GLOBAL VOICES COLUMN ARCHIVE

Giving a voice to the world's most fascinating untold global and social issues.

Making the Invisible Visible: Tackling Air Pollution

Stepping off a plane in Delhi a while back, Craig noticed a billboard in the distance. Your whitest whites, it promised, advertising a new brand of laundry detergent. The once white button-down in the photo had yellowed—so had the teeth of the Bollywood actor wearing it. Both were stained with soot. We thought of this when, for a few days this...

December 3rd, 2018 read more

Think Global, Act Local: What Canadians Can Do About Their Fury at Social Injustice in the News

Immigrant children peer out of barred windows in a building surrounded by razor wire. This isn’t Texas—it’s Laval, Quebec. Canadians are appalled at stories of migrant children torn from their parents in the United States, asking ourselves what to do from up North. With no vote to leverage, we don’t have much influence over American poli...

November 5th, 2018 read more

Girls Can Save the World: The Unexpected Benefits of Educating Girls

October 11 is International Day of the Girl Child What if we told you that you could simultaneously reduce poverty, counter radicalism, fight climate change, improve the health of entire communities, and increase the global food supply? All of that, with just one investment. That’s the power of girls’ education. Girls could be the world...

October 11th, 2018 read more

Meeting Our Heroes: The Fight for Diversity in Comic Books

When we were kids, we used to buy comics in bulk at a corner store near the local gas station. It was $3 for a random grab bag. Batman, Spider-Man, Fantastic Four—we never knew what we’d get. Except in some ways, we knew exactly what we’d get. With few exceptions, we’d get a white male hero. It’s strange that these stories about out...

September 7th, 2018 read more

Holding Ourselves Accountable: Our Gender Bias Report Card

Earlier this year, science writer Ed Yong announced in The Atlantic that he'd spent two years consciously trying to level the gender balance in his stories, ensuring the sources he spoke with represented the whole talent pool. We write frequently about diversity and wondered about our own grade on this scale. So we checked the numbers going back...

May 6th, 2018 read more

What Happens When Day Zero Comes Here?

A winter of bitter winds but little snow gives way to a dry spring. April showers are just a nursery rhyme. City officials ask citizens to take shorter showers. The drought drags through summer. By September, the town pumps are dredging up mud. One morning, you turn on your tap and nothing comes out. What do you do? Cape Town is struggling to...

April 4th, 2018 read more

Beware of Hidden Messages in Memes—Think Before You Click

A man gapes over his shoulder at the pretty girl who just passed him on the street. Beside him, his girlfriend glares in outrage. The punchline is in the captions: the head-turner is the new iPhone X, while the jilted girlfriend is the already-passé iPhone 8. You’ve probably seen—and shared—some version of this popular “distracted boyfr...

January 7th, 2018 read more

How the world can do better in 2017

“Have you tried switching 2016 off and back on again?” says an IT guy in a meme sweeping Facebook. Also making rounds online is a 2016 dumpster fire ornament. Festive and topical. As 2016 draws to a close, social media is alight with jokes and posts lamenting a year that will not go down in history as one of humanity’s finest. Civil war ke...

December 17th, 2016 read more

Could the United Nations make history this year?

There’s another election fraught with gender politics and global consequences, with one candidate braced to become a world leader—and no one is talking about it. This summer, outgoing Secretary General Ban Ki Moon publicly called for his successor to be a woman. In a body of 193 nations, the Secretary General of the United Nations is both...

October 1st, 2016 read more

The Power of Choice

Every day presents us with so many choices, we often take them for granted. Hit the gym for hot yoga, or a spin class? Have a nutritious and responsible kale smoothie, or indulge in a whip cream frappuccino? The choices we make—even the little ones—shape our identities and empower us in our own lives. Now try to picture your life without ...

April 30th, 2016 read more