This month's edition of Monocle magazine turns its designery, Look & Learn style gaze on the family firm - or the enduring appeal of dynastic rule.
An opening article by Sasha Issenberg makes the simple but important point that From Associated British Foods, owner of global tea brand Twinings, to Rupert Murdoch's News Corp to Germany's Miele and Italy's Fiat, family businesses are part of the fabric of everyday life.
And Sasha goes on: according to the London-based Institute for Family Business, they account for more than 30 per cent of the UK's GDP, with one in three jobs at a family business. A 2010 IFB survey found that the UK's top 10 family businesses had total annual sales of £36bn (€41.5bn).
With the withdrawl of certain welfare benefits in last week's UK Public Spending Review and the UK Government's plan to devolve power closer to neighbourhoods - the programme known as Big Society - statistics like this are a reminder of the power of the family, as a basic, vital unit of economic life, consumer culture and social stability and solidarity.
The nomination is for a healthy food initiative in the town that a group of us helped start in 2006 and has since gone from strength to strength, led by local environmental charity Middlesbrough Environment City.
As the nomination for the BBC award says:
Local charity MEC has helped over 100 local groups and families in urban areas grow their own fruit and vegetables. Food is grown in school playing fields, allotments and local parks as well as back and front gardens. Each group donates a small portion of their produce to be cooked up into a Town Meal feeding thousands of local people in a festival atmosphere.
Local charity MEC has helped over 100 local groups and families in urban areas grow their own fruit and vegetables.
Now 'the family' may sit awkwardly with cultural/social innovation types - er, like me ;) - slaves to the cult of the individual, tipsy on the association between crowds and transformation and quick to fix on social change as the work of a hoard of strangers, massed in an heroic scene that could've been filmed by director Sergei Eisenstein.
But to state the obvious - lots of people have families. Families are often the beating heart of places and neighbourhoods. And while Carrington or Soprano-like families are capable of creating hell, there are also those who can give love "in a family dose", as disco dollies Sister Sledge once sang:
Then there are the 'L' words, like local, localism and low-cost.
But is it worth also thinking about the 'F' word?
But also focus on key families in neighbourhoods, towns and cities - be they dynasties, folks with jugs behind the bar or the biggest fleet of cars jacked up on bricks on the drive: people at the centre of what goes on, spreads by word of mouth, give a place personality and often create wealth?