Ari Shapiro

Ari Shapiro is an NPR international correspondent based in London. An award-winning journalist, his reporting covers a wide range of topics and can be heard on all of NPR's national news programs, including Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

Prior to his current post, Shapiro reported from the NPR Washington Desk as White House Correspondent during President Barack Obama's first and second terms, as Justice Correspondent during the George W. Bush administration and as a regular guest host on NPR's newsmagazines. He is also a frequent analyst on CNN, PBS, NBC and other television news outlets.

Shapiro's reporting has consistently won national accolades. The Columbia Journalism Review recognized him with a laurel for his investigation into disability benefits for injured American veterans. The American Bar Association awarded him the Silver Gavel for exposing the failures of Louisiana's detention system after Hurricane Katrina. He was the first recipient of the American Judges' Association American gavel Award, recognizing a body of work on U.S. courts and the American justice system. And at age 25, Shapiro won the Daniel Schorr Journalism Prize for an investigation of methamphetamine use and HIV transmission.

An occasional singer, Shapiro makes guest appearances with the "little orchestra" Pink Martini, whose recent albums feature several of his contributions. Since his debut at the Hollywood Bowl in 2009, Shapiro has performed live at many of the world's most storied venues, including Carnegie Hall in New York, L'Olympia in Paris, and Mount Lycabettus in Athens.

Shapiro graduated from Yale University magna cum laude and began his journalism career in the office of NPR Legal Affairs Correspondent Nina Totenberg.

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The Salt
3:36 am
Sat October 25, 2014

Tracing A Gin-Soaked Trail In London

A depiction of "Gin Lane," filled with sins caused by drunken revelries.
William Hogarth/Wikimedia

Originally published on Sat October 25, 2014 9:57 am

In Scotland, some long-time whisky makers are switching over to gin. In Germany, people who distill traditional brandies are doing the same. The world is in the middle of a gin distillery boom, and it is coming to America.

One place to find the roots of this boom is London, where 250 distilleries once existed in the city limits alone.

For Charles Maxwell, this story is personal. "My great-great-grandfather was apprenticed in the city of London in the 1680s to learn how to make gin," Maxwell says. "And from that day to this, we've distilled gin in London."

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Europe
2:33 pm
Fri October 24, 2014

U.K.'s Relationship With EU In A Rough Patch

Originally published on Fri October 24, 2014 4:59 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

In the EU people can settle anywhere without a work visa or other special permission. That has become a source of tension between the EU and the United Kingdom. Prime Minister Cameron wants to limit immigration in Europe. NPR's Ari Shapiro reports from London.

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Europe
3:10 pm
Fri October 17, 2014

Europe's Short-Term Economic Fixes Can't Solve Long-Term Problems

Originally published on Mon October 20, 2014 7:57 pm

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Animals
10:39 am
Sun October 12, 2014

American Intruder Lurks In Scottish Streams, Clawed And Hungry

In the northwestern United States, this crayfish would be just a friendly bit of local fauna. But in Scotland, it's an invasive species wreaking havoc on trout streams.
Ari Shapiro NPR

Originally published on Sun October 12, 2014 11:14 am

Forget Nessie: there's another insidious creature living in the waters of Scotland.

The story starts in the streams and lakes of the northwestern United States, where North American signal crayfish are a familiar sight. Turn over a rock and you may well encounter one.

But in Scottish streams and lochs, these creatures are intruders.

In the United States, we often hear about invasive Asian carp, zebra mussels or snakehead fish from China that take over American waterways. It's a two-way street: American species are causing chaos in other parts of the world, too.

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Music News
4:08 am
Sun October 12, 2014

The Royal Shakespeare Company Releases Music From Its Archive

The Royal Shakespeare Company is releasing albums of the music commissioned for its productions of many of the plays in this first collected edition of William Shakespeare's works.
Leon Neal AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 12, 2014 11:14 am

For more than a century, the Royal Shakespeare Company in England has hired composers to write original music for its productions. That sheet music has sat in a vault for decades — until now.

The company has started releasing albums that combine music from its contemporary productions with much older works.

Bruce O'Neill, head of music for the Royal Shakespeare Company, describes the archive as "a bit like a bank vault."

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Parallels
4:14 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

Movement Against Female Genital Mutilation Gains Spotlight In U.K.

