Have We All Been Conned?

By |2024-05-20T10:16:22+00:00May 25th, 2024|

Over the last several decades, especially since the second world war, we have been encouraged, and exhorted, to be more productive - to meet ever-stretching targets.  And we have done it. Productivity figures over these years have been quite good. But what happened to those gains? In most of the Western world, there has been a

Happy New Year

By |2024-01-02T11:03:20+00:00January 1st, 2024|

Each year we say to friends, family and colleagues, "Happy New Year" - either as the 1st January rolls around or the first time we see them in the new year. What we are saying is "Good luck", merely wishing them that fate serves them kindly during the year.  Neither we, nor they, have any

Do We Have To Make A Choice?

By |2023-08-25T09:44:26+00:00September 2nd, 2023|

Climate-change activists often insist theirs is the right way.  They insist that everything we do (or more often not do) must help ‘save the planet', rather than make us richer or more secure. Yet, in all fields of human activity, the two can co-exist, even help each other…. If we look at green policies and practices

Can I have some more, Sir?

By |2023-03-29T06:54:41+00:00April 1st, 2023|

We all need more food.  The world population continues to grow.  At the same time, however, we devote less land to agriculture as we create mega cities and urban sprawl. The only solution is  increased agricultural productivity. However, an annual report from Virginia Tech University in the US shows agriculture is behind the pace of meeting the

Vision without Strategy – No Power!

By |2021-10-20T10:32:43+00:00October 20th, 2021|

Electric cars, buses, even planes. They are all coming.  Vehicles are  improving all the time.   As sensors become more efficient, range is extended - and range anxiety is the one factor that puts buyers off electric vehicles.  If, as a driver, you can’t make it to the next charging point, you’re in trouble.  But

More food, please

By |2020-03-19T22:48:24+00:00July 31st, 2012|

Food inflation combined with inadequate gains in productivity are clear indicators that our ability to feed a rapidly growing population is at serious risk without swift action. Example 1 Eggs are one of the most basic, affordable protein sources that people around the world depend upon. But, in recent years, production has been declining by

Unintended consequences

By |2020-03-19T22:48:24+00:00July 31st, 2012|

Governments (bless them!) often do things with good intentions.. but often fail to think through the unintended consequences of their actions. Take energy subsidies as an example. Quite a few governments subsidise energy prices ... to help businesses be more competitive, perhaps. However, business will only take a cold, hard look at energy usage when

8,000 years

By |2020-03-19T22:48:24+00:00July 31st, 2012|

I've talked in the past about the need to improve agricultural productivity to keep the world fed. This was brought home to me this week when I read an astonishing fact.  (Assuming, of course, that this is true  ... and I have no reason to doubt it.) "The world will need as much food in

Convergent Thinking

By |2020-03-19T22:48:24+00:00July 31st, 2012|

At the recent Rio summit (the less than spectacular one) there was some discussion about whether GDP is the best measure of a nation's well-being ... in an age where we are increasingly looking at the negative impact (on the environment) of increased industrial activity. The World Confederation of Productivity Science has been looking at

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