GlobalPost announces winners of GroundTruth reporting fellowship on youth unemployment, fall conference at International House

BOSTON — GlobalPost is proud to announce 21 journalism fellows who will participate in The GroundTruth Project’s reporting fellowship on rising youth unemployment as part of an ambitious, year-long project that brings together media, technology, education and humanitarian partners for an authoritative, global exploration of the youth unemployment crisis.

Chosen from more than 400 applicants who proposed stories in 90 countries across six continents, the selected 21 fellows will report from 11 countries in the coming months as part of a GlobalPost Special Report titled “Generation TBD.”

The GroundTruth Project reporting fellowship will culminate in October with a global conference hosted by International House in New York City that will convene thought leaders, journalists and social entrepreneurs to highlight the issue of youth unemployment and to search for solutions to the problem.

The future prospects of an estimated 290 million young men and women around the world are “to be determined” as employment, education and training remain out of their reach.

To produce the Special Report “Generation TBD,” GroundTruth reporting fellows will spend 2 to 3 weeks in the field interviewing millennials in countries including Italy, Nigeria, Brazil, Iran and the United States.

The young people at the center of this reporting initiative are grappling with economic forces that many say have left them feeling “lost,” “burned,” and “left behind.” But even with youth unemployment rates above 50 percent in many countries, young people are innovating, collaborating and hustling to create new jobs and better lives. This project sets out to tell their stories.

GlobalPost will work with Public Radio International‘s The World as an editorial partner on the project and will also team up with RYOT News to create a mobile-friendly, multimedia reporting project. The fall conference at International House will be livecast via SiliconANGLE’s “theCube,” an innovative way to connect participants with an online audience.

The fellowship, which is made possible with support from The Ford Foundation, will be led by GlobalPost co-founder and editor-at-large Charles Sennott, who heads up The GroundTruth Project, along with VII Photo Agency co-founder Gary Knight and GlobalPost senior editor Kevin Grant. Each team will be assigned a veteran mentor based in the region where the reporting will be completed. 

The selected GroundTruth reporting fellows and their story concepts are listed below:

Christopher Livesay (@cLivesay) — Italy
A tale of two Italies – one whose native young are hamstrung by over 40 percent youth unemployment, and another that receives tens of thousands of migrants every year from countries plagued by war and poverty, most of whom are young men in search of work. Neither group wants to stay. 

Elizabeth Herman (@bizalith) and Velma Saric (@velmmina) — Bosnia-Herzegovina
This report examines the staggering rate of youth unemployment (57%) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, using it as a point of entry to examine the ethnic tensions that persist two decades after the Bosnian War.

Rachel Hoffman (@rachelikewords) and Cindy Huang (@chuang2012) — South Africa
Our story examines the impact of detention and incarceration policies on young people's ability to obtain work in South Africa. Through the story, we hope to enrich the discourse surrounding how policymakers and community leaders can work to stop the cycle of crime and poverty in South Africa.

Lauren Bohn (@LaurenBohn) and Chika Oduah (@ChikaOduah) — Nigeria
A multimedia look at how Nigeria’s millennials are combating woeful inequities with crime, religion, and, at their best, politics and art. In an increasingly vital, though tenuous, oil-rich country, the stakes are high for a generation -- and a country -- whose fate is yet to be determined.

Monica Ibrahim (@Monica_Ibrahime), Laura El-Tantawy (@lauraeltantawy) and Menan Khater (@Manannn1) — Egypt
Despite the worsening employment status in Egypt and the growing political turmoil, Young entrepreneurs have emerged to address the government shortcomings.  The report will shed light on the emerging entrepreneurial sector in Egypt, the challenges and the promises. It is presenting entrepreneurs' journey toward fulfilling their dreams and combating unemployment.

Yeganeh Salehi (@yeganehsalehi) and Maryam Rahmanian — Iran
An in-depth look at how youth unemployment is transforming Iran's traditional values, changing gender roles in a male dominated society. Women are gaining ground, but there are also troubling effects that are going largely ignored that will be investigated in this project.

Eleanor Stanford (@elucylinnet) and Saila Huusko (@sailajohanna) — United States
This project explores what youth unemployment means for traditionally blue-collar communities in today’s United States. Through multimedia and written word portraits, it will tell the stories of 6 young unemployed men in towns that have felt the full force of America’s industrial decline: Gary, IN, Youngstown, OH, and Buffalo, NY.

Gayathri Vaidyanathan (@gayathriv) Pracheta Sharma (@pracheta) — India

In India’s most populous state, colleges churn out educated young men for whom there are few jobs. Some return home to villages and take up farming or other types of agricultural labor. Others enter politics, which is seen as the lottery ticket out of the intergenerational cycle of poverty.

Coleen Jose (@coleenjose) — Philippines
I will examine how this rising economy is leaving behind millions of its unemployed youth by failing to support their technologically driven endeavors. This project will uncover how the most digitally engaged group on the planet is raising issue and innovation through social media.

Corinne Chin (@CorinneChin) and Fabiano Leal (@fabianohtl) — Brazil
Geração nem-nem – ‘generation neither-nor’ – is growing. One in five young Brazilians neither attend school nor work. In Rio de Janeiro's favelas, that number rises to 34%. They're losing faith in their country: “Imagina na Copa,” locals say – imagine how much worse it'll be during the World Cup.

Tik Root (@tikroot) and Juan Herrero (@DustWeAre) — Spain
Far from cameras and reporters, the plight of young people in rural Spain — where youth unemployment rates climb over 90 percent — has gone largely unnoticed. Focusing on a northern region and southern province, we hope to paint fuller picture of Spain’s ‘lost generation.'


GlobalPost is the world news site with outstanding original reporting from country-based journalists in all regions of the world. Noted by The New York Times as “offering a mix of news and features that only a handful of other news organizations can rival,” GlobalPost offers fresh, in-depth perspective on the changing global picture that affects us all by combining traditional journalistic values and the power of new media. GlobalPost has received a number of prestigious journalism awards for its work, including the Peabody Award, the Polk Award, two Edward R. Murrow Awards, and the Overseas Press Club Award.

The GroundTruth Project is a foundation-supported initiative led by GlobalPost co-founder and editor-at-large Charles M. Sennott. GroundTruth is dedicated to training the next generation of foreign correspondents in the digital age and produces Special Reports published on GlobalPost. It is focused on issues of social justice including human rights, freedom of expression, emerging democracies, the environment, religious affairs and global health.

International House is an exceptional residential community of 700 members selected from more than 100 countries. More than housing for graduate students and trainees in New York City, I-House offers a unique experience in cross-cultural exchange that transcends the classroom.

PRI’s The World is a global news radio, audio and multi-platform program created by Public Radio International to fulfill the critical need for more original global news created for and provided to Americans. It is presented in partnership with the BBC and WGBH. Hosted by Marco Werman, The World is heard on over 300 stations across North America.

RYOT News ( the first breaking news site to connect every story with a related action. Founded in 2012 by Bryn Mooser and David Darg, RYOT News empowers readers to learn not only what's going on in the world, but also what they can do about it. A percentage of all RYOT's advertising revenue is donated to a featured non-profit, which changes weekly.  

theCUBE is a live HD studio that creates conversations shared by millions and specializes in live, on-the-ground coverage of major conferences and events for SiliconANGLE. SiliconANGLE’s team provides insightful analysis and unique perspectives on the global impacts of rapid technological change. theCUBE is a space where big ideas get the light they need to grow. It is a leader in streaming live in HD with blogging, live tweeting, crowd chats and in-depth analysis. @theCUBE #theCUBE

With support from the Ford Foundation.