(CNN) – With football facing another racism row, questions are being raised about how the "beautiful game" can protect its brand – and its players’ marketability.
In November, FIFA president Sepp Blatter stoked controversy after telling CNN that racism on the pitch could be settled with a handshake. On Tuesday Liverpool striker Luis Suarez was found guilty of racially abusing a Manchester United player in October.
The UK prosecution service Wednesday said England football captain John Terry would face charges of racially abusing another player.
Terry will appear before magistrates in west London on February 1, 2012, and faces a maximum penalty of £2,500 ($3,900). He has denied the charges, saying in a statement that he will fight “tooth and nail to prove my innocence.”
Whatever the outcome of the case, football itself has been tainted, says Ray Rudowski, regional director of crisis planning and training at PR agency Edelman. He told CNN that the wider questions for sponsors are how to use their influence and association with the game to ensure racism is eliminated.
The sport, Rudowski says, needs to admit to its problems if it wants to clean up. It then needs to formulate a policy for dealing with any issues that arise.
Individual situations are more complicated, he adds - but they should try and “reframe the conversation around ending racism as a stain on the game.”
Editor's note: "Along the Silk Road" is a weekly segment on Global Exchange, that will explore the burgeoning trade and investment links from the Middle East to Asia. Watch Global Exchange, on CNN International, Sunday to Thursday 1100 ET, 1600 GMT and 1700 CET.
Baku, Azerbaijan (CNN) – Azerbaijan was once known as the gateway between China and Europe, where ancient transport links were crucial in transporting goods east to west on the silk trading route. Now, in the capital Baku, authorities are developing the country's transport infrastructure to claim Azerbaijan as a central stop on the new Silk Road.
“The road to development begins with the development of roads, so clearly it's a very crucial element of allowing the flow of goods between people so that markets can function,” Joseph Owen, World Bank manager for Azerbaijan, told CNN’s Becky Anderson.
Today the region is focused is on the TRACECA project - a Transport Corridor of Europe, the Caucuses and Asia.
Azerbaijan is located in the very center of the TRACECA project and it's a gateway to both Europe and Asia.
(CNN) – Eugene Rogan, author of “The Arabs: A history” told CNN the world was seeing a new era of Islamic politics with their voice moving from the oppressed to the legitimate.
He said they are finding common ground with secular groups and he expected them to build business-friendly, pro-tourism agendas.
He added the new Islamic politics was open for business.
Johannesburg (CNN) - Last weekend I was at a Christmas parade in Barrydale, a small town in the Western Cape - a “dorp” as we call it here in South Africa.
I was working, following the Handspring puppeteers around, telling their story for African Voices. A little bit of shopping was called for, and besides buying a remarkably cheap case of shiraz from a local winery, I bought something called "ampoule couture."
My little piece of art is made of an old milk bottle, a couple of cut outs from a cardboard box, some beads, some wire, a few bottle tops and a crocodile clip.
Take the whole thing, wrap it around your low-energy light bulb and you have a work of art.
Billund, Denmark (CNN) - How many chief executives can put “working at a pre-school” on their resumes? Jorgen Vig Knudstorp, boss of toy giant Lego, can.
What’s more, he credits his time spent at a kindergarten with leadership lessons that later helped him bring the well-loved brand back to profitability.
“There are two things about working in a kindergarten: One is you are dealing with children and, at least in this country, they don’t care what you are telling them,” Knudstorp says. They care about what kind of role model you are and how you can influence them.”
The fluid leadership structure - often reflected in institutions like nursery schools, kindergartens and pre-schools - was also beneficial. At Lego, he says, “you need to manage the informal organization as much as the formal authority structure.”
Dublin (CNN) – Many of the world's airports are evolving from origins as mass transit hubs into economic powerhouses.
Dublin has similar ambitions for its own gateway. The Irish capital is using its airport facilities as a carrot to attract green businesses. CNN's Jim Boulden flew into Dublin Airport's shiny new Terminal 2 for a closer look.
London (CNN) – Asian markets fell on news of North Korean leader Kim Jong Il’s death, but analysts and ratings agencies say the ongoing economic impact will depend in part on the ease at which power is transferred to his youngest son, Kim Jong Un.
In contrast to Asian stocks, those in Europe and the U.S. were unmoved by the death of North Korea’s self-titled “Dear Leader,” as the rapid naming of his successor appeared to alleviate some fears of a power vacuum.
However, concerns the Korean peninsula would be destabilized by Kim's death prompted ratings agencies Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings to warn the sovereign rating of North Korea’s neighboring South Korea would come under scrutiny.
It also reinvigorated debate around whether the North Korean regime could collapse, and the peninsula be reunified.
London (CNN) – As the countdown to Christmas continues, shoppers across the world are pounding the pavements in search of the perfect present.
The festive season is a veritable godsend for retailers, many of which make much of their profits in the final month of the year.
Copenhagen (CNN) – Jens Bjorn Andersen, boss of Danish transport giant DSV, has a message for Europe’s politicians: Deal with Europe’s crisis like he has streamlined his business. Stop over-spending, trim the headcount and get a grip on costs.
Those struggling to rein in the eurozone’s ongoing debt problems might want to listen. DSV is one of those companies that you probably haven’t heard of but, once you do, you’ll see their logo everywhere.
After interviewing Andersen at DSV’s Copenhagen headquarters, we spent eight hours on the road. To pass the time, we played a game spotting DSV transporters. They have around 17,000 trucks on the road every day, and we spied at least one a minute.
Cape Town (CNN) – Asian trade and investment in Africa is growing, but where investment in Africa has traditionally concentrated on natural resources, India is looking to diversify its interests in the African continent.
In recent years, India has made new inroads into African markets. Tata, which is owned by one of India's richest men, recently built a new truck-manufacturing plant outside Pretoria, South Africa, producing heavy vehicles that are sold in Africa.
“You cannot constantly keep importing finished vehicles,” Raman Dhawan, who runs Tata's African operations, told CNN's Robyn Curnow.
“We've started actually with just assembling the commercial vehicles, which is the trucks and bus chassis, and so as we move forward, yes, we will explore others,” he added. “So the basic thing is that you must put investment, add value locally and that's what we've really followed.”
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