Monthly Archives: January 2018

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    Bad choice design can be particularly harmful for less educated individuals

Bad choice design can be particularly harmful for less educated individuals

Imagine you receive a phone call from someone who says they represent your bank. You are eligible to receive some free gifts, they say: gas coupons, airline savings vouchers, hotel accommodations. To get these free gifts, you simply need to verify your bank account number: they read the first nine digits and you just need to read the rest […]

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    We can’t rely on corporations to save us from climate change

We can’t rely on corporations to save us from climate change

Climate change is now the ever-present reality of human experience. Late last year we witnessed a procession of huge hurricanes batter the US and Caribbean, the largest wildfires on record burn through California, and in Australia, despite the death of up to half of the Great Barrier Reef in back-to-back coral bleaching events, political support for new mega-coal mines […]

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    Data in the age of increasing nationalism and trade disruption

Data in the age of increasing nationalism and trade disruption

Today, data is one of organisations’ most valuable assets. For most, it is instrumental in every decision-making process. It drives production and distribution strategies, new product development decisions, and customer service planning and execution. As the world moves toward a future in which artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are increasingly prevalent, data is sure to assume an even […]

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    Facing the Planetary: Entangled Humanism and the Politics of Swarming – Book Review

Facing the Planetary: Entangled Humanism and the Politics of Swarming – Book Review

Facing the Planetary: Entangled Humanism and the Politics of Swarming. William E. Connolly. Duke University Press. 2017.

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In Facing the Planetary: Entangled Humanism and the Politics of Swarming, William E. Connolly focuses on deepening planetary crises, including climate change, and the existing, inadequate responses to these by political, social and economic actors, before outlining a politics necessary to […]

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    Labour market institutions still matter in the knowledge economy

Labour market institutions still matter in the knowledge economy

The last forty years have seen a pervasive rise in income inequality across the advanced democracies of Western Europe, North America and the Asia-Pacific region. This has occurred alongside major structural change, which has seen these economies transition from Fordism – an economic system built around the mass production and consumption of standardised consumer goods, supported by collective bargaining, […]

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    Leadership development today requires that faculty act less as experts, more as Sherpas

Leadership development today requires that faculty act less as experts, more as Sherpas

Given the appreciative response to my article on why we need a radical change in how we develop leaders, I wish to expand on its most quoted message: that leadership development in today’s dynamic landscape requires that faculty acts less as experts, and more as Sherpas.

The reason I contend this is that the leadership skills required to navigate today’s […]

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    Financial crises, corporate scandals and blind spots: who is responsible?

Financial crises, corporate scandals and blind spots: who is responsible?

According to the U.S. Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, the main causes of the financial crisis of 2007-2009 were failures of corporate governance and policy, including widespread failures in financial regulation and supervision, lack of transparency, poor preparation by the government, and systemic breakdown in accountability. The Commission concluded that the crisis was avoidable.

In their book This Time is Different: Eight Centuries of […]

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    Economists think Trump harmed the world economy, but not that of their country

Economists think Trump harmed the world economy, but not that of their country

On November 8th 2016, I was in Mexico City having dinner with a group of people. Suddenly, the person sitting across from me started receiving an unconscionable number of emails, messages, and calls on two devices simultaneously. As the polls from the American presidential election became public, this person had to leave the dinner to field the incoming flow […]

Gender should be on the agenda of business schools

As business and management educators we have a role to develop greater awareness and appreciation of diversity in society and our workplaces. Gender should be on the agenda of business schools. Gender-inclusive organisations and gender-inclusive management and leadership should be non-negotiable. Business schools have ethical, social and economic imperatives for integrating gender inclusivity into their cultures and curricula.

The silence […]

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    More data or better data? Using statistical decision theory to guide data collection

More data or better data? Using statistical decision theory to guide data collection

Big data has become an increasingly common topic of discussion. While the amount of available data and its role in the economy will continue to grow, we worry that the big data revolution will not live up to its promise if it is guided by the principle that bigger is always better. Data quality will limit the usefulness of […]

Curated Decay: Heritage Beyond Saving – Book Review

Curated Decay: Heritage Beyond Saving. Caitlin DeSilvey. University of Minnesota Press. 2017.  

