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The Compass

Updated 6 days ago

News
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The Compass - exploring our world.

Read more

The Compass - exploring our world.

iTunes Ratings

57 Ratings
Average Ratings
46
7
1
0
3

Editing fails

By Jim Sack - Oct 07 2018
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Excellent program! Pathetic editing between programming and inserted commercials/promos. Sheesh.

Great series!

By SinzaS - Dec 02 2017
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Very insightful and informative.

iTunes Ratings

57 Ratings
Average Ratings
46
7
1
0
3

Editing fails

By Jim Sack - Oct 07 2018
Read more
Excellent program! Pathetic editing between programming and inserted commercials/promos. Sheesh.

Great series!

By SinzaS - Dec 02 2017
Read more
Very insightful and informative.
Cover image of The Compass

The Compass

Updated 6 days ago

Read more

The Compass - exploring our world.

Rank #1: Finance

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Trillions of dollars flow through the global economic system every day and intermediaries in the finance sector take a cut on every dollar, euro and yen. But financial technology – “fintech” – is fast-changing how the system works. Philip Coggan of The Economist explores how the coming technical revolution in finance will create new winners and losers – and perhaps a rebalancing of global financial power.
Producer: Ben Carter
(Photo: Tech Globe on hand. Credit: Shutterstock)

Mar 23 2017

26mins

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Rank #2: Depression in Japan

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Up until the late 1990s, depression was all but unknown in Japanese society and pharmaceutical companies had given up on trying to sell anti-depressants there. Fast forward to today and court cases alleging overwork depression and overwork suicide, reassuring commercial branding of depression as a "cold of the soul" and increased media attention have turned Japan into a highly medicated society. In the first episode of a five-part series about mental health and culture, Christopher Harding explores how in just a few years, psychiatrists, lawyers and the pharmaceutical companies helped introduce 'depression' to Japan.
Producer: Keith Moore
(Photo by Tori Sugari)

Aug 11 2016

26mins

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Rank #3: On the Black Sea: The Voyage Begins

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A voyage across a mysterious sea where empires have clashed for centuries and tensions are rising again. By ferry, rowing-boat, horse-drawn wagon, the BBC World Service travels over, around, and under the Black Sea, to discover its ancient and modern secrets. As Russia and Nato build up their naval power in the region, presenter Tim Whewell meets the Istanbul ship-spotter who helped alert the world to the scale of the Kremlin’s military involvement in Syria. Tim embarks on his journey over the sea to Odessa in Ukraine. It is a city in love with the sea. But its character is beginning to change.
Producer: Monica Whitlock
(Photo: Istanbul panorama Credit: Tony Jolliffe/BBC

Jul 19 2017

27mins

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Rank #4: Islam, People and Power: The Salafis

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Wahhabism is the most misunderstood brand of Islam. It is more correctly called Salafism and is a fundamentalist interpretation of the faith, often associated with Saudi Arabia. The salafis have long been split between jihadists who justify violently overthrowing their rulers and quietists who believe that even oppressive governments should be obeyed. Since the Arab uprisings, two new groups – salafi democrats and salafi revolutionaries – have come to the fore too.
Presenter Safa Al Ahmad talks to representatives of all positions in the current debate within salafi Islam about the relationship between religion and politics.
(Photo: Saudi Arabia's Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Aziz al-Sheikh. Credit: Hassan Ammar/AFP/Getty Images)

Nov 24 2016

26mins

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Rank #5: Islam, People and Power: The Islamists

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What should the relationship be between Islam and the state? This is the question which dominates political debate in the Arab world. Many traditional Islamic scholars believe in the separation of religion and politics. For the Muslim Brotherhood though – the Arab world’s foremost social and political movement - the goal is to create an Islamic state.
In Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood was elected to power after the Arab uprisings. But its plans quickly ended in failure. After just a year in office, the Brotherhood government faced mass protests before it was deposed by a military coup.
As presenter Safa Al Ahmad discovers, these events have caused an unprecedented level of debate between members past and present. She talks to a Brotherhood veteran who believes the Brotherhood should have remained a social movement rather than entering politics and to young members who believe it should be more revolutionary.
(Image: Muslim Brotherhood supporter holds a banner with the Arabic slogan 'Islam is the Solution' during a demonstration in Cairo 08 November 2005. Credit: Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Images)

