Columbia Announces 2024-2025 Knight-Bagehot Fellows in Economics and Business Journalism

Columbia Journalism School announced today 10 Knight-Bagehot Fellows in Economics and Business Journalism for the 2024-2025 academic year.

April 10, 2024

The mid-career fellowships are offered to experienced journalists who take graduate courses, primarily at Columbia's Schools of Business and Journalism. Fellows also attend weekly seminars with media and business executives and tech, finance and corporate experts during the nine-month program, which begins in August.

The Class of 2025 Fellows were chosen with input from a selection advisory committee of senior media and business executives. The incoming group will join more than 400 Knight-Bagehot alumni who cover economics, technology, finance and public policy around the globe.

The 2024-2025 Knight-Bagehot Fellows: 

Varsha Bansal is an independent reporter and editor from India writing at the intersection of technology, AI, labor and human rights. Her work has appeared in WIRED, TIME, Fortune, Slate, Rest of World, Economic Times, and more. She was longlisted for International Journalist of the Year award by One World Media in 2023 for her reportage on India’s gig workers. 

Brittany Jones-Cooper is a reporter and producer who has worked at CBS, ABC and CNBC Select where she’s a contributor on TODAY.  She covered personal finance at Yahoo Finance, conducted hundreds of live interviews at Build Series and hosted a web show highlighting social justice issues at Yahoo Lifestyle called Unmuted. Jones-Cooper also produced Microsoft's  Changemakers podcast series.
Olivia Konotey-Ahulu is the UK's equality reporter for Bloomberg News, where she covers disparities in the economy and the workplace. Her work on the inequity facing Black Britons in the housing market and the real estate sector has won awards with the Foreign Press Association, MHP Mischief 30 to Watch and the National Association of Black Journalists. 

Ralf Rivas is a business reporter and desk editor at Rappler. His most impactful stories include the rise of Chinese online gambling in Manila and cronyism under the Duterte and Marcos administrations. He is the host of “Business Sense.” Ralf is also a lecturer at the University of the Philippines—Los Baños, teaching data journalism, media ethics, and science  communication.   

Sarah L. Ryley is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative and data journalist at The Boston Globe, where she has covered topics including biotechnology investments, gun manufacturing, and municipal corruption. Previously, she reported on the pandemic response for the New York Times Opinion video team, and on law enforcement for the New York Daily News, ProPublica, The Trace, and BuzzFeed News.

Bjarke Smith-Meyer is POLITICO's Senior Finance Correspondent in Europe. He was among the first to join the finance desk when POLITICO arrived in Brussels and has led coverage of the past decade's biggest finance stories, including the Greek debt crisis, Europe's 2018 dirty money scandals, EU finance ministers' response to the pandemic and the cryptocurrency crash of 2022.

Alexandra Sternlicht is a tech reporter at Fortune who covers the creator economy. Prior to Fortune, she worked at Forbes editing, reporting and leading Under 30. Alexandra has also worked in audience development at The New York Times and served as director of marketing for an app startup. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania.

Ken Sweet is the banking reporter for The Associated Press, where he writes about the nation’s biggest banks, their regulators and how financial services impact Americans. Before joining the AP, he covered private equity at The Wall Street Journal. He also has written for CNNMoney and Bloomberg News. His corgi, Latke, was once featured in Bon Appétit magazine. 

Kate Taylor is a senior correspondent on Business Insider's features team. She was an executive producer on the docuseries "Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV," which debuted on Investigation Discovery in March. Previously, she covered the business of fast food and retail at Business Insider and Entrepreneur Magazine.

Erchi Zhang is the deputy director of Caixin’s TMT News Desk, based in Shanghai. Since joining Caixin in 2015, he has covered the global tech industry, including the semiconductor, automotive, and AI sectors. He also writes extensively about the international expansion of Chinese enterprises, and has traveled to various countries, such as Indonesia and Saudi Arabia, to document this trend. 

About the Knight-Bagehot Fellowship
Founded in 1975, the Knight-Bagehot Fellowship is named for John S. and James L. Knight, brothers who established the Knight Foundation, and Walter Bagehot, the 19th-century British economist and editor of The Economist. The Fellowship is administered by the Columbia Journalism School. Funds are provided by an endowment from the Knight Foundation with annual tuition scholarships supported by grants from foundations and corporations, which have included The New York Times, Thomson Reuters, Bloomberg, Dow Jones & Co., JP Morgan Chase, Brunswick Group, Goldman Sachs, Gladstone Place Partners, CNN, CBS, McKinsey & Co., and Edelman.
About Columbia Journalism School
For more than a century, the Columbia Journalism School has been preparing journalists in programs that stress academic rigor, ethics, journalistic inquiry and professional practice. Founded with a gift from Joseph Pulitzer, the school opened in 1912 and offers Master of Science, Master of Arts, Master of Science in Data Journalism, a joint Master of Science degree in Computer Science and Journalism, The Knight-Bagehot Fellowship in Economics and Business Journalism and a Doctor of Philosophy in Communications. It houses the Columbia Journalism Review, the Brown Institute for Media Innovation, The Tow Center for Digital Journalism, The Ira A. Lipman Center for Journalism and Civil and Human Rights and the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma. The school also administers many of the leading journalism awards, including the Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia University Awards, the Maria Moors Cabot Prizes, the John Chancellor Award, the John B. Oakes Award for Distinguished Environmental Journalism, Dart Awards for Excellence in Coverage of Trauma, Paul Tobenkin Memorial Award, the Mike Berger Awards and the WERT Global Prize for Women Business Journalists. 

For press inquiries:
Sarah M. Lally, Communications Manager
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