General Knowledge Current Affairs

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Ensuring Human Security in Today's World: A Comprehensive Overview

In an increasingly digital and interconnected world, the concept of security has extended far beyond traditional notions of physical safety. Human security encompasses a broad spectrum of concerns, from personal safety to economic stability and individual rights. At its core, it aims to safeguard the well-being and dignity of individuals, emphasizing the protection of human lives from various threats.

Understanding Human Security

The term 'human security' emerged to address the evolving landscape of challenges that affect individuals worldwide. It delves beyond national security frameworks, focusing on the protection of individuals rather than just states. This holistic approach considers threats such as poverty, hunger, disease, and environmental degradation alongside traditional security concerns like conflict and violence.

Dimensions of Human Security

Human security encompasses multiple dimensions, each essential in safeguarding individuals:

  • Economic Security: Ensuring access to basic resources, employment, and financial stability.
  • Food Security: Addressing issues related to hunger, malnutrition, and access to sufficient and nutritious food.
  • Health Security: Providing healthcare services and disease prevention measures.
  • Environmental Security: Mitigating the impact of environmental degradation and climate change on communities.
  • Personal Security: Protecting individuals from physical violence, crime, and human rights abuses.
  • Community Security: Promoting social cohesion and stability within communities.

Challenges to Human Security

Numerous global challenges threaten the realization of comprehensive human security:

Economic Disparities

Persistent economic disparities create barriers to achieving human security. Poverty, lack of access to education, and unemployment can lead to a multitude of insecurities, impacting various aspects of an individual's life.

Climate Change and Environmental Degradation

Rapid climate change and environmental degradation pose severe threats to human security. From natural disasters to resource scarcity, these issues directly impact the well-being of individuals and communities.

Health Emergencies

Health crises, such as pandemics or widespread diseases, significantly challenge human security. They disrupt lives, healthcare systems, and economic stability, underscoring the interconnected nature of security concerns.

Protecting Human Security

Addressing these challenges and ensuring human security demands a collective, multi-faceted approach:

Policy and Governance

Effective policies and governance play a pivotal role in safeguarding human security. It involves initiatives that address economic inequalities, strengthen healthcare systems, and mitigate environmental risks.

International Cooperation

Collaboration among nations and international organizations is vital in addressing global challenges that affect human security. Joint efforts in disaster relief, healthcare provisions, and conflict resolution contribute to a more secure world.

Empowering Communities

Empowering communities to address their own security concerns is fundamental. Local initiatives, support for education, and promoting inclusivity and diversity within societies play a significant role in enhancing human security.


Human security stands as a multifaceted concept, addressing diverse threats that affect individuals globally. Embracing a holistic approach that accounts for economic, environmental, and personal dimensions is crucial in ensuring the safety and well-being of people.

Monday, October 9, 2023

The Nobel Peace Prize 2023

The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize 2023 to Narges Mohammadi for her fight against the oppression of women in Iran and her fight to promote human rights and freedom for all.

This year's peace prize also recognises the hundreds of thousands of people who, in the preceding year, have demonstrated against Iran's theocratic regime's policies of discrimination and oppression targeting women. The motto adopted by the demonstrators - "Woman - Life - Freedom" - suitably expresses the dedication and work of Narges Mohammadi.

Narges Mohammadi is a woman, a human rights advocate, and a freedom fighter. Her brave struggle for freedom of expression and the right of independence has come with tremendous personal costs. Altogether, the regime in Iran has arrested her 13 times, convicted her five times, and sentenced her to a total of 31 years in prison and 154 lashes. Narges Mohammadi is still in prison.

Friday, October 6, 2023

The Nobel Prize in Literature 2023

The Nobel Prize in Literature 2023 is awarded to the Norwegian author Jon Fosse, “for his innovative plays and prose which give voice to the unsayable.”

His immense oeuvre written in Norwegian Nynorsk and spanning a variety of genres consists of a wealth of plays, novels, poetry collections, essays, children’s books, and translations. While he is today one of the most widely performed playwrights in the world, he has also become increasingly recognised for his prose.

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2023

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2023 was awarded to Moungi G. Bawendi, Louis E. Brus and Alexei I. Ekimov "for the discovery and synthesis of quantum dots".

Physicists had long known that in theory, size-dependent quantum effects could arise in nanoparticles, but at that time it was almost impossible to sculpt in nano dimensions. Therefore, few people believed that this knowledge would be put to practical use.

However, in the early 1980s, Alexei Ekimov succeeded in creating size-dependent quantum effects in coloured glass. The colour came from nanoparticles of copper chloride and Ekimov demonstrated that the particle size affected the colour of the glass via quantum effects.

A few years later, Louis Brus was the first scientist in the world to prove size-dependent quantum effects in particles floating freely in a fluid.

In 1993, Moungi Bawendi revolutionised the chemical production of quantum dots, resulting in almost perfect particles. This high quality was necessary for them to be utilised in applications.