Dec 01 2016

26mins

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Rank #6: Dams

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Half of the world’s river systems host hydro-electric dams. They offer reliable electricity but their construction forces people from their homes and disrupts the natural life of the river.
Scores of dams already span the Mekong River, the great waterway linking China to Vietnam. They’ve brought power and jobs to some of the most undeveloped parts of South-East Asia and the building boom shows no sign of ending. But the impact of the massive building programme on those living in the Mekong Delta and along the river is immense: silt deposits are disrupted and fish populations are displaced, as are many of the millions of people that depend on them.
Reporter Peter Hadfield sails up the Mekong to meet those communities living with the dams on their doorstep and discover how their lives are impacted.
Meanwhile, presenter Didi Akinyelure is in western Europe to find out why the countries that pioneered hydro-power are now turning their backs on it. In Switzerland they are releasing floodwater from their dams to bring life back to a tamed mountain wilderness. In France dams are actually being dismantled to revive fish life on Normandy’s rivers.
So how should we feel about dams? Do developing countries need the reliable low-carbon electricity they provide? Can they be built in less damaging ways or should we call a halt to the age of the mega-dam?
(Photo: Ota Khami, 55, stands where his home use to be before it was bulldozed to make way for the Sesan 2 dam in Stung Treng, Cambodia. Credit: Getty Images)

Apr 25 2018

27mins

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Rank #7: Islam, People and Power: Reflections

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Presenter Safa al Ahmad is joined by a panel of experts to reflect on the issues raised in her documentary series 'Islam People and Power'.
Her guests in the studio are:
Dr Maha Azzam, former Associate Fellow of Chatham House, now Head of the Egyptian Revolutionary Council.
Dr Hazem Kandil, Fellow of St Catharine’s College, Cambridge and author of Inside The Brotherhood.
Hassan Hassan, Fellow of The Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy and author of ISIS: Inside the Army of Terror.
Editor: Innes Bowen
(Image: Safa al Ahmad in the studio. Credit: BBC)

Dec 09 2016

27mins

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Rank #8: My Perfect Country: Cutting Poverty in Peru

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How has Peru cut its poverty rate in half in just ten years? Building on decades of economic growth, a policy of inclusive economics has meant many of the poorest in the country have shared in the prosperity created by the boom. Government schemes to extend basic services such as piped water, sanitation and electricity to slum areas, underpinned by social programmes for children, families and the over 65s, have helped to lift 7 million people out of poverty in the last five years alone. Low-income communities have played a vital role in the speed and extent to which this has been rolled out, putting pressure on successive governments through direct action such as protests and roadblocks.

But there are problems. Rural poverty rates remain high, many people are still slipping through the net, and more investment in health and education is needed. Corruption is endemic, and Peru’s largely informal economy means the improvement in people’s living conditions is precarious, particularly as the country’s economy is now slowing down.

Image: A woman pushes a child in a pram, Credit: Getty Images

So should Peru’s poverty reduction be added to the My Perfect Country pile of policies? Fi Glover, Martha Lane Fox and Henrietta Moore, the team imagining building a nation from the policies that are making the world a better place, debate the pros and cons with the help of Jelke Boesten from King’s College London.

Jan 03 2017

26mins

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Rank #9: UK: From Syria To Yorkshire

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As part of the World Service ‘Destination Europe’ series, the BBC’s Owen Bennett-Jones is finding out how Syrian refugees are settling in the northern English city of Bradford in Yorkshire. They were flown directly to Britain as part of a scheme to help the vulnerable living in the Syrian border region. The former British Prime Minister David Cameron pledged to help 20,000 of these people over a five year period, rather than taking those who had made the perilous journey to Europe through smuggler’s routes. So in Bradford, Owen meets people like Nadia, flown to the UK from Iraq – a single mother to a teenager who dreams of her former life in Damascus where she owned a shopping mall and was rich, but who now lives in a damp flat and whose possessions are sparse. Then there is Ayham and his family who became eligible to settle in Britain from Cairo after his younger brother was diagnosed with cancer. Their remarkable stories paint a vivid picture of war-torn Syria and the tragedies they have faced but also of their bravery and hope for a new beginning as they embark on finding their way in Britain.
(Photo: Owen in front of the Bradford factory)

Jul 21 2016

26mins

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Rank #10: disUnited Kingom: Birmingham, England

