The idea is the same but wouldn’t you know that the Brits would make it sound like a subject deserving to be debated at Oxford. But making the leap is exactly the idea behind the network of high-profile technology and innovation centers that the British government began establishing about a year and a half ago. The centers are intended to remove barriers between the country’s universities and its businesses when it comes to getting new ideas and discoveries into the marketplace. The first such innovation-promoting center to be established was aimed at high-value manufacturing. Then in rapid-fire order came centers for transport systems, the interconnected digital economy and satellite applications. The latest was announced this week. It will be based in London and will focus on how to create “smart cities” capable of handling the great migration of people into urban areas that is taking place world-wide. But the key word here is “catapult,” not “leap. The U.K.’s latest technology and innovation center is called The Future Cities Catapult Centre. If I were British, maybe I would have called this blog “CATAPULT!psych”. Or maybe not. Bernard Shaw (Sir Shaw to cognoscenti) once said that England and America were “two countries separated by the same language.” But in this instance, not by very far. Whether you make the leap or you catapult, it’s pretty clear that the idea is to get to the next right, smart, good thing as intelligently and expeditiously as possible.

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