2018 Cohort of Transatlantic Media Fellows

2018 Cohort of Transatlantic Media Fellows


After another round of strong applications, we are excited to announce our selection for the 2018 cohort of Transatlantic Media Fellows. 

Each year, we sponsor a select number of journalists from the US and Europe for an independent, five-day, transatlantic trip to research stories relevant our work on climate and energy policy, democracy and social policy, or foreign and security policy. Fellowships are selected annually and are open to journalists in any medium.

Climate & Energy Fellows

Felix Austen

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Felix Austen is a staff reporter and co-founder of the German constructive online magazine, Perspective Daily. He writes about energy, food, transport and pretty much anything we need to address to get the planet on a sustainable track. As a physicist, he cares about getting the numbers straight, but with years of experience as a journalist he even more so strives to make people care about sustainability. To reach that goal, he makes use of his skills in storytelling, which he acquired at the German journalism school Zeitenspiegel Reportageschule, and constructive journalism, a solution-oriented way of reporting which Perspective Daily established in the German.

Felix will use the Transatlantic Media Fellowship to investigate environmental injustice in the Los Angeles area, visit a deep red republican solar power heaven just north of Los Angeles, and take a look at the newly found love for climate solutions in both Silicon Valley and the green American “poster-boy” city of Portland, Oregon.

Jörg Wimalasena 

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Jörg Wimalasena is a politics and economics editor for taz. die tageszeitung. He studied political science and sociology in Vienna, Bordeaux and Berlin. Before joining taz, he worked for Zeit Online and completed an editorial traineeship („Volontariat“) with Berliner Zeitung. In addition to his Berlin-based editorial duties Jörg has reported from many places around the world including Kosovo, Gaza, Armenia, India and Colombia.

During his fellowship, Jörg will travel the gulf coast to study how minorities and the poor are more heavily affected by hurricanes due to structural reasons.

Kate Aronoff

Kate Aronoff is a Brooklyn-based writing fellow at In These Times magazine and a contributing writer for The Intercept, where she covers American politics and the politics of climate change. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in economics at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Among other outlets, her writing has appeared in the New York TimesHarpers, The Nation, Jacobin, The Atlantic, The Guardian, Dissent and Rolling Stone.

Kate will use her fellowship to report on the past, present and future of emissions trading in Europe, efforts toward energy democracy in Barcelona and the implications of Brexit for decarbonization in the United Kingdom.

Michael Riedmüller

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Michael Riedmüller is a freelance journalist from Austria and has been based in Lisbon, Portugal since 2015. He previously worked as a correspondent in Kiev, Ukraine for Radio FM4/ORF and other Austrian media outlets. His work has also been published in Le Monde Diplomatique, Der Standard, Datum, Wirtschaftswoche, Berliner Morgenpost, and elsewhere. Today the main focus of his work lies in energy and climate change issues.

Michael will use his fellowship to travel to eastern Kentucky, where he will investigate the difficult transition and the uncertain future the local coal communities are facing in view of the sharp decline of the coal industry.

Michael Isaac Stein

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Based in New Orleans, Michael Isaac Stein writes about climate issues, energy, and criminal justice in the Gulf of Mexico. In particular, he is interested in exploring how the changing climate exasperates existing social, political, and cultural problems. Locally, he writes for a investigative non-profit called The Lens, but his work also appears in national publications such as The Intercept, The New Republic, and CityLab.

Michael Isaac Stein will use his fellowship to travel to Cyprus, and find out how the split island is facing the challenge of droughts and freshwater salinization which have been intensified due to climate change.

Oliver Bilger

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Oliver Bilger is a freelance journalist based in Berlin. He regularly works for the political department of Der Tagesspiegel. His reports have been published in several publications including Neue Zürcher ZeitungZeit OnlineDie WeltCicero, and Handelsblatt. In 2017 he spent eight weeks as a visiting journalist at the Philadelphia Inquirer. He studied political science and communications in Mainz, Zurich, Berlin and London and completed a two-year journalistic training at Sueddeutsche Zeitung in Munich.

With the help of the Transatlantic Media Fellowship, he will travel to coal mining regions to find out if President Donald Trump will be able to keep his promise to save the mining industry.

