History of Buffalo’s city infrastructure and Design

Jon Purizhansky discusses the history of Buffalo, NY infrastructure and design. The Buffalo city plan was developed in 2003. This Queen City Hub Plan formulated modern policy and conception for downtown Buffalo. Buffalo is famous for being the regional center for recreation, education, the start-up scene and life science R&D. An award-winning plan controls the town; downtown Buffalo has been experiencing an upswing in redevelopment and involvement of new public and private sector investment over the last few years. This new development is also evidenced by many new projects.

history of buffalo

Jon Purizhansky says that the City is Buffalo is experiencing challenges to attaining its full capacity, encompassing specifying creative explanations to motivate and benefit ongoing downtown reinvestment. In 2012 Buffalo’s Building Reuse Project  was an acknowledgment to an overabundance of office vacuum in downtown, much of which is in class B and C buildings whose development is hampered by small floor plates, the outdated building systems, environmental interests, and surrounding public infrastructure.

The plan designed for the city sets out a frame for the City of Buffalo to make strategic infrastructure investment in the near term that will incrementally work towards the plan’s long term vision framework, helping to fuel development, bolster tourism, enhance downtown’s image, and attract investment that supports downtown’s renewal.

Jon Purizhansky points to the fact that the BBRP needs improvement of “a downtown master Modification for public infrastructure and conveniences, which is context susceptible and catches the personal characteristics of each downtown area district”.

The whole project is financed by National Grid and National Fuel, and this Master Plan has been formulated under the recommendation of the BBRP project team, encompassing the City of Buffalo Office of Strategic Planning, the Buffalo Urban Development Corporation.

The Downtown Buffalo Infrastructure and Public Realm Master Plan was established by a receptacle to harmonize and prioritize infrastructure investments in downtown. It is done by evaluating the occurring circumstances and making suggestions for what infrastructure interests should be intending for to accomplish for key roads and public spaces.

To open the path to investment, the plan recognizes four preference areas for new interest and a list of more certain priority undertakings in each area. This is funded by a series of decision-making standards to help in the examination of infrastructure proposals and a series of general design approaches to guarantee that new infrastructure is constructed to meet the desires of the developing downtown.

Originally Posted: http://www.jonpurizhanskybuffalo.com/history-of-buffalos-city-infrastructure-and-design/

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Rising Regulations of Cryptocurrency

According to Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY illicit use of crypto currencies is on the rise globally and nation states, including Iran and North Korea are taking advantage of that. For example, the US has imposed heavy sanctions on Iran. Iran, in turn, is doing all it can to evade these sanctions by using crypto currencies. But the U.S. Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) is not happy with Iran’s use of cryptocurrencies to bypass the sanctions.

Due to US restrictions on Iran, the country was slapped with a universal prohibition from acquiring US dollar banknotes. However, Iran went ahead and released their plans to launch the country’s own state backed cryptocurrency.  According to the US, Iran’s crypto activities pose a significant threat to financial institutions across the world.

rising-Cryptocurrency

Jon Purizhansky says that according to the FinCEN directive, despite Iran’s Central Bank’s ban on domestic financial institutions from trading in cryptocurrencies, a lot of internet avenues are available for potential investors to access crypto platforms and exchanges. Consequently, 15 global jurisdictions, including the G7 countries, will reportedly develop a system for tracking crypto transactions to prevent illicit uses of cryptocurrencies.

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is planning to prepare detailed measures by 2020, according to a report by Tokyo-based newspaper Nikkei. The new system intends to collect and distribute personal data on individuals who conduct crypto transactions in order to prevent funds from being used for illegal activities such as money laundering and terrorism financing, the report notes.

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is planning to prepare detailed measures by 2020, according to a report by Tokyo-based newspaper Nikkei. The new system intends to collect and distribute personal data on individuals who conduct crypto transactions in order to prevent funds from being used for illegal activities such as money laundering and terrorism financing, the report notes.

Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY also says that according to Cointekegraph four major South Korean crypto exchanges, including Bithumb, Upbit, Coinone and Korbit reportedly faced tighter regulation when they renewed their banking accounts. Further, on July 18, G7 finance ministers voiced their concerns that cryptocurrencies such as Facebook’s stablecoin project Libra risk upsetting the global financial system if they are not regulated strictly. For these reasons, we will see more and more regulations and restrictions as they relate to crypto currencies and their movements.

Originally Posted: http://www.jonpurizhanskybuffalo.com/rising-regulations-of-cryptocurrency/

Global Migration of Domestic Workers

Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY says that relocation of domestic assistants is rapidly expanding. Domestic assistants is a category of foreign migrant workers who perform a variety of household services for an individual or a family, from providing care for children and elderly dependents to housekeeping, including cleaning and household maintenance. Other responsibilities may include cooking, laundry and ironing, shopping for food and other household errands. Particular niche, however, is taking care of the elderly.

The world population is ageing, and the number of older adults who need assistance in activities of daily living has been increasing. At the same time, the ability to provide informal care to frail older adults within the family is declining, among other things due to drop in fertility, women joining the workforce and increasing divorce rates in the West. Consequently, in most western countries the home care services are provided by paid care workers – either locals or foreign migrants. This solution is a win-win situation for both care recipients and governments. For the older adult, it allows them to stay in their homes as long as possible, as most of them hope and aspire. For governments, every day at home means a day less in public funded expensive long-term placement. For the foreign migrant workers, it creates an opportunity to relocate globally to take advantage of better economic opportunities.

Global Migration

However, Jon Purizhansky of Buffalo, New York says that while this arrangement is financially cost-effective, it entails other costs. Migrant domestic workers are particularly vulnerable to both violations of workers’ rights and work-related abuse. Violations of workers’ rights refer to disregarding rights that relate specifically to being a worker, whereas work-related abuse refers to any violent acts against a person at work or on duty. Migrant domestic workers are subjected to greater risk for exploitation and work-related abuse compared with local home care workers, as they are not as familiar with the laws of their host counties that protect employees against abuse. While their duties and rights are different from that of citizens of their host countries, they are typically still afforded the same protection as local workers.

It’s important to note that migrant care workers pay thousands of dollars to obtain a work permit in the host country. The process of global employment based relocation is full of fraud, non-transparency and inefficiencies. It’s because of these problems that migrant workers end up paying recruiters in their countries who sell them opportunities that may not reflect reality. Consequently, upon arrival, many migrant domestic workers have expectations of salaries and conditions that stem from what their recruiters sold them and not from their actual employment agreements. Additionally, in their first years of employment, most of their salaries are used towards settling the enormous debts that the workers obtained to migrate. Under these circumstances, not only tensions are created between employers and employees, but also leaving an abusive or disrespectful employer becomes more difficult.

Therefore, points Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY, in light of the above-described problems and inefficiencies, a systemic technological solution is required in the global market place – a solution that will protect the employees and will provide employers with better service by connecting employees and employers on the same technological platform, while cutting out the middlemen who create the inefficiencies today. As a result, human rights abuse will be substantially mitigated globally.

Originally Posted: https://www.jonpurizhansky.net/post/global-migration-of-domestic-workers

Labor Shortage in the EU

Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY points to a new report by the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies that shows that, while most of central and eastern European countries have been growing at their highest rates since the global financial crisis about a decade ago, this boom may be overdue to severe shortage of labor in the EU.

Global relocation of economic migrants stands at an all-time high in modern history. With Central and Eastern Europe being a large part of the EU, both skilled and unskilled labor has migrated to Western European EU member states. Simply put – if you are a carpenter in Western Poland, then why would you work in Poland when you can make double in Germany, which is just an hour drive away. As Western Europe has been feeding on labor, originating from Eastern and Central Europe, a vacuum of labor has emerged and is growing in Central and Eastern European countries. Central and Eastern European countries, which have been struggling to fill up vacancies as more and more workers migrate to Western Europe in search of better pay. The labor shortage has pushed down unemployment rates in the region to record lows and driven job vacancies to their highest levels. The shortfall can also be attributed to a decline in the overall population. Most countries in the region have experienced shrinking populations over the past 15 years even as the total population in the EU has gone up.

