The future of fashion retail
Section D on Monocle 24: Meet Farfetch, the fashion start-up using data to shape the way we shop. We take a look at fashion start-up Farfetch’s plans to harness digital data to change bricks-and-mortar shopping. Plus: the often hidden interiors of Singapore’s ubiquitous HDB housing blocks.
Too close for comfort
Conflict with North Korea might seem like a distant prospect in some parts of the world but in Japan it feels uncomfortably close. Last month, three North Korean missiles reached waters within Japan’s exclusive economic zone, just 300km from the Oga Peninsula in the northern prefecture of Akita. As public anxiety increases, local governments are fielding more and more calls from concerned citizens. Last week there was a meeting in Tokyo of disaster officials from around Japan, who were encouraged to hold evacuation drills based on a scenario where a ballistic missile lands in the country. The number of hits on the Cabinet Secretariat’s Civil Protection Portal Site, which details the procedures in place in the event of an armed attack on Japan, has gone from 450,000 in March to more than 5.7 million this month. There are also reports that sales of nuclear shelters and purifiers that guard against radiation and gases have risen sharply. Earlier this month, prime minister Shinzo Abe said that North Korea might already be capable of firing missiles loaded with sarin nerve gas at Japan.
Canada’s so-called “Top of the World Highway” is nearing completion. The 137km road, which is expected to cost CA$300m (€204m), will link the Arctic town of Inuvik to Tuktoyaktuk, a hamlet of 1,000 people on the shore of the Beaufort Sea, all year round. By replacing the annual ice highway that becomes impassable in the summer, the hope is that the route will lower the cost of produce (which needs to be flown in during warmer months), increase mobility and encourage growth in the region’s fledgling tourism industry. Approved by Justin Trudeau’s Conservative predecessor Stephen Harper, the highway was intended to spur economic development around the untapped oil and gas fields off Canada’s Arctic coast. Trudeau has barred fresh drilling of those areas, which has forced residents in the area to seek new opportunities for the highway – from tourism to construction – when it officially opens at the end of the year.
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The Foreign Desk: live!
We welcome a panel of opinionated guests from the worlds of politics and journalism for a discussion on the results.
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Featured podcasts and chapters
Georgina Godwin meets Irvine Welsh, the hugely acclaimed and often controversial author who defined a generation with his debut novel ‘Trainspotting’. In his new book ‘The Blade Artist’, Begbie is back. Find out how this bad boy of Glasgow has reinvented himself – and how the author has too.
The Classics 18: Dennis Morris
A listen back to a chat with photographer and creative Dennis Morris, whose work with musicians such as Bob Marley and John Lydon – for whom he designed the classic ‘Metal Box’ album art – has earned him a unique place in music history. Original air date: 6 March 2016
On Design 37: Who was Josef Frank?
Stockholm’s design chops are much touted but one practitioner from Austria helped shape the scene more than most locals. Josh Fehnert explores the legacy of the late Josef Frank.
On air now
The Continental Shift
The Continental Shift is where our editors bring you three hours of curated music from Europe and beyond, with nu-disco from Oslo, jazzy soul from Stockholm and cutting-edge sounds from London.
Wednesday 26 April
We discuss US foreign policy towards North Korea, ask if Jacob Zuma’s deputy can take power in South Africa and find out why French politicians are choosing country over party. Plus: the business news from Greece and a look at the future of independent fashion houses.
Tuesday 25 April
We assess the latest developments between the US and North Korea, look at accusations of hacking in the French election, speak to international-affairs expert Bill Emmott, and hear from influential US musician Booker T Jones.
The future of fashion retail
We take a look at fashion start-up Farfetch’s plans to harness digital data to change bricks-and-mortar shopping. Plus, we explore the often hidden interiors of Singapore’s ubiquitous HDB housing blocks, talk mobile architecture and meet a San Francisco designer doing technology differently.
Tuesday 25 April
Marine Le Pen steps down as leader of the Front National – at least temporarily, Donald Trump summons the entire US senate for a briefing on North Korea and the campaign continues ahead of the UK’s general election. Plus: why a region in China has banned some Muslim names for newborns.
Monocle preview: May issue 2017
If you're in search of a good-looking city to provide a beguiling base for your start-up or residence, our design and property special will be right up your street. We've got all the other details covered too – architects to hire, trade fairs to visit – as well as our usual house-proud line-up of riveting reports and unique photography.Available now at The Monocle Shop.
MonocleA. Lange & Söhne
Monocle Films has partnered with A. Lange & Söhne to uncover the mystery of how to create a sublime timepiece that will last for generations. We delve into the world of horology to see exactly how the masters do it.
Celebrating fashion in Beirut
A group of edgy fashion designers and Lebanon’s ALBA fashion school are shining a light on the possibilities for the next generation of creatives.
Issue 103 ∙ May 2017
Design and property special. Inside: bright ideas from Barcelona, a Beirut chanteuse and the US’s new liberal capital.
Issue 102 ∙ April 2017
How to: start a fashion brand, join the indie sports team and look hot (in a considered way). Plus: On patrol with a more vigilant Swedish army, our inaugural HQ Audit, the prime minister of Malta on a tough Brexit and our EXPO on the juicy delights of Thailand's blissed-out party Wonderfruit.
Free to read in this issue
With China and Russia as neighbours, Mongolia’s future rests on pragmatism and smart planning. We look at the forces driving the growth of central Asia’s oasis of democracy.
Cut from different cloth
Uniqlo’s new home represents the company’s desire to become a more hi-tech operation – and rewire its staff at the same time.
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The Fast Lane
Why I won’t be hiring a CCJO any time soon
‘I was trying to think who flogged the concept on the client and how it looked on an organisational chart’
The Bulletin with UBS
Artificial intelligence could have a major impact upon Asia – and the world at large. According to a new UBS CIO report, by 2030 it will have added up to $3trn of economic value to Asia annually. We’ll explore that data with the report author and a top equity analyst, and we’ll ask how governments, firms and society can best cope with potential job losses as a result of this growth.