The Why? Curve
Good COP, bad COP?
Season 1, Ep. 25
World leaders, journalists, climate campaigners – they all jetted in to the air conditioned hotels of Sharm El-Skeikh earlier this month for COP27, but was anything actually achieved. After 27 of these meetings to tackle climate change has anything actually been achieved? Are we all fiddling whilst the planet burns? Will politics and business interests determine our destiny rather than science, just as they did in the movie Don’t Look Up?
This week Phil and Roger talk to journalist Lucy Siegle, who writes and broadcasts regularly on environmental issues. Lucy is just back from COP27 and gives her thoughts on what’s been achieved this time around.
Work in Progress
Season 1, Ep. 40
In the 1930’s John Maynard Keynes predicted that, with automation and new ways of working, we’d all be working a 15 hour week. Many of us grew up being told that there would be more time for leisure. Yet, here we are, working as hard as ever. Except those who saw the pandemic as an opportunity to leave the workforce altogether. For many, we might be working harder, but spending more time working from home, without the drudgery of the daily commute. So, are we finding a new, more balanced way of working? How are companies adapting to this shift in behaviour? And are some of the fundamental issues of work, like bad management, ever going to shift. Phil and Roger have a barrage of questions for Clare Kelliher, Professor of Work and Organisation at Cranfield School of Management, Cranfield University, and author of several books on the subject, including ‘New Ways of Organising Work’ and ‘Flexible Working In Organisations’
Hong Kong - Is the Shine Coming Off The Pearl Of The Orient?
Season 1, Ep. 39
Hong Kong is re-emerging from almost two years of COVID isolation, but can it resume its place an Asia’s leading financial hub? Or has Beijing’s imposition of strict security laws made it little different from China’s other economic dynamos like Shanghai or Shenzhen? It’s taken a massive hit over the last year- GDP down by 3.5% - and suffered a brain-drain as some of its brightest and best have left for freer environments in the UK or Taiwan. Dr Yan-ho Lai of the Dickson Poon School of Law at King’s College London and a co-conveyor of the Hong Kong Studies Association gives Phil and Roger his view of the prospects of his home city 25 years after it was handed back to China.
Shaken. Can science predict the next big earthquake?
Season 1, Ep. 38
The earthquakes that rocked southern Turkey and northern Syria seemed to come from nowhere - an instant of catastrophic destruction that killed around 50,000 people, demolished hundreds of thousands of homes and left a legacy of loss and poverty that will last for generations.But could it have been avoided? Could we, at least, have known it was coming and been prepared? Or do we just have to shrug and accept the risks of living in quake-prone areas?Mark Allen, Professor of Earth Sciences at the University of Durham, talks to Phil and Roger about the challenges of earthquake forecasting and prediction, and the chances of science ever being able to provide accurate warnings in good time of what our planet may be about to do to us.