Opinion

A smarter approach to pandemic-era research funding

By MITCH MAIMAN // It’s heartening to see both the business and charitable investments going into COVID-19 research. I’m certain that the institutions and individuals making these investments want to see the money create the greatest impact possible. But is it? Those who want their funding to have the most useful result should make sure they are funding an area where there is a unique need. I see money flowing into research in problem areas…

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The pitfalls of remote work, and how to avoid them

By MITCH MAIMAN // Like many companies, IPS is discovering and depending on new ways to work, enabling business to continue during the COVID-19 crisis. For our company, the pivot has been broadly enabled by a few key factors. For one thing, IPS staff members are predominantly “knowledge workers,” meaning the majority of their work already involves modern computing and telecommunications technologies. And the modern telecommunications infrastructure includes ubiquitous broadband communication channels, featuring highly evolved…


Fail to plan, plan to fail: A post-pandemic blueprint

By MICHAEL H. SAHN // We are fighting a great battle against COVID-19. Healthcare providers – the people in the trenches, our heroic first responders – deserve our greatest admiration and deepest respect. But in a very real sense, all of us are on the front lines and exposed to the dangers of this crisis. We will prevail. But the costs will be staggeringly high, in both lives lost and economic damage. To recover, we…


The diversity dilemma: Making good hires look bad

By GREG DEMETRIOU // Major corporations, organizations and institutions make regular announcements when they tick off diversity accomplishments. XYZ Company welcomes its first African American CEO. Acme Corp. elevates a woman to its Board of Directors, first time ever. Widgets Inc. announces its first openly gay chief operations officer. These personnel announcements are plentiful, especially in business publications and their social media counterparts. And there is the smiling face of the newly crowned – forever…


Why Harry S. Truman was the ultimate COO

By TOM MARINER // Last week, I visited the 4-mile-wide dot called Key West at the end of the giant fishhook chain of islands hanging from the bottom of Florida. One of the local attractions in Key West is the Little White House, where Harry S. Truman, the 33rd President of the United States, took the nation’s business when he wanted to get away and think. We took an educational tour with an enthusiastic, knowledgeable…


To slow diseases, smarter environments are going viral

By SAVERIO BELFIORE and THOMAS KING // We send our children off to school every day with the understanding that our school facilities are safe, clean and secure environments. But if we don’t properly maintain these “controlled” environments, they may become examples of “great science experiments.” Students spend up to eight hours a day indoors, with hundreds of other students in close proximity. Children are generally more vulnerable to environmental contaminants than adults, whether it be coronavirus,…


As climates change, a strong case for new land laws

By MICHAEL H. SAHN // We need a new, long-range vision for land-use regulation. The land we are regulating is changing rapidly, and this presents challenges and consequences we are only beginning to understand. Land-use regulations, codified in zoning laws, govern the way land is used and developed. The goal of zoning laws is to carry out a community’s long-range land-use objectives, in accordance with a comprehensive plan – in other words, to make sure…