British Prime Minister David Cameron speaks with campaigners against female genital mutilation at the Girl Summit in London in July.
Oli Scarff Getty Images

In Washington Thursday, a group of experts from across the government will hold its first meeting to address the practice known as female genital mutilation. This is one issue where the U.K. is far ahead of the United States.

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World
2:12 pm
Fri September 26, 2014

British Parliament Approves Airstrikes Against ISIS

Originally published on Fri September 26, 2014 3:51 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Europe
5:40 am
Sat September 20, 2014

The Turmoil In Scotland, Expressed By Its Poets

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 2:17 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Europe
2:16 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

United Kingdom Remains Intact But Not Unchanged

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 4:08 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Europe
3:02 am
Fri September 19, 2014

Voters In Scotland Reject Independence

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 5:57 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Europe
4:51 am
Thu September 18, 2014

Scottish Voters Cast Ballots On Whether To Cut Ties To U.K.

Originally published on Thu September 18, 2014 5:50 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Parallels
9:55 am
Wed September 17, 2014

For Scotland's 16-Year-Olds, The First Vote Will Be On Independence

Scotland lowered the voting age to 16 for Thursday's referendum on whether to remain part of the United Kingdom or opt for independence. It was widely assumed the teenagers would overwhelmingly vote for independence, but that doesn't appear to be the case.
Scott Heppell AP

Originally published on Wed September 17, 2014 4:03 pm

It's lunchtime at Drummond Community High School in Edinburgh. The kids are all wearing the uniform of a smart black blazer, white shirt and blue tie. Some 16- and 17-year-olds are here with their cheese sandwiches and their baked potatoes.

They get to cast ballots Thursday in what looks to be a close vote on whether Scotland will become independent or remain part of the United Kingdom.

Here's what some of them are saying:

"Scotland will be a richer country if there's a 'yes' vote" for independence, says Calum Preston. "It's just a fact."

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Europe
1:57 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Will Scotland Vote To Cut The Cord?

A tourist wears a poncho decorated with the national flag of Scotland to shelter from the weather in Scotland's capital, Edinburgh, on Monday.
Matt Dunham AP

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 11:03 am

It's pouring in Edinburgh, and the fog is so thick you can barely see to the end of the block.

People walking through the city center duck out of the rain into a little stone alcove to talk about the subject on everyone's mind — Thursday's big vote on whether Scotland will become an independent country.

The latest polls show the race is extremely tight.

In the Edinburgh rain, a striking number of voters have recently changed their minds. Michael Constantine says he and his parents all switched sides.

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Europe
2:34 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Cameron Makes Last Minute Appeal For Unity In Scotland

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 3:11 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Parallels
11:48 am
Tue September 9, 2014

Behind Every Good Whisky Is A Trusty Distillery Cat

Elijah, the Woodford Reserve Distillery mascot cat in Versailles, Ky., in 2013. He kept the workplace mouse-free for more than 20 years before dying this summer, the distillery said.
Charles Bertram Lexington Herald-Leader

Originally published on Wed September 10, 2014 9:42 am

Editor's Note: The Glenturret distillery announced Wednesday that Peat the kitten was killed. It was found on the side of the road near the distillery and was presumably hit by a car. The accident took place on Monday, the day before this story aired and was published online, but the distillery did not make the announcement until Wednesday.

As the great poet T.S. Eliot once said:

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Europe
3:11 am
Mon September 8, 2014

Poll: Momentum Grows For Scottish Independence From Britain

Originally published on Mon September 8, 2014 5:56 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Europe
5:50 am
Sat September 6, 2014

Russia Rips Up NATO's Rulebook

Originally published on Sat September 6, 2014 9:28 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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World
2:20 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

At NATO Summit, U.S. And Europe Ready New Sanctions Against Russia

Originally published on Fri September 5, 2014 6:39 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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World
2:36 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

World Leaders Descend On Wales To Help Decide NATO's Way Forward

Originally published on Thu September 4, 2014 4:51 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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I'm Melissa Block.

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National Security
3:11 am
Thu September 4, 2014

NATO Summit Considers: Ukraine Crisis, Rise Of Islamist Militants

Originally published on Thu September 4, 2014 5:43 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Europe
2:19 pm
Wed September 3, 2014

From Estonia, Obama Talks Tough On Islamic State And Russia

Originally published on Wed September 3, 2014 5:04 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Europe
4:07 am
Wed September 3, 2014

Ukraine Crisis Reshapes NATO's Mission

Originally published on Wed September 3, 2014 6:22 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Parallels
2:59 am
Sat August 30, 2014

The Wall That Defined Scotland's Frontier 2,000 Years Ago To Today

Hadrian's Wall marks the Roman Empire's northernmost boundary, and at one point is less than a mile from today's border between England and Scotland.
Ari Shapiro NPR

Originally published on Sat August 30, 2014 10:33 am

About 2,000 years ago, the Roman Empire stretched from the Middle East all the way across Western Europe. A wall marked the empire's northernmost boundary, at one point less than a mile from today's border between England and Scotland.

