Volunteering to help others can have diverse benefits both for us as individuals and for those we volunteer with. It can increase people's confidence, boost wellbeing and help strengthen the fabric of society. There is increasing recognition of this from policy makers too. Take for example, the Government's pledge to offer up to three days' paid volunteering in companies employing over 250 staff - a move which could provide new opportunities to around 15 million staff.
The Times and Telegraph both spookily comment on the 'Americanisation' of our traditional way of policing, and I'm sorry, but that's just plain daft. In perspective there are a mere handful of armed response crews out and about on patrol in the UK, and this bears absolutely no resemblance whatsoever to any US policing model.
The vernacular of 'Science 2.0' has become increasingly utilised in the debate about the future of science. Many media articles and conferences focus on this topic, and the European Commission has recently held a public consultation to better understand the impact of 2.0 and desirability of policy action to enable it.
Firefighters will join up to two million public sector workers this Thursday as unions come together in co-ordinated industrial action to send a clear message to the government that we have had enough of austerity. Like all other public sector workers, firefighters are under attack from a government which is wrecking our public services and destroying the lives and futures of millions.
Austerity, and online petitions have much in common. Both are dominant online topics, and both have a polarising effect on opinion as to whether they can ever truly yield successful outcomes. Petitions seem to be becoming the reposte of choice for those affected by the worst effects of austerity, and today I read about a case that exemplifies this brilliantly.
Given that many of the jobs lost in manufacturing over the last forty years - it now accounts for less than 10% of the economy - were in 'traditional' areas of the country such as the North East and North West, to name but two, any increase in jobs that require making real things, as opposed to the service sector, would be welcome.
The idea that a British Government Minister should think it necessary to make a speech about the importance of culture must astonish Germans. For them, culture is as natural as breathing. The British have also made an exceptional contribution to culture and continue to do so but our reputation for philistinism in high places continues.
Like many organisations across the public sector, law enforcement agencies are expected to continuously improve their performance. Even when crime levels are low or falling, isolated failures are often put in the spotlight. This can in turn adversely impact public perceptions and decision-makers' reactions.