Slow down, wise up

What’s different about Tortoise is slow news. Not breaking news, but what’s driving it.

Our award-winning team doesn’t cover every story but takes the time to reveal just one a week. Calm, clear reporting on the stories that matter most.

sensemaker our daily roundup of the news that matters

The race is on

15 jANUARY 2021
Giles Whittell and Kim Darrah
  • Bobi Wine claimed victory in Uganda’s historic election after voters in some parts of the country stayed to watch the count after polls closed. President Museveni claimed an early lead; final results are due tomorrow.
  • Xi Jinping used a letter to the founder of Starbucks to call for a reset in US-China trade relations.
  • A new study estimated that more foreign-born residents left Britain last year than in any other year since the Second World War. 

Not just between the virus and the vaccines but between nations desperate for herd immunity. So far the competition seems to take the form of governments striving to do better because of positive headlines from elsewhere (Israel, UK, early hiccups notwithstanding). The risk is that the competition turns into a beggar-thy-neighbour scramble for supply…

The vaccine

Our way out of the coronavirus pandemic has been discovered – but not yet delivered.

Immigration & asylum

As the post-Brexit era begins, what does Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s vision of “global Britain” mean?

Year of the Screen

From Zoom calls to gaming sessions, from Netflix binges to smartphone-led protests, this is how 2020 panned out

Feminism Inc.

The Wing was the perfect haven for professional women – until it wasn’t. Here’s what happens when corporate feminism turns sour.

Halloween 2020

Leaks, delays, mistakes and recrimination. This Halloween, there was nothing scarier than the British government’s handling of the second lockdown

Chinese capitalism

Jack Ma’s fintech company Ant Group was set for one of the biggest stock market launches in history. Then China’s ruling party took offence.

Trans rights

Earlier this year, JK Rowling stepped into one of the fiercest debates of our time – gender and trans rights. Why?

Meet the editor
“In my recent journalism, I’ve been digging into the dysfunction at the heart of the UK government. Here’s an example, along with some other recent Tortoise articles I’ve enjoyed.”
Matt d’Ancona

Our members like

Photo essays

Our friends in the North
Xiomara Bender
29 June 2019

Bitter harvest
Mariano Silletti
16 November 2019

The wee muckers
Toby Binder
12 October 2019

Circus Love
Stephanie Gengotti
02 August 2019

Line in the sand
Pascal Maitre
7 February 2020

Life at the top
Kadir van Lohuizen and Yuri Kozyrev 
27 April 2019

No agua, no vida
John Trotter
30 November 2019

Isolated from the world
Jordi Ruiz Cirera
10 March 2019

Europe’s last pastoral
Rena Effendi
16 March 2019

Crunching the numbers

Discovering stories in big datasets.

Responsibility 100 Index

A ranking of the FTSE 100 companies on their contribution towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals, measuring their commitment to key social, environmental and ethical objectives such as carbon reduction, gender equality and good business practices.

The Global AI Index

Which countries are winning the race for the future?


The pandemic didn’t affect all of Britain equally.

Net zero

Tortoise members have been working on how to get to net zero carbon emissions by 2030.

Fighting for justice

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Big five

The forces changing our world

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