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Section: The Conversation (USA)

      Explainer: why everyone is giving Poland a hard time
      Jan13

      Explainer: why everyone is giving Poland a hard time

      A protest flag depicts Jarosław Kaczyński as Poland’s puppet master. Reuters/Kacper PempelSince coming into power at the end of October 2015, Poland’s new, right-wing government has caused a stir at home and drawn international criticism. Hardly a day passes at the moment without EU officials or European leaders questioning decisions...

      Explainer: What is going on in Ukraine now?
      Jan12

      Explainer: What is going on in Ukraine now?

      Watching Putin’s end-of-year news conference in Sevastopol, Crimea. Reuters/Pavel RebrovOn the face of it, the conflict in Ukraine seems to have stabilised somewhat. Sporadic shelling aside, the last few months of 2015 saw the “hot” phase of the conflict in eastern Ukraine wind down to a relative calm. Both parties’ forces have been...

      War and Peace: a user’s guide
      Jan08

      War and Peace: a user’s guide

      BBC/Robert ViglaskyWar and Peace is more than a novel. It’s a reflection of Leo Tolstoy’s strongly held beliefs – a philosophical tract, not just about politics, war, love, marriage and property, but about history itself and the way the affairs of society are reported. Central to the book is his antipathy towards the way in which...

      Netflix is everywhere (almost), so what does this mean for local media?
      Jan08

      Netflix is everywhere (almost), so what does this mean for local media?

      Reed Hastings, co-founder and CEO of Netflix, at the 2016 CES trade show in Las Vegas. REUTERS/Steve MarcusIn his keynote address at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week, Reed Hastings, Netflix CEO, announced that Netflix will now be available in 130 new countries. This sees Netflix more than triple its global presence. The world...

      Forget Putin’s global posturing – Russia’s biggest challenges for 2016 are domestic
      Jan06

      Forget Putin’s global posturing – Russia’s biggest challenges for 2016 are domestic

      Reuters/Alexei Druzhinin/Sputnik/KremlinAfter a remarkably fraught and complicated 2015, Vladimir Putin’s Russia finds itself still sanctioned by the West for its conduct in Ukraine, dogged by falling oil prices and dicing with a deadly conflict in Syria. And it’s increasingly difficult to foresee the challenges Putin and his country...

      Five biggest security threats facing the world in 2016
      Jan01

      Five biggest security threats facing the world in 2016

      It’s not looking good. Reuters/Mohamad TorokmanThis has been a remarkably violent year – and many of the worst threats to human security that have dogged people all over the globe are no less a problem than they were a year ago. Here, in no particular order, are some of the biggest risks the world faces in 2016. 1: Civil conflict Civil wars...

      2015, the year that was: Politics + Society
      Dec27

      2015, the year that was: Politics + Society

      Tony Abbott leaves the partyroom on September 14, having lost the Liberal leadership and prime ministership to Malcolm Turnbull. AAP/Sam MooyThe year started as it finished, with terrorist atrocities, intractable conflicts and political upheavals that toppled several leaders. Among them was Australia’s prime minister, Tony Abbott. In...

      Is European football facing a crisis?
      Dec14

      Is European football facing a crisis?

      It has been a busy, and often turbulent, time for football. Several FIFA officials were arrested in Switzerland; FIFA announced a raft of new reforms aimed at changing the organisation’s system of governance; Chinese investors made their first foray into the English Premier League, acquiring a 13% stake in Manchester City; and now the draw...

      Why improving your own performance isn’t always good for the team
      Dec08

      Why improving your own performance isn’t always good for the team

      Arsene Wenger: anti-doping, but is he right that it automatically improves group performance? Ronnie Macdonald, CC BYDoping in sports often gives us intriguing insights not only into how we think about right and wrong, but also into our intuitions about performance. In the aftermath of the latest doping scandal, for instance, Arsene Wenger,...

      Xi has created a Chinese Bloc that the Paris climate talks cannot ignore
      Dec01

      Xi has created a Chinese Bloc that the Paris climate talks cannot ignore

      Xi Jinping doesn’t want to be the villain of Paris. Etienne Laurent / EPAChinese president Xi Jinping addressed the opening day of the Paris climate talks as leader of a nation more confident and assertive than it has been at any point since Mao declared it had “stood up” after a century of rebellion and invasion. The changing status is...

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