The working-age population in these countries has been shrinking due to migration and other demographic factors such as low fertility rates. This shortage might result in lower GDP growth rates which could have severe implications for the welfare systems. As the aforementioned report stated, migration and low fertility rates are expected to cause the working-age population (aged 20-64) in central and eastern European countries to shrink by about 30 percent by 2050.

So, how does the EU solve its shortage of labor? Primarily by bringing in workers from outside the EEU. The organic economic trend of EU employers searching for workers globally is driving the numbers of EU bound foreign workers into dozens of millions annually.

Labor-Shortage

Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, New York notices that in December 2011, the so-called Single Permit Directive was adopted. It creates a set of rights for non-EU workers legally residing in an EU State, notably the right to equal treatment with nationals in the country they reside and work. The Directive applies to most non-EU nationals with authorization to reside and work in the EU, independently of their initial reason for admission, unless they are explicitly excluded from the scope of the Directive. Its scope includes both non-EU nationals seeking to be admitted to an EU State in order to stay and work there and those who are already resident and have access to the labour market or are already working there. It provides for:

A single permit giving the right both to residence and work

A single application procedure for this permit

A set of rights for non-EU workers, notably the right to equal treatment with nationals of the country where they reside and work, in a number of key areas: working conditions, freedom of association and joining organisations representing workers, education and vocational training, recognition of diplomas, social security, tax benefits, access to goods and services including procedures for housing and employment advice services. Some exemptions may be applied by the Member States. The right to social security can, for instance, be limited to those in employment, or who have worked for at least 6 months and who are registered as unemployed.

Jon Purizhansky says that a foreign worker can work in the Schengen Area if she/he holds a National (D) Visa for employment purposes issued by one of the 26 European countries parts of the Schengen Zone. The fact that dozens of millions of D Visa recipients enter the EU annually coupled with the fact that the manpower recruitment industry is full of fraud, inefficiency and non-transparency creates risk not only to the economic health of the EU but also to the domestic security in Europe. European employers largely meet their employees for the first time when employees arrive.

Often times so-called “manpower brokers” or “recruiters” charge prospective employees exorbitant amounts of money by promising them unreal employment terms and when the non-European employees show up in the EU, their expectations are not aligned with the expectations of their European employers. Consequently, employees leave their employees, file complaints with government agencies and NGOs and become illegal aliens in the EU by illegally migrating in violation of their “D Visa” conditions. Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY points out that without a systemic technological solution the situation will continue to get worse.

Originally Posted: http://www.jonpurizhanskybuffalo.com/labor-shortage-in-the-eu/

Important to understand global migration flows

Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY defines the concept of global migration as a permanent move to a new location. Global migration is at its most active point in modern history. It’s rapidly changing the demographic, social and economic landscape of the planet. For this reason, it’s important to understand global migration flows. Data on migration flows are essential for understanding global migration patterns and how different factors and policies in countries of origin and destination may be related to flows. Currently, only 45 countries report migration flow data to the United Nations (UN DESA, 2015). Migration flows “refer to the number of migrants en70tering or leaving a 1given country during a given period of time, usually one calendar year” (UN SD, 2017). However, countries use different concepts, definitions and data collection methodologies to compile statistics on migration flows. Definitions of who counts as an international migrant vary over time in the same country and across countries. That’s why it’s important to understand how many people actually leave countries of origin and actually enter countries of destination.

Although the number may not be accurate, global estimates based on census data suggest that 0.5 percent – or approximately 37 million people – left their native country to live in another country between 2010 and 2015 (Abel, 2016). Some countries report data on annual flows to the UN Statistics Division (UN SD), who has a mandate to collect migration statistics, including on migration flows, from countries through the Demographic Yearbook data collection system. Some countries report data to OECD or the Statistical Office of the European Union (Eurostat) as well. OECD data on permanent migration inflows allow to distinguish between different types of migration flows including work, family and humanitarian migration (OECD, 2017). However, the number of countries reporting flow data is limited and the data are often not harmonized.

global migration

According to Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY, absence of systemic flow data has led researchers to develop their own estimates of global migration flows based on 5-year intervals (see Abel and Sander, 2014; Raymer et al., 2013). These estimates are based on UN statistics, some of which are available from the DEMIG Country-to-Country database (C2C) of the University of Oxford, which contains bilateral migration flows data for at least 34 countries. The database also provides gender breakdowns were available and more historical depth.

