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The Why? Curve

The Why? Curve

Each week Phil Dobbie and Roger Hearing get to grips with one issue that impacts our lives. It could be economic, social, technological or geopolitical. Whatever the subject, they'll talk to the experts who can give help explain what's really going on. And Phil and Roger back it up with their own research and opinions. It's half an hour to get across one of the key issues of the time, and they promise, it'll never be boring.
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Recent Episodes

March 16, 2023

The Great Divide

Is the wealth divide in Britain getting better or worse? Will the chancellor’s budget make any difference? Phil and Roger talk to Pat Thane, professor of Contemporary History at King's College London about our divided nation.

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March 9, 2023

Work in Progress

Work patterns shifted after COVID lockdowns, but is the impact long lasting? Phil and Roger ask management expert Clare Kelliher how the world of work is changing, and will we ever reach the 15 hour week promised by John Maynard …

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March 2, 2023

Hong Kong - Is the Shine Coming Off The Pearl Of The Orient?

It's masks off in Hong Kong, but with a more authoritarian China will the city ever return to its former glory?

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Feb. 23, 2023

Shaken. Can science predict the next big earthquake?

Earthquakes aren’t easy to predict. Mark Allen from the University of Durham explains why.

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About the Hosts

Phil DobbieProfile Photo

Phil Dobbie


Phil has been podcasting for two decades, long before it was fashionable. As well as the Why? Curve he hosts The NAB Morning Call, a daily finance podcast in Australia, all from a studio in Surrey. He's also the host of Debunking Economics, a weekly podcast with economics contrarian Steve Keen. He does bits of radio here and there, just to check he can still do it, which he can (just). Phil's ambition in life is for somebody to write a Wikipedia entry about him. Or world peace. Whichever is easier.

Roger HearingProfile Photo

Roger Hearing


Roger is not quite as old as the BBC, but then the BBC is very very old. He joined the BBC World Service in 1987, who sent him all over the world, then stuck him in the studio to present The World Today and Newshour. He's spent most of his working life at the beeb , except for a diversion to Bloomberg in recent years. Roger's aim in life has always been to co-host a podcast with someone marginally younger and slightly more talented, who he can depend on to write his biography on the website.