Enrico Franceschini is the London correspondent of the Italian newspaper La Repubblica, for which he previously worked in New York, Moscow, Jerusalem and Washington DC. For his coverage of post- Soviet Russia he won the Europe Prize for Journalism in 1994. You can read about London in his blog My Tube for Repubblica. Among others, he published Voglio l’America (2009) and Londra Babilonia (2011).
After London Babilonia (2011), you are working on another book
about London. What is about?
True, but - knocking on wood - I prefer not to talk about it until is published.
Three words to describe Italy now.
Hopeful, changing, beautiful (as always).
If you were UK Prime Minister for a week, what would you do?
On Monday I would change the benefits system to prove that immigration is not the problem, on Tuesday I would force people to eat well when they go to the pub so they would not get so drunk on weekends, on Wednesday I would say that without Europe the Brits are nothing and would join the euro, on Thursday I would be out of the job.
What is the main difference between Italian and British journalism?
Here they have quality press and tabloids, we mix the two.
Jeremy Paxman or Stephen Sackur?
I am a Paxman fan and the recent interviews with Cameron and Milliband would pick him for PM.
Do you plan to go back to live in Italy one day?
When I’ll retire, but I do not plan to retire, if the Gods assist me.
New York or London?
New York in your 20s, London in your 50s, which is what I did and am doing.
West or East London?
Would love to say East, but I am too old for that.
Earliest London memory?
Mid ’70s, English breakfast in a smelly coffee-shop, I like it better now.
…where my son lives.