National Partners

Stories from our program partners, including NPR, APM, and PRI.

Sleeping like a baby is a $325 million industry

Jan 16, 2017
Jenny Gold

Lindsay Barrick and her husband  had been trying to get their baby Arlo down for his nap for almost an hour.

“He sounds so miserable,” said Barrick, bouncing her screaming infant up and down. “I know, if you just would go to sleep you'd feel better!”

It would definitely make Arlo’s parents feel better. Since this adorable red-haired baby was born three months ago, they haven’t gotten much sleep.  The previous night, Barrick and her husband Jerry Talkington, who live in Oakland, Calif.,  were up three separate times with Arlo.

1/16/2017: It's Inauguration week

Jan 16, 2017
Marketplace

Welcome to Inauguration week! On this MLK Day we're looking at three themes of President-elect Donald Trump's campaign: An obsolete NATO, rolling back the estate tax and bringing back coal jobs. We'll talk about the state of all three and how Trump might act on them after he's sworn in Friday. Plus: a chat with the CEO of Qualcomm and how getting your kid to sleep became a $325 million industry.

Sam Harnett

The desire for increased productivity in Silicon Valley is spawning a new market, for substances under the heading “nootropics.”

Nootropics are marketed as pills that will increase your productivity and boost your brain power. Many in the scientific community question the claims. But in Silicon Valley, nootropics have become part of a subculture that is trying to work as many productive hours a day as possible.

Like many who take nootropics, Daniel Wiggins works in tech. “It started about nine months ago when I was working on my own startup,” Wiggins said.

Umit Bektas/Reuters

The attack inside an Istanbul nightclub on New Year's Day is the latest episode in a string of brutal terrorist attacks in Turkey, where terrorism has spiked since 2012. In 2016, 484 died in attacks, making it Turkey's deadliest year in this century for such violence, according to data compiled by media reports.

Why are investors punishing the pound?

Jan 16, 2017

The British pound's sizable fall on Monday; pushback against the World Economic Forum; and the rise of food insecurity on college campuses.

 

MLK Day has become a day of service for many. Those that are off may take the time to volunteer. For others, their employers may provide a day for annual volunteering, a benefit that is especially attractive to younger workers.

Click the above audio player to hear the full story.


Business and political  leaders descend on the Swiss Alpine resort of Davos this week for the latest annual World Economic Forum. They do so against a backdrop of rising populism, and opposition to some of things that Davos has promoted, like globalization. Some critics have attacked the event itself as elitist and blamed it for turning U.S. and European  citizens against free trade. 

Click the above audio player to hear the full story.


Jennie Cecil Moore

In Seattle, University of Washington senior Taylor Herring combines grants and part-time work to cover tuition and necessities. But toward the end of the quarter, his account gets pretty low.

“I think my second quarter here, after going through my second quarter running out of food, I was like, 'Well, do I need to buy this book?' I mean it’s so expensive, whereas later on I might need that,” Herring said.

Amazon has announced plans to add more than 100,000 full-time jobs over the next 18 months.

The news comes as U.S. companies try to burnish their credentials as a job-creator — a priority of the incoming Trump administration. Amazon’s growth isn’t a complete surprise, however, for a company expanding into so many different product categories.

Click the above audio player to hear the full story. 

Catherine Green

In November, Los Angeles voters committed $1.2 billion to addressing homelessness with passage of a proposition called HHH. The city's homeless population is second only to that of New York, a city twice its size. About 28,000 people are estimated to be sleeping on the streets of LA on any given night.

01/16/2017: A $50 billion eyewear merger

Jan 16, 2017
Marketplace

Eyewear maker Luxottica — known for its Ray-Ban shades — is merging with lens maker Essilor to create a company worth $50 billion. We'll explore the future of the eyewear market and explain why a deal between these two types of companies is so unusual. Next, we'll talk about Amazon's job growth plans, and then look at how Los Angeles plans to allocate $1.2 billion of funds dedicated to the homeless. 

01/16/17: Trump TV

Jan 16, 2017
Marketplace

The Internet Archive has launched a library of Trump's television appearances — the first of its kind for an incoming president. We'll hear from one of the archive's managing editors, Nancy Watzman, about why they created the collection and what they hope it's used for. Afterwards, we'll take a tour of of the Mercedes-Benz Stadium, a new playing venue for the Atlanta Falcons that's set to open later this year.  

<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/109aw/10672927735/">US Air National Guard/Maj. Matthew J. Sala</a>. <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">CC BY 2.0</a>. Image cropped.

