Madano ranked highest communications consultancy in its category in the UK’s 2018 Best Workplaces™ for Women

Madano ranked highest communications consultancy in its category in the UK’s 2018 Best Workplaces™ for Women

Madano was named by Great Place to Work® as one of the UK’s 2018 Best Workplaces™ for Women in the Small category (organisations with 20-49 employees), taking 5th place in its inaugural year of ranking.

Judging is based on honest feedback from employees, and the award recognises Madano’s company culture and flexible working environment.

Michael Evans, Madano’s Managing Partner, said:

“Whilst Madano’s committed to creating a collaborative, flexible and supportive environment for all employees, this award helps us to recognise the support and flexibility put in place to help the development, engagement and wellbeing of our female employees, something which is not only an issue of importance for our industry, but society as a whole.”

About Great Place to Work®

Great Place to Work® UK is a consultancy specialising in workplace culture, helping organisations to create exceptional, high performing workplaces where employees feel trusted and valued. We help employers improve recruitment, retention and productivity by putting employees at the heart of the organisation, analysing what they think and feel and identifying the real issues that need to be addressed. Part of a global organisation, we apply data and insights from approximately 10,000 organisations across the world to benchmark individual performance and advise employers on how to continuously improve employee engagement and wellbeing and so help build and sustain business performance. We run the Best Workplaces™ awards to enable the organisations we work with celebrate their achievements, build their employer brand and inspire others to take action.

AI Used to Safeguard the Democratic Process (The Week in AI, July 6)

AI Used to Safeguard the Democratic Process (The Week in AI, July 6)

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The week’s biggest story came from North America. In Mexico, ahead of what is known as one of the most violently contested electoral campaigns in the world, an AI-powered search tool known as Krzana is being used to monitor fake news and polling station problems. In an effort to combat the increasing levels of violence, the tool will be used to react quickly to propaganda on social media and violence aimed at frightening off voters. The tool has been taught to scan and analyse text, video and stills on social media to spot items and messages that relate to candidates and the election.

This week also marked 70 years since the formation of the much-loved yet beleaguered National Health Service. As the media celebrated the rich history of the NHS, it also championed its future by highlighting the latest development in artificial intelligence (AI), aimed at providing much swifter radiotherapy treatment. Microsoft system InnerEye automatically marks up scans of prostate cancer patients, saving time in treatment. The machine learning software was trained on organs and tumours in scans from past patients. Similar treatments are expected to be implemented in brain tumours imminently. Questions as to whether AI will enhance or diminish the roles of medical professionals linger. Read more here – https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/jul/04/its-going-create-revolution-how-ai-transforming-nhs

News in Brief:

Around Whitehall:

The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS), and the Office for Artificial Intelligence has responded to The House of Lords Artificial Intelligence Select Committee’s report, AI in the UK: Ready, willing and able?, which was published in April 2018.

The departmental 41-page response ranges from the ethical use and regulation of AI to its integration into university education.

In relation to possible economic opportunities, the Government said in the response document: “Data trusts could help SMEs pool resources to rationalise access to data and work together to pre-process data – allowing them to compete with more established firms. In so doing, a healthier AI and data business ecosystem could be fostered.”

The Lords report did however receive some critique particularly surrounding the power of big technology companies in the UK, such as Google and Facebook. “The increasing consolidation of power and influence by a select few risks damaging the continuation, and development, of the UK’s thriving home-grown AI start-up sector,” the report said.

The report also highlighted the role the Competition and Markets Authority is seeking to play in the use and monopolisation of data by the big technology companies operating in the UK. The report announced the CMA will build a new technology team to strengthen its ability to keep pace with the use of algorithms, artificial intelligence and big data in business as well as introducing new regulatory initiatives to improve outcome for consumers.

