Reasons to be Cheerful with Ed Miliband and Geoff Lloyd
Professor Nicola Rollock
Season 1, Ep. 267
Hello! This week we're treating you to a new author episode: a fascinating conversation with Nicola Rollock, Professor of Race and Social Policy at King's College London. Nicola's new book The Racial Code: Tales of Resistance and Survival is all about the implicit rules of race and racism that govern our lives and strengthen the status quo. Geoff sits down for a discussion with Nicola all about how she weaves fiction with academic writing, the illusion that racial injustice has been eliminated, and why we need to change our patterns of thinking about race if anything is going to change for the better.
Buy The Racial Code: Tales of Resistance and Survival
Sunday, May 28, 2023
Business as (un)usual: can people and planet really come before profit?
Season 1, Ep. 298
Hello! Capitalism, eh? Despite its creative genius, some would say it's at the root of many of the problems we're facing these days, from planetary breakdown, to poor health and social inequality. How can it become the solution? We're revisiting the idea of purposeful business, a way of re-thinking our system so that companies are also putting the needs of people and the environment up there with profit. CEO of Graze Joanna Allen explains how the Better Business Act and B Corp movement will enable this in the UK. We're talking to Charles Conn about Patagonia's 'earth is now our only shareholder' ethos. Finally, we chat to Cemal Ezel, founder of Change Please, a social enterprise which tackles homelessness through the power of selling coffee. GuestsJoanna Allen, CEO, graze (@grazesnacks)Charles Conn, Board Chair, Patagonia (@patagonia)Cemal Ezel, Founder of Change Please (@CemalEzel / @ChangePlease)More informationLearn more about the Better Business Act and B-CorpsFind out about Patagonia's environmental commitmentsVisit one of Change Please's locationsLive show tickets
Sunday, May 21, 2023
Reasons to be Letchworth: what can we learn from the garden city movement?
Season 1, Ep. 297
Hello! This week we’re taking you back to the distant days of 1898 when social reformer and ‘practical idealist’ Ebenezer Howard set out his ideas about the Garden City, one of the most radical urban planning experiments in Britain’s history. Can we bring Howard’s utopian vision into the 21st century? We talk to Josh Tidy about the history of the Garden City Movement and how it's faring 125 years on. We find out from Nick Skinner whether Letchworth is actually full of sandal-wearing vegetarians (hey Geoff!) Finally, we chat to Katy Lock about how the garden city movement offers a practical path to a more hopeful future.Plus: Geoff's got a new business idea...will it make him millions?GuestsJosh Tidy, Heritage Manager, Letchworth Garden City Heritage Foundation and Curator, International Garden Cities Exhibition (@letchworthgardencity)Nick Skinner, Manager, The Settlement, Letchworth (@letchworthsettlement)Katy Lock, Director of Communities and FJ Osborn Fellow, The Town and Country Planning Association (@katy_lock / @theTCPA)More informationBuy tickets for our one-off live show in Stratford-upon-Avon on 3rd JuneA brief introduction to Garden CitiesLetchworth Garden City Heritage FoundationThe Settlement, Adult Education Centre, LetchworthLearn about the TCPA's Tomorrow125 project
Sunday, May 14, 2023
But what can I do?: a conversation with Alastair Campbell
Season 1, Ep. 296
Hello! When you’re in the business of optimism, it can be difficult to draw much hope from the mess that Britain is in. Making a change can feel overwhelming and getting involved unappealing. This week, former Labour strategist and now podcaster Alastair Campbell joins Ed and Geoff to talk about his new book about why UK politics has gone so wrong, and why you can - and should - help to fix it.Plus: Geoff’s turned 50 and took a podcast mini-break. So what's he been up to?GuestAlastair Campbell (@campbellclaret / @HutchHeinemann)More informationBuy a copy of But what can I do? Why politics has gone so wrong, and how you can help fix it (Published by @HutchHeinemann)Buy tickets to Reasons to be Cheerful Live in Stratford Upon Avon on 3rd JuneContact Reasons to be Cheerful via our website, follow us on Twitter and Instagram. Let us know your episode ideas, your comments and feedback!
