Editor in chief Jeffrey Goldberg announced today that Ian Urbina, a longtime reporter for The New York Times and a winner of the Pulitzer Prize, is becoming a contributing writer for The Atlantic.
Urbina’s first piece for The Atlantic, “A Visit to the World’s Tiniest Nation,” published this morning, is an exploration of what the remarkable (and bizarre) story of Sealand—a “micro-nation” on an eerie metal platform off the coast of England—tells us about libertarianism, national sovereignty, and the lawlessness of the ocean. As part of his five years of extensive reporting on the high seas for his forthcoming book The Outlaw Ocean, from which the piece is adapted, Urbina traveled through the churning waves of the North Sea to tour Sealand and interview its founding family. For The Atlantic, Urbina will continue his reporting on issues associated with the world’s oceans—crime, piracy, global migration, climate change—and on other topics, publishing across multiple platforms.
“Ian is one of the most intrepid reporters working today,” Goldberg says. “His writing about the world’s oceans is totally pathbreaking. I’m so excited to share his writing with readers of The Atlantic.”
During his career, Urbina has won a Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News, a George Polk Award for Foreign Reporting, and his work has been nominated for an Emmy Award. He has degrees in history and cultural anthropology from Georgetown University and the University of Chicago. Before joining The New York Times, he was a Fulbright Fellow in Cuba and he also wrote about the Middle East and Africa for various outlets including the Los Angeles Times, Harper’s, and Vanity Fair.
The Atlantic recently added contributing writers Rachel Monroe, whose latest investigation for The Atlantic told the story of the con man-turned-true-crime author; and Drew Gilpin Faust, President Emerita and the Arthur Kingsley Porter University Professor at Harvard University, who wrote recently on race, history, and memories of her childhood in Virginia.