Another tool worth mentioning is DTM.

The International Organization for Migration’s Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM), a system to track and monitoring population displacement and mobility, collects migration flows data through flow monitoring component in more than 30 countries. DTM flow monitoring assesses areas of high mobility, often at key entry, exit, and transit locations. Flow monitoring activities aim to derive quantitative estimates of the flow of individuals through specific locations and to collect information about the profiles, intentions, and needs of the people moving. Numbers of people moving within areas of free circulation such as the European Union or the Southern Common Market (Mercosur in Latin America) are also indicated separately in the OECD’s International Migration Database.

The system off tracking data, however, is still very fragmented and inefficient. The tracking system is dependent of collecting data from administrative sources, but such sources usually record events (e.g. issuance/renewal/withdrawal of a residence permit) and may not necessarily reflect actual migration movements (e.g. a residence permit is not renewed but the person stays in the country, or the permit is renewed but the person leaves the country).

Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, New York notices that without a systemic global technological solution, tracking and monitoring global relocation will become more and more difficult. Creating a unified blockchain technology system will help government agencies in both, destination and origination countries, employers, and third-party organizations by tracking and storing not only migrants’ identification documents, but also their migration history (renewals, visas, approvals, denials, supporting documents, etc….). It will not only generate transparency and efficiency for all participants of the global relocation ecosystem, but it will also assist researchers to understand and quantify global relocation data.

Originally Posted: http://www.jonpurizhanskybuffalo.com/important-to-understand-global-migration-flows/

Economic Developments in Buffalo, NY

Jon Purizhansky says that Buffalo international airport is busy. “When we first opened the airport in 1997, we were doing about 3 million passengers a year, and now we’re doing 5 million passengers a year. So, we need the additional space downstairs in the baggage claim area to make a better experience for our visitors in Western New York,” said NFTA Director of Aviation Bill Vanecek. The airport is currently undergoing an 80 million enhancement project. Some of the improvements include the building of two new exiting concourses to ease congestion at the security checkpoint. The baggage claim area will also be 50 percent bigger and includes the addition of four new baggage return belts.

Economic-Developments

The airport, however, is not the only development underway in Buffalo. Jon Purizhansky says that there is no shortage of new construction and renovation activity heading toward completion in 2019 and beyond. Large projects have been completed at HarborCenter at Canalside, RiverBend in South Buffalo, the Delaware North Building at 250 Delaware, and the new Convent us Building, Oishei Children’s Hospital and University at Buffalo’s Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus and Ellicott Development Co. has launched the 500 Pearl project, a very cool 12-story downtown tower with a new hotel, apartments, office space, retail space, and even a bowling alley.

Washington, D.C., developer Douglas Jemal last year kicked off his $120 million remakes of the Seneca One Tower, which is Buffalo’s tallest building. The Buffalo Urban Development Corp. is investing over $120 million in the Northland Project, which is turning a 35-acre swath of industrial land on the Buffalo’s East Side into a light-industrial economic development hub that will bring jobs and investment to the poorest neighborhood in Buffalo.

Stuart Alexander & Associates and Rhonda Ricks are spending $50.7 million to convert the vacant former Buffalo Forge Manufacturing Co. plant at 490 Broadway into a new residential community, with 158 affordable apartments and some retail space in the two-building main complex. LP Ciminelli is also continuing work on its $90 million remakes of the 27-acre former Central Park Plaza site into a new residential community, dubbed Highland Park, with more than 663 new apartments, townhomes, and for-sale homes. Ciminelli Real Estate Corp. is finalizing its proposal for 201 Ellicott St., where it wants to construct a multistory building with 201 affordable apartments and an unspecified fresh-food market, but not a previously proposed parking facility. The mayor of Buffalo says that “This has been an incredible decade of growth, development, and progress in the City of Buffalo. It is a special time in our City’s history – we are in the midst of a transformation that will be felt for generations to come.”