Sunday, May 7, 2023
Thank you, next: breaking up with the job for life
Season 1, Ep. 296
Hello! Geoff’s off this week and friend of the pod and writer Melissa Benn is practicing what we preach in this episode by trialing a new vocation as podcast co-host. This week, sparked by the news of the resignation of Jacinda Ardern and Nicola Sturgeon - we’re talking all about what happens when you take a step back from a high-pressure job. What comes next? And why is the way we think about careers all wrong? We talk to four guests about navigating new career paths, having a mid-career gap year, and whether the dream job really exists. Plus: Ed’s gone down a new internet rabbit hole. What is it this time?GuestsDr Ali Budjanovcanin, Senior Lecturer in Work Psychology and Public Sector Management at King’s College London, and Career Coach (@AliBudj)Lucy Kellaway, Economics Teacher and Co-Founder of NowTeach (@lucykellaway / @NowTeachOrg)Katie White, taking a career break from her role at WWF (@KatieJWhite)Jaega Wise, Co-Founder and Head Brewer at Wild Card Brewery, London (@jaegawise)More infoFollow Melissa on Twitter (@Melissa_Benn)Interested in a career in teaching? Learn more about NowTeachAttend the 'Teaching Curious with Lord Blunkett' event, hosted by NowTeach (May 23rd)Check out Wild Card BreweryReady to quit your job? Here are 17 things to ask yourself first. (Opinion, Guardian, August 2021)
Sunday, April 30, 2023
How to build a fairer society: does this 20th century philosopher have the answer?
Season 1, Ep. 294
Hello! We all know our society is deeply unfair, but how can we fix it? We've been tackling that question for years on RTBC, but according to our guest this week, a twentieth-century philosopher might have already come up with the answer. Daniel Chandler has a new book seeking to excavate the work of John Rawls - the greatest political philosopher you've probably never even heard of - because he believes it can provide the blueprint for a fairer and more equal future. So what are the practicalities of Rawls’ ideas? Could he offer a vision for a 'realistic utopia'? From UBI to democracy vouchers, we find out what exactly political philosophy can do for us.Plus: Is Ed triathlon ready?GuestDaniel Chandler, Author of Free and Equal: What would a fair society look like? (@dan_chandler)More informationBuy a copy of the book nowGet tickets for our live show on 3rd June, Live at the RSC Festival, Stratford-upon-Avon.Did you have thoughts on today's episode? Maybe you've got a great idea for a future episode or just want to wish Geoff a happy birthday. You can contact the podcast via our website, Instagram or Twitter!
Sunday, April 23, 2023
A basic income for the arts: how Ireland is changing the game
Season 1, Ep. 293
Hello! This week we’re returning to one of our favourite topics covered in our very first episode when Geoff was closer to 40 than 50: universal basic income. Except this time it's not money for everyone - it's just for artists - and it raises some important questions about how we recognise the role that art plays in our economy, society and communities. Last year Ireland announced a three-year pilot in which 2,000 artists will receive 325€ a week. Is removing financial stress the key to unlocking creative freedom? Will it mean a wider group of people can access the arts? And what can we learn from our own history, including Mrs Thatcher’s Enterprise Allowance Scheme. These are all big questions that we put to our guests: Eliza Easton, Noel Kelly and Love Ssega - formerly of Clean Bandit - a musician working across artistic boundaries.Plus: It’s the big 5-0 for Geoff as he records a message to his future self...GuestsEliza Easton, Deputy Director, Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre (@ElizaEaston)Noel Kelly, CEO and Director, Visual Artists Ireland (@VisArtsIreland)Love Ssega, Musician and Artist in Residence, Philharmonia Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall (@LoveSsega)More informationLearn more about the PEC, led by NestaLearn more about Visual Artists for Ireland, including more information about the Basic Income for the Arts SchemeSsega mentioned Ella Kissi-Debrah and her mother's fight to get air pollution on her death certificateWatch the film of Love Ssega's 'Where are we now?' performance at the National GalleryRead about Love Ssega and his residency at the Philharmonia Orchestra Come to the celebration at 6pm on 8th June at the Royal Festival Hall
Sunday, April 16, 2023
Back to nature: how can farming be sustainable?