The Roman emperor Hadrian built the 73-mile wall at this point to keep the unruly Scottish out. When the Scottish vote in an independence referendum on Sept. 18, they will be deciding whether they want to separate from the rest of Britain.

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Parallels
12:35 pm
Wed August 27, 2014

It's Not Whisky, But Everyone In Scotland Drinks It By The Bottle

Irn Bru is a hugely popular Scottish soda that may even outsell Coca-Cola in Scotland. It also symbolizes local pride in a place that will vote on whether to break away from the United Kingdom next month.
Courtesy of Irn Bru

Originally published on Thu September 11, 2014 9:10 am

For a visitor to Scotland, it can be difficult to understand the local passion for a neon orange soda that locals call "the brew." The drink is Irn Bru (pronounced "iron brew").

You can find it from McDonald's to corner stores and pubs across Scotland. It is such a powerful force that it may even outsell Coca-Cola here — making it one of the few places on the globe where Coke isn't the leading brand.

"This stuff runs in my blood," says Chris Young, as he walks through downtown Glasgow carrying a bottle.

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Europe
3:21 am
Wed August 27, 2014

Report Details 'Horrific Abuse' Of Children In U.K. Town

Originally published on Wed August 27, 2014 5:15 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Europe
3:37 pm
Tue August 26, 2014

Report Details 16 Years Of 'Horrific Abuse' Of Children In U.K. Town

Alexis Jay, author of a report released Tuesday that documents the abuse of 1,400 children in Rotherham, England, says local authorities were aware of the problem for years and did nothing.
Dave Higgens PA Photos/Landov

Originally published on Tue August 26, 2014 6:07 pm

An investigation out on Tuesday documents the abuse of more than 1,400 children in Rotherham, England, and says local authorities were aware of the problem for years and did not respond.

Alexis Jay, who authored the report, used to be chief inspector of social work in Scotland.

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Parallels
12:30 am
Sat August 23, 2014

Scotland's Independence Vote And The Fate Of Britain's Nuclear Subs

A Trident submarine makes its way out from Faslane naval base in 2009. Scotland votes on whether it wants independence next month, raising questions about the future of Britain's naval base, including its nuclear subs.
Jeff J Mitchell Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 2, 2014 5:24 am

After 300 years in the United Kingdom, Scotland votes next month on whether to break the union, which raises many questions. One is particularly meaningful in the town of Helensburgh, in Western Scotland: What will happen to the U.K.'s nuclear weapons?

The Trident submarine program is based in Scotland, at Faslane naval base.

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Parallels
2:10 pm
Thu August 21, 2014

European Fighters Take On More Prominent Roles In The Islamic State

This image posted on a militant website shows ISIS fighters marching in Raqqa, Syria, where the extremist group trains recruits, including Westerners.
AP

Originally published on Thu August 21, 2014 7:18 pm

British authorities are trying to identify the masked man who executed American photojournalist James Foley in a video that has caused massive global reaction.

The man — who appears wearing all black, holding a knife, and wearing a gun holster — speaks in an accent that linguists say sounds like someone from East or South London. The video yields other clues to the man's identity, such as his height and the fact that he's left-handed.

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Europe
4:07 am
Mon August 18, 2014

WikiLeak's Assange May Leave Refuge Of Ecuador's Embassy

Originally published on Mon August 18, 2014 6:11 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Fine Art
3:48 am
Sat August 16, 2014

A Sea Of Ceramic Poppies Honors Britain's WWI Dead

This installation at the Tower of London will ultimately feature 888,246 ceramic poppies, honoring the soldiers from Britain and the British colonies who died in World War I.
Rich Preston NPR

Originally published on Tue November 11, 2014 3:10 pm

How do you memorialize an event that happened 100 years ago? Almost nobody is alive who witnessed the start of World War I. In England, at the Tower of London, an unusual artistic commemoration is blooming. Its name comes from a poem, written by an anonymous soldier in World War I: "The Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red."

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