Peter Day's World of Business



Insights into the business world with Peter Day - featuring content from BBC Radio 4's In Business programme, and also Global Business from the BBC World Service.


  • Australia’s Coalface

    11/01/2020 Duración: 27min

    Australia is stubbornly sticking to providing much of its power through coal. While many countries around the world are eschewing fossil fuels, (because of their environmental impact), the Australian government continues to give the all-clear to new coal mines, including one called the Carmichael mine. It’s being constructed by the Indian company, Adani. Much of the coal it produces will be exported to Asia. The mine was an issue in the country’s 2019 general election, and has been the site of many protests. Heidi Pett has visited the area in Queensland where the mine is being built – speaking to locals who’re on both sides of the heated debate about Australia and its continuing reliance on coal. Presenter: Heidi Pett Producer: Phoebe Keane Picture Credit: Lisa Maree Williams/Gettty Images

  • Zimbabwe's Food Crisis: Can Old Crops Fix New Problems?

    09/01/2020 Duración: 28min

    Every day people dig into sadza, a maize based meal, but there’s a problem. Zimbabwe’s getting much drier and maize can’t cope. Crop failures have partly contributed to food shortages this year leading to more than 7 million people needing food aid. The economic crisis has made the situation more serious and things will only get worse as the climate heats up. How can Zimbabwe feed itself? It turns out grains like millet and sorghum could hold the key. Unlike maize, these small grains are indigenous to the region. For In Business, Charlotte Ashton meets the remarkable business people fighting to put them back on Zimbabwean plates. From convincing smallholder farmers that traditional crops are the way forward, to advertising the health benefits of small grains to busy parents, this is a campaign for hearts and minds as much as full bellies. Presenter: Charlotte Ashton Producer: Phoebe Keane Picture Credit: BBC

  • Germany’s Energy Transition

    04/01/2020 Duración: 26min

    Germany has long been considered a leader in renewable energy – a model even for others to follow with its subsidies for wind and solar. Householders were encouraged to put solar panels on their rooves as early as two decades ago. But its so-called “Energiewende” or “energy transition” from fossil fuels to renewables is facing challenges and the country still relies on coal for 30 per cent of electricity generation. That will be phased out within the next eighteen years and nuclear energy will end too by 2022, leading to fears within industry about adequate energy capacity. Meanwhile the German government has admitted that it won’t meet its climate emissions targets for 2020. Caroline Bayley has been to the industrial Ruhr region to an enormous open cast mine, as well as to Steinfurt, a rural area where they’re pushing community renewable energy schemes and to the former coal town of Bottrop which is undergoing its own energy transition. Presenter/Producer: Caroline Bayley Picture Credit: BBC

  • Selling Britain

    02/01/2020 Duración: 28min

    Whatever happens in British politics, Britain's reputation has changed. What does this mean for its global business image? Chris Bowlby discovers what's ahead for Brand Britain.

  • Clean Cooking in Rwanda

    28/12/2019 Duración: 26min

    More than seventy percent of households in Rwanda cook over wooden and charcoal fires. This means women often sit for hours every day in smoky conditions which can damage their health, increasing the risk of respiratory infections, heart disease, strokes and lung cancer. These traditional cooking methods are also the cause of widespread deforestation. The Rwandan government is aiming to halve the number of people using these cooking fuels in the next six years. They're investing in infrastructure and offering tax incentives to try and support businesses to entice customers to other products which could give them a cleaner and safer way to cook. In other countries who’ve made this move though, changing from traditional stoves to modern clean cooking took the best part of a century - can that really be achieved here in just six years? Producer/Presenter: Kate Lamble Picture: Lady cooking meal in pan over an open fire in Rwanda Credit: Wayne Hutchinson/Farm Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

  • The Business of Beethoven

    26/12/2019 Duración: 27min

    "Beethoven's arms were bigger than the piano" says concert pianist Stephen Hough at his Steinway. "I sense him pushing at every moment - as if he's in a cage saying 'Let me out'". To mark the 250th anniversary of the composer's birth in 2020, Clemmie Burton-Hill looks, not at Beethoven the composer, but at a little-known aspect of the composer's life, Beethoven the entrepreneur. In the company of some of the foremost Beethoven proponents - pianist Stephen Hough, violinists Anne-Sophie Mutter and Daniel Hope and jazz trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, Clemmie investigates how Beethoven pushed and cajoled music publishers, music printers and piano makers to turn convention on its head and create a music "industry". Could he even have invented the gig economy?! Presenter: Clemmie Burton-Hill Producer: Adele Armstrong Picture Credit: REUTERS/Leon Kuegeler

  • The pub is dead! Long live the micropub!

