Geoff Mulgan Quotes

geoff mulgan quotes



The smug complacency of technology adverts disguises a pretty mixed picture, with too many people not connected, too many passive users of technologies designed for interactive, and far too much talk about empowerment but far too little action to make it happen.


All over the world, social innovation is tackling some of the most pressing problems facing society today - from fair trade, distance learning, hospices, urban farming and waste reduction to restorative justice and zero-carbon housing. But most of these are growing despite, not because of, help from governments.


A modest dose of self-love is entirely healthy - who would want to live in a world where everyone hated themselves? But taken too far, it soon becomes poisonous.


On the environment and climate change, I suspect that future generations will think there was too much timidity, too much fear of upsetting business. Basically, New Labour was very nervous about regulating business, or requiring it to do anything, even when there was a very clear social or environmental case for doing so.


Computing should be taught as a rigorous - but fun - discipline covering topics like programming, database structures, and algorithms. That doesn't have to be boring.


It's an irony that growing inequality could mean more money for philanthropy. In the U.S., quite a few of the ultra-rich have taken to heart the 19th century industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie's comment that it's a disgrace to die wealthy.


As the Internet of things advances, the very notion of a clear dividing line between reality and virtual reality becomes blurred, sometimes in creative ways.


For most of human history, the main goal of states has been to conquer land and to achieve glory for their rulers, usually at others' expense. Then in recent decades it was all about GDP. It's only in very recent history that rulers have been willing to commit themselves to helping their citizens live happier lives.


Deeper fulfilment is rather different from the happiness of seeing a good film or watching your team win at football, and it doesn't come at the push of a button.


Many of the greatest composers and musicians do their best work in extreme confinement but we are seeing it in other fields - uses of technology to link people together in networks to solve problems and almost certainly we'll get better ideas than we would from them just doing it on their own.


Science is, rightly, searching for drugs to arrest ageing or to slow the advance of dementia. But the evidence suggests that many of the most powerful factors determining how you age come from what you do, and what you do with others: whether you work, whether you play music, whether you have regular visitors.


There is incredible potential for digital technology in and beyond the classroom, but it is vital to rethink how learning is organised if we are to reap the rewards.


The responsibility for good government lies not just with governments themselves but also with every other part of the system they operate in, including media, non-governmental organisations and the public.


There is a yearning for people to return to elementary moral virtues, such as integrity and commitment. We distrust people who have no centering of values. We greatly respect businessmen, for example, if they display those virtues, even if we don't necessarily agree with the people.


In every capitalist economy there are anti-capitalist movements, activists, and even political parties; in a way, that there are no longer anti-democratic movements, activists, and parties.


Most governments do have inbuilt biases in favour of the rich and powerful, and most do contain plenty of manipulators who love intrigue, who have lost whatever moral compass they may once have had and who protect themselves with steely cynicism.


With a fractured sense of self, we come to depend on what people feed back to us - often mediated through social networks - not what we are. We have complex identities but may become less able to act as a subject - confident in what we really are.


Understanding capitalism is in some ways simple. At its best, capitalism rewards creators, makers and providers: the people and firms that create valuable things for others, like imaginative technologies and good food, cars and drugs.


Governments that invest billions in new hardware still find it hard to accept that they might benefit just as much from systematic innovation in such things as child development or cutting crime.


The really interesting moment will be when you have a critical mass of people engaging through the networks, more than through the press and TV. When that happens, the culture of politics has to change, moving away from controlled one-way messages towards a political culture that is more questioning.




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