300 episodes

Insight, wit and analysis as BBC correspondents, journalists and writers take a closer look at the stories behind the headlines. Presented by Kate Adie and Pascale Harter.

From Our Own Correspondent Podcast BBC Radio 4

    • News
    • 4.3 • 893 Ratings

Insight, wit and analysis as BBC correspondents, journalists and writers take a closer look at the stories behind the headlines. Presented by Kate Adie and Pascale Harter.

    Kenya goes to the polls

    Kenya goes to the polls

    Kenyans go to the polls to elect a new president. Plus, our correspondent says farewell to the Philippines; the personal consequences of Poland’s strict abortion laws; and how a women-only shopping mall is providing new opportunities in Yemen.

    • 27 min
    Farewell, Super Mario

    Farewell, Super Mario

    Stories from Italy, Ukraine, Peru and Sri Lanka.
    We're in Italy, which last week saw the resignation of Mario Draghi as PM after only 18 months in office. Initially a popular choice as PM – Mr Draghi has guided Italy and the eurozone through numerous crises. But having failed to win support for a new economic package among his broad-based unity government, he called a vote of confidence – and lost. Mark Lowen reflects on a very Italian situation.
    In Ukraine, Dan Johnson visits some of the Soviet era institutions where children and young people with disabilities are confined. He found that many of these residential homes are ill equipped to provide proper care and cope with their complex needs. Human rights investigators say the neglect disabled people face in Ukraine reflects the failings of a system that has been deficient long before the war started.
    Amid the political and economic crisis in Sri Lanka, we hear from correspondent Aanya Wipulasena about the people growing their own fruit and vegetables to cope with the soaring costs of food. And about the broader impact of the instability on education and people's livelihoods.
    In Peru, we meet the farmer behind a David and Goliath-style lawsuit, who has taken on Germany energy company over the impact of emissions on the local environment. The case centres on determining the link between climate change and the melting of a nearby glacier, and the risk this poses to the lake it feeds. Olivia Acland followed the story.
    And finally - Roger Harrabin reflects on his 35 years covering the natural world, focusing, in particular, on the threat posed by human-induced climate change. He reflects on how reporting on this issue has changed over the years.

    • 28 min
    Valentina’s Kiosk

    Valentina’s Kiosk

    Stories from Russia, Ukraine, Lebanon and South Africa
    Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine is now entering its six-month and there’s still no signs of any possible resolution or ceasefire. Russian citizens continue to be fed a daily diet of propaganda on State TV, with fewer and fewer sources of independent news. But the conflict is nevertheless taking its toll on Russian citizens as soldiers go out to the frontline, never to return, which has left families questioning the government line that the Ukraine invasion is necessary. To keep abreast of the Russian point of view, Steve Rosenburg has a daily ritual: buying his newspapers each day from his local newspaper kiosk, run by a woman called Valentina. He tells her story.
    In Ukraine, a recent missile attack in the city of Vinnytsia, in central-west Ukraine has served as a stark reminder of the indiscriminate nature of Russia's military onslaught. Everyday routines have become fraught with hazard, from a trip to the shops to a walk to school, even in those cities considered to be safe. Sarah Rainsford has been in Vinnytsia and Mykolaiv.
    The Lebanese economy is in a state of collapse, but the government hopes that the summer tourist season, when many Lebanese living abroad return for a holiday, will provide a much-needed boost. But any visitor must navigate a tangled web of erratic exchange rates, as Angelica Jopson has found.
    And finally, to South Africa’s West Coast, the site of a large saltwater lagoon situated in a National Park, around 55 miles north of Cape Town. The area, which is also a marine reserve, attracts numerous water birds and sea life, as the Atlantic waves pound its edge. Antonia Quirke went to explore the lagoon.

    Presenter: Kate Adie
    Producer: Serena Tarling
    Production Coordinator: Gemma Ashman
    Editor: Richard Fenton-Smith

    • 29 min
    The Crown Prince and the President

    The Crown Prince and the President

    The meeting between US President, Joe Biden and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, at the weekend was closely watched back in Washington. Mr Biden said his visit would focus mainly on human rights and regional security - but a request for an increase in oil output was also on the agenda. Anna Foster was in Jeddah. Beyond the official meetings, Sebastian Usher speaks to artists who are taking part in an exhibition in Qatif, in Saudi Arabia's east, reflecting on some of the lost heritage both there and in the historic quarter of Jeddah, amid the rapid pace of development in the Kingdom. Wildfires have broken out across Europe as a heatwave has brought soaring temperatures. Portugal has seen 30,000 hectares of land destroyed by wildfires already this year, and its leaders have moved quickly to try and avoid repeating the same mistakes they did in the deadly fires of 2017. Alison Roberts has been following the story. We visit the town of Pacific Grove, California which has become renowned for its butterfly visitors over the years, which migrate from the frostier climes of Canada to the Golden State. Ben Wyatt hears about efforts by locals in 'Butterfly Town USA' to help protect the various species of butterflies which are at risk of extinction. Finally, we're in Greenland, which is prioritising tourism as a means of growing its economy, rather than mineral exploration. The island remains a challenging environment in which to travel but is not lacking for luxury, as Tim Ecott finds. On his visit, he discovers a Michelin-starred restaurant on the shores of an Ice Fjord. Presenter: Kate Adie Producer: Serena Tarling Production Coordinator: Gemma Ashman Editor: Richard Fenton-Smith

