Tag Archives: culture

Youtube ad campaign for Danish Tourism board depicts single mum looking for her child’s father

I have only just discovered this extraordinary ad campaign on Boing Boing – there was some controversy surrounding this back in September resulting in the ad being removed from Youtube.

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What makes this campaign extraordinary is the fact that rather than promoting safe sex, or prevention of STDs or unwanted pregnancy, it is in fact for the Danish Tourist Board, and the objective is to encourage more overseas visitors to consider Denmark as a holiday destination.

The controversial aspects of the campaign are clear, and have been discussed elsewhere, particularly on Adland.tv.

What struck me was the comments made by the CEO of Danish Tourism, Dorte Kiilerich.

“Karen’s story shows that Denmark is a free place with space for you to be who you want. The film is good exposure for Danish self-sufficient and dignified women.”

I don’t really see this at all, and judging by the controversy and subsequent apology, it would seem that other people don’t either. I am just wondering if this is because we aren’t Danish. Denmark is a society that really is socially ahead of the curve, having been the first country to legalise pornography (in 1969) and same-sex marriages (in 1989).

Maybe we just don’t get it because we are mired in antiquated behaviour and conservatism. Or maybe the idea was to play on national stereotypes and generate attention through controversy.

Thinking of cultural insensitivity in tourism advertising reminds me of the Broadcast Advertising Clearance Centre in UK banning the TV spots for Tourism Australia for featuring the word ‘bloody’ (a word so inoffensive in today’s society, that my grandmother would not be averse to using it).

It goes to show how even the smallest of issues can be misconstrued and misinterpreted, with the original objective and intention completely lost in the ensuing public debate.


Trends and Technology Timeline 2010 (and beyond)

Here is the latest in a series of annual topological trend maps created by Richard Watson of NowandNext.

Trends and Technology timeline 2010 (and beyond)

The detail in the map is incredible and the various branches include subjects such as Society & Culture, Geopolitics, Environment & Climate and IT & Telecomms.

It reminds me of a copy of a lithograph from the Tate I used to have in my house in London, which was a re-imagining of Harry Beck’s famous London Underground map. Instead of the Economy and Financial Services, Simon Patterson’s The Great Bear changed the lines to different cultural and scientific icons, such as Film Actors (the Northern Line), Engineers (the Bakerloo Line) and Musicians (the Metropolitan Line).

As with the Great Bear, Richard Watson’s work will bear repeated visits, which will no doubt throw up something surprising each time.

I just hope I am still alive when augmented reality contact lenses hit the market.

Creating a workplace culture that fosters innovation

I have been part of a team in 2009 that has been looking at innovation, and how to create an environment in the workplace that encourages ideas. Not only this, but what processes are in place to define, refine and implement these ideas.

It has been a fascinating exercise, and we have discovered some great articles along the way, which I have listed below.

50 ways to foster a culture of innovation – from Idea Champions. 50 might sound like a lot, but these are simple and also represent a back-to-basics look at what a good company culture should look like.

From the Center for Business Planning, the Mission Statement. The Mission Statement is critical to any organisation in that it ties in to the What, When, Why, How aspects within the innovation process.

Similarly, from QuickMBA, the Business Vision and Company Mission Statement, which expands the idea of the Mission Statement to include core values, core purpose, and visionary goals.

Hat-tip to Piete Berkel for finding these great articles.