For activists Trisha Shrum and Jill Kubit, climate change isn't just an abstract concept. Rather, it has faces and names: Eleanor and Gabriel, their children. And through their time capsule project DearTomorrow, Shrum and Kubit are hoping you’ll connect the planet’s future to your loved ones, too.

The 'Madhouse Effect' of climate denial in America

Jan 15, 2017
<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/davidstanleytravel/16298322411/">David Stanley</a>/<a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">CC BY 2.0</a>. Image cropped.

2016 is a wrap — and with it, likely the hottest year ever recorded. Temperatures weren’t the only anomaly: Louisiana, for instance, saw floods so severe they should only happen every 1,000 years.

<a href="https://twitter.com/UNHaiti/status/805826804497993728">Nations Unies Haïti</a>

It was seven years ago today, at 4:53 p.m., that Haiti was violently shaken. In just 35 seconds, the 7.0 earthquake destroyed much of the nation’s capital, Port-au-Prince, and claimed more than 200,000 lives.

Just over three months ago, on Oct. 4, Hurricane Matthew dealt another devastating blow to the country. The Category 4 storm’s 145-mph winds tore through Haiti’s southern peninsula, washing away farmland — one of the island nation's “breadbaskets” — along with vast swaths of homes and trees, and killing hundreds of people.

Three ways to die on Venus, and other space facts

Jan 14, 2017
ESA (image by Christophe Carreau).&nbsp;

Today we call it the “Big Dipper,” but in the year 75000, we may look up in the night sky and admire a constellation known affectionately as the “Big Spatula.”

As astronomer Dean Regas explains, that’s because the stars are moving relative to our position here. “And so you know, over thousands and thousands of years, the constellations we see today will actually change a little bit,” he says. “Where we saw the Big Dipper, they'll see something that looks like a big spatula. And who knows what kind of mythology will spring from that.”

Citizen scientists have been taking an annual ‘bird census’ for over a century

Jan 14, 2017
<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/kim/16677151112/">Finiky</a>/<a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">CC BY 2.0</a>. Image cropped.&nbsp;

As snow, wind and rain kept many of us cozy inside our homes this December, thousands of bird-watchers grabbed their binoculars and headed out for a day in the elements.

Theirs was no average bird-nerd-devotion: They were on a mission to count every bird they saw or heard, as part of the National Audubon Society's 117th annual Christmas Bird Count.

The count, which begins every Dec. 14 and wraps every Jan. 5, is a census of local bird populations.

<a href="https://twitter.com/rpdsanescobar/status/819161154245316608" target="_blank">Twitter screenshot</a>

There is no country in the world called San Escobar.

But in the age of "fake news" let's just imagine for a moment a "fake country" called San Escobar.

Think of it as "a small country located between Mexico and Guatemala with 200,000 citizens, with several main cities, including Esperal Bay, Santo Subito, and with several major exports including tomatoes and wine," says Ewa Lalik, a technology blogger in Warsaw, Poland.

Each week on The World, we feature a unique selection of music, and every week, we put together the highlights for you here. 

YouTube-inspired music confessionals

Songwriter Teitur Lassen is from the Faroe Islands. His latest collection of songs is a collaboration with American pianist and composer Nico Muhly, and performed with the Dutch ensemble Holland Baroque. The songs were inspired by YouTube videos in which people share something unique about themselves. — Marco

Courtesy L. Somi Roy

Persia claims to be the birthplace of polo, but the modern version of the game comes from the small state of Manipur in northeastern India. The British discovered it there and brought “hockey on horseback” to the West in the 19th century. These days, the West is going back to Manipur to play polo.

Since 2013, members of the United States Polo Association have been coming to compete with Manipuris. The 2017 USPA-Manipur games get underway next week in Manipur’s capital, Imphal.

Courtesy of RAICES

When Leah Aguilera was held in a special section of the Santa Ana City Jail in California for transgender people, who were being detained by immigration officials, she experienced a delay and pushback for her request for hormones and disparaging remarks for being transgender.

“The only thing I was thinking is that I want to get out. I really want to get out,” she says. “I was getting in, like, depression. I didn’t know how long I was going to be there.”

Joshua Lott/Reuters

Last month the Justice Department announced it would end the use of private prisons at the federal level in the next five years.

Thomas Hawk/Flicker

It is illegal for women to get an abortion in Ireland unless the pregnancy directly threatens her life.

With no other options, two women live-tweeted as they traveled to the United Kingdom for the procedure.

@TwoWomenTravel live-tweeted from Friday to Sunday. The description of the Twitter account states “Two Women, one procedure, 48 hours away from home.”

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