Tag Archives: Hendriks

And finally – well almost finally – well, just another 38 days to go

5 Sep

Here in the early morning, the sun only just above the horizon, this extraordinary feeling of calm will surely not last – so there’s every reason to gently coax continuing slumber like a dream that you’d rather not let go.  Reality will make itself felt soon enough.

One by one the clamour of action points, promises, the sins of omission, the list of ‘things to do today’, will break through but right now there is space and time to think; to reflect that it’s nearly a month since that last blog note which, in retrospect, signaled the start of frenzied activity.

There are, no doubt, some well-ordered folks whose passage through life proceeds at a carefully moderated pace with commas in all the right places, no excessive use of capital letters or exclamations and with upright thinking always on an even keel.  They must be very boring.  Most of us are blown about by the winds – our progress being the aggregate of umpteen diversions, a touching faith in our navigation, a strong hand on the helm and another glass of red wine.

This current calm descended yesterday mid-day and marked the end of an intense month – perversely that month when so many folk push off for a rest.

It was the month when the short-listed contenders for this year’s Digital Challenge are converted into a complete set of final submissions to the judging panel.  It was the month to confirm the availability and willingness of the judges.  A month to redesign the scoring methodology and contemplate trophy designs.  It was a month of double-checking that the ideas flowing from the contenders would be fully reflected in the emergent agenda for NextGen 13 in October.  And yet this was only a small part of the annual orchestration of speakers, exhibitors, venues, sponsors and the briefs for session leaders – a massive workload (and risk) that falls on the remarkably resilient shoulders of colleagues Marit and Andrew.

But here, just for this short moment, it is calm.  The Digital Challenge entries are in the hands of the judging panel for the next three weeks.  Weather forecasters predict that this summer sun will end abruptly tomorrow with a 10-degree drop and the onset of autumnal rains.   And with the cold showers of tomorrow’s reality we must shake off this dull sloth and move on.

For those of you who’ve been away on holiday – welcome back.  The countdown to NextGen 13 has begun.  This year’s event will be at Wembley and while we are preparing the pitch, prizes and programme it will be the mix of delegates, speakers, exhibitors and sponsors who will come together to make a great event, Changing Agendas: shifting broadband futures’.

YEEKS – only 38 days?!


The power of Open Data

10 Jun

In this brief summary of our NextGen presentation at last week’s ICF Summit in New York, Marit Hendriks and I gave a few examples of innovations engendered by Open Data from both the community perspective and that of Enterprise.

The summary ‘Innovating in Public: the power of Open Data‘  includes material from the Ordnance Survey’s Geovation Challenge, the Open Data Institute and Simon Rodgers iPad book ‘Facts are Sacred’.



Innovation and job creation: Intelligent Community Forum annual Global Summit

6 Jun

(David Brunnen and Marit Hendriks reporting from New York)

The Intelligent Community Forum (ICF) is holding its annual Summit this week in New York City. This 3-day event is an international gathering of mayors, chief administrative officers, CIOs and economic development officers from cities, states and regions around the world that are designated Intelligent Communities by the ICF. The theme this year is “Innovation and Jobs”.

In partnership with the Polytechnic Institute of New York University, the event brings the world’s most dynamic communities together to discuss how to use information and communications technology innovation to create jobs and sustainable communities.

The high point of the event will be on Friday when ICF announces the name of the world’s 2013 Intelligent Community of the Year.

Amongst the speakers gathered from around the world will be Mike Lazaridis, founder of Blackberry, Uzo Udemba, developer of Lagos as an intelligent city and Mayor Michael Coleman of Columbus Ohio.

From the UK, Marit and I will today be addressing a conference plenary on the impacts of Open Data innovation and giving several examples of community development as well as the trends towards greater transparency in the commercial sector and environmental sustainability.

Developing this theme has been excellent preparation for the upcoming Intelligent Cities event in Leeds on June 19th.

Working with the ICF has hugely informed NextGen Events – particularly in helping to identify the key UK challenges faced by cities and communities as the investment priorities for digital infrastructure begin to be realised.   A brief summary of the 2013 themes can be found in our paper ‘Economic Revitalisation’.

Groupe Intellex Index: July-Dec 2012

7 Jan

This edition of the index shows that our published output may have been lower in the 2nd half of the year but we developed some digital economy themes in greater depth.

The Index provides quick links to all of our editorial material (including contributions from Marit Hendriks and Andrew Macdonald and Leader columns for the CMA) plus briefing notes for projects for NG Events and Community Study Tours.

