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Penyanyi cantik muda berbakat, Raisa, telah menganggap Adele dan India Arie sebagai panutan dalam bermusik. Bahkan Raisa juga sempat bertemu langsung dengan India Arie saat berkunjung ke Jakarta.

"Saya senang banget sempat ketemu sama India Arie. Dewa bermusik saya itu dia. Secara nyanyi, musikalitas, secara lirik, dia itu panutan saya," ungkapnya di Kawasan Thamrin, Jakarta Pusat .

Tak heran jika lagu kedua penyanyi manca negara itu telah menjadi konsumsi telinganya setiap hari. Raisa juga mengaku harus mendegar lagu Adele dan India Arie.

"Banyak sih, dan tetap yang tidak bisa lepas Adele dan India Arie. Setiap hari harus dengar," ujarnya.

Kendati tak mendengarkan lagu-lagu dari kedua penyanyi itu, diakui Raisa, lagu-lagu mereka juga selalu terngiang di kepalanya. "Kalaupun saya lagi tidak mendengerkan, itu selalu ada di kepala saya," tukasnya.

Adele dan India Arie jadi panutan Raisa dalam bermusik

saco-indonesia.com, Kebakaran pagi ini telah melanda Gedung Cyber 1 Mampang Prapatan, Jakarta Selatan. Belum dapat diketahui bagian mana dari gedung yang telah dilalap si jago merah.

Deni, petugas piket Suku Dinas Pemadam Kebakaran Jakarta Selatan, juga mengatakan pihaknya telah mendapatkan laporan pada pukul 05.40 Wib.

"Kita kirim 10 unit damkar. Sekarang sudah pendinginan," kata Deni saat pukul 07.50 Wib.

Dia belum bisa memastikan penyebab kebakaran, karena petugas dari lapangan belum kembali. Begitu juga soal kemungkinan adanya korban, dia belum bisa memberi informasi.

 

Editor : Dian Sukmawati

GEDUNG CYBER DI MAMPANG KEBAKARAN

Seperti halnya Bunaken, Wakatobi juga merupakan kawasan diving populer yang telah menjadi kebanggaan Indonesia. Terletak di Sulawesi Tenggara, Wakatobi juga telah memiliki terumbu karang yang sangat luar biasa indah dan ikan-ikan cantik yang telah membuat traveler seluruh dunia tidak bosan untuk mengunjungi tempat wisata ini. Asal kamu tahu, Wakatobi juga telah memiliki 750 dari 850 spesies koral, jenis karang yang beragam serta makhluk laut yang sudah sulit ditemukan di daerah lain.

Wakatobi sendiri juga merupakan kependekan dari nama empat pulai besar di Sulawesi, yaitu Wangi-wangi, Kaledupa, Tomia dan Binongko. Wanci adalah ibukota Wakatobi yang terletak di Pulau Wangi-wangi. Anda juga tidak akan kesulitan untuk mencari akses dari dan ke Wanci karena kota ini sudah tersedia berbagai macam alternatif transportasi mulai dari taksi, angkot sampai ojek.

Semakin tergoda mengunjungi Wakatobi, travelers? Anda juga bisa menjangkau tempat ini dengan transportasi udara yang ditempuh dari Jakarta atau Surabaya dengan tujuan Makassar. Setelah sampai di Makassar, anda juga bisa melanjutkan perjalanan dengan penerbangan lanjutan ke Kendari atau Bau Bau. Setelah itu, perjalanan akan dilakukan melalui jalur udara, kapal cepat atau kapal kayu ke Wangi wangi, Kaledupa dan Tomia.

Anda sebenarnya bisa memangkas biaya transportasi dengan menggunakan kapal laut dari Makassar. Tapi, Anda akan membuang banyak waktu karena perjalanan itu akan memakan waktu hingga 10 jam. Jadi, transportasi udara adalah pilihan terbaik supaya kamu bisa menjelajah Wakatobi secara maksimal.

Tiba di Wakatobi, jika belum melakukan reservasi, tentu anda harus mencari penginapan. Tidak perlu pusing, travelers, karena Wakatobi juga punya banyak pilihan penginapan mulai dari hotel standar dengan tarif Rp150 ribu per malam hingga resort bintang lima dengan tarif mencapai Rp1,5 juta per malam. Atau kalau Anda ingin lebih menghemat bujet, Anda juga bisa memilih penginapan warga alias homestay dengan rata-rata tarif Rp50 ribu.

