Longitude #74

August, 2017


Cover story

The indispensable nation
by Stefano Cingolani

Germany is a success story from many points 
of view, especially with respect to economic stability. But if it is to be a global power, it must understand how impossible it is for others to imitate the German model.

The German miracle
map by Marie Joveneau
A trump card for Europe
by Renzo Rosso

Is there a growing likelihood of a renewed Franco-German axis in the troubled environment of an economically stagnant Europe? With the continent still reeling from Brexit and the fear of a populist surge, there may be no better alternative.

Germany and China realigned
by Fabrizio Franciosi

Strategically located at the western end of the Eurasian land mass, Germany must contend with a United States that seems to be drifting away. Now the interplay between Beijing and Berlin will have a huge impact on the world economy. 


Losing their religion
by Matteo Matzuzzi

The recent political upheaval in the United Kingdom has led to a debate over what British values are, and whether they are being lost. The debate, however, tends to brush aside the inconvenient topic of religion.


Playing from the KGB handbook
by Maurizio Stefanini

Moscow’s interference in US and European politics is no surprise to anyone who has a cursory understanding of recent Russian history. The problem today is that the West is more vulnerable than it has ever been to Russian meddling.

Featured briefing

The elite poor
by Anna Bono

With a young population and dynamic economies, Sub-Saharan Africa’s growth has led to the rise of a new and expanding middle class. Unfortunately, inertia remains within the societies and continues to drag many African economies down.

African dynamics
map by Marie Joveneau
by Stash Luczkiw

As Christianity’s center of gravity shifts southward to Africa, the change is likely to have repercussions not only on the politics of Sub-Saharan Africa, but also on the trajectory of Western civilization.

Unwitting deportees
by Angelo Baiocchi

The influx of migrants across the Mediterranean has put the spotlight on one of the most insidious forms of international crime: human trafficking. To complicate the situation, certain ideologies unwittingly make matters worse.

World finance

An enticing tax for wealthy foreigners
by Sergio Sirabella

Visitors have always fallen in love with Italy’s culture and beauty. Now the government wants to introduce a new law that will attract workers and capital to give the economy a much-needed boost.


Amplifying Italian soft power
by Gianluca Comin

Italy has many problems, but its cultural riches make for a veritable treasure of soft power. The key, in our age, to spreading the word about these treasures is to use the growing array of media.

Warming bloopers

Diamonds forever at sea
by Carlo Clini

As demand for diamonds increases and the mines that dig them out of the ground are exhausted, the alternative, thanks to technological advances, lies under water. 
Extracting those minerals, however, could cause an ecological catastrophe.