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2023

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2023 was awarded jointly to Pierre Agostini, Ferenc Krausz, and Anne L’Huillier "for experimental methods that generate attosecond pulses of light for the study of electron dynamics in matter".

The three Nobel Prize laureates in Physics 2023 are being recognized for their experiments, which have given humanity new tools for exploring the world of electrons inside atoms and molecules. They have demonstrated a way to create extremely short pulses of light that can be used to measure the rapid processes in which electrons move or change energy.

Pierre Agostini (Affiliation at the time of the award: The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA): Prize motivation: “for experimental methods that generate attosecond pulses of light for the study of electron dynamics in matter”

Ferenc Krausz (Affiliation at the time of the award: Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, Garching, Germany; Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Munich, Germany): “for experimental methods that generate attosecond pulses of light for the study of electron dynamics in matter”

Anne L’Huillier (Affiliation at the time of the award: Lund University, Lund, Sweden): “for experimental methods that generate attosecond pulses of light for the study of electron dynamics in matter”

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2023

The Nobel Assembly at the Karolinska Institutet has decided to award the 2023 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine jointly to Katalin Karikó and Drew Weissman “for their discoveries concerning nucleoside base modifications that enabled the development of effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19.”

The discoveries by the two Nobel Prize laureates were critical for developing effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19 during the pandemic that began in early 2020. Through their groundbreaking findings, which have fundamentally changed our understanding of how mRNA interacts with our immune system, the laureates contributed to the unprecedented rate of vaccine development during one of the greatest threats to human health in modern times.

 Image Courtesy: The Nobel Committe for Physiology or Medicine. Ill. Mattias Karlén

Katalin Karikó (Affiliation at the time of the award: Szeged University, Szeged, Hungary; University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA): “for their discoveries concerning nucleoside base modifications that enabled the development of effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19”.

Drew Weissman (Affiliation at the time of the award: Penn Institute for RNA Innovations, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA): “for their discoveries concerning nucleoside base modifications that enabled the development of effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19”.

Thursday, October 5, 2023

India wins bid to host 17th International Congress on the Chemistry of Cement

India has won the bid to host the prestigious International Congress on the Chemistry of Cement (ICCC) at New Delhi in 2027. India’s leading research and academic institutes, National Council for Cement and Building Materials (NCCBM) along with IIT Delhi successfully presented the India’s bid before the Steering Committee members of the Conference during the ongoing 16th ICCC at Bangkok, Thailand. Besides India, other bidders were from Switzerland and UAE. The decision was announced on 20th September 2023 at Bangkok, Thailand during the 16th ICCC. The Indian bid was presented by Dr L P Singh, Director General, NCCBM, Dr S K Chaturvedi, Joint Director, NCCBM and Dr Shashank Bishnoi, Professor (Civil Engg.), IIT Delhi.

The International Congress on the Chemistry of Cement is the largest and most prestigious event of its kind which reviews the progress of research in the area of Cement and Concrete. The congresses have been held generally at intervals of four to six years since 1918, providing a strong and fruitful link between the academic world and the cement industry. The 9th Congress was organized at New Delhi in 1992 by NCCBM and the present 16th ICCC is being held at Bangkok, Thailand from 18-22 September 2023.

Hosting this esteemed event in India provides us with a unique opportunity to bring together the leading leaders, experts, and innovators in cement sector from around the world. This event is not only a testament to our research and academic organization's capabilities but also a chance to showcase our vibrant city New Delhi to the global cement and concrete industry. New Delhi, as a host city, will be poised to offer an unforgettable experience to all attendees of 17th ICCC in 2027 with its world-class conference facilities like Bharat Mandapam and Yashobhoomi, rich cultural heritage, and exceptional hospitality.

National Council for Cement and Building Materials (NCCBM) is an apex Research and Development organization under the administrative control of DPIIT, Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Government of India. NCCBM is dedicated to research, technology development & transfer, education & industrial services for cement, allied building materials & construction industries. NCCBM has a proven track record of executing biennial NCB International Seminars/Conferences of similar magnitude, ensuring a seamless and memorable experience for all participants from across the globe.


India is the fifth largest economy today and is likely to become third largest by the next five years and its cement industry is second largest in the world with installed cement capacity of 600 million tonnes. The cement industry in India plays a key role in circular economy framework in the country by utilizing various industrial wastes and is having one of the lowest CO2 footprints and most energy efficient in the world. The booming infrastructure development, resources, and expertise available within India make it a perfect backdrop to bring together thought leaders, academics, cement and concrete professionals, and enthusiasts to exchange ideas and drive progress. The experience and framework of Indian cement industry for addressing local and global issues such as decarbonisation, sustainable development, circular economy in operation, energy security, alternate energy sources, low carbon cements and so on provide an ideal modal for deliberations and showcasing to global leaders and technocrats for the benefits of global society at large.