The long litany of scandals suggests that bankers believe it is simply to make as much money as possible by any means possible. Yet surprisingly, they also have a social purpose.
Given the banks own the primary mechanisms that facilitate economic activity, there are quite a lot of ways for them to make money. That . . . → Read More: Does anybody know what banks are for?
The biggest obstacle to sustainability is our mindset. See my Guardian article on why we need a new one.
What happens when things go wrong? Here is my review of ‘The Dark Side’ – a collection of case studies of poor performance, mistakes and tragedies.
Should public honour be given to scientists irrespective of the social impact of their researches? Would it have been right for Robert Oppenheimer to have been awarded a Nobel Prize for his work on the Manhattan Project?
The World Food Prize is a case in point. The 2013 World Food Prize has been awarded to . . . → Read More: When science clashes with society…
Worries over the role of the moneylenders (that’s excluding the banks, whom some think don’t deserve that name any more) is growing.
Wonga is but one of the many lenders to those who cannot really afford to borrow. But it’s catchy name means it will receive more adverse attention than most. Yet CSR strikes even . . . → Read More: Unsocial enterprise?
The role of the public sector is changing. Activities that were once deemed to be a natural part of the function of the state, are now being carried out by the private sector. Whether in health, education, transport or security, large parts of the job of the delivery of services paid for by the state . . . → Read More: How well do you know your government?
It may be at risk. It is not at all clear what the future holds for Fairtrade cocoa. The large food industry bodies involved in cocoa production are trying to develop a standard for sustainable and traceable cocoa through CEN, the European standards body. Fairtrade bodies are also, rather carefully, involved with the initiative given the . . . → Read More: Do you like the taste of Fairtrade cocoa?
Obama should just give up and admit he got it wrong. A little bit of humility is worth it to avoid a catastrophe in Syria.
It is unclear whether Obama will even ask for Congressional approval. By law he does not have to, despite many requests to do so. But international law does require UN . . . → Read More: Accountability for Syria
The police are investigating possible crimes at News International committed by the company, not just by a bunch of individuals. It is sometimes claimed that the most effective deterrent to crimes committed while operating a company is the individual prosecution of senior management figures. And of course this is a real deterrent. But the question . . . → Read More: Companies as if they mattered
What makes a good retailer? Is it minimal packaging? Is it community donations? Or is it being able to use the toilet?
The answer, of course, must be all three. But while Amazon has worked on packaging and giving money away, it is working too hard on making it in the first place. According to a . . . → Read More: Amazon: a tale of zero-rights contracts