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What has the European Union referendum vote revealed about the divisions within the UK? And what might this mean for the cohesion of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland?
Birmingham in the West Midlands, one of the biggest cities to vote leave, has been lauded as a success for multiculturalism but the result has brought tensions to the fore. A spike in hate crime, a petrol bombed halal butchers and racist graffiti were some of the short term effects. A 15 minute drive from the centre of Birmingham is the town of Walsall – where Nina Robinson was born and brought up, where immigrant communities have settled from South Asia but where a large majority voted to leave. Nina returns from London (which voted strongly the other way) to investigate why her family and other locals are disillusioned with politics and politicians and how they want their vote to translate into radical change. She talks to the people building bridges post-Brexit - the UKIP councillor visiting Muslim schools, the residents reaching out to their neighbours and the Muslim street artist known as ‘Birmingham’s Banksy’. What does Brexit from Birmingham tell us about being British in 2016?
(Photo: The Union Jack flag shattered and broken. Credit: Shutterstock)

Oct 03 2016

26mins

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Rank #11: Technology

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The future of employment is certain to change – and change fast – as robotics and artificial intelligence replace human workers. For many, it’s a future to be feared. But the global economy has continually been revolutionised by technological innovation; innovation which has led to disruption but also further economic progress. In this edition of Economic Tectonics, Andrew McAfee from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology – and a tech optimist – explores how he thinks technology could change our economic futures for the better.
Producer: Sandra Kanthal
(Image: Child fixing robot, Credit: Shutterstock)

Apr 06 2017

26mins

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Rank #12: Turkey:The Lost Generation

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There as many as half a million Syrian refugee children who are not attending school, leaving them open to exploitation in sweatshops and other forms of abuse. Aid workers call them the "lost generation" and warn that unless they return to the classroom, Syria will lack educated people to help rebuild the country when the war eventually ends.
Tim Whewell meets children as young as nine employed up to 14 hours a day in textile sweatshops - and also a Syrian teacher who has helped rescue some of them from sweatshops by opening a special school for refugee children in Istanbul. Increasing educational opportunities for Syrians in Turkey may persuade some of them to give up their ambition of migrating to Europe but huge investment will be needed.
(Photo: Shaza Barakat and pupils)

Jun 30 2016

26mins

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Rank #13: The History of Wastefulness: The Tipping Point

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After exploring our wasteful past and the reality of today’s trash challenge, Australian journalist Alexandra Spring asks if we are on the tipping point of a rubbish free future.

Alexandra joins blogger Kathryn Kellogg to find out more about San Francisco’s growing zero waste ambitions. Encased in one single mason jar, Kathryn describes the tiny amount of waste she created over two years and how living without a trace has changed her life.

Then, Alexandra meets the inventor Veena Sahajwalla, who shares her belief that we should consider our rubbish to be a resource for the future. As Alex discovers, this attitude and Veena’s engineering skills have stopped millions of tyres from ending up in rubbish dumps, and could lead to cities around the world being built from recycled materials.

Producer: Chelsea Dickenson and Ben Cartwright.

(Photo: A jar full of all the garbage blogger Kathryn Kellogg threw away in two years. Credit: Audio Always)

Jan 23 2019

26mins

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Rank #14: Sounds of the forest

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Nobody ever forgets the first time that they hear or see a tiger. But as Chris Watson discovers when he travels to Corbett National Park in India this is far from easy. What he uncovers is a fascinating relationship between the people and the forest environment in which listening plays a vital role. Amongst the dense vegetation you can hear far more than you can see. As a wildlife sound recordist from North East England, Chis is immediately excited by the range of new sounds he can hear; a soundscape which changes throughout the day and night.

Listening provides vital sound clues as to the activities and whereabouts of the wildlife. Local people learn to recognise and interpret these sounds; for example different species of birds call at different times of the day. And recognising when a tiger is near from the alarm calls of birds in the canopy, could save your life, as could knowing which direction you are travelling by the sounds and direction of the wind. Living with Nature in this way results in extraordinary relationships between the people and the forest.

(Photo: Corbett Tiger Reserve, India. Credit: Chris Watson)

Aug 15 2018

26mins

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Rank #15: Europe’s Challenges: The Road to Rome

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The European Union emerged in the 1950s from a vision of a bright future for a war-ravaged continent – free from conflict, with nations living in harmony, their citizens free to trade and travel without restriction. In the first programme of a three-part series, former BBC Europe correspondent Allan Little hears first-hand from the negotiators who drew up the project’s founding document, the Treaty of Rome, with its key goal of an “ever-closer union”.
The interviews for this series were recorded ten years ago and many of the interviewees have since died.
(Photo: Foreign Ministers of France, Belgium, Holland, Luxembourg, Germany and Italy signing two treaties establishing the European Common Market and the atomic energy community at Campidoglio, Rome, 25 March1957. Credit: Keystone/Getty Images)

May 19 2016

27mins

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Rank #16: My Perfect Country: Norway

