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Geology – Brazil’s subsoil is rich in water. The country lies on two gigantic aquifers, the Saga, in the northern region, also known as Alter do Chão, extending over more than 1,800 kilometers from Peru to Marajó Island, and the Guarani, in the south and southeast, and which also spans Brazil’s neighboring Southern Cone countries, with a total area of 1,2 million square kilometers. Together they make up a reserve that is equivalent to twice the volume of water of all of the planet’s existing lakes and rivers.

Current affairs – Worldwide, the number of women on the highest rungs of the corporate ladder is rising, a revolution in relation to the days when executive positions were exclusively filled in by men. In China, 50% of these positions are already in women’s hands, while in Brazil this share is at about 24% – 14% as CEOs.

Modern life – With economic development, new professions appeared, many of them admittedly unusual. Lawyers, engineers, and medical doctors are still fine careers, yet now they have the company of a range of new activities. Some of them were, until recently, odd jobs done by amateurs that have grown, become a business and, in many cases, have given rise to franchises.

Early risers – Numerous Brazilians trade day for night, work overnight, and spend hours from home to work and back in order to ensure a job and help keep the wheel of life turning. Often these are people who cannot get a good night’s sleep and have little contact with their families, especially in great metropolises, where they often travel from one end to the other.

History – At first, in the mid-1800s, it was home to farmer Antônio Clemente Pinto, a luxurious building and a Rio de Janeiro landmark. Years later, renamed Palácio do Catete, it became the residence and home office of a succession of Brazilian presidents. Later, when Brazil’s capital moved to Brasília, it became the Museum of the Republic, now with the mission of preserving the material heritage and historical testimony of the post-1889 regime.

Business – Brazil is a top world producer of eggs, yet is not high ranked in terms of consumption. In 2012, local per capita consumption was 164 eggs whereas, for example, the Mexicans consumed 360 units and the Europeans over 200. Campaigns promoted by the productive chain expect to raise per capita demand to 208 units by 2018.

Transport – According to the National Association of Cargo Transportation and Logistics, Brazilian land transportation companies today have a deficit of 106,000 drivers, a problem that has also become a headache for their congeners in Europe. In Brazil, the driving professional average deficit is estimated at 12.1% of the companies’ fleet, or 675,000 vehicles, according to the National Land Transportation Agency (ANTT).

Memory – In the 1950s and 1960s, Brazilian big bands, inspired by their US peers, livened up dancers with their elaborate arrangements for wind instruments complemented by a “kitchen”, as then was called the harmonic base of a band, which also included electric guitar, drums, bass, and piano. In those days, the highlights were, among others, the orchestras conducted by Enrico Simonetti, Fafá Lemos, Severino Araújo, and Sílvio Mazzuca.

Cities – In the heart of the Rio Grande do Sul mountain range, 830 meters above sea level, the landscape reveals a city with the airs of a European postcard, awarded by nature with occasional winter snowfalls, a mild weather in summer, and a profusion of flowers all year round. This is Gramado, with 35,000 inhabitants, a place packed with restaurants, bars, guesthouses, and hotels, and which is the destination of over 3 million visitors every year.

Interview – Lawyer Luiz Fernando Marrey Moncau, manager and researcher at the Center for Technology and Society at the Getulio Vargas Foundation, in Rio de Janeiro, speaks on the Civil Rights-based Framework for the Internet, and says that telecommunication companies are willing to dispute the interpretation of the law as regards the regulatory process, even in court if need be.

Culture – Brazilian literature is faced with a conundrum: there are many book launches, yet few readers. The big publishing companies are facing the sorcerer’s apprentice curse: they do not know what to do with the flood of new titles they themselves unleashed and regret the high storage costs for keeping them in their crammed warehouses.

Books – Lina Bo Bardi, who got off at the age of 32 at the Rio de Janeiro port, in 1946, in the company of her husband, Pietro Maria Bardi, then aged 46, both Italian, engraved her name as an architect of outstanding works in the country. Examples thereof are the São Paulo Museum of Art (Masp), created by Pietro Bardi in partnership with Assis Chateaubriand, and Sesc Pompeia, both in the city of São Paulo. The book Cidadela da Liberdade – Lina Bo Bardi and Sesc Pompeia, published by Edições Sesc São Paulo, tells a little about her history.

Thematic panel – Economist Leda Maria Paulani, São Paulo City’s secretary of planning, discussed with the members of the Economics, Sociology and Politics Council of the Federation of Trade in Goods, Services and Tourism, Sesc and Senac the future of the capital of the state of São Paulo, a city that is the mirror image of a country marred by inequality.