    05/12/2019 Duración: 28min

    Since 2001 the UK has lost a quarter of its pubs. They've shut their doors for good. High taxes, high prices, supermarket competition, even the smoking ban have all been blamed. But there are new types of pub, the micropub, and community-owned pubs, which are bucking the trend. While larger, traditional establishments have been under pressure, these have flourished. So why have they been able to succeed where others have not? For In Business, John Murphy visits his local boozer - and others - to see what these new pubs have to offer. Presenter: John Murphy Producer: Ruth Alexander Picture: Micropub Credit: BBC

  • Keeping the Lights On

    28/11/2019 Duración: 28min

    As Britain’s sources of electricity change, along with significant changes in demand, how will the lights stay on? The major power blackout that hit the UK in early August – the worst in more than a decade – was an indication of how increasingly complicated our electricity grid is becoming. Hundreds of thousands of people, as well as major transport hubs, were affected as electricity supplies were cut to restore balance to the system and prevent an even greater blackout. The National Grid, which is the energy system operator, said two generators, including a major wind-farm, tripped out after lightning struck a high-voltage transmission line. The episode raised many questions about how stable the UK’s electricity supply system is. What is clear is that the traditional coal-fired generators, which used to supply much of the UK’s electricity, are being rapidly phased out. Now many more - and varied - generators supply the grid, including small and huge wind-farms, solar farms, nuclear power stations, gas-fired

  • What is the value of women’s work?

    26/10/2019 Duración: 26min

    Iceland has taken radical measures to reduce its gender pay gap. These aren't just about equalising pay when men and women do the same job but when they do different jobs of equal value. That's proved to be quite a sticking point in many countries around the world; ensuring that the jobs routinely occupied by women are paid as well as those that men do. Lesley Curwen meets the people tasked with comparing a production line worker with an office administrator, an HR professional with an accountant and a camera operator with a social media marketeer. What has the financial and cultural impact been on companies that have had to adjust their pay rates and what do their employees think about the process? Is the Iceland model one that other countries could follow? Presenter: Lesley Curwen Producer: Rosamund Jones Picture Credit: Getty Creative

  • Belarus: Harvesting the whirlwind

    19/10/2019 Duración: 26min

    The irradiated lands around the Chernobyl nuclear reactor were large, prosperous, and lively collective farms until the reactor exploded in 1986. Seventy percent of the toxic radiation fell in Belarus – a small, agrarian country in which most people lived on the land. Hundreds of villages were evacuated, but much of the population has since returned. A generation later Global Business visits the Belarussian contamination zone and its hinterland to see how the local economy and way of life has adapted to a world turned upside down. We meet the beekeepers developing a honey farm in the depopulated part of the zone, visit an unexpected herd of horses and hear about the innovations in arable farming designed to resist radioactive toxins. Produced and presented by Monica Whitlock Image: Horses in Belarus Radio-Ecological Zone Credit: Ilya Kuzniatsou

  • Can Liberian rubber bounce back?

    12/10/2019 Duración: 27min

    A victim of the “resource curse”, Liberia is one of the poorest countries in the world, in spite of being rich in natural resources. Rubber is one of the country’s biggest exports but few Liberians have benefitted from this multimillion dollar business. In this Global Business, Josephine Casserly meets a retired Californian policeman, James Cooper, who has returned to his grandfather’s farm, determined to revolutionise Liberia’s rubber industry. But in a country with a struggling economy and endemic corruption, can he succeed? Produced by Lucy Ash

  • How Politics Broke up with Business

    29/09/2019 Duración: 27min

    Why have politicians gone from cosying up to businesses, to turning a deaf ear to their concerns? Jeremy Schwartz – a CEO himself – finds that the love affair was starting to become toxic long before Brexit, and asks whether it’s really such a bad thing if governments no longer care what business leaders think. Contributors include: Andrea Leadsom – Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Frances O’Grady – General Secretary, TUC Iain Anderson - Executive Chairman, Cicero Giles Wilkes – Former Special Adviser to the Prime Minister Helen Dickinson – Chief Executive, British Retail Consortium Andy Street – Mayor of the West Midlands, former CEO of John Lewis Partnership Joe Owen – Institute for Government Paul Walsh – Chairman, Compass Group Presenter: Jeremy Schwartz Producer: Beth Sagar-Fenton Picture: Getty

  • Flying Green

    19/09/2019 Duración: 27min

    Flying, for many of us, is now routine. For a few of us it is a weekly, maybe even daily, event. At the same time global protests, concerned with the pressing danger of climate change and the need to reduce CO2 emissions, are gaining attention and causing alarm. So, will we ever get to a point where we can indulge our flying habit and our keep our conscience clear? Katie Prescott talks to the flight refuseniks and assesses the impact they are having. Is the long term solution to change minds or can technological advances provide a fix? Electric cars are here; small planes are already powered the same way. How long until sizeable passenger jets follow? At a number of airports around the world, planes can fill up with bio-fuels. But the take up is extremely modest. While the oil price stays low, what's the incentive for airlines to go green? Presenter: Katie Prescott Producer: Rosamund Jones Picture: Newark International Airport Credit: Mario Tama/Getty Images

  • The Business of Clicks

    08/09/2019 Duración: 28min

    Online retail spending has increased more than four fold in the last ten years - it now accounts for almost one in five pounds we spend shopping. But whilst times are tough for our high streets, e-retailing is far from a licence to print money. With widespread discounting and a growing cost of delivery and returns, margins are being squeezed and many are finding it a struggle to survive. In this programme, Adam Shaw investigates how the economics of e-commerce work, what the move to predominantly online will mean for many retailers and what our shopping environment may look like in 10 years time. Presenter: Adam Shaw Producer: Alex Lewis Editor: Penny Murphy Image: A woman packing a box to post Credit: Getty Images

