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This is the official Perth blog site for posts, comments, and other contributions about leadership, behavioral finance and economics, and about management generally, as well as other related topics that take our fancy.

Was Darwin wrong? Why it matters


Hmmm, this sounds like a stretch, even for me. Surely natural selection is gold-plated, like the Bible, maybe even better? Nope, it’s starting to look like Darwin was barking up the wrong (evolutionary?) tree. But just so you know, I’m just the messenger, using info from the big guns, in this case a widely-published professor of biology Kevin Lalan...
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etedprince
Thx James for your thoughtful comments. You obviously know a lot about this topic and certainly far more than I do. However the ma... Read More
Sunday, 27 November 2016 00:11
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Are universities obsolete?


So I’m sure you’ve heard about the MOOCs – massively open online courses? There’s a bunch of them now like Udacity and Coursera. Many universities are adding new online course offerings powered by them. So the MOOCs are already doing a little to disrupt the university scene. But so far they haven’t had a fundamental impact, notwithstanding recent m...
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Being overweight is not your fault – and how to cure it


So yep a majority of people are either overweight or obese. And it’s a commonplace that they need to diet and exercise to fix the problem. The subtext is that for such people it’s their own fault. If they only had the willpower they wouldn’t have the problem. I beg to differ. Sure, for many if not most people a lack of exercise or poor diet is a co...
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Robo-Etiquette by Emily Roast


  Have you noticed the recent explosion of robots? There are robo-soldiers , robo-advisers , robo-vacuums and so on. To my great shame I’ve even added to the clutter ( Robo-coaches ), so I’m part of the problem too. We have a rapidly-emerging existential crisis, namely how to communicate with these robos. I mean no-one teaches you at school or...
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Can we unify traditional and behavioral economics?


So active investing is dead. Even the investment literati have finally figured that one out even though the writing has been on the wall for quite some time. I’ve been heralding the issue (“ An Inconvenient Truth - Alpha Financial Styles Beget Ginormous Returns ” and “ Less Algebra More Fudge Brownie - What Will Managed Investing 2.0 Look Like ?”)....
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Head transplants – body optional?


So you haven’t heard of head transplants? Get with the times, dude! Believe it or not an Italian medical research team is planning to do a head transplant in 2017 . And yep, they even have a volunteer. Takes all types. There’s considerable skepticism however that the operation can go ahead let alone succeed. Most mainstream surgeons think it’s impo...
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Earth’s clouds expose us to ET!


Dr. Stephen Hawking has just warned us against contacting aliens . I’m sure you have heard of him ? He’s the famous cosmologist who has ALS and a doughty approach to life notwithstanding. He’s also known for being an iconoclast. He believes (as do I) that it is certain that there are numerous ETs out there. And he thinks we should do nothing to enc...
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Leadership gurus lose to Robo-Coaches!


Did you know that the classic book “Moby Dick” has been translated into emojis? Yep, to wit, “ Emoji Dick ”. What’s the world coming to? I guess like almost everyone in the world you use messaging on your phone. Maybe you have even been known to use emojis, but only with your kids, right?. Same here, but I have also been known to use them (suitably...
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Do you have Pre-Alzheimer’s?


It being Presidential silly season, what better than to write a post about past presidents. So I read the latest magnum opus on said topic recently ( The American President: From Teddy Roosevelt to Bill Clinton 1st Edition by William E. Leuchtenburg ). Warning: it’s a bit of a slog, but it’s worth the trek. The chapter that really caught my attenti...
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“Happy Feet” - can animals fall in love?


OK so I went whale-watching recently, my token conversion to greenery. I actually saw several whales! Humpbacks actually. The interesting thing is that all the ones I saw were in pairs. Our helpful guide told us that these were always couples, male/female. But, she added disapprovingly, the male escort was always temporary; they have their way with...
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ECB Should Push Issue of Refugee Bonds to Turbocharge EU Growth!


Useless factoid for the day: the European Central Bank (ECB) recently let it be known that it will likely start buying equities as part of its radical approach to quantitative easing . Apparently there aren’t enough bonds around for it to be able to buy. Mario Draghi, its head, really meant it when he said the ECB will take all steps to jumpstart e...
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Who owns Mars?


Did you hear that China intends to land on the Moon and to have a base there by 2020 ? That’s only 4 years’ time. Your freshman kids won’t even have finished college by then….. And of course, SpaceX intends to have a settlement on Mars by 2024 . Maybe the explosion of its rocket recently will put a dampener on that, but personally I doubt it. I thi...
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The end of the wheel - wheel-less cars the next humongous growth driver


Hmmm, no car drivers these days, so why not no wheels too? You can’t open any paper, blog or tweet these days without hearing about self-driving cars. Frankly I’m getting bored. How about something new for once? How about wheels? Wheels are terribly old-fashioned. They weigh a lot, cost a lot, need a heavy car to ride on, are very hard to stop and ...
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Labor still beats capital in leadership development


As is my wont I was recently idly surfing the net checking out stuff about leadership. I ran across the latest issue of Entrepreneur magazine , a very good publication I am sure. Here were its three top headlines on the leadership page: 3 Tough Habits You Must Drop to Succeed 9 Things Managers Do That Make Good Employees Quit 22 Qualities That Make...
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How do negative interest rates impact leadership and risk globally?


It just came out that the Bank of Ireland and RBS bank have introduced negative interest rates on large deposits. Germany and Japan both have banks with negative interest rates, as well as some of the Scandinavians. That’s got to qualify as a megatrend. It looks like negative interest rates are spreading fast. We are in uncharted territory. Likely ...
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Is organizational culture over-hyped?


If you’re in HR, or you’re the CEO of an organization, chances are that you talk a lot about your “unique” organizational culture. It’s also a favorite of academics. Definitely politically correct. But even the promoters of organizational culture don’t exactly know what it means – see for example this article, direct from the PC headquarters of aca...
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Noah’s Ark on a stick is how we get to the stars - soon


I guess you saw that the latest in the Star Trek movie series ( Star Trek Beyond ) has just come out? It’s a hardy perennial, even though everybody knows that the travel to the stars isn’t possible for us humans because it would take so long to get there. When the first Trekkie came out, that was a true statement. Now with several companies girding...
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Could you purposely redesign your personality with a pill?


Another apparently useless piece of information, courtesy of researchers at the University of Virginia and the University of Massachusetts medical School. It looks like particular chemicals in your immune system cause you to be social . Specifically it’s a molecule called gamma interferon. Who would have thunk it? For some reason, the immune system...
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The Difference between Agile and Supple Leadership


So where did I get “supple leadership” from? I made it up of course! Actually I was reflecting on the now widespread use of the term “agile leadership”. It’s in use by many companies and there are even assessments for it now such as one from Korn/Ferry . Even I have been guilty of using the term (see my post “ Can Behavioral Agility Be Learned? ”) ...
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Should we deliberately slow down innovation?


Did you notice that Alvin Toffler, author of “Future Shock ” just passed away? His book was published in 1970. That was well before the Internet, Twitter, Facebook and even photocopiers and hand-held electronic calculators. Think what he would say today? Clearly the pace of change has accelerated dramatically since Toffler alerted us to the problem...
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