The Chairman of the Royal Dutch/Shell Group from 1991 to 2001 and of Anglo American Plc from 2002 to 2009 discusses the realities, dilemmas and lessons to be learnt from the last 20 years of corporate engagement with sustainability, ethics and responsibility. He tells a tale of corruption and conflict, of extractive industries and intractable governments from Syria and Nigeria to Downing Street and Beijing. In a tough world, how can business do the right thing?
A collection of delightfully witty and acutely observed stories by the comedy writer, columnist and actress – star of The Thick of It, Lewis and Nighty Night. She reads and talks to Lisa Dwan.
Can literature show us how to have a good sex life and a successful marriage? The SuperProf and the Digested Reads satirist romp through the bedrooms and letters where less is more. And where more is sometimes more too.
The creator of the famous blog issues a brilliantly bolshy and raucously funny rallying call to girls and women of all ages: The Vagenda asks real women everywhere to demand a media that reflects who we actually are.
The co-author discusses her delightful memoir of a later-life friendship and what happens when two ladies of a certain age decide to test Graham Greene’s maxim: Leap and the net will appear! This is a book for thrill-seekers, the adventurous and armchair travellers alike, a celebration of friendship, laughter and all that’s good in the world.
Paris at the time of the French Revolution was the world capital of science. Its scholars laid the foundations of today’s physics, chemistry and biology. They were true revolutionaries, agents of an upheaval both of understanding and of politics. The Eiffel Tower, built to celebrate the Revolution’s centennial, saw the world’s first wind tunnel, first radio message and first observation of cosmic rays. Perhaps the greatest Revolutionary scientist of all, Antoine Lavoisier founded modern chemistry and physiology, transformed French farming, and hugely improved the manufacture of gunpowder. His political activities brought him a fortune, but in the end led to his execution. The judge who sentenced him claimed that “the Revolution has no need for geniuses”. Chaired by Dan Davis.
What’s been happening in the environmental world during Festival week? We pick through the best and worst, sort the bizarre from the banal and generally sift the global media. The comedian and the journalists discuss. Chaired by Andy Fryers.
Keen’s incisive critique The Internet is Not the Answer traces the development of the net through the waves of start-ups and the rise of the big data companies to the increasing attempts to monetize almost every human activity. He shows how the Web has had a deeply negative effect on our culture, economy and society. Phillips’ Trust Me, PR is Dead asks whether we can ever really trust companies and their stories in an age when technology not only allows transparency, but demands it. Keen is executive director of the Silicon Valley salon FutureCast and the author of Digital Vertigo and The Cult of the Amateur. Phillips was CEO of Edelman, the world’s largest PR company, before leaving to set up Jericho Chambers.
You know all about the phone hacking trial, don’t you? Rebekah Brooks was acquitted and Andy Coulson went to jail. But why? Why was Brooks, the public face of the phone hacking scandal, found not guilty on all charges? Why did Coulson’s expensive defense not impress reporters? What impact did Rupert Murdoch’s millons have on the trial? And why did the jurors reach the decisions they did?
The classicist introduces his translation of the first work of history, a work that tells us much of what we know about the ancient world. Herodotus was an endlessly curious man, and gathered information about the world around him from as many people and places as he could investigate. Whether it was the pyramids of Egypt, the cannabis habit of the Scythians, the flora and fauna of Arabia or the table dancing of the Athenian aristocracy, he was fascinated by them all. His accounts of the great battles of Marathon and Thermopylae, of Salamis and Plataea, retain to this day a matchless epic quality.