Jon Purizhansky says that Buffalo is no longer a depressed rust-belt town but is now a bustling city in New York flushed with new investment capital that features many new projects and that is now home to a great deal of entrepreneurs and young professionals and is well on its way to becoming a major economic hub.

Originally Posted: http://www.jonpurizhanskybuffalo.com/economic-developments-in-buffalo-ny/

Blockchain and Electronic Medical Records

Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY says that current electronic medical records (EMR) systems are a mess in the United States. If a patient visits a doctor, there is an efficient way for the doctor to obtain transparency into this patient’s medical history. For example, when you go visit your primary care doctor, unless you allow him to obtain your medical records from all the other doctors you have visited, there is no way for your primary to understand what issues you have had before, particularly if you don’t remember. This creates serious inefficiencies and results in lower-quality care for all US patients. Additionally, if the data cannot be integrated into existing systems, doctors are unable to take full advantage of innovations in health data to make the best decisions about a patient’s health.

Blockchain network , Machine learning , deep learning and neural networks concept. Blue Distributed connection atom with black background , 3d rendering

However, Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY says that applying blockchain technology to EMR could fix the problem. Blockchain is a database that leverages cloud storage infrastructure to maintain a secure list of data records or transactions. Smart contracts within the blockchain platform allow logic to be programmed into the blockchain and executed when a transaction is made.

With respect to the EMR system, blockchain would create the ability to upload, store, and transfer files securely and cost-effectively. Rather than requiring health data to be stored in a centralized database, blockchain utilizes secure cloud technologies enabling data to be seamlessly shared and accessed from multiple sources. For example, during annual check-ups, physicians could review data synced from apps and wearable devices like the Apple Watch or Fitbit, instead of relying on patients to accurately, and honestly, divulge their health and exercise habits. In more urgent situations, a doctor may access blockchain-sourced data to determine whether the patient is allergic to certain medicines, or gather other critical information necessary for treatment.

Despite the efficiencies, blockchain provides, the concerns for maintaining the integrity of healthcare data is legitimate. In the first half of 2017, there were 233 health data breaches, affecting more than 3 million people, reported in the United States. Over 41 percent of the breaches were insider-caused. However, the services provided by blockchain help assuage the anxieties of bringing valuable, personal healthcare data into the digital world. Blockchain offers particularly strong benefits in three areas: integrity, permission, and decentralization. Blockchain ensures the information on the chain is verified by requiring users to provide a signature and time-stamp with a private key to access the data.

Blockchain can trace successful, or attempted, hacks and falsified records to an exact user to mitigate data breaches and insurance fraud. Blockchain maintains a permanent ledger, making it much more difficult for records to be lost or misplaced. Instead of relying on photocopies from their doctor’s office or third-party provider, patients have control over their data. Blockchain uses the logic that powers smart contracts, allowing users to give permissions, and control with whom their data is shared. The logic built into blockchain allows patients to have the best of both worlds, providing access to doctors when they need it, while simultaneously protecting data from unauthorized users. It’s important to note that Blockchain does not require data to be centrally maintained. Healthcare information can be stored in cloud databases and devices around the globe, ultimately providing patients with the power to control and share their data.

By removing the requirement for doctors, hospitals, and other care providers to be stored into a single health data system, patients are empowered to decide when, how, and to what extent their information may be shared with those who provide care. Private, public, and government agencies are all looking towards the potential uses and innovations for blockchain. Nevertheless, despite the fact that the theory on how to integrate blockchain with the EMR is clear, a systemic efficient solution has not yet been created.

If a single blockchain platform is created and is integrated with all EMR systems in a HIPAA compliant way, the quality of patient care will increase substantially due to the newly created ability for physicians to analyze patient data. Jon Purizhansky from Buffalo, NY hopes that the United States will become a leader in safe, private, and secure storage and distribution of health records, thereby increasing the efficiency of patient care in a previously unrealized way.

Originally Posted: http://www.jonpurizhanskybuffalo.com/blockchain-and-electronic-medical-records/