Simon Head is a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Public Knowledge at New York University, and Director of Programs for the New York Review of Books Foundation. He is the author of Mindless: Why Smarter Machines Are Making Dumber Humans (2014).


Big Brother Goes Digital

A demonstrator dressed as a security camera at an anti-surveillance protest, Berlin, November 2017


by Gina Neff and Dawn Nafus

Sociometric Badges: State of the Art and Future Applications

by Daniel Olguín Olguín and Alex (Sandy) Pentland
In the twenty-first century, new technologies have emerged that enable companies as varied as Amazon, the British supermarket chain Tesco, Bank of America, Hitachi, and the management consultants Deloitte to achieve continuous oversight of their workers’ behavior.

The Grim Threat to British Universities

A memorial service for Harold Macmillan, Oxford University, 1987

Strategic Plan, 2006–2011

by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE)

The American Faculty: The Restructuring of Academic Work and Careers

by Jack Schuster and Martin Finkelstein
The British universities, Oxford and Cambridge included, are under siege from a system of state control that is undermining the one thing upon which their worldwide reputation depends: the caliber of their scholarship. The theories and practices that are driving this assault are mostly American in origin, conceived in American business schools and management consulting firms. This alliance between the public and private sector has become a threat to academic freedom in the UK, and a warning to the American academy about how its own freedoms can be threatened.

They’re Micromanaging Your Every Move

The Social Life of Information

by John Seely Brown and Paul Duguid

Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream

by Barbara Ehrenreich
The digital revolution of the 1990s seemed to mark a definitive break with the manufacturing economy that had thrived in the United States since the late-nineteenth century. With the pervasive use of information technology (IT) by banks, insurance companies, hospitals, clinics, even warehouses and retail stores, the era of industrial …


Brexit: ‘Take Back Control’?

It now seems unlikely that the UK government will secure a transitional agreement with the EU in time for businesses to postpone their plans to start leaving the UK or cutting their investments there. If so, the percentage of British voters who come to realize that Brexit represents a real threat to their jobs and incomes can only grow. If the last year and a half has revealed anything about British politics, it is the instability of public opinion. If the polling numbers start to move strongly against Brexit, the political class will surely take note and start moving toward the only solution that makes sense for Britain: to abandon the whole disastrous project altogether.

Britain: An Economy on the Brink

London, England, March 20, 2017

If no agreement between the two sides has been reached by March 29, 2019, unless the EU agrees to prolong the negotiations, the UK’s membership in the EU will automatically lapse. It will become just another foreign country with which the EU does business, treated no better or worse than Zimbabwe, Thailand, or Paraguay. And so the central issue for the UK remains: how will Brexit affect the UK economy?

The Death of British Business

The City of London, 1999

Since the early 1980s, leading global corporations have used British soil as a terrestrial aircraft carrier to assault the single European market. Trade figures for the past three decades show with brutal clarity how dependent the UK is on this status. Even with large inflows of foreign capital the UK’s trade performance has been the weakest of the G-7 economies. What will it look like without them?