Untuk opsi lokasi penyelaman dan snorkeling, Anda juga bisa menemukan banyak tempat menarik di Wanci. Biasanya, spot di sekitar pelabuhan kapal fery, belakang Hotel Wakatobi atau sekitar Patuno Resort dan Pantai Sousu adalah lokasi yang paling dekat dan sering dikunjungi turis. Tapi, kalau Anda ingin menikmati lokasi yang lebih jauh, Anda juga bisa ke Pulau Tomia dan Binongko yang memakan waktu lima jam perjalanan dengan speed boat.

Kalau Anda tidak punya perlengkapan, tidak perlu khawatir karena di Wakatobi juga terdapat banyak penyewaan alat diving maupun snorkeling, lengkap dengan pemandu dan kapal yang akan mengantarkan Anda ke tempat penyelaman. Di lokasi tertentu, Anda juga bisa menjumpai ikan napoleon dengan ukuran besar, atau melihat kelinci laut serta ragam bintang laut. Tentu saja, Anda juga akan menyaksikan keindahan ragam terumbu karang yang menjadi keunggulan Wakatobi.

Tapi, jangan salah, travelers, Wakatobi lebih dari sekadar diving dan snorkeling lho! Anda juga bisa menyaksikan atraksi lumba-lumba ataupun menikmati pemandangan matahari terbit dan tenggelam di Hoga, salah satu spot terbaik di Wakatobi.

Supaya puas mengelilingi Wakatobi, Anda setidaknya harus meluangkan waktu satu minggu. Pasalnya, perjalanan satu pulau ke pulau lainnya harus dilakukan dengan speedboat dengan jadwal tertentu yang kadang tak bisa diandalkan. Kalau ingin berkunjung Wakatobi, sebaiknya antara bulan Oktober sampai awal Desember dan bulan April hinga Juni. Karena saat itu laut berombak kecil sehingga memudahkan untuk dapat melakukan perjalanan dan lebih nyaman untuk berenang atau snorkeling.

TEMPAT WISATA WAKATOBI

sco-indonesia.com, Empat tersangka pelaku spesialis pencuri rumah kosong (Rumsong), telah dibekuk oleh jajaran Reserse Kriminal (Reskrim) Polsek Serpong, Kota Tangerang Selatan (Tangsel).

Tiga pelaku tersebut diantaranya masih dibawah umur, bahkan masih ada pelajar.Para pelaku yang mayoritas berdomisili di Tangerang itu, masing-masing berinisial F alias B (17) tahun , Z alias M (16) tahun dan AY alias M (15) tahun , serta S alias H (21) tahun .

Meski masih terbilang masih remaja, para tersangka itu juga terbilang cukup mahir dalam melakukan setiap aksinya. Sebab, sedikitnya sudah ada 36 rumah di wilayah Tangerang Raya, telah berhasil mereka bobol.”Pengakuan mereka 36 TKP itu diwilayah Serpong, Kelapa Dua, Cikupa dan Balaraja. Semua TKP sudah kami cek dan memang benar semua korban telah mengakui dan bahkan sudah ada LP nya, walaupun beberapa korban ada juga yang tidak melaporkan ke polisi,” kata Kanit Reskrim Polsek Serpong, AKP Toto Daniyanto

Menurutnya, pengungkapan tersebut telah berawal dari hasil rekaman CCTV salah satu rumah korban. Dari situlah, pihaknya telah berhasil mengungkap dan menangkap  para tersangka.”Modus mereka sebelum melakukan aksinya adalah dengan cara menjadi pengamen di siang hari. Dari situ mereka telah menggambarkan situasi targetnya, kemudian barulah beraksi dimalam hari,” paparnya sambil menyebutkan, para tersangka juga dapat dijerat dengan pasal 363, tentang pencurian dengan ancaman hukuman diatas 5 tahun penjara.

“Namun, bagi pelaku yang masih dibawah umur kita akan tetap kenakan sesuai peradilan anak. Kami juga masih harus mengejar 4 pelaku lainnya,” tandasnya.

