Museums of the future

Posted in culture, digital, future, history, scenarios, social by thenextwavefutures on 25 June, 2008

I contributed last week to an event in London which was designed to imagine how the notion of the museum might change. The current model, which is about 150 years old, basically consists of a building with some stuff in it, arranged according to some organising principle. It is changing already in the face of challenges from technology and shifting ideas about authority and hierarchy.



The failure of the political class

Posted in articles, civil liberties, emerging issues, politics by thenextwavefutures on 21 June, 2008

Two unrelated events this month – David Davis’ resignation to fight a by-election on the issue of 42-day internment of suspects without trial, and the ‘no’ vote in the Irish referendum – seem to me to be connected. The connection is the conservative journalist Peter Oborne’s theory of the ‘political class’.

The creative virus

Posted in articles, culture, innovation, organisational by thenextwavefutures on 8 June, 2008

Doing some electronic filing today, I came across a keynote speech on creativity and its sources which I gave while  working on interactive television in the 1990s. It seems to stand up pretty well a decade on, so I have posted it to my selected articles page (scroll to the bottom of the page).

The paper argues that creativity is a tension between the group and the individual, and that successful creative teams share four creative characteristics: porousness, persistence, partnerships, and opportunism. It draws on examples from across creative media, from Orson Welles to Gene Kelly, from Bob Dylan to the Beatles and Bruce Springsteen, from Charlie Parker to his radio producer namesake Charles Parker. And look out for the cameo appearance from Marie Osmond.

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Bringing it all back home

Posted in culture, emerging issues, identity, music, politics by thenextwavefutures on 7 June, 2008

There was a moment in the recent Robert Plant and Alison Krauss concert when Krauss sang part of the traditional English song Matty Groves. The band, led by T-Bone Burnett, was from the American South, and it was a reminder of the connections between the English folk song and the musical traditions of the white American south. But it was also a reminder, at a high profile event, that musics which have been marginalised are pushing themselves into the mainstream. This is partly a story a diversity coming full circle. In England, at least, it is also a story about politics.