Charlotte Talks on WFAE

Weekdays at 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m.
Mike Collins

Charlotte Talks with Mike Collins is this region's exclusive forum for the discussion of politics, growth, the arts, culture, social issues, literature, human interest, the environment and more. If something is of interest to people in the Charlotte region, listeners and leaders know the topic is bound to be discussed on Charlotte Talks. 

You're invited to join the conversation during our live broadcast by E-mail at Or on Facebook and Twitter


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Charlotte Talks
9:00 am
Mon March 9, 2015

Women And Girls In Science And Tech Fields

Joergelman / Pixabay

9:00, Monday, March 9, 2015

It’s no secret that women are vastly unrepresented in the computer and technology fields and even those in the business say, “that has to change.” Technology is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the economy and is a huge job creator. That makes this more than an equality problem; it is an economic one. So, how to bring more women into the field? Three women working to close that gap share ideas.

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Charlotte Talks
9:00 am
Fri March 6, 2015

Talkin' Tarheel

9:00 a.m., Friday, March 6, 2015

My, how you talk – and when you do, you have an accent. We all have them. That said, we hope ya’ll can gather ‘round and set a spell, as we chew the fat about how North Carolinians talk. Two NC State professors who study language in its social context well tell us how upbringing, geography, socio-economic status and other factors influence speech.  

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Charlotte Talks
9:00 am
Thu March 5, 2015

Demography Changes, Implications

Map of global urban growth.
UN World Urbanization Prospects Report, 2014 Update

9:00, Thursday, March 5, 2015

Charlotte and Raleigh will grow faster than any other large cities in the U.S. over the next fifteen years, according to a projection from a new United Nations study of world population growth. Growth is expected to reach 71 percent in that time frame. This expansion is due in part to a strong economy and low cost of living. What this growth means is shifting demographics thanks to a rise in foreign immigration and return migration of people back into the South. But what do these demography shifts mean for demands on health care, implications to politics and business and innovation? 

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Charlotte Talks
9:00 am
Wed March 4, 2015

A Gardner's Guide To March Planning

freefotouk Flickr/

9:00, Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Think spring! Even though it might not seem like it with the weather, it's time to start planning your vegetable gardens and flower beds. If you can't wait to get started, why not start some plants inside and transfer them outside when it's warmer? We'll give you a how-to on this technique and find out what you should be doing in your garden right now. Our gardening experts will also answer your questions.

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Charlotte Talks
9:00 am
Tue March 3, 2015

Police Body Cameras

A Taser Axon-Flex body camera worn on a head mount.
Tom Bullock/WFAE News

9:00, Tuesday, March 3, 2015

This month Charlotte-Mecklenburg police begin equipping all their officers with a new tool: Body worn cameras. They’ll record what officers see and hear – and come with the promise of building public trust in the force. But they come with many questions as well. Guest host Tom Bullock is joined by privacy advocates, legal experts and the chief of the first police force in Mecklenburg County to equip their officers with these cameras.

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Charlotte Talks
9:00 am
Mon March 2, 2015

Charter Schools 101

Childen in school
Phil Roeder Flickr/

9:00, Monday, March 2, 2015

A couple of weeks ago, Mike Collins spoke with CMS Superintendent Ann Clark, along with the chair of the State Board of Education and the Governor’s Education Advisor about education and what we may see come out of this legislative session.

But one aspect of education policy has been in the news recently, and that is charter schools. What are charter schools? What is their role in our overall academic picture? Why do some fail while others succeed? 

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Charlotte Talks
10:11 am
Thu February 26, 2015

Making Charlotte A 'Smart City' Flickr/

9:00 a.m., Friday, February 27, 2015

Sustainability is something we hear a lot about and many of us try to make little changes to our daily habits, conserving resources and using energy in smart ways. And it turns out, cities are doing the same thing. There's a new strategy underway in uptown to make Charlotte a "smart city." But, what does that mean? What makes a “smart city”? We'll check in with the people behind this new effort, who are using digital technologies to improve the quality of services, and reducing costs and resource consumption. Find out how technology is making cities- including Charlotte- smarter, more livable, workable, and more sustainable.

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Charlotte Talks
3:46 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

I77 Toll Lane / Medicare

Proposed I77 toll lanes.
NCDOT Flickr/

9:00, Thursday, February 26, 2015

The fight over a proposed toll project on I-77 is now in court. An anti-toll group is suing North Carolina over its solution to horrible traffic in the Lake Norman area. We'll cover the latest on that project, and then transition to a big change under Obamacare that hasn't received as many headlines: how hospitals are now getting Medicare bonuses or penalties based on readmissions, infections and quality metrics.

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Charlotte Talks
10:27 am
Tue February 24, 2015

Slate Of Presidential Candidates

The sky is seen above the Truman Balcony of the White House, Sept., 29 2009.
Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy United States Government Work

9:00, Wednesday, February 25, 2015

It may seem a bit early to talk about candidates for the 2016 presidential election but, as one political science expert recently quipped, “most of us are already talking about 2020 as well!” For 2016, a large and growing list of candidates is crowding the GOP field, while Hillary Clinton appears to be standing alone- at least early on- in the Democrats’ corner. South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham even threw his hat into the ring of politicians forming committees and raising funds, and of course, the list of candidates will likely change in the coming months. Dr. Michael Bitzer guest hosts a panel of political pundits to help us handicap the race for the White House in 2016. 

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Charlotte Talks
10:59 am
Mon February 23, 2015

The Science Of Creating The Best Workplace

Phillie Casablanca Flickr/

9:00, Tuesday, February 24, 2015

In the workplace, employers have discovered that a happy worker is a productive one, so they’ve been looking for ways to make employees happier. But how to do that? Dr. Ron Friedman thinks he knows. He’s conducted scientific research and some of what he discovered may surprise you and your boss – things like naptime and rewarding failure. There’s a lot more and he’ll share his tips on creating the best workplace in this episode. 

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