A freelance journalist since 2004, Robert Coates has written widely on the Caribbean and Brazil for travel guides, newspapers and international organizations. Previously working in youth-focused roles in NGOs and local government in the UK and the Caribbean, he holds a masters in Postcolonial Politics from Aberystwyth and speaks Portuguese and French.
Oliver Marshall is a freelance writer and journalist specializing in history and travel relating to the Americas. His most recent travel articles have been to Connoisseur Circle, The Geographical Magazine, The Independent and Wanderlust Magazine. He first visited Brazil in 1982 and has been regularly ever since. He has degrees from the universities of East Anglia and Manchester and has been a research fellow at the Universities of London's Institute of Latin American Studies and the University of Oxford's Centre for Brazilian Studies.
Eager to leave genteel Bath in south west England as a fresh-faced eighteeen year old, Robert Coates used a handful of Rough Guides while backpacking the Middle East in the mid 1990s, always appreciating the books' approach to balancing coverage of the sights with intelligent background. A few years later he discovered a passion for the Caribbean while living in Jamaica as a youth worker, an experience which included drumming in a reggae band, inadvertently ending up in a riot, and developing a love for ackee and saltfish.
After two degrees and a stint as a reporter at the UN Commission for Human Rights, Robert's first work as a travel writer was in 2004. While visiting family in Belize, he met Rough Guide author Peter Eltringham and gained an informal - if alluring - contract to research music, punta nightlife, and human rights issues for the Rough Guide to Belize. He has since returned to the region numerous times to update Rough Guides to Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Caribbean - in the process visiting islands like Cuba, Curacao, St Lucia and Martinique. Dancing rum-in-hand through the carnival-crazed streets of Port of Spain led Robert onwards to Brazil, travelling across the country in 2007 before returning to the Cidade Maravilhosa to research the first edition Rough Guide to Rio de Janeiro, published in 2009.
In between times, Robert has worked for VSO as a volunteer manager in London and a programme officer in Guyana, as well as contributing to the New Internationalist and a range of other books and magazines. He's a self-confessed lover of Rio's big passions - football, Carnaval and samba - as well as being an enthusiastic hiker, canoeist and musician. When not in Brazil or the Caribbean, he is based in Bristol.