27th of September was establishedWorld Tourism Day as World Tourism Day by the UN World Tourism Association (UNWTO) 1980. The aim of the day is to raise awareness of the importance of tourism for the international community and its positive effects, socially and economically, on societies worldwide.

The theme for 2012 is Tourism and Sustainable Technology: Powering Sustainable Development. Official celebrations will take place in Maspalomas, Spain. Watch live footage of the celebrations here!

When I first arrived in London, in 2009, the BT tower was counting days to the Olympics. The countdown was slowly moving down from the 900s. Now, the moment is only a day away! The Olympic Games 2012 open tomorrow.Olympics

Over the past few months London has had mixed feelings about the games. Some Londoners deeply resent them and have long ago made plans to escape the city, others grumble about the traffic the games will bring but are secretly excited, and the rest have been counting days with the BT tower and are warmly welcoming the event.

To get an idea of the enormity of the games, watch the BBC animation on Olympics people in numbers, or the more general Guardian animation on Olympics in numbers. You’ll learn that this is the third time London is hosting the Olympics, and 203 countries are participating this year. The global audience to watch the opening ceremony tomorrow evening is estimated to be around 4 billion people. That’s 60% of the world’s population.


Cross-cultural differences in colour meanings are sometimes the least of our worries when communicating internationally. I have just finished off an article which is to appear in the next edition of Winning EDGE magazine for the Insitute of Sales and Marketing. In it, I caution marketers to know their target audience as different cultures ascribe various meanings to colours. How easy is it to convey the wrong meaning by getting colour choice wrong?

White in the west symbolises brides, angels, good guys versus funerals and death in the East; black in the West symbolises death, funerals and bad guys versus a colour for young boys in China and restoring balance in Chakra energy (Indian medicine). Then I went on a hunt to find out more. This is what I found out…