By Pedro Schwartz,
Let me start on a personal note and ask myself the question, why have I given much of my life to dealing in ideas? I did at different moments play practical roles both in business and politics, but I somehow I drifted away. This is not an essay in sour grapes: I am happy that life led me into being an academic specializing in policy innovation. So let me put it another way. Why have I often found my engagement with ideas an obstacle to getting on with people who wanted my advice or my collaboration and did not get what they expected? It is as if my scruples made me difficult to accommodate. Well do I remember one of my kinder adversaries in Parliament telling my political friends on my side of the aisle: “Pedro is not dumb: it’s simply that he has convictions”.