Season 1, Ep. 292
Hello! This week we’re getting our wellies on as we dig deeper into the future of farming. Agriculture accounts for around 10% of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions and has a role in biodiversity loss and pollution. So how can we change the way we farm and use our land in a way that helps ensure food security, restores nature and provides a livelihood for farmers, all while tackling the climate crisis? It's quite a task but we chew it all over with Lydia Collas from Green Alliance and Minette Batters from the National Farmers’ Union. We’re then heading to Dorset to talk to Jyoti Fernandes about the role of ‘agro-ecology’ to feed ourselves, restore nature, and cool the planet.Plus: Which unexpected (and highly relevant) radio show was Ed obsessed with as a child?GuestsLydia Collas, Policy Analyst, Green Alliance (@LydiaCollas / @GreenAllianceUK)Minette Batters, President, National Farmers' Union (@Minette_Batters / @NFUtweets)Jyoti Fernandes, Campaigns and Policy Coordinator, Landworkers’ Alliance & Agroecology Smallholder (@fernandes_jyoti / @LandworkersUK)More informationVisit the websites of Green Alliance, the NFU and LWARead Jyoti's open letter to George MonbiotElms: England greener farming payments detail unveiled (Article, BBC News, January 2023)What is agroecology? (Explainer, The Soil Association)Contact Reasons to be Cheerful via our website, follow us on Twitter and Instagram. Let us know your episode ideas, your comments and feedback!
Sunday, April 9, 2023
Not too late: why there’s still time to act on the climate crisis
Season 1, Ep. 291
Hello! As our Easter egg to you we’ve recorded a great conversation with two inspiring voices from the climate community. The mood around the climate crisis is mainly one of despair and doom, for understandable reasons, but neither Rebecca Solnit nor Thelma Young Lutunatabua think it needs to be that way. In their new book, they explore how it’s possible to change the climate narrative to one of hope, and why making that shift is more important than you'd think. We have the solutions, we know what we need to do, and most importantly: it’s not too late.GuestsRebecca Solnit, Author and Activist (@RebeccaSolnit)Thelma Young Lutunatabua, Digital Storyteller and Climate Activist (@Thelma_Lutun)More infoBuy a copy of Not Too Late: Changing the climate story from despair to possibility. Visit the Not Too Late website or Twitter to learn more about the project.
Sunday, April 2, 2023
Who’s afraid of the kleptocrats?: cleaning up corruption
Season 1, Ep. 290
Hello! You may not know it, but for decades Britain has enabled the dodgy dealings of the world's criminals, tax dodgers and kleptocrats, says journalist Oliver Bullough. He's been digging deep into Britain’s role as a 'butler to the world' for years, but very little has changed. Estimates suggest that the equivalent of three times the NHS budget is lost to the economy through corruption every year, so why isn’t the government acting? Oliver is joined by Labour MP Dame Margaret Hodge to discuss how and why Britain got into the business of dirty money, why we all should care about corruption, and what we can do to change it.Plus: Has Ed finally got his own back on Geoff following the vegan cheese making incident?GuestsOliver Bullough, Journalist and Author of Butler to the World and Moneyland (@OliverBullough)Dame Margaret Hodge, Labour MP for Barking and Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Anti-Corruption and Responsible Tax (@margarethodge)More informationBuy a copy of Oliver’s book ‘Butler to the World: How Britain became the servant of tycoons, tax dodgers, kleptocrats and criminalsThe APPG on Anti-Corruption and Responsible TaxSupport and learn more about the work of Transparency International (@anticorruption), Global Witness (@Global_Witness), Spotlight on Corruption (@EndCorruptionUK)