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.

[+] full biography[-] full biography

Pope Francis arrives for a special audience with the members of the UCIIM Catholic union of Italian secondary school teachers, in the Pope Paul VI hall, at the Vatican on Saturday. L'Osservatore Romano via AP hide caption

itoggle caption L'Osservatore Romano via AP

On the outskirts of Rome is a mile-long stretch of unfinished elevated track for a tramline. Work stopped in the mid-1990s. Under the guidance of Renzo Piano, architects are turning it into an elevated park. Courtesy of the G124 Group hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of the G124 Group

Pope Francis leads the consistory at St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City. In addition to 15 new electors, Pope Francis named five new cardinals who are over the age of 80 and, therefore, ineligible to vote in a conclave. Franco Origlia/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Franco Origlia/Getty Images

Cardinal Sean Patrick O'Malley of Boston arrives for a meeting of a Vatican commission on sex abuse at the Vatican on Saturday. O'Malley heads the group. Gregorio Borgia/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Gregorio Borgia/AP

Archbishop Oscar Romero of El Salvador (shown in 1977) was gunned down in a church in San Salvador in 1980 after criticizing a government crackdown. He had been celebrating Mass at the time. AP hide caption

itoggle caption AP

Pope Francis salutes the faithful during a meeting with members of the Pope John XXIII Community association in the Paul VI hall at the Vatican, on Dec. 20. The first pope from the global south wants to reshape the church for the contemporary world. L'Osservatore Romano via AP hide caption

itoggle caption L'Osservatore Romano via AP