Democracy & Social Policy Fellows

Elizabeth Barber

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Elizabeth Barber is a member of The New Yorker 's editorial staff . Her writing has appeared in The New Yorker, Wired, and TIME magazines, and she has also reported for Reuters, The Christian Science Monitor, and The Cambodia Daily. From 2015 to 2017, she was a fellow at Columbia Journalism School, from which she graduated in 2013.

She is using the fellowship to travel to Italy and report on, amoung other subjects, the intersections of faith and feminism.

Haloren Mellendorf

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Haloren Mellendorf is a reporter with The Fuller Project for International Reporting, a Washington, DC-based nonprofit dedicated to investigating and reporting on issues impacting women around the world. She has covered gender, immigration, politics, and the environment. Her work has appeared in The Washington PostThe Lily, and The Progressive magazine. Haloren earned her bachelor’s degree in Journalism and International Relations from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, along with certificate degrees in Middle Eastern Studies and African Studies. During college she wrote for The Daily Cardinal, one of the oldest student newspapers in the country. Haloren has also spent a year studying Arabic at the Language Institute of Fez, Morocco.

Haloren will use her fellowship to travel to Spain and research the effects EU asylum policy has had on women crossing from Morocco.

Martín Echenique & Adriana Loureiro Fernández

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Martín Echenique is a Chilean journalist who specializes in international affairs, immigration, and Hispanic/Latin American issues. After graduating with a Master of Science in Journalism from Columbia University, he moved to Buenos Aires to work for the International News desk of Clarín ––Argentina's main newspaper and the largest Spanish-speaking one in the world. Currently, he lives in Washington, DC and covers the Latino community in the US for CityLabUnivision, and The Atlantic. His work has been featured in both Spanish and English by foreign and American outlets, such as El MercurioLa TerceraThe Miami HeraldWiredMother Jones and The Huffington Post.

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Adriana Loureiro Fernández is a Venezuelan photojournalist who focuses on human rights, conflict, and immigration. She has photographed the Venezuelan-Colombian border, gang-related violence in Long Island, and the ongoing Venezuelan protests against President Maduro. Nowadays, Adriana is working on a long-term project focusing on crimes against humanity in Venezuela. Her work has been featured by The New York TimesLos Angeles TimesTIMEThe Intercept and The New Yorker, among other outlets. She won Ian Parry’s Highly Commended Award in 2017. Adriana holds a Master of Science in Journalism from Columbia University, where she was a fellow at the Global Migration Program.

Martin & Adriana will work together on a multimedia project on migration into the European Union via Spain.

Scott Heins

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Scott Heins is a photographer and journalist living in New York City. He specializes in documenting the intersections of class, race, and criminal justice, and pursues stories that highlight inequality in every form. He has reported for news outlets across the United States and worked abroad with NGOs in Haiti and Somalia. His work has been published in The Intercept, The Village Voice, Getty Images, and WNYC.

Scott will use his fellowship to travel to Berlin to report on asylum-seekers and refugees in the German arts community.


Foreign & Security Policy Fellows

Julian Hattem

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Julian Hattem is a temporary reporter with the Associated Press in Salt Lake City, Utah. He was previously a freelance journalist based in Uganda and a staff writer in Washington, DC with The Hill newspaper and the Yomiuri Shimbun, Japan’s largest daily newspaper. In 2017 he was an International Reporting Project fellow in Myanmar and Bangladesh. His reporting focuses on issues of conflict, politics, migration and popular culture. He has written for outlets including The Guardian, The Washington Post, Public Radio International, World Politics Review, The Atlantic, NPR and Quartz, among others.

Julian will use his fellowship to report on the dynamics of migration in Melilla, Spain.

Julian Heissler

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Julian Heissler, born 1983, works as a freelance journalist in Washington, DC. Before his move to the United States he covered German national politics in Berlin for a variety of news outlets. He is a graduate of Freie University Berlin and Hamburg Media School.

Julian will travel to the Czech Republic, Lithuania, and Finland to research the changing perceptions of Russia in Central and Eastern Europe. 

Thomas Meaney

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Thomas Meaney has reported for The New Yorker, the London Review of Books, and The Guardian “Long Read.” He was previously a fellow at the Einstein Forum in Potsdam.

Thomas will use his fellowship to report on the recent political deals and methods the EU and its member states have devised for keeping refugees and migrants out of Europe.


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It feels really nice to see something like this, I am sure that this is going to help others out so massively.


Great blog post!