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‘We are meddlers born’ (130), asserts Caitlin DeSilvey in discussing our relationship to cultural heritage sites. As a trainee Conservation Architect, this notion strikes at the heart of what I do, and what I hope to do more of in the future. My day is full […]

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    Facebook’s newsfeed changes: a disaster or an opportunity for news publishers?

Facebook’s newsfeed changes: a disaster or an opportunity for news publishers?

Social media and digital executives in newsrooms already have a tough job connecting their content to consumers via social media, but Facebook’s proposed changes in the algorithms of its ‘newsfeed’ are going to make it a lot harder. Social networks offer immense opportunities for reaching vast new audiences and increasing the engagement of users with journalism. The most important platform in […]

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    The old man and the sea of leadership: looking for effectiveness

The old man and the sea of leadership: looking for effectiveness

Leadership has been a scientific discipline for more than one hundred years. The magnitude of research has increased tremendously. Many different objects of study related to leadership have been investigated with the ambition to solve a variety of problems that appear to be more or less relevant for those in leadership positions.

In this blog post, I present my own […]

Second-generation family CEOs: are they up to the task?

Family firms are the most prevalent type of firm in the world. This is especially true in emerging economies, where they account for over half of medium-sized firms in the manufacturing sector. In particular, dynastic family firms – that is, where the founding family owns a controlling share and have appointed a second-generation (or later) family member as the […]

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    Confronting the macroeconomic challenges of the fourth industrial revolution

Confronting the macroeconomic challenges of the fourth industrial revolution

“The fourth industrial revolution – isn’t that an IT thing? We have a Minister for Digital looking at it”, said a policymaker. “Yes, it is changing business models which is why we are fostering an ecosystem for start-up innovation”, said another minister.

The implications of the current wave of technological change at a mechanical and commercial level are fairly well-understood. […]

Bond prices both reflect and influence the fundamentals

Most economists assume that bond prices merely reflect fundamental factors such as the bond’s interest rate, its face value and the likelihood that the bond issuer defaults. Bond issuers that are more likely to default will have to offer a higher interest to compensate the buyer for the higher risk.

Most economists stop here. However, for real-world bonds, it is […]

AI and the democratisation of judgement and decision-making

Qualitative judgement – the ability to make considered business decisions based on a personal interpretation of the context and facts — has never been more important (or overlooked).

There are three main reasons why judgement will remain central to the practice of management and leadership in the years to come. First, qualitative judgement is the last preserve of humanity in […]

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    Developing England’s North: The Political Economy of the Northern Powerhouse – Book Review

Developing England’s North: The Political Economy of the Northern Powerhouse – Book Review

Developing England’s North: The Political Economy of the Northern Powerhouse. Craig Berry and Arianna Giovannini (eds). Palgrave. 2018.

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On 23 June 2014, in a speech in Manchester, the then Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, announced the Northern Powerhouse (NP). To raise the economic performance of the North, Osborne called for a new policy approach building on the […]

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    An up-to-date account of economic inequalities in Britain since 2008

An up-to-date account of economic inequalities in Britain since 2008

Income growth in the UK has been weak since the financial crisis. It is a trend which seems likely to continue through to the early 2020s. But in overall terms, this has not been accompanied by a worsening of income inequalities. Official data from the DWP indicate a broad stability in the inequality of disposable household income, equivalised (i.e. weighted) for […]

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    Lessons from the 1890s to realign innovation and finance in post-Brexit Britain

Lessons from the 1890s to realign innovation and finance in post-Brexit Britain

There is increasing consensus among political and economic commentators that the UK economy is in significant need of rebalancing. The gulf between the finance-based London economy and former manufacturing regions was thrown into sharp relief by the Brexit vote, reinforcing the momentum for the so-called “Northern Powerhouse” and “Midlands Engine” initiatives and, to underpin a new focus on regional […]