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Organisations advance by asking “what went wrong” rather than “who is to blame”

Bad events in organisations are generally the product of bad systems rather than bad people. So, while it is right to place responsibility for the VW scandal with the chief executive rather than the individuals who falsified emissions tests, we need to go on and ask what it is about modern corporate life that has made such misbehaviour not only possible but appear increasingly common.

The case for a new runway at Heathrow is overstated, Prime Minister

If the capital costs of Heathrow expansion could be substantially reduced and its actual financing costs were also trimmed, that project would merit further consideration. Otherwise, a second runway at Gatwick appears simpler, cheaper, less risky and less politically unpalatable.

Must we endure excessive drug prices to encourage pharmaceutical R&D?

A mechanism of funding pharmaceutical research which leads to drug prices far in excess of marginal cost is bound to lead to anguish and injustice. But is there a better idea?

The best strategy is to be good at whatever it is you do

Michael Porter warned on the danger of being “stuck in the middle”. Companies, he said, must either gain a cost advantage or emphasise product differentiation. But what really matters is enjoying a competitive advantage in the market position you choose.

Authors should back Amazon in the battle with Hachette

Established companies in all industries are inhibited in their response to radical change by vested interests inherent in their existing business models. Now, in publishing, it’s time for the author to be placed where he or she should be – in charge.

The ‘best’ health care is not always the one that keeps us alive

Can Britain’s NHS really be the best in the world – except for keeping its patients alive? John reviews the paradox.

Drug companies are built in labs, not boardrooms

The history of ICI and the British pharmaceutical industry may provide some pointers to show how shareholders and policymakers should react to Pfizer’s bid for Astra Zeneca.

Taxi apps should be hailed for breaking the cabby cartel

Taxi licensing illustrates regulatory capture, the phenomenon by which regulation intended to serve the public is hijacked by industry interests.

Regulators will get the blame for the stupidity of crowds

Just as dammed water finds new channels of escape, crowdfunding seems to provide a way around the blockage.

The design flaws that lead to financial explosions

Nuclear power and financial systems both have the capacity to blow up the world. Perhaps there are lessons from one for the other.