EventsNüStories Magazine

NüVoices in Perugia: The rise and transformation of women’s magazines and platforms

Young women’s magazines and platforms were previously associated with superficial coverage of beauty and makeup. Now, they’re leading the way on topics such as race and politics for a socially conscious young audience, as well as serving entire communities of civic-minded young women hungry for change.

In a panel at this year’s International Journalism Festival in Perugia, NüVoices Editor and Board Member Jessie Lau joined Teen Vogue’s Editor-in-Chief Versha Sharma and Suyin Haynes – freelance journalist and former Head of Editorial at gal-dem – in an engaging discussion on the progressive transformation of young women’s media spaces and the importance of platforming marginalised communities.


Despite the challenges of working on gender issues in a China context, NüVoices has successfully built a global network of writers, journalists, translators and artists interested in supporting the creative work of underrepresented communities in this space. In recent years, Teen Vogue’s shift from fashion bible to social activism has also only strengthened its brand, and gal-dem was a magazine widely praised for platforming the perspectives of people of colour from marginalised genders before it was forced to fold in 2023 due to budget challenges.

In addition to highlighting the crucial work of these platforms, the panel – moderated by Emma Löfgren, senior digital news editor at The Local Sweden – also shared insights on how outlets are building an audience that’s willing to read their stories and support their message.

About the panelists

Jessie Lau is a freelance journalist covering human rights, politics and culture from a transnational, feminist perspective. Her work has appeared in The Guardian, CNN, The Economist, BBC World Service and elsewhere. A specialist on China and Asia, she’s also editor and board member at NüVoices, a collective supporting gender minorities working on China subjects. A Hongkonger now based in London, she holds a holds a MSc. in International History from the London School of Economics, an LLM. from Peking University, and a BA in English from the University of California, Berkeley. Visit her website and follow her on X (formerly Twitter) or Instagram @_laujessie

Suyin Haynes is a London-based freelance journalist covering identity, culture and underrepresented communities. Her work has been published in TIME, CNN, Al Jazeera, the Guardian, openDemocracy and more. She is a Visiting Lecturer at City, University of London, and is a media consultant working with values-driven organisations on storytelling and communications. She is also the creator of the Substack newsletter, Ginkgo Leaves, and is a published short fiction story writer. Suyin was previously Head of Editorial at gal-dem, the award-winning media company platforming people of colour from marginalised genders. Before this, she was a journalist at TIME for five years, based in both London and Hong Kong.

Versha Sharma is the Editor-in-Chief of Teen Vogue, where she is focused on covering social justice, culture, fashion and politics through the lens of young people. Previously, she was Managing Editor and Senior Correspondent at NowThis, where she led audience growth across platforms, working at the social video-first company since 2014. She won the Edward R. Murrow award for her documentary work about the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico as part of the NowThis Reports team. Prior to joining NowThis, she worked as a reporter and editor for Vocativ, where she managed a team of international reporters. She covered the 2012 U.S. presidential election for MSNBC and began her journalism career as an intern for Talking Points Memo in 2009.

About the moderator

Emma Löfgren is a senior digital news editor who believes journalism can help people find their place in the world. Her main interests are solutions journalism, audience building and editorial branding. Starting her career in local news in Scotland, she has since 2015 been based in her native Sweden, where she leads The Local Sweden’s award-winning newsroom in reporting on issues that affect the lives of foreign professionals. She’s also the deputy managing editor of The Local Europe’s editorial team and a contributor to The Fix, a trade publication for media leaders. Emma is a solutions journalism trainer and public speaker. A graduate of the Online News Association’s Women’s Leadership Accelerator, she mentors for Digital Women Leaders and Journalism Mentors.