Category Archives: Business


“We can’t rely on influencing, landing messages, representing, spinning. The game’s up. The great lumbering beast that is late, western capitalism has to turn itself to face the great mass to which it’s suddenly accountable – activist and accessed, wired … Continue reading

‘That full complement of riches’

For those who attended the “Why the world needs anthropologists” symposium in Amsterdam yesterday here are the slides. For those that didn’t attend I hope the notes with the slides help provide a bit of context to the more visual … Continue reading

Thinking differently? Really?

As a follow up to last night’s session at @unrulymedia which I really enjoyed, here’s a short but penetrating piece by Thomas Frank, author of  “Pity the Billionaire.” and “One Market Under God“. It’s a stylishly coruscating attack on the genre … Continue reading

Big data, asymmetry and business

[This post is a little longer than initially planned – it’s about a 15 minutes read] It was of little surprise that big data figured as a major presence at EPIC 2013 in London last week. In a session devoted … Continue reading

On numbers

“To depend on statistics is to asphyxiate the dynamic heart of the business.” Simon Marks, co-founder of the UK retail giant, Marks and Spencer, 1956.

Possessive companies

Typically sharp and incisive piece by Benedict Evans on the tendency for companies to think, and talk, about owning their customers. He relates this specifically to Google Glass but the point relates to all and every business that slips into … Continue reading

Silence and silos

Couple of years old now but well worth watching in full – Gillian Tett, Managing Editor of the FT in the US addresses the 2010 AAA on “Silence and Silos: The Problems of Fractured Thought in Finance”. 2010 AAA Inno-vent: … Continue reading

Anthropology and the abduction of strategy

I gave a talk last week at a UK UPA event on ethnography in design and innovation. I somewhat subverted the intent of the session by not talking about ethnography but instead focused on anthropology. My argument being that the … Continue reading

90 minutes of business wisdom

Professor Clayton Christensen talks models of disruptive innovation, what the job of your product is and explains why there will always be room for disruptive innovation an entrepreneurs in the world. From the rise of Sony and the transistor radio, … Continue reading

Blog post: Innovation, Ageing and Healthcare – a talk

Here's a talk on innovation in healthcare that I gave this afternoon at Imperial Business School to Professor James Barlow's students. I hope they found it useful. Innovation in Healthcare I've been interacting with James for a few years now. He's … Continue reading

Things to Watch in 2011

I’m always more than a little wary of ‘trends predictions’ in whatever form they manifest themselves – be it in Saturday supplements or marketing companies. But this piece from JWT Intelligence looks interesting and some of the predictions for 2010 … Continue reading

Post Scientific Society and R&D 2.0

I've spent the best part of a year on a Foresight Working Group exploring the role of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (AHSS) in the culture, economy and well-being of Ireland. As the year has progressed, and the Celtic Tiger … Continue reading

Book Review: Doing Anthropology

I've got a book review out in the latest edition of Anthropology in Action (16:1), which is a Special Joint Issue with the Irish Journal of Anthropology. it is a review of Doing Anthropology in Consumer Research – Patricia Sunderland and Rita … Continue reading

Credit Crunch Creative

The Crisis of Credit Visualized from Jonathan Jarvis on Vimeo. via crisis of credit

Data Shopping and Dropping

I'm always been fascinated by the idea that Walmart might be able to know – before most healthcare providers in an area that a flu or common cold outbreak is on the way based on their fine detail of the … Continue reading

On Lions, Laundry and Being a sort of Anthropologist

At one level it is a ghastly expression, which only someone in marketing could come up with. And yet, on the other hand, only someone in marketing could alight on a phrase which neatly captures in an instance some of … Continue reading

Trading Places

From Peter Day's excellent World of Business podcast, and a long interview with Richard Florida (16.9.08), there was a fascinating little section on the nature of the work environment, managerial style and organisational success, sandwiched between high octane chat about … Continue reading

Good times in bad times

Some people do really well out of recessions. My Dad always seemed busy at such times since he was an accountant who specialised in insolvency. But journalists do okay too. As one Sunday newspaper hack said to me last weekend: … Continue reading

Innovation, Teams and Dinosaur Eggs

A  few things I’ve read recently seem, quite independently, to be pointing in the same sort of direction. First, an article by Malcolm Gladwell in The New Yorker exploring the genesis of ideas and innovation. Second, a paper in the HBR on … Continue reading

Coinage of the Day

I appreciate this little coinage from Frog Design’s Adam Richardson – indentured advertude – in which we’re advertised to in contexts from which there is no escape, fast forward button or other means of avoidance. He used the example of … Continue reading

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