A new year and renewed vision

Welcome to the first edition of Transform for 2021. I hope it finds you well, and that you managed to find some joy in the festive break, however you spent it.

I don’t think that any of us, in our wildest dreams, could have predicted the year we have just had. Offices abandoned, commercial districts around the world emptied, the warp and weft of business life – stopping for a latte on the way to a meeting, heading for the gym or a yoga class on the way home, a much-needed drink with friends – ripped apart. 

In many places, the vaccine rollout has begun in earnest. My parents-in-law have had both jabs and are beginning to feel more relaxed about a trip to the shops or a short walk outside. The fact we have several vaccines either available or in the final stages of development shows what remarkable progress can be made when the best minds in the world concentrate on a single, world-threatening problem. There are obvious parallels in the increasingly urgent need to decarbonise the economy. However, many business leaders point out confidence in government regulations, designed to support net-zero, has evaporated as these regulations often change when there is a change in government. Here, Andrew Jordan and Brendan Moore argue that climate policy needs to strike a balance between durability and flexibility.

“Remarkable progress can be made when the world’s best minds concentrate on a single problem”

Many of us will be contemplating more weeks or months, working from home. For some, it has become a routine that gives us back more time. For others, it has starkly shown how much we miss the interaction of office life. David Burrows considers the ups and downs here.

This year will bring some changes to Transform. We will be reducing the number of editions from 10 to six per year. We have listened closely to what you have asked for in terms of a more proactive service, and will be investing in a more frequent, web-based service of news that will provide you with regular, focused information. We will also be turning the entire back catalogue of Transform into a searchable, topic-led database. Do let us know if there is anything you would like to see from the new service – we are always keen to hear from members about what works for them, and what doesn’t.

In the meantime, enjoy this edition and stay safe.

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