The Big Q

Questions - Ideas - Scholarship - Debates

Project for Public Interest Media

Why did the world’s supply chain fail and how can we make it more resilient? 🔊

The COVID pandemic has exposed the weaknesses of the world’s supply chain, with its emphasis on lowering costs without regard to the resilience of disruptions.

Why is China cracking down on dissident international students?

Students and scholars from China who criticise the regime in Beijing can face quick retaliation from fellow students and Chinese officials who harass their families back home. U.S. universities rarely intervene.

What does the outcome of COP26 mean for the future of the planet? 🔊

Earlier this month, world leaders met in Glasgow to negotiate on climate change. With the eyes of the world on COP26, did the meeting meet the needs of the globe to address the climate crisis? Was it successful?

Politics & Society

Surveillance: What is it good for?

Surveillance: What is it good for?

Online monitoring raises serious questions about privacy and rights, but where justified it can be used for good if organisations consider wider issues like transparency and fairness. 

Science & Technology

Do we need a fundamental rethink into how we address climate change?

Do we need a fundamental rethink into how we address climate change?

By Anne Salmond The way the Government is investing in tackling climate change is scientifically ill-informed, and economically ill-considered. It needs a fundamental rethink, writes Dame Anne Salmond.  My heart sank when I read about the commitments that New Zealand...

Business & Economics

How do rich politicians avoid paying tax?

How do rich politicians avoid paying tax?

IRS records reveal how Gov. Jim Justice, Gov. Jared Polis, former Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and other wealthy political figures slashed their taxes using strategies unavailable to most of their constituents.

Do we need a right to repair?

Do we need a right to repair?

Legislative changes must be made quickly to avoid New Zealand becoming a dumping ground for products unable to be sold overseas.

What has happened to supply-chains?

What has happened to supply-chains?

As Covid-19 cases decline, capacity constraints and shortages should ease, spending on travel and entertainment should pick up, slowing demand for goods and taking some of the pressure off supply chains and delivery times.

Arts & Culture

Why are the New Zealand Wars still important? 🔊

Why are the New Zealand Wars still important? 🔊

In this episode of the Big Q podcast, Sam Smith speaks with renowned New Zealand historian Vincent O’Malley about the New Zealand wars, their importance, and their place in contemporary New Zealand.

Why do some people believe the Earth is flat?

Why do some people believe the Earth is flat?

By Anders Furze Although scientific evidence says the Earth is a sphere orbiting the Sun, there are some people around who still think our planet is flat... and social media plays a role.  If you type ‘flat Earth’ into Google, you’d be joining a group of people that...