We knew that people felt strongly about tax evasion and avoidance - but the results of our latest opinion poll still shocked us. The survey, in which ComRes questioned 2,270 British adults, found that one in three people (34 per cent) say they are currently boycotting the products or services of a company which doesn't pay its fair share of UK tax. In London, this rises to 44 per cent.
We could be the generation to end poverty. For many that statement seems a little unbelievable at least in part because we've heard it all before. But it really is possible - the problem is maybe that we've tended to get too bogged down in the past and thinking that the problem of global poverty is just too big to solve.
Bill Gates has suggested that the Millennium Development Goals do not need updating. He is wrong. Here's why: Throughout the world, from Burma to Namibia, Somaliland to Laos, China to Nicaragua, there are communities of people marginalised by the societies in which they live and forgotten by international development organisations.
A remarkable revolution is taking place in finance, not in the City, but under the shade of large communal trees in villages across Africa and the developing world. It's a savings revolution, and one with the potential to pump $157 billion into the global economy, and particularly developing nations, if the 2.7bn adults worldwide who are 'unbanked' participate in savings-led microfinance programmes.
Our Olympic and Paralympic heroes deserved every bit of the great parade we saw last week. But why didn't this celebration happen again yesterday? That's when the UN announced that the number of children dying each year under the age of five has fallen by 41% since 1990. While 12 million died in 1990, just under seven million lives were lost in 2011. That's 14,000 a day less than were dying in 1990. The progress made in reducing child deaths must be one of the biggest success stories of the last decade. Yet there was no tickertape parade.
There are an estimated 70,000 school-aged blind children in China - most living in rural areas and villages. The schools which offer special education for VI children are predominantly located in the major cities hundreds or thousands of miles away. A casual visitor to Shanghai, an incredible economic powerhouse of a city, might wonder how such a plight could be possible.
At its inception in 1945, the IMF was disputed by two rival tendencies. The British group, led by the brilliant economist J Maynard Keynes, envisaged an organisation which would act to regulate capital flow world-wide in order to cap national deficits, and so avoid the employment crises and economic collapses which had wracked the world economy of the 30s.
It is one of Africa's cruelest ironies that as the planting season begins, as it is now across much of the continent, so does the hunger season. The food stocks from the previous harvest are running low and it will be several months before the next harvest comes in. In this crisis, nearly one billion people go to bed hungry every night...
The mantra of growth as a cure to the economic malaise that is engulfing Europe and the US is repeated ad nauseam by economists and political pundits. My training is in engineering science, not economics, so let us not be encumbered by economic dogma or theory. Let us go back to first principles to examine some of the prevailing economic axioms.