Georgia: Opposition on the Move - Georgia's political opposition is enjoying rising popularity. Under pressure from weeks of protests, President Mikheil Saakashvili gave in and spoke to protest leaders. One of the movement's leading figures is songwriter Giorgi Gachechladze. His brother stood for election opposing Saakashvili. Giorgi is mobilizing the masses, for exsample with a radio show critical of the government, during which he locks himself in a cell. We accompanied him on a protest march from Tblisi to Western Georgia.
Norway: Test for Female Quota - It's been heard in the global slowdown that "it wouldn't have happened if women were in control." In Norway they've had a year to prove that they're the better managers. That's because since 2008 there's been a binding quota for women on corporate supervisory boards in Norway. It's a sign that the government is serious about equality for women. At first companies had to search hard and quickly train the right candidates for the job. If companies don't meet their quotas, they may have to pay fines.
Spain: Soccer and the Crisis - Before every home game for Valencia, Vincent Valles stands in front of the stadium and collects signatures. He's trying to convince other fans to buy stock in the club. And Valencia is no exception. The clubs of Spain's Primera Division are believed to be sitting on a total of three billions euros of debt. The outlandish dreams of past years and the financial crisis are the cause.
Greece: The Great Cesspool - Many Mediterranean bays in Greece are falling victim to poorly-processed waste water. Cesspool have spilled over into ecologically sensitive coastal areas. The mayor of Elefsina is outraged at the government in Athens, which seems to just look on as shores are fouled and tourists flee. And he's getting support from the EU commission, which is threatening to recall subsidies if processing facilities and sewers aren't built.
Germany: Casting for Street Musicians - Many successful musicians used to play for a few coins on the sidewalk and sold their CDs in person. But anyone wanting to perform in central Munich has to first pass a tough casting call. Albert Dietrich, a municipal worker for more than 40 years, hands out one-day performance permits every morning. Although he doesn't play an instrument himself, Albert has lots of sympathy for the musicians. But he has been known to send off the odd Elvis impersenator, saying "The King would turn around in his grave if he heard this." [26 minutes]
This episode has not aired in the past few months on Iowa Public Television.
Series Description: EUROPEAN JOURNAL looks beyond the headlines and sound bites to deliver relevant, unbiased and imaginative reporting on the events shaping the political, economic and cultural landscape of Europe. Each week, teams of journalists, photographers and producers scour the continent in search of stories with impact and meaning for American viewers, while alternating presenters Jim Gibbons and Cathy Smith provide in-depth analysis on this dynamic region.
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These episodes of European Journal aired in the last few months on Iowa Public Television.
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