The World according to John Barth

by Admin PRX


The World is Changing

Since the merger I’ve been living and breathing The World.

That makes sense. It’s an important show. The World is the only global program created exclusively for U.S. audiences. It’s important to us. It’s important to your listeners.

You haven’t been shy: The World needs a serious upgrade. Well, we agree and the work is underway. Here’s what we’re tackling:

  • Develop a contemporary sound: tone, pacing, voice and style

  • Own the biggest beat: be on the ground more, around the world

  • Serve stations better: new tools, formats and opportunities

The past 100 days have been intense and we’ve already made a lot of progress toward a fresh, new sound. This is just the beginning, so buckle up!

I want to talk with you soon - about your ideas, how to make the show more valuable and responsive, and to hear what you think about where we are headed.

Internal Updates

There’s new leadership at the helm, and with that comes a brand-new perspective. Andrea Crossan is acting EP. Andie has incredible field reporting experience from Nicaragua to India to Afghanistan.

PRX is investing in digital. Alex Newman has been named Executive Editor. Alex came to The World from Al Jazeera and can do everything from coding to driving editorial agendas. We’ve already added global contributors from Mexico, Africa and Turkey.

We’ve reorganized staff, positions, and focus: we’re working on more ambitious reporting and new ways of telling important stories. We want to be in places where developments lead to the next headline.


The World is committed to ensuring your listeners are riveted by something every day. We will help them become truly informed about the world outside of our borders through engaging and fascinating stories.

We’re focused on telling stories that matter to your listeners; reports from the front lines of climate change, the struggle for human freedoms and stories of complexity, removed from pat answers and common wisdom.

In the past 100 days we’ve nearly tripled the number of on-the-ground reports originating from The World newsroom to balance the excellent interviews by host Marco Werman.

Here are a few we’re especially proud of:

Strategic Collaborations

The World has a unique partnership with the BBC. That partnership continues to play an important role in our success. But we need to expand our relationships further. Our future involves collaborating with well positioned partners to bring truly essential content to your listeners.

  • Groundbreaking investigations from Reveal are now regularly appearing on The World and we’ve placed a producer from The World in the Reveal newsroom to look for greater programming opportunities.

  • Monica Campbell just completed a special episode of PBS Frontline’s Dispatch podcast that was part of The World; Frontline is a key collaborator in where we are going.

We’ve got other big partnerships coming, but can’t say anything yet. Hold tight!

Plus, we’ve upgraded how we credit station-based reporters on web stories. We want to work with your newsrooms more, so this is just the beginning. 

Style, Tone and Tools

We’re working on enhancing reporter production styles; more personal, engaging and enthralling storytelling. Our reporters are doing an even better job of painting an audio portrait of The World for your listeners.

If you haven’t listened lately, you should. Here are examples of how our efforts are playing out:

We’re working on a new, station-friendly clock. That means more flexibility for localization and monetization. We’ll need your input before its implemented to make sure it fits your needs.

The show is also rethinking how we help you fundraise. We’ll provide the very best tools we can, starting now. We want to ensure The World helps you drive revenue