Volkswagen and the psychology of cheating

What is startling is that the VW affair does not appear to fit into any category of corporate scandal

The perils of joking away from home

One solution is to avoid trying to be funny — but humour is an essential social lubricant

House prices push out those London needs

There is no future for a city that cannot provide homes for the workers that keep it running

Businessmen Partnership Travel Destination Business Trip Concept

Envy business travellers, don’t pity them

Research into the negatives of trips abroad misses three big advantages

Adult learning

Migrants and ministers need English help

The UK insists immigrants learn the language yet the government has slashed spending on teaching

Google Translate: good enough for work?

The voice feature still misses out on nuance but so do many conversations in a second language

Bank of England chief economist Andy Haldane

Shareholder value mantra masks CEO power

The critique of dividends and buybacks by the BoE’s Andy Haldane begs a vital question

Why buying a car makes no sense

In most cities, driving is horrible — there are greener, less stressful and cheaper alternatives

Machines can cut airport arrival queues

Public sector staffing is under pressure everywhere and air passenger numbers are growing

Those headed for the top also read print

Screens are not as good at cultivating the peripheral vision that business leaders need

Three reasons for South African optimism

Free speech, judges and business founders offset the malaise elsewhere

Hong Kong: better English needed

Whatever happens to the balance of power, English will remain the world’s language for years

Let algorithms show if they can recruit

It is not just our biases that get in the way but that past performance cannot predict results

What the hotel room of the future needs

Three suggestions for practical and simple improvements that are not remotely high-tech

Bosses beware: staff can record you

Few employers can complain – they tore up their loyalty contract with employees years ago

The startling rise in short-sightedness

Cases of myopia have doubled in Europe

Time for a brave CEO to ask for less pay

Even fervent defenders of free markets think top pay is out of control

Tories’ battle over tourists and students

The UK government is pro-business but tourism and university sectors suffer if visitors are put off

Citi investors join the war on lobbying

Owners of companies can be an effective check on undue political influence

Business should speak up on house prices

Unaffordable property holds back social mobility and companies’ ability to hire the best talent


Michael Skapinker Michael Skapinker is an FT associate editor. His column on Business and Society appears on Thursdays. Born in South Africa, he began his journalistic career in Greece. He joined the FT in London in 1986 and has held many positions, including FT Weekend editor, FT Special Reports editor and management editor.

He received the Work Foundation Members’ Award for his contribution to the understanding of working life in 2003, was named WorkWorld Media Awards Columnist of the Year in 2008 and Business Commentator of the Year at the 2012 Editorial Intelligence Comment Awards.

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