In Features, my investigation for Corporate Financier into the performance so far of the government-backed Regional Venture Capital Funds. The basic verdict is they're a nice idea, but... a good deal more government intervention at this end of the market is likely to be needed before the commercial investors are convinced that the sub-£1m market is a worthwhile place to put their money.
This was the feature shortlisted for the BVCA Private Equity & Venture Capital Journalist Of The Year Awards 2005. I'm currently working on another feature for Corporate Financier on the role of advisory boards in corporate finance firms - what do they do, and do they offer anything more than glamour by association?
And in Reviews, another couple from the Fortean Times: a comparison of the two recent biographies of the iconoclastic astronomer Fred Hoyle; and a sceptical verdict on the much-hyped Freakonomics. I note of the latter that 'much of this Freakonomics is already becoming the conventional wisdom, and ripe for overturning in turn' - the Economist this week has a provacative account of what it calls an embarrassing hole in the evidence for Levitt's most (in)famous theory.
Latest tome to arrive from the FT is 'Are we alone? The Stanley Kubrick extra-terrestrial intelligence interviews', a collection of transcripted interviews with leading scientists of the late 1960s, commissioned for Kubrick's 2001 but dropped from the finished film. Parts of these were included in a contemporary 'Making of 2001' book that I recently exhumed from the local secondhand book cave, and I'm looking forward to reading more.