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Backlight: The new Silk Route

October 20, 2017 , ,

The power is shifting from West to East. Until today, the world history was a western-centered enterprise – based on the belief that everyone should be like us, or at least should want to be. According to Frankopan, the West has completely alienated itself from the rest of the world. Old Europe is on the decline and the economic prosperity in Asia, Africa and South America is over. We have no friends left east of Venice, says Frankopan. The power center shifts along the lines of the new silk roads, from West to Wast. How should we adapt to this new world order?

Backlight: The new Wisdom of Ricardo Semler

February 24, 2015 ,

We are smarter than ever, but have we also grown wiser? According to Ricardo Semler, the Brazilian top entrepreneur and philosopher who became immensely rich by making his employees happy, our economy has gone completely off the rails and capitalism has failed to create equality anywhere, ever.

Backlight: Making the Future

October 27, 2014

Decreasing costs of materials and tools, and the availability of all kinds of information mean everyone can become a maker, developer or entrepreneur. Is this mass-production in reverse and the start of a new industrial revolution?

Backlight: Power to the City

October 20, 2014

While national governments are mired in party politics and their own bureaucracy, the cities are bursting with energy, optimism and a sense of resolve. Where national governments fail, on a city level many problems – in the fields of the environment, poverty, food production and care – are solved more quickly and together in collaboration with citizens.

Backlight: Digital Amnesia

September 5, 2014

Digital data is vulnerable. Yet entire libraries are shredded and lost to budget cuts, because we assume everything can be found online. But is that really true? For the first time in history, we have the technological means to save our entire past, yet it seems to be going up in smoke. Will we suffer from collective amnesia?

Backlight: Fake for Real

July 25, 2014

What is real and what is fake these days? This question presents itself more and more frequently, whether it’s in regard to newspaper photos, designer bags or the human body.

Backlight: The Greedy Brain

May 2, 2014

In  science fiction films the minds of scientists are downloaded into computers and criminal brains are connected with the Internet. Interesting, but how does it work in real life……?

Backlight: Youtopia

May 2, 2014

Shortly before the local elections and inspired by the TV reality show Utopia, Backlight, together with newly-minted professor of community development Justus Uitermark, looks at how people would build their community if they could start afresh.

Backlight: The European Security Complex

March 4, 2014

Europe is building a network of unprecedented surveillance technologies that can track everyone and divide all of us who travel within the EU into those who can travel freely and those who can’t.

Backlight: Bye Bye Car

March 4, 2014

A documentary about the future of transportation.

Cars will become less prominent. Bill Ford of Ford Motor company claims that in ten years’ time the company will sell mobility, not cars. How will we move around in the future? The first spectacular signs are manifesting themselves.

Backlight: Seed Battles

November 8, 2013 ,

Hidden deep inside a massive mountain in inhospitable Spitsbergen is the most important vault in the world: the Global Seed Vault. It is 20 degrees below zero and the vault is able to withstand earthquakes, floods, missile attacks and nuclear disaster. It’s Noah’s Ark for our food production with the largest diversity in seeds from all over the world, a backup of as many crops as possible and the toolbox for seed breeders. This is vital, for by 2050 there will be 9 billion mouths to feed.

Backlight: Big Data; The Shell Search

November 8, 2013 ,

Ever since the revelations about the snooping practices of the US and the Dutch intelligence services, we have become increasingly aware of the vast amount of digital data that are stored about us on the net, in the matrix. Data about citizens, information about governments and multinationals is also stored in multi-terabyte files: big data. The good news is that a large part of this information is, thus, also accessible to all of us, if you just know where to look.