Sham Jaff

Sham is a 29-year-old political scientist based in Berlin, Germany. When she's not at her 9-5 job, she reads all the news she can get her hands on. Why? She's a news junkie with a democratic vision: to break down the language barrier to elite journalism. 

With whlw:, she's created an email magazine, which she sends out every week. The promise: a heavily curated, easy-language and straight-to-the-point version of what happened last week in world news. More than 5,000 readers trust her as a source of information. 

Her previous projects are known as culture experiments with new digital formats, journalism and good ole' storytelling.


Commented Curriculum Vitae

Born in Sulaymaniah, Iraqi Kurdistan, Sham remembers figs, the Dukan lake and her family as the best parts of her childhood.

At the age of 8, she fled to Germany from Iraqi Kurdistan with her family. Her new home Nuremberg had mountains, too – but also Lebkuchen. 

She returned for an internship at the Kurdistan Regional Government in Sulaymaniah, Iraqi Kurdistan – only to find out that she had been the first intern ever. She did, however, found out that it was too early to return.

Fast forward to another internship in Berlin, where she translated former German chancellor Gerhard Schröder's letters to the Iraqi government and shook the hand of the Queen of Europe, Angela Merkel. 

It is during this time in her life that she started a tumblr blog called 'what happened last week'. It was an experiment in making a little go a long way.


Years later (it felt like an eternity), she graduated. Studying political science, philosophy and development economics, she felt like turning her back on academia and going out into the 'real' world (so her parents said)... 

And so she did. It was in a refugee camp in Central Greece where she connected the dots of her previous studies. As a volunteer, she found herself most useful as a translator of both worlds: the Western and the Middle Eastern. 


Her small tumblr blog turned into a bigger mission: to make complex things easy to understand for everybody.


To be continued.

"I want everybody to understand the news."

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© 2019 by Sham Jaff