Tim Longhurst's Blog

Naming and shaming restaurants – online penalty registers

July 23rd, 2008 · 1 Comment

Food inspectors don’t just hand out fines to dirty restaurants in NSW Australia, they name and shame the offenders online (read about it, see it). Far more sophisticated is the New York equivalent: it’s a searchable database that offers the ‘stick’ of shame and the ‘carrot’ of an award: “Golden Apples” are awarded to restaurants that pass food inspections with flying colours.

Going a step further: Publish the results where people will actually see them.

ONLINE: Still, there are some obvious enhancements for such systems. With so many restaurant listings guides (Time Out, Eatability etc.), it would be great for food authorities to link such guides to the complete food inspection database: why not have the last 5 food inspection scores alongside customer reviews? It wouldn’t be technically difficult to implement and would provide a REAL incentive for keeping your business spotless – online restaurant guides are being used more and more to help organise busy social lives…

OFFLINE: You could also oblige restaurateurs to publish their results in the windows of their businesses, along with the menu. Man, that’s an incentive to keep things spotless.

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Category: Communication and connection

Australia 2020

February 4th, 2008 · 2 Comments

Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has announced his intention to gather “1000 Prominent Australians” for a consultative project focused on Australia’s Future. He’s keen to look “beyond the ranks of ministers, politicians and public servants …and see what the rest of the nation has to say.”

The PM’s website advises that Vice chancellor of the University of Melbourne, Professor Glyn Davis, will head up the steering committee to select the participants, and will co-chair the summit.

The project has the potential to be a fantastic futures/foresight exercise. I’m really curious about the models and methodologies that are going to be used. I’m hoping members of Australia’s futures community secure roles both as participants and in the event’s process development and planning.

Basically, 100 experts will be chosen for each of these ten broad topics:

Environment & population
Rural Australia
Family and community
Indigenous Australia
The arts
The future of government
Australia’s security and international relations

According to the PM’s media release, a 10 member non-government ‘steering committee’ will select the 1000, who will be “…drawn from business, academia, community and industrial organisations, the media and include a number of individual eminent Australians”.

This is one to watch. Read more at the PM’s release. [editor’s note: unfortunately this resource is no longer available online and we have therefore removed the link]

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Category: Uncategorized