Kanit juga mengimbau kepada masyarakat luas, agar lebih berhati-hati dalam memperhatikan gerak-gerik setiap orang yang tidak dikenalnya..

Sementara, tersangka F juga mengaku, kerap mengirimi orangtuanya di Lampung dengan hasil penjualan barang curiannya itu. “Buat kirim ke orang tua setiap bulan, sebagian buat senang-senang sama teman,” akunya.

Dalam penangkapan itu, petugas juga telah mengamankan barang bukti hasil curian berupa, 3 ekor burung, 2 unit Handphone, uang tunai sebesar Rp72 ribu, 2 buah Laptop 2, 1 buah jam tangan, serta sebilah pisau dan obeng sebagai alat melakukan aksinya.


Editor : Dian Sukmawati

EMPAT PENCURI RUMSONG TELAH DIBEKUK POLISI

Fenomena kejahatan telah terjadi di Indonesia makin hari nampaknya tidak menunjukkan penurunan berarti. Menurut telaah dua akademisi, yakni Romli Atmasasmita dan Muhammad Mustofa, malah jenis kejahatan di Indonesia makin beragam.

Romli juga menjelaskan ihwal makin banyaknya jenis tindak kriminal yang dijalankan di Indonesia salah satunya telah dipicu oleh faktor gagalnya penegakan hukum. Sebabnya adalah, lanjut akademisi Universitas Padjadjaran itu, fungsi penjara hanya diartikan sebagai tempat membayar ganjaran atas perbuatan kejahatan seseorang atau kelompok, ketimbang membangkitkan kembali rasa penyesalan mereka dan mendorongnya menjadi pribadi yang lebih baik selepas menjalani masa tahanan.

"Makanya peneliti dari luar senang riset di sini. Di Indonesia kejahatan apa sih yang tidak ada? Semua ada. Dari terorisme sampai korupsi. Negara ini jadi laboratorium kejahatan," kata Romli dalam diskusi 'Setengah Abad Sistem Pemasyarakatan,' di Gedung Kementerian Hukum dan Hak Asasi Manusia.

Romli juga telah mengingatkan, beragamnya tindak kriminal di Indonesia juga tak lepas dari fenomena kejahatan antarnegara (transnational crime). Dia juga mengatakan, mestinya pemerintah sadar akan bahayanya hal itu dan bakal mengancam masyarakat jika tidak diantisipasi.

Sementara itu Mustofa juga mengatakan, demi untuk menekan kejahatan yang beranak pinak, negara sebagai institusi tertinggi juga harus bisa membuat sebuah keadaan yang tidak memungkinkan sebuah kriminalitas berkembang. Caranya adalah memenuhi hak-hak sosial dan ekonomi masyarakat secara adil dan merata, sesuai janji Undang-Undang Dasar 1945.

"Sejahterakan dulu masyarakat, baru ada alasan untuk dapat memberikan sanksi kalau terjadi pelanggaran," ujar Mustofa yang merupakan pengajar di Universitas Indonesia.

Akademisi sebut Indonesia jadi 'laboratorium' kejahatan
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With 12 tournament victories in his career, Mr. Peete was the most successful black professional golfer before Tiger Woods.

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Children playing last week in Sandtown-Winchester, the Baltimore neighborhood where Freddie Gray was raised. One young resident called it “a tough community.”
Todd Heisler/The New York Times

Children playing last week in Sandtown-Winchester, the Baltimore neighborhood where Freddie Gray was raised. One young resident called it “a tough community.”

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Hard but Hopeful Home to ‘Lot of Freddies’

WASHINGTON — The former deputy director of the C.I.A. asserts in a forthcoming book that Republicans, in their eagerness to politicize the killing of the American ambassador to Libya, repeatedly distorted the agency’s analysis of events. But he also argues that the C.I.A. should get out of the business of providing “talking points” for administration officials in national security events that quickly become partisan, as happened after the Benghazi attack in 2012.

The official, Michael J. Morell, dismisses the allegation that the United States military and C.I.A. officers “were ordered to stand down and not come to the rescue of their comrades,” and he says there is “no evidence” to support the charge that “there was a conspiracy between C.I.A. and the White House to spin the Benghazi story in a way that would protect the political interests of the president and Secretary Clinton,” referring to the secretary of state at the time, Hillary Rodham Clinton.

