Sylvia Poggioli 2011 i
Kainaz Amaria/NPR
Sylvia Poggioli 2011
Kainaz Amaria/NPR

Sylvia Poggioli

Senior European Correspondent, Rome, Italy

Sylvia Poggioli is senior European correspondent for NPR's international desk covering political, economic, and cultural news in Italy, the Vatican, Western Europe and the Balkans. Poggioli's on-air reporting and analysis have encompassed the fall of communism in Eastern Europe, the turbulent civil war in the former Yugoslavia and how immigration has transformed European societies.

Since joining NPR's foreign desk in 1982, Poggioli has traveled extensively for reporting assignments. Most recently, she travelled to Norway to cover the aftermath of the brutal attacks by an ultra-rightwing extremist; to Greece, Spain, and Portugal for the latest on the euro-zone crisis; and the Balkans where the last wanted war criminals have been arrested.

In addition, Poggioli has traveled to France, Germany, United Kingdom, The Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Sweden, and Denmark to produce in-depth reports on immigration, racism, Islam, and the rise of the right in Europe.

Throughout her career Poggioli has been recognized for her work with distinctions including: the WBUR Foreign Correspondent Award, the Welles Hangen Award for Distinguished Journalism, a George Foster Peabody and National Women's Political Caucus/Radcliffe College Exceptional Merit Media Awards, the Edward Weintal Journalism Prize, and the Silver Angel Excellence in the Media Award. Poggioli was part of the NPR team that won the 2000 Overseas Press Club Award for coverage of the war in Kosovo. In 2009, she received the Maria Grazia Cutulli Award for foreign reporting.

In 2000, Poggioli received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Brandeis University. In 2006, she received an honorary degree from the University of Massachusetts at Boston together with Barack Obama.

Prior to this honor, Poggioli was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences "for her distinctive, cultivated and authoritative reports on 'ethnic cleansing' in Bosnia." In 1990, Poggioli spent an academic year at Harvard University as a research fellow at Harvard University's Center for Press, Politics, and Public Policy at the Kennedy School of Government.

From 1971 to 1986, Poggioli served as an editor on the English-language desk for the Ansa News Agency in Italy. She worked at the Festival of Two Worlds in Spoleto, Italy. She was actively involved with women's film and theater groups.

The daughter of Italian anti-fascists who were forced to flee Italy under Mussolini, Poggioli was born in Providence, Rhode Island, and grew up in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She graduated from Harvard College with a Bachelor's degree in Romance languages and literature. She later studied in Italy under a Fulbright Scholarship.

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Supporters of same-sex civil union gathered last Saturday in central Rome. Italy is the only major Western European country that has not legalized same-sex marriage or civil unions. The Senate plans to take up the question of civil unions on Thursday. Alberto Pizzoli/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Pope Francis caresses a baby at a charity in Rome on Friday. In keeping with his focus on the poor, he celebrated Mass at a soup kitchen at Rome's main train station. AP hide caption

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Starlings migrating in huge numbers come to roost this time of year in Rome. In the past, the city used special speakers that emit sounds of predators and starling distress calls to make the birds fly elsewhere. This year, falcons have been enlisted to drive the starlings out — without success. Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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A nun dances in expectation at the Entebbe International Airport in Uganda. Sylvia Poggioli/NPR hide caption

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The closing ceremony of the Second Vatican Council in St. Peter Square on Dec. 9, 1965. Forty bishops pledged to forsake worldly goods, but the agreement was largely ignored. Pope Francis' emphasis on helping the poor has revived talk about the Pact of the Catacombs. Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images hide caption

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