More detail here: https://www.computerweekly.com/news/252444144/Government-welcomes-Lords-AI-report-vaunts-industrial-strategy

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The Social Housing Green Paper – communicating its impact

The Social Housing Green Paper – communicating its impact

Written by Sarah Park, Head of Madano’s Investment, Development and Regeneration (IDR) practice

“Housing is about people,” said Terrie Alafat, Chief Executive of the Chartered Institute of Housing, at last week’s Housing Conference. This reality is often a forgotten fact during dinner-party conversations about London house prices and within industry reports about yield and land value.

But how and where people and families live – especially in social housing – has been under media scrutiny for the past 12 months, which makes the imminent Social Housing Green Paper one of the most important housing papers in recent times. Developed to respond to the concerns of tenants, underlined in the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster, and set out to initiate greater conversation about the lives of those people living in social housing, the public and the industry have a vested interest in what James Brokenshire is about to propose.

From a strategic communications point of view, the Green Paper has two equally important roles; 1,000 direct interviews and 7,000 online responses online have helped shape the report so language, tone and context needs to resonate with a public that wants to see empathy as part of the process of change. And communications is no longer simply about words but about action. The publication of the Green Paper has the potential to expose Registered Providers to an immediate ‘holding to account’ of any pledges made – even at this proposal stage. RPs will need to start communicating effectively with their tenants from the get go.

The RPs that anticipate how residents may react to the Green Paper, and respond by communicating with them in the first instance with clear messaging and empathy, will help prevent misinterpretation and establish transparency. Opening channels of communication will be a positive act alongside a national announcement that is certainly guaranteed not to appease everyone. As many RPs already know, complaints, grievances and proactivity from residents groups can be a good resource of information and insight rather than something to be quickly dispelled, and as a result an opportunity to halt problems before they happen.

In his first housing speech to think tank Policy Exchange, in Westminster on Monday, James Brokenshire said it was ‘..a privilege to lead this work..’ What he proposes in the Social Housing Green Paper is further Governmental response to the Grenfell disaster and will undoubtedly be complex. Communications won’t solve the problems that currently face social housing, or drive the Green Paper but they should be regarded as an integral element to its execution. People want to be heard and they want conversation.

Find out more about Madano’s expertise in the built environment by viewing our IDR page here.

Madano and BOLDT launch a new strategic partnership on how business can engage, influence & lead on the Brexit process

Madano and BOLDT launch a new strategic partnership on how business can engage, influence & lead on the Brexit process

Madano and BOLDT– a business strategy and communications consultancy with offices in Brussels, Cologne, Oslo and Zurich – have announced the launch of a strategic partnership, with a focus on Brexit-related services.

The partnership is an offer of seamless public affairs and communications services on both sides of the Channel for companies at risk of disruption and change. As the negotiations on the UK’s future relationship with the EU enter a critical new phase, the Madano-BOLDT ‘Leading on #Brexit’ partnership seeks to equip companies and organisations with the ability to understand, influence and manage the process. Key sectors in which the partnership has expertise include construction & real estate, energy, financial services, food & drink, healthcare & pharma, technology and transport.

To mark the launch of their strategic partnership, BOLDT and Madano unveiled Managing Brexit, the most comprehensive timeline to date of opportunities for companies and organisations to engage with the Brexit process.

In March 2018, BOLDT and Madano launched What do European and UK companies think of Brexit? A social media perspective, which examined the attitudes of UK and European companies to Brexit.

Michael Zdanowski, Director, Madano: “As we’ve seen in the media in recent days, companies of all shapes and sizes are increasingly concerned at the potential for serious disruption to their businesses if they don’t plan ahead for all potential Brexit-related scenarios. Businesses need to take the lead on Brexit – this partnership offer combining expertise in both Brussels and London – enables clients to do this.”

Michiel van Hulten, Partner, BOLDT: “For companies, trade associations, NGOs, citizens and others who have a stake in Brexit negotiations, the time to engage is now. Linking up with Madano strengthens our ability to help our clients navigate and engage with the Brexit process, making sure that their voice is heard in Brussels, London and other EU capitals at the optimal time.”

Please contact Michael Zdanowski for more information on how your business can engage, influence and lead on the Brexit process.

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