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Today’s top stories, opinion and opportunities
Friday 18 January 2019

Defence

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Switched on

Sweden is enlisting military recruits to counter the threat of cyberattacks – other countries should follow suit.

Cyberwarfare is becoming one of the most fiercely fought theatres of war – and it is no longer restricted to major players, such as the US Cyber Command or Russia’s shadowy Unit 26165. This week Sweden announced its first foray into digital defence. Speaking at the Defence National Conference in Sälen, the Swedish military’s supreme commander Micael Bydén explained that 30 conscripted recruits would be trained to become a crack team of cyberwar operatives. The emphasis is squarely on defence rather than on instigating cyberattacks, with Bydén saying that Sweden must safeguard its digital systems. With a rising number of digital attacks being attributed to foreign actors with political motives, no nation can afford to put off investment in such measures.

Business

Image: Getty Images

Show me the money

Japanese corporations will employ impartial directors to police executive pay in a new bid to enhance transparency.

The arrest of Carlos Ghosn, the former chairman of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, for allegedly under-reporting his pay is prompting fresh questions about how corporations in Japan should be run. This week the country edged closer to reforms to make those at the helm more accountable. Many companies listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange have an outside (or impartial) director, who is required to observe operations and blow the whistle at the hint of any murky goings-on. Japanese authorities have decided that there aren’t enough such figures to marshal big companies effectively so the new rules, set to be implemented in 2020, will require all larger firms to have an outside director. The reforms will also mean that companies will have to show how the salaries of executives have been agreed. Those at the very top, though, will be immune: no such transparency will be expected of Japan’s CEOs.

Design

Let there be light

A cohort of fresh makers and designers are proving that Canadian design can compete with whatever Europe has to offer.

Those walking past Monocle’s Toronto shop today will notice an especially warm glow emanating from within. A line of folded-paper lights called Tapermoon Rising, by local firm Zeed Light, features in the window display as a nod to Canadian talent in the midst of DesignTO and the Interior Design Show (IDS). In case you hadn’t guessed, January is Toronto’s design month; while European eyes will be trained on Paris for Maison et Objet, there is an emerging pool of talent from this (northern) side of the pond. Furniture studios such as Toronto’s MSDS and Vancouver’s AndLight are putting Canadian design on an equal footing with the efforts of European makers. “Those designers don't have specific Canadian look, but they have a global viewpoint,” says Karen Kang, director of IDS. “There's broad appeal and people are paying attention.

Fashion

Image: Getty Images

C’est chic

Though men’s fashion weeks seem to be losing their lustre, Paris’s versions continues to shine as bright as a button.

The autumn/winter 2019 edition of Paris Fashion Week Men’s, which runs until Sunday, is a display of LVMH muscle: the week’s stellar line-up is punctuated with shows by brands owned by the luxury conglomerate. Already Givenchy artistic director Clare Waight Keller has staged her first ever men’s only presentation and Virgil Abloh has unveiled his new Louis Vuitton collection. Yet the group’s most anticipated events are still to come: today is Kris Van Assche’s Berluti debut, while Dior shows tonight and Loewe tomorrow afternoon (LVMH has shuffled times around to ensure that brands don’t show during the day on Saturday, when the gilets jaunes will be out). Then the apogee: on Sunday night, provocateur Hedi Slimane hosts his first menswear show for Celine. Although the luxury menswear industry is booming, most men’s fashion weeks are getting weaker as many brands decide to show both genders together during womenswear weeks. Paris – thanks in part to LVMH – is cut from a different cloth.

From Monocle 24

Image: Alamy

Spring cleaning

The Urbanist

How to keep New York’s subway clean, why Calgary is using beet brine to clear the streets of snow and the importance of going green. Plus, a city icon: Rio de Janeiro’s street-sweepers.

From Monocle Films

Monocle preview: February issue, 2018

Our February issue focuses on staying healthy. And that’s in both body and business: we’ve got reports on everything from why Madrid’s residents live longer to opportunities in sportswear and scallops. Buy your copy now to find out why Monocle is fit for purpose.

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