Frank Langfitt is NPR's London correspondent. He covers the UK and Ireland, as well as stories elsewhere in Europe.
Langfitt arrived in London in June 2016. A week later, the UK voted for Brexit. He's been busy ever since, covering the most tumultuous period in British politics in decades. Langfitt has reported on everything from Brexit's economic impact, Chinese influence campaigns and terror attacks to the renewed push for Scottish independence, political tensions in Northern Ireland and Megxit. Langfitt has contributed to NPR podcasts, including Consider This, The Indicator from Planet Money, Code Switch and Pop Culture Happy Hour. He also appears on the BBC and PBS Newshour.
Previously, Langfitt spent five years as an NPR correspondent covering China. Based in Shanghai, he drove a free taxi around the city for a series on a changing China as seen through the eyes of ordinary people. As part of the series, Langfitt drove passengers back to the countryside for Chinese New Year and served as a wedding chauffeur. He expanded his reporting into a book, The Shanghai Free Taxi: Journeys with the Hustlers and Rebels of the New China (Public Affairs, Hachette).
While in China, Langfitt also reported on the government's infamous "black jails" — secret detention centers — as well as his own travails taking China's driver's test, which he failed three times.
Before moving to Shanghai, Langfitt was NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi. He reported from Sudan, covered the civil war in Somalia, and interviewed imprisoned Somali pirates, who insisted they were just misunderstood fishermen. During the Arab Spring, Langfitt covered the uprising and crushing of the democracy movement in Bahrain.
Prior to Africa, Langfitt was NPR's labor correspondent based in Washington, DC. He covered coal mine disasters in West Virginia, the 2008 financial crisis and the bankruptcy of General Motors. His story with producer Brian Reed of how GM failed to learn from a joint-venture factory with Toyota was featured on This American Life and has been taught in business schools at Yale, Penn and NYU.
In 2008, Langfitt covered the Beijing Olympics as a member of NPR's team, which won an Edward R. Murrow Award for sports reporting. Langfitt's print and visual journalism have also been honored by the Overseas Press Association and the White House News Photographers Association.
Before coming to NPR, Langfitt spent five years as a correspondent in Beijing for The Baltimore Sun, covering a swath of Asia from East Timor to the Khyber Pass.
Langfitt spent his early years in journalism stringing for the Philadelphia Inquirer and living in Hazard, Kentucky, where he covered the state's Appalachian coalfields for the Lexington Herald-Leader. Prior to becoming a reporter, Langfitt dug latrines in Mexico and drove a taxi in his hometown of Philadelphia. Langfitt is a graduate of Princeton and was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard.
The past seven years have been the most tumultuous in the United Kingdom since the end of World War II. After five prime ministers and two monarchs, Frank Langfitt reflects on his tenure in the U.K.
People in Ireland lined up to see President Joe Biden during his visit on Wednesday, but the political reaction to the U.S. president was lukewarm, NPR's Frank Langfitt reports.
President Biden has landed in Belfast to visit the island of Ireland. He'll be honoring the 25th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement, which ended the political violence known as the troubles.
Humza Yousaf is the new leader of the pro-independence Scottish National Party. As head of the governing party, he is set to become Scotland's first minister.
Former service members and combat medics from other countries are in Ukraine to train civilians. They typically have just days with new conscripts before they are sent to the front.
Kuba Stasiak, a young volunteer from Poland, has braved artillery barrages to evacuate residents from Bakhmut, the epicenter of fighting in eastern Ukraine.
The report, "Freedom in the World 2023," finds that the gap between the number of countries where freedom has improved and where it has declined is at its narrowest in 17 years.
Russia and Ukraine are believed to have suffered equally horrific losses in the war. But when it comes to troop strength, the math is on Russia's side. Its population is four times Ukraine's.
The military alliance is publicly committed to preserving Ukraine's independence. But discussions on how to reach that goal are quietly contentious.
As Russia's war with Ukraine reaches the one-year mark, many say the war is entering a critical phase. But some Republican lawmakers are raising questions about the ongoing support from the U.S.