Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Mindlab is a design agency/government innovation unit. WHAT?! I was thrilled to find these two seemingly independent themes wrapped under one creative umbrella.

Since its inception in 2002, Mindlab has evolved into a vehicle for bureaucratic reform.
"We work with the civil servants in our three parent ministries: the Ministry of Economic and Business Affairs, the Ministry of Taxation and the Ministry of Employment. These three ministries cover broad policy areas that affect the daily lives of virtually all Danes. Entrepreneurship, climate change, digital self-service, citizen’s rights, emplyment services and workplace safety are some of the areas they address.

MindLab is instrumental in helping the ministry’s key decision-makers and employees view their efforts from the outside-in, to see them from a citizen’s perspective. We use this approach as a platform for co-creating better ideas."

You can find some great case studies on their website, many concerning the Danish government's "Away With Red Tape" plan. It's interesting to read and compare the citizen/government disconnect in Denmark to that experienced here in the US.

In the June 2011 issues of Monocle magazine, Mindlab's Christian Bason gave some insightful advice...
"The key to longevitiy is having the self-awareness to ask yourself a difficult question: 'Are we still relevant?' If not, you must take your own medicine."
(They have a MindBlog too!)

via Monocle and MindLab, all images via MindLab

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


This weekend was heaven. I spent (literally) the entire day at the beach with my sister/best friend, had a perfect taco dinner with the whole family, rode in my dad's vintage firetruck – in a parade, enjoyed a refreshing mug (or 2) of birch beer at my favorite local festival, fired a shot gun (terrifying) AND spent another blissful day in the sun – in an inflatable lounge chair in a beautiful lake. If this is any indication of the rest of this season's activities, it's going to be the best summer ever. It's also going to be the sunniest summer ever, and that means we all need to start taking care of our skin.

Yesterday I was a lobster, today I am peeling from head to toe. However apathetically, I DID apply sunscreen. Though, I may have been better off without it, according to the Environmental Work Group's 2011 Sunscreen Report. Apparently a lot of sunscreens in today's market contain harmful chemicals that could be doing us more harm than good. For instance, did you know that...BOTH UV radiation and many common sunscreen ingredients generate free radicals that damage DNA and skin cells, accelerate skin aging and cause skin cancer? We could be unconsciously encouraging the health issues we are working so hard to prevent! Very scary. For a quick reference, check out their list of best sunscreens here, though you'll find the rest of the site to be a great resource as well.

via free range