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Improving Relations Between India & Pakistan, Bureaucracy in Higher Education, Film Compares Coal Shortage in 1980s Wales to Modern Appalachia: Today on Here and Now

1:06pm: Today Pakistan agreed to normalize trade relations with India when Pakistan’s cabinet granted ‘Most Favored Nation’ status to its neighbor. Indian granted MFN status to Pakistan in the 90’s, but Pakistan did not reciprocate.

1:12pm: From 1975 to 2005, the costs of attending public universities in the U.S. have tripled. Benjamin Ginsberg argues that much of the cause is administrative bloat. Ginsberg writes that since the 1970s the number of administrative staffers has risen by 235%, while the number of faculty and students has increased by about 50%.

1:35pm: The coalfields of Appalachia are running out of coal, and there’s not a large-scale effort to diversify the region’s economy. But there are lessons to be learned from a similar transition in an unlikely place: the small United Kingdom country of Wales. Now, a documentary filmmaker is exploring parallels between 1980s Wales and modern-day Appalachia. WFPL’s Erica Peterson spoke with Tom Hansell and joins us with a report.

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Documentary Filmmaker to Explore Parallels Between Welsh, Appalachian Mining Communities

The coalfields of Appalachia are running out of coal, and there’s not a large-scale effort to diversify the region’s economy. But there are lessons to be learned from a similar transition in an unlikely place: the small United Kingdom country of Wales. Now, a documentary filmmaker is exploring parallels between 1980s Wales and modern-day Appalachia.

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Tom Hansell is a former Kentucky resident and a documentary filmmaker at App State’s Appalachian Studies Center. In After Coal: Welsh and Appalachian Mining Communities, he’ll look for lessons from Wales’ transition away from coal that could be applicable in Appalachia.

“So often you hear about coal issues, particularly in Kentucky, as very emotional ‘jobs versus environment,’” he said. “And I think there are real reasons for that, but what I’m hoping to do in this project is actually look beyond that immediate conflict.

“Because we know that coal is a finite resource. So what I want to do is look beyond that and imagine a future after coal and use the Welsh experience to start people talking about ‘what can we do when the mines run out?’”