Following the appalling death of Awaab Ishak, the Housing Ombudsman has written an open letter and call to change to all social landlords urging a renewed focus on handling and responding to complaints about damp and mould.

It has re-issued its recommendations from last year’s ‘It’s not a lifestyle’ report and underlines that landlords should adopt a zero-tolerance approach to damp and mould, making it a top priority. Richard Blakeway goes on to say that a ‘change in culture’ is needed from reactive to proactive and that landlords should take responsibility for resolving problems.

The case has raised serious questions for landlords around data and assurance – with Boards scrutinising data on stock management conditions and the standards of work carried out by contractors. I&T professionals are reporting challenging conversations with leadership around the cost and timescales of data gathering and assurance.

Glasgow City Council is taking a tech-first approach to its damp and mould prevention with a new pilot scheme. It is testing out smart technology which monitors the temperate and humidity levels in homes providing moisture readings every 30 minutes.

Currently being tested in 30 homes, the council hopes for a wider roll out of the technology.

As reported by STV; “The smart Tempus sensors will share real-time data through IoT Scotland, Scotland’s Internet of Things (IoT) network, which is managed by North, with Glasgow City Council and the registered social landlords (RSL) who will record and analyse moisture readings.

“More than 75% of RSLs in Glasgow have confirmed that they would welcome the use of IoT devices to enhance services and quality of housing.”

The world’s biggest working pattern pilot scheme has culminated in many companies committing to making four-day working weeks a permanent fixture. Are we on the way to four-day weeks becoming the norm? That’s what the 4 Day Week campaign group is pushing for

70 UK companies are taking part in the trial, the concept being that workers earn 100% of their salary for 80% of the hours they would usually do.

According to the BBC, three months into the trial, 86% of companies reported that productivity was up and that it was working with well. They had plans to continue. You can more about some of the companies and how their employees are investing the gift of time here.

Old tech, squeezed budgets and lack of training are the biggest barriers to transforming government services according to research from Global Government Forum. Does this sound familiar?

The new UK Civil Service Digital Skills Report found that half of officials name legacy technology that is no longer fit for purpose (50%), and budget constraints/lack of funding (50%) as the top issues when asked what is significantly holding them back from using digital to improve public services.

Other significant factors highlighted in the UK Civil Service Digital Skills report included a lack of fit-for-purpose civil service funded training opportunities, and a lack of knowledge at the strategic level in government.

Tech Nation is calling on its entrepreneur member base to help cut carbon emissions by 81.8 million tonnes. The body is urging the UK tech sector to commit to four key business changes including switching to sustainable offices, green pension funds and reducing travel.

Perhaps they have one eye on the housing sector and our forwarded momentum towards achieving net zero by 2050?

“According to Tech Nation, employees, investors and customers are becoming increasingly hot on carbon emissions: 26% of employees want more opportunities to share feedback on their company’s climate action plan, and at the same time, the majority of c-suite leaders (71%) are now feeling pressure from investors to implement sustainability plans.”

There has been a great deal of buzz this week about Elon Musk’s ChatGPT text generating AI. According to the Guardian, the chatbot ‘stunned onlookers’ with its writerly abilities and ease of use. The newspaper goes as far as to say that professors, programmers and journalists could soon be out of a job.

“In the days since it was released, academics have generated responses to exam queries that they say would result in full marks if submitted by an undergraduate, and programmers have used the tool to solve coding challenges in obscure programming languages in a matter of seconds – before writing limericks explaining the functionality.”

Meanwhile, you can watch a robot giving evidence in the House of Lords to an inquiry about arts, design and fashion. Ai-Da gave a rousing speech to a committee about how AI poses both a threat and an opportunity to artists.