But he also concludes that the White House itself embellished some of the talking points provided by the Central Intelligence Agency and had blocked him from sending an internal study of agency conclusions to Congress.

Photo
 
Michael J. Morell Credit Mark Wilson/Getty Images

“I finally did so without asking,” just before leaving government, he writes, and after the White House released internal emails to a committee investigating the State Department’s handling of the issue.

A lengthy congressional investigation remains underway, one that many Republicans hope to use against Mrs. Clinton in the 2016 election cycle.

In parts of the book, “The Great War of Our Time” (Twelve), Mr. Morell praises his C.I.A. colleagues for many successes in stopping terrorist attacks, but he is surprisingly critical of other C.I.A. failings — and those of the National Security Agency.

Soon after Mr. Morell retired in 2013 after 33 years in the agency, President Obama appointed him to a commission reviewing the actions of the National Security Agency after the disclosures of Edward J. Snowden, a former intelligence contractor who released classified documents about the government’s eavesdropping abilities. Mr. Morell writes that he was surprised by what he found.

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“You would have thought that of all the government entities on the planet, the one least vulnerable to such grand theft would have been the N.S.A.,” he writes. “But it turned out that the N.S.A. had left itself vulnerable.”

He concludes that most Wall Street firms had better cybersecurity than the N.S.A. had when Mr. Snowden swept information from its systems in 2013. While he said he found himself “chagrined by how well the N.S.A. was doing” compared with the C.I.A. in stepping up its collection of data on intelligence targets, he also sensed that the N.S.A., which specializes in electronic spying, was operating without considering the implications of its methods.

“The N.S.A. had largely been collecting information because it could, not necessarily in all cases because it should,” he says.

The book is to be released next week.

Mr. Morell was a career analyst who rose through the ranks of the agency, and he ended up in the No. 2 post. He served as President George W. Bush’s personal intelligence briefer in the first months of his presidency — in those days, he could often be spotted at the Starbucks in Waco, Tex., catching up on his reading — and was with him in the schoolhouse in Florida on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, when the Bush presidency changed in an instant.

Mr. Morell twice took over as acting C.I.A. director, first when Leon E. Panetta was appointed secretary of defense and then when retired Gen. David H. Petraeus resigned over an extramarital affair with his biographer, a relationship that included his handing her classified notes of his time as America’s best-known military commander.

Mr. Morell says he first learned of the affair from Mr. Petraeus only the night before he resigned, and just as the Benghazi events were turning into a political firestorm. While praising Mr. Petraeus, who had told his deputy “I am very lucky” to run the C.I.A., Mr. Morell writes that “the organization did not feel the same way about him.” The former general “created the impression through the tone of his voice and his body language that he did not want people to disagree with him (which was not true in my own interaction with him),” he says.

But it is his account of the Benghazi attacks — and how the C.I.A. was drawn into the debate over whether the Obama White House deliberately distorted its account of the death of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens — that is bound to attract attention, at least partly because of its relevance to the coming presidential election. The initial assessments that the C.I.A. gave to the White House said demonstrations had preceded the attack. By the time analysts reversed their opinion, Susan E. Rice, now the national security adviser, had made a series of statements on Sunday talk shows describing the initial assessment. The controversy and other comments Ms. Rice made derailed Mr. Obama’s plan to appoint her as secretary of state.

The experience prompted Mr. Morell to write that the C.I.A. should stay out of the business of preparing talking points — especially on issues that are being seized upon for “political purposes.” He is critical of the State Department for not beefing up security in Libya for its diplomats, as the C.I.A., he said, did for its employees.

But he concludes that the assault in which the ambassador was killed took place “with little or no advance planning” and “was not well organized.” He says the attackers “did not appear to be looking for Americans to harm. They appeared intent on looting and conducting some vandalism,” setting fires that killed Mr. Stevens and a security official, Sean Smith.

Mr. Morell paints a picture of an agency that was struggling, largely unsuccessfully, to understand dynamics in the Middle East and North Africa when the Arab Spring broke out in late 2011 in Tunisia. The agency’s analysts failed to see the forces of revolution coming — and then failed again, he writes, when they told Mr. Obama that the uprisings would undercut Al Qaeda by showing there was a democratic pathway to change.

