Thursday, July 3, 2008

Dresden - UNESCO World Heritage exchanged for bridge

Good morning,

in a few hours at the UNESCO World Heritage Meeting in Quebec it will be decided whether Dresden will hold on to its world heritage title (given in 2004) or not.

The reason for being put on the "red list" is the planned -and already well under way- construction of the so-called "Waldschlößchenbrücke" over the river Elbe right in the middle of the phantastic river landscape.

Despite constant discussion -over the last ten years- whether the new bridge really is suitable for the sensible area due to its large dimensions and concrete, bold and rather modernistic construction.

Actually there are pretty diverse parties arguing whether the bridge is necessary or not or which other way of crossing the river could be appropriate to hold on to the World Heritage Title as well as keeping the landscape as exceptional as it is now.

The pressure to build the bridge comes from the fact that the most southern bridge of Dresden, the "Blaues Wunder" ("Blue Wonder") (a steel construction perfectly fitting into the landscape) is reaching its end of use time (no trucks allowed any longer, busses are crossing with a mere 30 km/h). There has to be a new river crossing - that can't be denied!

What is not clear what will the future impacts of the "Waldschlößchenbrücke" for Dresden and the tourism. Especially intangible effects have not yet be taken into account especially in comparison with the benefits for the car owners (that would have easier river crossings available).

Let's hope for the best and that holding onto the World Heritage Title will make a major shift in the bridge planning inevitable. If holding on to the "Waldschlößchenbrücke" should be preferred than the World Heritage Title should be taken away - in order for the UNESCO to stay to its word !

Let's create the future we would like to see


PS.: By the way, how can the effects of the World Heritage Title on a region be measured? Isn't this what Richard Florida says about "Who's My City" and what makes regions special?

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Caux Round Table - wonder what this is?


a few weeks ago while getting an email from a dear friend from Australia he mentioned that he is giving a talk at the Caux Round Table after finishing his holidays of about three weeks in Europe.

Somehow the name "CAUX ROUND TABLE" struck my head and I remembered that I must have heard and read about earlier this year, not quite sure in which context. Some short searching in my recently bought books (Real Lean by Bob Emiliani) and the postings at the Lean Thinking group brought positive outcome.

I had read about the Caux Round Table earlier!

What has struck me is the fact that someone from Australia is coming up to Europe to give a talk there and on the other hand this initiative is pretty unknown (to my personal experience) and not spoken about in Europe or Germany.

The interesting main point of the Caux Round Table Principles for Business (1994):


The Caux Round Table believes that the world business community should play an important role in improving economic and social conditions. As a statement of aspirations, this document aims to express a world standard against which business behavior can e measured. We seek to begin a process that identifies shared values, reconciles differing values, and thereby develops a shared perspective on business behavior acceptable and honored by all.

These principles are rooted in two basic ethical ideals: kyosei and human dignity. The Japanese concept of kyosei means living and working together for the common good enabling cooperation and mutual prosperity to coexist with healthy and fair competition. "Human dignity" refers to the sacredness or value of each person as an end, not simply as a mean to the fulfillment of others' purposes or even majority prescription..."

The focus definitely lies on the people side that business leaders so often underestimate in their local turfs.

How can we get started to achieve what we truly want? (and that is definitely not more money in the pocket alone - either for organizations or people in general).

If it doesn't make sense to you yet please state so while commenting on it.