Weekend reading: on Japanese & European politics, Chinese art and Hong Kong skyscrapers

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A selection of articles & blogs I came across this week, not only on Asia or sustainability – but this week also on storytelling and ‘Europe’. Happy reading!

Shanghai vs Beijing: China Design Hub compares these two cities as a first entry for the headquarters of your retail brand. Conclusion: Shanghai shouldn’t be an automatic choice. There is no one China, and the article emphasizes researching the various large cities to decide which city is the best fit for your retail strategy.

On East Asia Forum, Aurelia George Mulgan summarizes clearly the changes to Japan’s Constitution as proposed by current PM Abe. Changing Article 9 comes up often, but what surprised me when I first heard about this in Japan is the proposed change to Article 96 which would then make it easier to make other changes to the Constitution, some of the changes on the table include seeming limitations on freedom of association, speech, etc. Considering that Japan isn’t exactly at risk of fundamental or revolutionary groups, I don’t really understand where the heightened focus on public order is coming from… and why it would be necessary.

Moving from business and politics to art: for anyone interested in contemporary Chinese art, I recommend subscribing to the SinArts Newsletter started not too long ago by Alex Lebbink. Every week, this newsletter contains an impressive amount of news, references to articles, reviews etc.

Many of us are often trying to explain something, get a message across or share information. And what better way to do that than by using stories. Doug Stevenson explains how to build a good story which fits your message and audience.

When you’re done reading, listen to this speech by the Dutch minister of Foreign Affairs, Frans Timmermans, in which he’s talking about the issues we are facing in Europe, about European cooperation, and offering suggestions on how to move forward. All done by quoting Game of Thrones.

And for some stunning photography, Co.Design shares the work of photographer Romain Jacquet-Lagreze who has been taking stunning shots of Hong Kong’s skyscrapers. Good reminder to look up from street level more often, and discover what else the city, any city, has to offer.

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