The Monocle Minute

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Today’s top stories, opinion and opportunities
Thursday 13 October 2016

Image: Jeff Swensen/Getty Images

Latino heat

Republican holdouts may be abandoning ship but presidential hopeful Donald Trump is ploughing on regardless – and he isn’t losing as badly with some key demographics as you might think. Yes, his comments suggesting that inner-city areas are more dangerous than “warzones” means he has well and truly lost the African-American vote but when it comes to Latinos the imbalance isn’t quite as pronounced. Even though 54 per cent of Hispanic Americans say that the Democratic party is “more concerned” with Latinos than the Republicans, according to new data released by the Pew Research Center that’s about the same advantage held exactly four years ago. While about six out of 10 Latino voters (58 per cent) are in favour of Clinton, 28 per cent of those interviewed said that there was no difference between the parties.

Image: Rasmus Hjortshõj - COAST

Lounge act

For the past decade Danish architecture firm Cobe has been one of the key players shaping Copenhagen’s cityscape, dreaming up train stations, bridges and even the odd nursery. To celebrate its 10th birthday Cobe has brought out a cobalt-coloured coffee-table book called Our Urban Living Room, published by Arvinius and Orfeus in conjunction with an exhibition of the same name at Copenhagen’s Danish Architecture Centre. “Copenhagen has undergone radical changes in the past 30 years and is today known as one of the world’s most liveable cities,” says Cobe founder Dan Stubbergaard. “Both the book and exhibition are based on Cobe projects that tell a story about the city’s architectural development.” Through photographs, sketches and life-sized models the firm shines a light on ventures such as The Silo, a dilapidated grain container that has been turned into a multipurpose building, and Christiansholm, a run-down island that is getting a community-minded makeover (think public gardens, art galleries and exhibition halls). Our Urban Living Room runs until 8 January.

Image: Kohei Take

Young at heart

Japan’s growing population of seniors is in better shape than ever according to the latest survey of the nation’s fitness habits. This year’s Stamina and Exercise Ability report from the Japan Sports Agency revealed that women aged 65 to 79 and men aged 75 to 79 achieved their highest scores since the annual survey began in 1998. The 66,000 participants were marked for their abilities in a number of simple fitness tests and questioned about how much exercise they do. While the elderly appear to be fighting fit, the younger generations are looking sluggish: women in their thirties are doing less sport than in previous years and saw their fitness scores drop; men aged 24 to 29 showed marginal improvements overall but a marked decline when it came to the cardiovascular tests. Time to lace up those running shoes.

Image: TCDC Chiang Mai

Farewell gift

Thailand Creative and Design Centre (TCDC) has played a vital role in supporting the nation’s emergent creative industries for more than a decade. This month the government-backed agency says goodbye to its long-time Bangkok base in Phrom Phong by offering members of the public free access to its sizeable resource library until the end of the month. “TCDC has always helped translate our design language into something that the public understands,” says Tnop Wangsillapakun, one of Thailand’s top graphic designers, who adds that TCDC assists many small firms in forming industry connections. The organisation has also boosted Thailand’s international creative profile, supporting major events such as the increasingly relevant Chiang Mai Design Week and hosting numerous exhibitions and symposiums at its Bangkok facility. TCDC’s resource centre will reopen in 2017 in the historic grand post-office building in Bangkok’s Bang Rak district. This bigger and better facility is a fitting new home for an organisation that has withstood the developing nation’s politically turbulent climate and continues to nurture Thailand's creative talent.

From Monocle 24

Do the Kind thing

Daniel Lubetzky is the founder and CEO of Kind, the fastest-growing snack company in the US, and author of the New York Times bestseller Do the Kind Thing. Lubetzky and his team have built a billion-dollar company based on healthy ingredients and a devotion to the philosophy and practice of kindness in everyday life. He talks to Monocle’s Daniel Giacopelli about everything he’s learnt.

From Monocle Films

Art of war: Afghanistan

Monocle Films visited artist and illustrator George Butler ahead of an exhibition of his war-torn Afghanistan artwork at the Imperial War Museum North. His ink-and-watercolour scenes bring a new depth to reportage more often the preserve of combat photographers.

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