“There is no good explanation for our not being able to see the pressures growing to dangerous levels across the region,” he writes. The agency had again relied too heavily “on a handful of strong leaders in the countries of concern to help us understand what was going on in the Arab street,” he says, and those leaders themselves were clueless.

Moreover, an agency that has always overvalued secretly gathered intelligence and undervalued “open source” material “was not doing enough to mine the wealth of information available through social media,” he writes. “We thought and told policy makers that this outburst of popular revolt would damage Al Qaeda by undermining the group’s narrative,” he writes.

Instead, weak governments in Egypt, and the absence of governance from Libya to Yemen, were “a boon to Islamic extremists across both the Middle East and North Africa.”

Mr. Morell is gentle about most of the politicians he dealt with — he expresses admiration for both Mr. Bush and Mr. Obama, though he accuses former Vice President Dick Cheney of deliberately implying a connection between Al Qaeda and Iraq that the C.I.A. had concluded probably did not exist. But when it comes to the events leading up to the Bush administration’s decision to go to war in Iraq, he is critical of his own agency.

Mr. Morell concludes that the Bush White House did not have to twist intelligence on Saddam Hussein’s alleged effort to rekindle the country’s work on weapons of mass destruction.

“The view that hard-liners in the Bush administration forced the intelligence community into its position on W.M.D. is just flat wrong,” he writes. “No one pushed. The analysts were already there and they had been there for years, long before Bush came to office.”

Ex-C.I.A. Official Rebuts Republican Claims on Benghazi Attack in ‘The Great War of Our Time’

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Ms. Rendell was a prolific writer of intricately plotted mystery novels that combined psychological insight, social conscience and teeth-chattering terror.

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HOBART, Tasmania — Few places seem out of reach for China’s leader, Xi Jinping, who has traveled from European capitals to obscure Pacific and Caribbean islands in pursuit of his nation’s strategic interests.

So perhaps it was not surprising when he turned up last fall in this city on the edge of the Southern Ocean to put down a long-distance marker in another faraway region, Antarctica, 2,000 miles south of this Australian port.

Standing on the deck of an icebreaker that ferries Chinese scientists from this last stop before the frozen continent, Mr. Xi pledged that China would continue to expand in one of the few places on earth that remain unexploited by humans.

He signed a five-year accord with the Australian government that allows Chinese vessels and, in the future, aircraft to resupply for fuel and food before heading south. That will help secure easier access to a region that is believed to have vast oil and mineral resources; huge quantities of high-protein sea life; and for times of possible future dire need, fresh water contained in icebergs.

It was not until 1985, about seven decades after Robert Scott and Roald Amundsen raced to the South Pole, that a team representing Beijing hoisted the Chinese flag over the nation’s first Antarctic research base, the Great Wall Station on King George Island.

But now China seems determined to catch up. As it has bolstered spending on Antarctic research, and as the early explorers, especially the United States and Australia, confront stagnant budgets, there is growing concern about its intentions.

China’s operations on the continent — it opened its fourth research station last year, chose a site for a fifth, and is investing in a second icebreaker and new ice-capable planes and helicopters — are already the fastest growing of the 52 signatories to the Antarctic Treaty. That gentlemen’s agreement reached in 1959 bans military activity on the continent and aims to preserve it as one of the world’s last wildernesses; a related pact prohibits mining.

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But Mr. Xi’s visit was another sign that China is positioning itself to take advantage of the continent’s resource potential when the treaty expires in 2048 — or in the event that it is ripped up before, Chinese and Australian experts say.

“So far, our research is natural-science based, but we know there is more and more concern about resource security,” said Yang Huigen, director general of the Polar Research Institute of China, who accompanied Mr. Xi last November on his visit to Hobart and stood with him on the icebreaker, Xue Long, or Snow Dragon.

With that in mind, the polar institute recently opened a new division devoted to the study of resources, law, geopolitics and governance in Antarctica and the Arctic, Mr. Yang said.

Australia, a strategic ally of the United States that has strong economic relations with China, is watching China’s buildup in the Antarctic with a mix of gratitude — China’s presence offers support for Australia’s Antarctic science program, which is short of cash — and wariness.

