Longitude #51

July, 2015


Emergency aid disasters

Disastrous emergency aid
by Lanfranco Vaccari­­

Despite the noble intentions of aid organizations in the aftermath of natural disasters, their effectiveness is often negligible, if not calamitous. Nevertheless, certain valuable lessons can be learned from recent experiences.

Foreign aid data
Map by Marie Joveneau

Racing to stream

The man who would throw TV into the stream
by Stefano Cingolani

Media moguls come and go, but some, like John Malone, manage to leave the landscape utterly transformed. As is often the case, the key to success is sheer size, and Malone is bent on creating a media colossus.

The telecom stream
Map by Marie Joveneau
The disrupters
by Stefano Parisi

The world of television is changing with the rapid growth of digital distribution. But in Europe there are many more hurdles blocking video-on-demand’s inevitable spread.


France’s re-founding father
by Michele Marchi

Sarkozy is back. In an attempt to gather all the elements of France’s center-right, in opposition to both Socialists and the Front National, he has formed Les Républicains to breath new life into the post-Gaullist tradition.

L’Americain le petit
by Christopher Caldwell

France’s conservatives are trying to rebrand. While the new name might strike some as aping the Americans, the French see it more as a re-appropriation of their historic ideals.


by Stash Luczkiw

Ukraine’s economy has been devastated by years of misrule and now war. Faced with dismemberment, Kiev’s aspiration to become a more European society is dependent on Western support. But is the West committed to helping?

A tattered economy
Map by Marie Joveneau


Problems inside and out
by Pasquale Ferrara

Turkey’s recent elections have shed light on what could well be a domestic sea change. Combined with the turmoil throughout its neighborhood, the country’s political future is conditioned by new levels of complexity.

Turkey at a crossroads
Map by Marie Joveneau

Middle East

The Middle East black hole
by Stefano Stefanini

Crises in the Middle East don’t just follow one after another, they pile on top of each other. While there are no easy solutions for all the problems, half-hearted engagement is a surefire recipe for disaster.

Iran’s sanctions workaround
by Shahram Bahadori

Doing business in Iran involves adapting to the effects of sanctions. As Iranians prepare for normalized relations with the West, the element of mistrust looms large in the collective psyche.


Atlanticism and its discontents
by Maurizio Stefanini

In many respects, the ideology of globalization is the legacy of the Atlantic ideology born after the discovery of America. Today the various trade agreements that try to integrate the global economy are both manifestations of Atlanticism and signs of its demise.


The globalization of education
by Franco Pavoncello

John Cabot University, an American accredited English-language college in Rome’s Trastevere neighborhood, is more than just a growing success. It is a reflection of the globalization of higher education.

The Orientalist

A setback for the Sultan
by Maurizio Molinari

After years of seemingly uncontested rule in Turkey, Prime Minister Erdogan has to confront obstacles to his neo-Ottoman vision. His fate will have a huge impact on the Middle East power struggle. 

Inside business

More, more, but not too much
by Hermann Simon, Danilo Zatta

Increasing production would seem to be a good thing for businesses. But one of the most persistent problems, especially in mature economies, is overcapacity, which has the potential to disrupt many industries.

Warming bloopers

Brown is the new green
by Carlo Clini

California’s drought is the worst since records have been kept. If it continues, then the state will be forced to make the regulatory and infrastructure changes it has thus far been reluctant to make.