Video: how networks of engaged people can achieve more than nations

  In spite of all its flaws, the Internet can empower people to address specific issues in ways that exceed the abilities of nation states. In this energising talk for the Royal Society for the Arts, Don Tapscott, a Canadian businessman and now one of the world’s leading authorities on the impact of technology on people […]

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What Alan Bennett can teach us about taste

What Alan Bennett can teach us about taste

The idea of taste is a strange one, not least when we’re surrounded by people guiding our tastes in everything from cars to wine, food, clothes, house design, office design, restaurants, holidays, language, art, music, books and film. The problem with an acceptance of what we mean by ‘good taste’ is that it acts as a […]

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Suppliers need to take responsibility for green labelling of products

Suppliers need to take responsibility for green labelling of products

We all like to think we are discerning about what we will and won’t put in our trolleys at the supermarket. Not any old salty, fat saturated gloop will make the cut these days. That’s why food producers like to proclaim its healthiness on packaging, regardless of the nature of the product within. ‘Lower fat’ […]

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Where flexible working employees really want to work? Starbucks.

Where flexible working employees really want to work? Starbucks.

Leaving aside the fact that most surveys are designed to further the commercial interests of the firms that commission them, most offer a deal of insight into what drives people and organisations, some of it unwitting. Most telling are often the specific details that lift the veil on the motivations and attitudes of individuals. So […]

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The UK’s five worst public art projects

The UK’s five worst public art projects

That is obviously a misleading headline. The two worst public art projects in recent memory are evidently the Diana Memorial Fountain, which wasn’t much of a fountain never mind a memorial, and B of the Bang, Thomas Heatherwick’s glorious but spike-shedding testament to the then eternally popping dreams of Manchester City fans from 2005. But we […]

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Landmark buildings can lead to an identity crisis for tenants

Landmark buildings can lead to an identity crisis for tenants

Companies want to brand themselves in lots of ways and for lots of reasons. There are all the usual reasons to do with marketing but when companies talk about brand and how it is integrated with architecture and the design of their offices they are equally likely to be concerned with attracting staff and making […]

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Flexible working: Falling out of fashion

Flexible working: Falling out of fashion

  Just as ACAS concludes its consultation on flexible working, the practice has been declared démodé by none other than Alexandra Shulman, the editor of British Vogue. Writing in response to the recent news that Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer ordered the company’s 11,500 staff back to the office, the Vogue editor has argued that working from […]

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Time to mothball facilities management’s stuffed shirts

Time to mothball facilities management’s stuffed shirts

Much hand-wringing and angst in the world of Facilities/Workplace Management at the moment. The usual existential paranoia about relevancy and the need for a seat at the top table; the search for differentiation when pretty much the whole industry does the same things in the same way; hoping to standardise as much as possible under […]

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Video: The greening of the workplace should begin with individual behaviour

There is an understandable temptation when we consider the ways in which we might green our buildings and organisations that we focus primarily on designed and engineered solutions. But as this blog on Greenbiz points out, we can achieve a great deal by looking at the behaviour of individuals. It is a point made in […]

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Don’t believe everything you read about health and safety, except this

Don’t believe everything you read about health and safety, except this

As we are told repeatedly, the modern workplace is a death trap. Most of us are lucky to get home in one piece at the end of each day, regardless of the job we do. Of course, statistically the most dangerous professions are those such as agriculture, forestry and construction. Proper, hardcore industries which employ […]

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Buying green products should involve a closer look at the supply chain

Buying green products should involve a closer look at the supply chain

Last year’s unrest in the Chinese factory that is a principal manufacturer of the iPhone5 shone a light into one of the usually dark corners of modern life. Namely that beneath the sleek facades of the products we buy lies the story of their production, transportation, marketing and eventual demise. Look further back than the […]

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Video: another prediction from the 60s gets it a bit right and a bit wrong

    The latest in our series of videos looking at how the world in which we now live was predicted a generation or so ago. This time a clip from a 1967 documentary called 1999 AD. Although accurate in many respects including the use of online shopping and e-commerce as well as e-mail it […]

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