“We should have no illusions about the deeper agenda — one that has not even been agreed to by Chinese scientists but is driven by Xi, and most likely his successors,” said Peter Jennings, executive director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute and a former senior official in the Australian Department of Defense.

“This is part of a broader pattern of a mercantilist approach all around the world,” Mr. Jennings added. “A big driver of Chinese policy is to secure long-term energy supply and food supply.”

That approach was evident last month when a large Chinese agriculture enterprise announced an expansion of its fishing operations around Antarctica to catch more krill — small, protein-rich crustaceans that are abundant in Antarctic waters.

“The Antarctic is a treasure house for all human beings, and China should go there and share,” Liu Shenli, the chairman of the China National Agricultural Development Group, told China Daily, a state-owned newspaper. China would aim to fish up to two million tons of krill a year, he said, a substantial increase from what it currently harvests.

Because sovereignty over Antarctica is unclear, nations have sought to strengthen their claims over the ice-covered land by building research bases and naming geographic features. China’s fifth station will put it within reach of the six American facilities, and ahead of Australia’s three.

Chinese mappers have also given Chinese names to more than 300 sites, compared with the thousands of locations on the continent with English names.

In the unspoken competition for Antarctica’s future, scientific achievement can also translate into influence. Chinese scientists are driving to be the first to drill and recover an ice core containing tiny air bubbles that provide a record of climate change stretching as far back as 1.5 million years. It is an expensive and delicate effort at which others, including the European Union and Australia, have failed.

In a breakthrough a decade ago, European scientists extracted an ice core nearly two miles long that revealed 800,000 years of climate history. But finding an ice core going back further would allow scientists to examine a change in the earth’s climate cycles believed to have occurred 900,000 to 1.2 million years ago.

China is betting it has found the best location to drill, at an area called Dome A, or Dome Argus, the highest point on the East Antarctic Ice Sheet. Though it is considered one of the coldest places on the planet, with temperatures of 130 degrees below zero Fahrenheit, a Chinese expedition explored the area in 2005 and established a research station in 2009.

“The international community has drilled in lots of places, but no luck so far,” said Xiao Cunde, a member of the first party to reach the site and the deputy director of the Institute for Climate Change at the Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences. “We think at Dome A we will have a straight shot at the one-million-year ice core.”

Mr. Xiao said China had already begun drilling and hoped to find what scientists are looking for in four to five years.

To support its Antarctic aspirations, China is building a sophisticated $300 million icebreaker that is expected to be ready in a few years, said Xia Limin, deputy director of the Chinese Arctic and Antarctic Administration in Beijing. It has also bought a high-tech fixed-wing aircraft, outfitted in the United States, for taking sensitive scientific soundings from the ice.

China has chosen the site for its fifth research station at Inexpressible Island, named by a group of British explorers who were stranded at the desolate site in 1912 and survived the winter by excavating a small ice cave.

Mr. Xia said the inhospitable spot was ideal because China did not have a presence in that part of Antarctica, and because the rocky site did not have much snow, making it relatively cheap to build there.

Anne-Marie Brady, a professor of political science at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand and the author of a soon-to-be-released book, “China as a Polar Great Power,” said Chinese scientists also believed they had a good chance of finding mineral and energy resources near the site.

“China is playing a long game in Antarctica and keeping other states guessing about its true intentions and interests are part of its poker hand,” she said. But she noted that China’s interest in finding minerals was presented “loud and clear to domestic audiences” as the main reason it was investing in Antarctica.

Because commercial drilling is banned, estimates of energy and mineral resources in Antarctica rely on remote sensing data and comparisons with similar geological environments elsewhere, said Millard F. Coffin, executive director of the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies in Hobart.

But the difficulty of extraction in such severe conditions and uncertainty about future commodity prices make it unlikely that China or any country would defy the ban on mining anytime soon.

Tourism, however, is already booming. Travelers from China are still a relatively small contingent in the Antarctic compared with the more than 13,000 Americans who visited in 2013, and as yet there are no licensed Chinese tour operators.

But that is about to change, said Anthony Bergin, deputy director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute. “I understand very soon there will be Chinese tourists on Chinese vessels with all-Chinese crew in the Antarctic,” he said.

