2014)
: Aquino moves toward legacy
The annual State of the Nation Address (SONA) of the President of the Philippines, when distilled using word counts, can provide insight into the pressing issues of the day. We update [our original post ](/2014/02/sona-words.html) to include the latest 2014 SONA by President Aquino.
On the Effectiveness of Higher Sin Taxes
: Losing Steam? (2014 Q2 Update)
We update our assessment on the effectiveness of sin taxes with fresh national accounts data for the second quarter of 2014, and learn that sin taxes may be losing steam - smokers and drinkers may be having a hard time kicking the habit.