    • 28 min
    The legacy of Shinzo Abe

    The legacy of Shinzo Abe

    Japan has been in mourning after the assassination of former prime minister, Shinzo Abe, at an election rally in the Western city of Nara. Mr Abe was a towering figure in Japanese politics. He was known for his efforts to bring Japan out of years of economic stagnation. Yet it was his firm belief that Japan should move away from its pacifist past that proved most divisive. Rupert Wingfield Hayes reflects his legacy.

    In Ethiopia, the federal government has been in armed conflict with rebel authorities in the northern region of Tigray since November 2020. Tens of thousands of people have been killed. A state of emergency was imposed between last November and in February this year, and the country’s human rights watch dog said the period was marked by a significant number of arbitrary arrests and illegal detentions. The Ethiopian government is now saying it plans to negotiate with forces from the Tigray region, but a culture of impunity prevails, says Kalkidan Yibeltal.

    We visit a mosque and a church in Norway to hear how an agreement between Christian and Muslim leaders, recognising the right to convert between faiths, has affected the respective communities. Maddy Savage is in Oslo.

    Jamaica has this year set the process in motion to remove the Queen as head of state and become a Republic. Adina Campbell recently visited the country and found the issue was the subject of fervent discussion wherever she went.

    The Shandur Polo Festival in north-west Pakistan is held each July. The event draws enthusiastic crowds from all the surrounding regions, willing to brave the nerve-wracking journey to the highest polo ground in the world, says Hannah McCarthy.

    Presenter: Kate Adie
    Producer: Serena Tarling
    Editor: Richard Fenton-Smith
    Production Coordinator: Gemma Ashman

    • 28 min
    Suspicions in Soweto

    Suspicions in Soweto

    South Africa saw a spate of violent shootings over the last week triggering conspiracy theories and suspicions. South Africa has been simmering since last Summer, when the country saw some of the worst outbreaks of violence in decades. Andrew Harding says there is a jittery mood in the country.
    Next, the authorities in Uzbekistan - a former Soviet republic - have declared a state of emergency and a night-time curfew in the region of Karakalpakstan following protests about moves to restrict its autonomy. Although the planned constitutional changes have now been withdrawn, Uzbek authorities have imposed a security clampdown and an information black-out. Joanna Lillis was there.
    At the local abortion clinics in Arkansas, the recent Supreme Court ruling in the US had an immediate impact, effectively giving states the right to determine their own abortion laws. In the case of Arkansas, the state’s Attorney-General then implemented an almost complete ban. Sophie Long was at an abortion clinic in Little Rock when the news broke.
    We visit one of the most active volcanoes in Central America. An eruption at the Fuego volcano four years ago devastated the surrounding region, killing at least 200 hundred people. Several thousand were displaced, but many have since returned both to live and to farm the mineral rich land in the surrounding area. Isabelle Stanley set up camp on a nearby peak.
    The Dolomites Marathon in the Italian Alps is one of the major annual cycling events, approximately 86 miles in length, weaving its way through spectacular mountain passes. Dominic Casciani decided to make his return after a twelve-year reprieve.

    Presenter: Kate Adie
    Producer: Serena Tarling
    Production Coordinator: Gemma Ashman
    Editor: Richard Fenton-Smith

    • 29 min

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5
893 Ratings

893 Ratings

Anita Swale ,

terrific range

I used to use this as a way of keeping a sense of perspective & balance with the rest of the world. Recently though I have found some of the reporters somewhat self-absorbed and sometimes voyeuristic, which makes me uncomfortable.

lovealways# ,

Valentino kiosk

Please give more of kiosk stories her smile her pain and her hope came through There so much pain in the world and it’s looking desperate So desperate and hope and joy seems in short supply
I never know when we will be able breath again
I know this hard to hear but why can’t all the world gather together and just crush this mad man putin
Surly we can crush this crazy man ? You seem to bomb other countries with ease and yet you seem to drag your heal with crazy man
Kiosk story and her rich smile will stay with me in the mean time world leaders are failing us all

davew80 ,

Always great

I love FOOC and have listened for many years but lately the Kate Adie segues have some very painful sibilance.
Keep up the good work though! Please don’t stop.

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