 

Top News China’s Intents Are Questioned as It Builds in Antarctica

Imagine an elite professional services firm with a high-performing, workaholic culture. Everyone is expected to turn on a dime to serve a client, travel at a moment’s notice, and be available pretty much every evening and weekend. It can make for a grueling work life, but at the highest levels of accounting, law, investment banking and consulting firms, it is just the way things are.

Except for one dirty little secret: Some of the people ostensibly turning in those 80- or 90-hour workweeks, particularly men, may just be faking it.

Many of them were, at least, at one elite consulting firm studied by Erin Reid, a professor at Boston University’s Questrom School of Business. It’s impossible to know if what she learned at that unidentified consulting firm applies across the world of work more broadly. But her research, published in the academic journal Organization Science, offers a way to understand how the professional world differs between men and women, and some of the ways a hard-charging culture that emphasizes long hours above all can make some companies worse off.

Photo
 
Credit Peter Arkle

Ms. Reid interviewed more than 100 people in the American offices of a global consulting firm and had access to performance reviews and internal human resources documents. At the firm there was a strong culture around long hours and responding to clients promptly.

“When the client needs me to be somewhere, I just have to be there,” said one of the consultants Ms. Reid interviewed. “And if you can’t be there, it’s probably because you’ve got another client meeting at the same time. You know it’s tough to say I can’t be there because my son had a Cub Scout meeting.”

Some people fully embraced this culture and put in the long hours, and they tended to be top performers. Others openly pushed back against it, insisting upon lighter and more flexible work hours, or less travel; they were punished in their performance reviews.

The third group is most interesting. Some 31 percent of the men and 11 percent of the women whose records Ms. Reid examined managed to achieve the benefits of a more moderate work schedule without explicitly asking for it.

They made an effort to line up clients who were local, reducing the need for travel. When they skipped work to spend time with their children or spouse, they didn’t call attention to it. One team on which several members had small children agreed among themselves to cover for one another so that everyone could have more flexible hours.

A male junior manager described working to have repeat consulting engagements with a company near enough to his home that he could take care of it with day trips. “I try to head out by 5, get home at 5:30, have dinner, play with my daughter,” he said, adding that he generally kept weekend work down to two hours of catching up on email.

Despite the limited hours, he said: “I know what clients are expecting. So I deliver above that.” He received a high performance review and a promotion.

What is fascinating about the firm Ms. Reid studied is that these people, who in her terminology were “passing” as workaholics, received performance reviews that were as strong as their hyper-ambitious colleagues. For people who were good at faking it, there was no real damage done by their lighter workloads.

It calls to mind the episode of “Seinfeld” in which George Costanza leaves his car in the parking lot at Yankee Stadium, where he works, and gets a promotion because his boss sees the car and thinks he is getting to work earlier and staying later than anyone else. (The strategy goes awry for him, and is not recommended for any aspiring partners in a consulting firm.)

A second finding is that women, particularly those with young children, were much more likely to request greater flexibility through more formal means, such as returning from maternity leave with an explicitly reduced schedule. Men who requested a paternity leave seemed to be punished come review time, and so may have felt more need to take time to spend with their families through those unofficial methods.

The result of this is easy to see: Those specifically requesting a lighter workload, who were disproportionately women, suffered in their performance reviews; those who took a lighter workload more discreetly didn’t suffer. The maxim of “ask forgiveness, not permission” seemed to apply.

It would be dangerous to extrapolate too much from a study at one firm, but Ms. Reid said in an interview that since publishing a summary of her research in Harvard Business Review she has heard from people in a variety of industries describing the same dynamic.

High-octane professional service firms are that way for a reason, and no one would doubt that insane hours and lots of travel can be necessary if you’re a lawyer on the verge of a big trial, an accountant right before tax day or an investment banker advising on a huge merger.

But the fact that the consultants who quietly lightened their workload did just as well in their performance reviews as those who were truly working 80 or more hours a week suggests that in normal times, heavy workloads may be more about signaling devotion to a firm than really being more productive. The person working 80 hours isn’t necessarily serving clients any better than the person working 50.

In other words, maybe the real problem isn’t men faking greater devotion to their jobs. Maybe it’s that too many companies reward the wrong things, favoring the illusion of extraordinary effort over actual productivity.

How Some Men Fake an 80-Hour Workweek, and Why It Matters
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