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The Explainer x Noteworthy: Is the State ignoring island depopulation?

Noteworthy’s Niall Sargent and islander John Walsh tell Susan Daly about what is needed to help our offshore islands thrive.

LAST UPDATE | 31 Jan 2023

Noteworthy logo with the design for ISLAND NATION project featuring a lighthouse painted in stripes with a beam of light coming from it with clouds in the background.

“IT’S THE SQUEAKY wheel that gets oiled.”

This is how one islander described the constant need for communities to campaign, protest and shout loudest to have their voices heard in a new series by investigative platform Noteworthy.

In our ISLAND NATION project, investigative reporter Niall Sargent took a deep dive into the key issues facing our islands, causing their numbers to drop and pushing them closer to depopulation.

The findings are part of an extensive cross-border investigation with journalists Jamie Mann for The Ferret in Scotland and Giacomo Zandonini for IrpiMedia in Italy, supported by a grant from

This week, as a bonus episode of The Explainer brought to you by Noteworthy, Susan Daly chats with Sargent and John Walsh, chair of the European Small Islands Federation, about what is needed to help our offshore islands thrive.

The Explainer / SoundCloud


This episode was put together by Susan Daly, Niall Sargent and producer Laura Byrne.

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