People & Business: Scardino presents the prizes and receives one

It has been a busy few days for Marjorie Scardino, the Pearson boss. Yesterday she presented the prizes to the winning analysts in the annual Extel Survey. Then last night she hosted a reception for Pearson staff at the National Gallery, London, which is holding an exhibition dedicated to Seurat, the painter.

Today la Scardino receives an honorary fellowship from the London Business School in recognition of her "outstanding contribution to business".

Other winners of this accolade today include Lord Blyth of Rowington, chief executive of Boots, and Peter Sutherland, chief executive and managing director of Goldman Sachs International.

The gongs are being presented by the Princess Royal, who is Chancellor of the University of London.

Two former faculty members of the LBS receive Fellowships, Sir Alan Budd, a member of the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee, and Sir James Ball, professor of economics at the LBS.

Ewen Macpherson, chief executive of 3i, bags an Alumni Achievement Award, "to mark his success in business since graduating from LBS in 1970".

Alarming news from the accountancy profession: "Ernst & Young's entrepreneurial services practice grows two heads." Does this press announcement mean E&Y's auditors have spent too much time in nuclear power stations?

Happily, it concerns David Wilkinson, who has been appointed national head of entrepreneurial services at the firm, and Patrick Stevens, who takes over the London side of the division. The operation, as its name implies, provides auditing and consultancy services for owner-managed businesses.

Mr Wilkinson comments: "I am taking over the helm ... at a time when many in the outside world probably think that the enterprise boom peaked under Mrs Thatcher.

"Nothing could be further from the truth, as some of the work I have been in involved in over the past year demonstrates, and I believe the upward trend is set to continue." So there.

My faith in a rational universe has taken another knock. We keep hearing that the new era of digital television will soon see us choosing from "500 channels". In a new book on Bill Gates and Microsoft, Overdrive, by James Wallace, we learn that John Malone, head of Tele-Communications Inc (TCI), the American cable giant, originally coined the term "500 channels" quite by accident.

"In an announcement by Malone on 2 December 1992, to reveal that TCI was going to build digital compression technology into its cable operations, Malone had picked the hypothetical number out of thin air. But it was a good round number and it stuck."

Smokers in the US might enjoy the latest marketing wheeze from Glaxo Wellcome. The company's new pill to help people quit smoking and declare their independence from cigarettes is making its way to drug stores in time for 4 July.

Forget those old-fashioned patches and nicotine gum. Glaxo's Zyban tablets offer smokers a nicotine-free way to quit the weed. Dr Michael Fiore, director of tobacco research at Wisconsin University, is gung-ho about the marketing idea. "There is no better time to declare your independence from nicotine," he declares. Zyban sounds like an altogether good thing. Compared to gum and patches, patients taking Zyban are less cantankerous than your average ciggy quitter and crave less.

Perusing the acres of economic analysis of Gordon Brown's first Budget, it is refreshing to turn to William Davis's latest book (his fourteenth) called Great Myths of Business. The veteran City journalist takes a flail to the dismal science in an acidic chapter: "The myth that economics reflects reality."

Mr Davis, a former head of the British Tourist Board and ex-editor of Punch, writes: "This is certainly true of the people who call themselves economists. They have great influence but few seem to know how to make a fortune or run a company."

Mr Davis writes that during his years as a financial editor of the Guardian in the 1960s he saw how badly economists served Harold Wilson, himself a former Oxford don. Wilson set up a Department of Economic Affairs to revitalise Britain, and put the colourful George Brown at its head. It soon ended in tears, and was scrapped. Let us hope Gordon Brown's Wise People are better value.

PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
News
Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
i100
Voices
Oscar Pistorius is led out of court in Pretoria. Pistorius received a five-year prison sentence for culpable homicide by judge Thokozile Masipais for the killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp
voicesThokozile Masipa simply had no choice but to jail the athlete
Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004
music

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'

News
i100
Life and Style
The Tinder app has around 10 million users worldwide

techThe original free dating app will remain the same, developers say

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Helpdesk Analyst

£23000 per annum + pension and 22 days holiday: Ashdown Group: An established ...

Senior Helpdesk Analyst / Service Desk Co-ordinator

£27000 per annum + pension, 22 days holiday: Ashdown Group: An established ind...

Senior Pensions Administrator

£23000 - £26000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...

Corporate Actions Administrator / Operations Administrator

£25 - 30k: Guru Careers: A Corporate Actions Administrator / Operations Admini...

Day In a Page

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album