Surprisingly popular in the last week of the year was a review of Irene Ng’s new book ‘Value & Worth’ with a hit–rate exceeding anything we’d published since last September.


Connecting Continents

30 Nov

While I’ve been deeply immersed in an altogether different journey my colleague Marit Hendriks has trekked to Cape Town and back.

Communications networks are seen by many as the threads that tie us all together but as Marit’s exploration of the African market shows it is the diversity of developments and their contexts that provide the most interesting insights.

Although her visit was focused on the Africa Com conference & exhibition, Marit arrived in South Africa in time to see beyond the glitz of the international conference centre.  In the first of her reports (Under African Skies) Marit takes a trip into a township and takes measure of the vast inequalities and digital divisions.

At the conference itself the contrasts between Europe and Africa were also very much evident – the local approach to Social Media, the huge importance of Mobile Payment systems and the very different priorities for infrastructure in the wider wilderness.  The venturing zeal, the local software industry, the scale of the opportunities are all vast – but the scale of inequalities and the size of the un-served market demands a very different approach to market development.

If there was one common theme between our two continents it might be found in the gradual reduction of relevance of the old ‘last generation’ Telco models – while millions clamour for connectivity the investment spotlight has shifted to the cleverness of Apps and the demand for higher ICT skills – and deepened the digital divides in places that are already desperately disconnected.

Quarterly Review and Index

28 Jun

Our editorial streams in the quarter April-June 2012  were dominated by coverage of the UN Sustainability Summit, (Rio+20) with considerable input from ‘Groupe Intellex Associate’ Marit Hendriks in Rio de Janeiro filming for NextGen TV.

Surprise hits, however, were the editorials on the ‘digital’ economy, New Economic Models and, from the archive, a heart-felt sermon on the iniquities of call centres, ‘ Please hold during the silence’.

The Quarterly Review includes references, acknowledgement, a chronological listing and a full alphabetical index of topics and people featured  in the last 3 months.

Rio+20: Pressing for a Restart

26 Jun

In this final editorial from the UN Sustainability Summit in Rio we consider the disappointments felt by many participants but also celebrate the digital connectivity that has taken the messages from this event to all corners of the world.

In Marit Hendrik’s compilation of voices from Rio we hear from the UN leadership, from those concerned with their own country’s leadership deficit in environmental matters and those who really understand the need to re-engage with a digitally-empowered and well-connected next generation.

Full story here with video from Marit Hendriks for NextGen TV.

Ria: a tribute to worldly-wise women of Rio+20

22 Jun

Ria in Spanish is the feminine of Rio and it seems only appropriate for our 4th report from Rio+20 to acknowledge the work of women around the world.

On a day when London and Brussels both experienced the power of dignified but determined voices we turn our Rio+20 spotlight on Tanya, Doris and Brittany – three voices with messages that lift us out of politics, resolutions and declarations and into the real world of getting on with finding solutions to everyday environmental problems.

In the rain forests of the Amazon or remote valleys in Switzerland or from the distant shores of New Zealand we feature three great examples of digital empowerment.

Politicians and the media may think the Rio+20 sustainability text is ‘insipid’ but life goes on and the present powers will be held to account by the next generation.

Full story here with videos by Marit Hendriks for NextGenTV.

Rio+20: the reality of Digital Engagement

20 Jun

From an aerial view of the beach in Rio de Janeiro to Argyll & Bute in the Scottish Highlands by way of Brighton & Hove (and Nick Clegg, Aung San Suu Kyi, the EU delegation led by Denmark, ‘the hairy cornflake’ and Ellen MacArthur) we bring you our second report from the UN’s Sustainability Summit and a message about ‘the problem solving capabilities of networks‘.

All that plus Paragraph 65 of the Rio+20 draft final text that world leaders are expected to affirm this week.

Full story here with additional reporting from Marit Hendriks in Rio for NextGen TV.

Rio+20: digital realities dawning

19 Jun

As thousands of delegates throng the conference halls of the UN Rio+20 Summit and work late into the night to try and reach a sustainable consensus, voices of reason are highlighting the national and global deficits in digital infrastructure.

In this first of our reports from Rio we bring together thoughts from the European Commission, the ITU, Boston Consulting Group, BT and the guy from Aberdeenshire who just got on with it and founded Mashable.com .  Additional reporting from Marit Hendriks of NextGenTV.

Full story here