  • India’s fashion industry

    07/09/2019 Duración: 26min

    India has emerged as one of the world’s fastest-growing fashion markets and is expected to touch $60 billion by 2022, which will make it the sixth largest in the world. This is due to its rapidly growing middle class and tech savvy consumers, who are buying online, as well as from a plethora of shopping malls which have mushroomed in the country’s bigger cities. International brands are trying to step in and take a share of this demand – some 300 of them are planning to open stores in India within the next two years. The BBC’s Nina Robinson talks to e-commerce brands, retailers, fashion entrepreneurs and influencers. The programme also features the Usha sewing project which is helping to train hundreds of thousands of rural women in sewing skills. Producer/presenter: Nina Robinson Image: Woman from the Usha sewing project at a sewing machine Credit: Nina Robinson/BBC

  • Managing Volunteers: Free and Easy?

    29/08/2019 Duración: 28min

    Twenty million Brits give their time for free each year. From the National Trust to the hospice coffee morning, the Samaritans to the local football club, huge parts of our world rely on volunteers. But how easy is it to manage a workforce who can walk out at a moment's notice? How can you ensure people perform well - or even turn up - without the "carrot and stick" of pay and disciplinary procedures? Presenter Claire Bolderson knows both sides of this: she volunteers at a food bank, but also chairs the governors at her local school. With the help of an RNLI lifeboat crew, a bustling community centre, and a whole roomful of professional volunteer managers, she discovers just how to get the best out of volunteers - and how much managers of paid staff have to learn from them. Contributors include: Tim Ody - Station Manager, RNLI Teddington Pam Bardouille - Volunteer Co-Ordinator, The Dalgarno Trust Jarina Choudhury - Volunteering Development Consultant, NCVO Emma Knights - Chief Executive, National Gove

  • Berries Galore!

    06/07/2019 Duración: 28min

    Strawberries at Christmas? No problem! And as cheap as ever? Yes, of course! Many of us have become used to buying whatever fruit and vegetables we want, whenever we want, no matter the season. Strawberries, raspberries, blackberries and blueberries are available in supermarkets all year round. Until recently that was not the case. So what does it take for this to happen and what’s the cost? John Murphy peels back the layers of the berry industry, which has grown massively in recent years. Despite increasing production costs, prices have remained stable. Can that continue? Politics, economics and the environment could have a bruising impact on producers and on the price and availability of the fresh fruit we eat. Presenter: John Murphy Producer: Sally Abrahams Picture Credit: BBC

  • Who are Huawei?

    29/06/2019 Duración: 26min

    Chinese technology company, Huawei, is the world’s biggest supplier of network telecoms equipment, and with a research budget of up to $20 billion, its ambition is to be even bigger still. However, it’s also one of the most controversial businesses of our time. The United States and others have banned its involvement in their critical infrastructure, fearing that Beijing might use the company to spy, steal trade secrets, or even wage cyber warfare. Huawei insists that its networks are as secure as anyone else’s, and says that its technology is literally years ahead of competitors, so countries who reject it risk falling behind. As the world prepares for a technological revolution through 5th Generation mobile communications, the BBC has gained rare access to Huawei’s founder and Chairman, Ren Zhengfei, to explore his company’s origins, its rise to global pre-eminence, and what makes it tick. And, to ask if the current security questions threaten its continued growth. Presenter: Karishma Vaswani Producer: M

  • Business Making an Impact

    22/06/2019 Duración: 28min

    Climate-change scientists have warned that the clock is ticking, environmental campaigners are blocking the streets, but until now the world of business has kept itself out of the fray. That is changing. From multi-billion dollar investors, to leaders of international companies, to banking bosses, the call is going out for business to take more responsibility for the way the world runs, and the way businesses run themselves. And it’s not just their environmental impact that’s coming under scrutiny. Inequality, their supply chains and the way they treat their workforce are becoming as much a part of companies’ bottom line as simple profit. Welcome to the Impact Economy. David Baker meets new business champions who want to overturn the old ways of doing things and put commerce at the centre of guaranteeing a future world that is good for everyone. But will it work or is it just a flash in the pan? Presenter: David Baker Producer: John Murphy Picture Credit: Getty

  • The Berlin Airport Fiasco

    15/06/2019 Duración: 26min

    One thing Germany does well, you might assume, is infrastructure and transport. Think again. For Global Business on the BBC World Service, Chris Bowlby’s had a rare behind the scenes tour of Berlin’s new airport. It’s billions over budget, already seven years late in opening, and is still being rebuilt before a single plane’s landed. So what’s gone so wrong in a place supposed to be the capital of efficient engineering? And is the Berlin airport fiasco a warning for infrastructure builders everywhere? Presenter: Chris Bowlby Producer: Jim Frank Picture Credit: Getty

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