So conference season is over, at least for the RSA. We had another good turnout with the Conservatives yesterday evening, which means each event has attracted over 150 people. After years and years of party conferences I can’t help feeling that doing one big event is infinitely preferable to putting on the kinds of programmes other think tanks host. A game to play when browsing through the fringe guide is to identify the most boring fringe meeting and the one which the think tank has most obviously just done just for the sponsorship: ‘Plastic recycling; time for a new paradigm’, ‘light transit rail systems; thinking out of the box’. When they retire the people who plan fringe meetings could get jobs choosing the name of hairdressers or fish and chip shops prone as they are to clunking puns: ‘Let’s go Higher baby; the case for university expansion’ or ‘Who cares wins; why nursing homes need a new deal’. Finally, there are the titles that imply the fringe meeting will change the world but betray their inevitably blandness: ‘Children; they are our future’, ‘Climate catastrophe – isn’t it time to act?’.