August 2011

Semiconductor products bounce back

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Articles - August 2011
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
0811_Semiconductor_DataburstThe global sales of North American semiconductor equipment producers have bounced back from their recessionary lows of mid-2009 to levels not seen since 2007. 
 

Women lag in bike riding and business

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Articles - August 2011
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
0811_WomenLagInBikeRidingEvery year, the Interbike trade show in Las Vegas sponsors a seminar about the female bike consumer. “It’s always the same material — how women have the buying power in the U.S.,” says Joan Martocello, a manager at Bike Gallery, a Portland bike store chain. “Then you go into bike shops and still see the girlie posters.” Even in cycle-friendly Portland, says Martocello, the male-dominated bike shop environment “is quite a bit intimidating for women.”
 

The Portland rental squeeze

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Articles - August 2011
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
0811_PDXRentalSqueezeLandlords of Portland, rejoice. Although the city’s residential real estate market remains in the doldrums, the rental market is flourishing.
 

Zidell cleanup begins waterfront area renewal

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Articles - August 2011
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
0811_OnTheWaterfront_02The aptly named environmental consultant Paul Fishman has enjoyed a long career at the intersection of the built environment and the natural world. His biggest projects have involved elaborate cleanups that balance the needs of industrial clients facing regulatory pressure and endangered fish in the Willamette River. None has been larger or more complex than his latest, the long-awaited cleanup of the Zidell property along the river between downtown and South Waterfront.
 

Sock It to Me's success

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Articles - August 2011
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
0811_Tactics_01Carrie Atkinson was only 26 when she decided to start her own company. Now Sock It to Me is splitting at the seams.
 

News about news sources

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Articles - August 2011
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
0811_InputGraph_03We asked readers this month about where they get their news.
 

From the editor: Age defines news usage

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Articles - August 2011
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
robin-BLOGThis month's input survey asked Oregon business leaders about their news habits, and what we found out syncs with what the Pew Research Center has documented about news consumers nationally.

 

 
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Free Falling

Contributed Blogs
Thursday, December 18, 2014
121714-oilprice-thumbBY JASON NORRIS | OB CONTRIBUTOR

The implosion of the energy complex: The best thing for low oil prices is low oil prices.


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Powerbook Perspective

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Friday, December 12, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER

A conversation with Oregon state economist Josh Lehner.


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Editor's Letter: Power Play

January-Powerbook 2015
Thursday, December 11, 2014

There’s a fascinating article in the December issue of the Harvard Business Review about a profound power shift taking place in business and society. It’s a long read, but the gist revolves around the tension between “old power” and “new power” as a driver of transformation. Here’s an excerpt:

Old power works like a currency. It is held by few. Once gained, it is jealously guarded, and the powerful have a substantial store of it to spend. It is closed, inaccessible, and leader-driven. It downloads, and it captures.

New power operates differently, like a current. It is made by many. It is open, participatory, and peer-driven. It uploads, and it distributes. Like water or electricity, it’s most forceful when it surges. The goal with new power is not to hoard it but to channel it.

The authors, Henry Timms and Jeremy Heimans, don’t necessarily favor one form of power over another but merely outline how power is transitioning, and how companies can take advantage of these changes to strengthen their positions in the marketplace. 

Our Powerbook issue might be viewed as a case study in the new-power transition. This annual book of lists provides information on leading businesses, nonprofits and universities in the state. Most of the featured companies are entrenched power players now pursuing more flexible and less hierarchical approaches to doing business. Law firms, for example, are adopting new technologies and fee structures to make legal services more accessible and affordable.

This month we also take a look at a controversial new U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission rule requiring public companies to disclose the median pay of workers, as well as the ratio between CEO and median-worker pay. 

Part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law, the rule will compel public companies to be more open about employee compensation, with the assumption that greater transparency will improve corporate performance and, perhaps, help address one of the major challenges of our time: income inequality.

New power is not only about strategy and tactics, the Harvard Business Review authors say. “The ultimate questions are ethical. The big question is whether new power can genuinely serve the common good and confront society’s most intractable problems.”

That sounds like a call to arms. Or a New Year’s resolution. Old power or new, the goals are the same: to be a force for positive change in the world. Happy 2015!

— Linda


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Crowdfunding 2.0

News
Tuesday, December 02, 2014
120214-crowdfund-thumbBY LINDA BAKER

A conversation with attorney Erich Merrill about the latest way to raise money from large groups of people.


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Top stories in 2014

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Thursday, December 18, 2014
10-listthumb

2014 was a year of wild contradictions, fast-paced growth and unexpected revelations.


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The short list: 5 hot coffee shops for entrepreneurs

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Friday, November 14, 2014

CupojoeBY JESSICA RIDGWAY

Oregon entrepreneurs reveal their favorite caffeine hangouts.


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Justice for All

January-Powerbook 2015
Thursday, December 11, 2014
BY JESSICA RIDGWAY

Lawger upends the typical hourly based fee model by letting clients determine the cost.


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