PPPs down under

The Evatt Foundation in Australia have just published an article that I wrote for their website. The article deals with Public-Private Partnerships and their attempts to wrestle with the complexity of school improvement.

Posted by Duncan O'Leary on 21 Jun 2004
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Kerry storms ahead…

Its not something which seems likely to precipitate an immediate revision of the American constitution, but it does spark some thoughts about some fairly recent events. Tuition fees were squeezed through parliament in on the back on the votes of MPs for Scottish constituencies – where fees were not going to be introduced as a result. One of the arguments used to defend this was that the new laws would effect the not insignificant number of Scottish students who opt each year to study in...

Posted by Duncan O'Leary on 21 Jun 2004
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Is nano the next GM?

Nanotechnology - the ability to manipulate matter at the atomic scale - is the next big thing according to many in the worlds of science and technology. But it isn't without its sceptics, and some are predicting a similar kind of brouhaha to that which accompanied GM foods in the late 1990s in the UK.Demos and IEPPP at Lancaster University are working together on an ESRC funded project to examine the potential for developing 'upstream' public engagement in nanotech R&D. We'...

Posted by Paul Miller on 21 Jun 2004
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People Flow just keeps on flowing...

Demos's 2003 offering, People Flow, has recently been covered on Italian website Caffe Europa.You can read the article here.

Posted by Rachel Briggs on 17 Jun 2004
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Europe goes to the Polls

Now the dust is starting to settle, and Peter Snow's swingometer has been put back into the BBC storeroom for another year, one can begin to try and make sense of the recent European Parliamentary election results.It seems that the UK electorate were not alone in their choosing to vote for Eurosceptic and anti-Brussels candidates. Not only in the UK, but in new Member-States like Poland and Slovakia, voters gave a big thumbs-down to a federal vision of Europe. For those of us concerned ab...

Posted by on 15 Jun 2004
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Always ask the audience

His new book The Wisdom of Crowds: why the many are smarter than the few is well worth a read. The basic line of argument is that if you want to make a correct decision or solve a problem, large groups of people are smarter than a few experts. He argues his case persuasively. The stats (I guess from the US) show that the friends on Millionaire get it right 65 percent of the time - which isn�t bad - but as Surowiecki puts it,�Those random crowds of people with nothing better to d...

Posted by Paul Miller on 15 Jun 2004
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Truce Calling

I'm sick of the football already, for obvious reasons, so bring on the next major sporting event I say. And as the Olympics return to Greece, Demos has been looking at the idea of the Olympic Truce - the 16 days of peace that accompanied the ancient games. Anyway, you're all invited to the launch party which will be held in London on the evening of the 23rd June. For more details click here.

Posted by Paul Miller on 14 Jun 2004
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How powerful is open source?

A few drawbacks make it unlikely - open source is very difficult to apply to goods which are not information rich; at present it tends to imitate existing goods rather than support innovation; and, ironically, some of the motivation necessary for the free labour is reliant on the desire to overthrow capitalism's monoliths - it might therefore be parasitic upon rather than threatening to capitalism.The second article examines the burgeoning role of open source within a specific discipline ...

Posted by James Page on 14 Jun 2004
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Perception Gap

Donald Rumsfeld might not know his known unknowns from his unknown unknowns but we've been trying to figure it out. We recently held a seminar - called Perception Gap - looking at how the perceptions ordinary people have of security threats affect government and corporate decision-making. This is the first in a series of seminars looking at the challenges facing companies of doing business in the new global security environment. Keep an eye on the Demos website for information about futur...

Posted by Rachel Briggs on 07 Jun 2004
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Geeks and Wonks unite

Tom Steinberg (of MySociety fame) emails to say there are two political sessions at this Sunday's 'geek conference par excellence' NotCon in London. The two sessions are:"The Politics OF the Net"A discussion of the values embedded in the net itself, as well as of theshifting politics of groups and idea shapers who inhabit it.12.30-1.30PM"Politics ON the Net"Various presentations covering issues from how the June 10th elections arebeing fought online, to the lau...

Posted by Paul Miller on 04 Jun 2004
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