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How has Norway managed to have the lowest rate of prisoners reoffending in Europe, and one of the lowest in the world? Their policy revolves around the fact that the justice system see taking their citizen’s freedom away as punishment enough, and prisoners are expected to carry on a life as similar to normal society as possible. As a result, high-quality education is given to inmates – as well as opportunities to work, to receive mental health support, and remain self-sufficient by cooking their own meals. This support is further strengthened by the prison guards who are some of the most highly-trained in the world and who are encouraged to spend time with inmates. The Norway government also brought in top architects and asked them to redesign prisons from scratch – focusing on decreasing any tension or conflict between inmates. Upon release, inmates are given significant help to reintegrate back into society – as help is provided for them to find both housing and employment.
However, the policy is not without criticism as some detractors view Norway’s prisons as too luxurious, and questions are also raised over why Norway needed to rent space in Dutch prisons in 2015.
(Photo: The interior of a cell at the Norgerhaven prison in Veenhuizen, The Netherlands. Credit: Catrinus van der Veen/AFP)

Jan 31 2018

27mins

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Rank #17: Glaciers

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Life in the Himalayas is tough at the best of times. Crops are dependent on the seasonal melt-water from the mountain glaciers. If climate change wipes out the glaciers then the people will be forced to move.
As the global population increases and climate change tightens its grip the struggle for land intensifies. The tension over the ownership and the use of land creates new conflicts and inflames existing struggles. It also inspires creative thinking and fresh approaches to agriculture, development and conservation.
Nigerian journalist, Didi Akinyelure meets the innovators determined to maintain their traditional ways of life in the face of the worst that the climate can throw at them. In the Himalayas the locals are building their own artificial glaciers. Known as ice stupas, these mounds of ice modelled on Buddhist meditation structures can hold water for agriculture right through the summer.
Meanwhile, in the Alps, villagers are determined to save the glaciers that provide their groundwater and attract tourists. They have hired a scientist who plans to spray the glacier with artificial snow in order to deflect the heat of the summer sun.
(Photo: Didi Akinyelure on a glacier in the Swiss Alps)

Apr 18 2018

27mins

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Rank #18: My Perfect Country: Estonia's Digital Society

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Fi Glover and digital guru Martha Lane Fox look at the digital revolution pioneered by the government in Estonia – where people vote, get their medical prescriptions even pay for their parking, online. With the help of Professor Henrietta Moore from the Institute for Global Prosperity and Taavet Hinrikus from Transferwise they ask - could it work where you are?

Estonia’s digital services have revolutionised the country since its independence from the Soviet Union with 600 services now being available online. E-Estonia has the fastest broadband speeds in the world, was the first to allow online voting in a general election, all classrooms are online, all medical records online, and it has more start ups per person than Silicon Valley in California. But does the networked society come at a price?

(Photo: People gathered on 20 August 2010 in Toila, Estonia for the world's first ever digital song festival. Credit: Raigo Paulla /AFP/Getty Images)

Feb 04 2016

27mins

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Rank #19: A New Cold War?

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Russia’s actions in the Crimea and Ukraine, and the modernising of its armed forces at home, are causing anxiety in the High North. Current tensions in East-West relations threaten to jeopardise the fragile stability of the region.
In Oslo, defence has been high on the government’s agenda with increased spending on the Norwegian Armed Forces proposed for 2017-2020. Are we entering a new Cold War? It is a vexed question, as defence expert Mats Berdal discovers when he canvasses opinions in Oslo, Moscow, Brussels, London and US.
(Photo: President Vladimir Putin holds a replica Tupolev-160 strategic bomber jet at the at the Olenogorsk military airport, near Murmansk, 2005. Credit: Vladimir Rodionov/AFP/Getty Images)

Nov 10 2016

26mins

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Rank #20: Our Friends, the Russians

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Russia’s actions in the Crimea and Ukraine, and the modernising of its armed forces at home, are causing anxiety in the High North. Here Norwegian (as well as broader Western) security and economic interests converge with those of Russia, and can conflict. Will the High North be the next flashpoint in a new Cold War?
Norway is adept at walking the tightrope between co-operation and self-protection in its relations with the former Soviet Union. A founding member of Nato, this tiny oil-rich state has been a key player in promoting stability in the region. Defence expert Mats Berdal, a Norwegian national now living in London, travels to Kirkenes in the High North to meet those who live and work along the Russian border.
(Photo: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Norwegian Foreign Minster Boerge Brende attend a wreath ceremony at the Russia Monument, Kirkenes, 2014. Credit: Berit Roald/AFP/Getty Images)

Nov 03 2016

26mins

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