Greta Thunberg

Every year since 1927, legendary American news outlet Time Magazine has featured a person, group or idea that “for better or for worse… has done the most to influence the events of the year.” Formerly called the Man or Woman of the Year, Time’s Person of the Year has been awarded to a diverse bunch, including Mahatma Gandhi, Mikhail Gorbachev and Mark Zuckerberg.

However, it has become ever harder to second-guess Time’s choices as they have shifted to recognising groups as well as individuals. 2014 was the turn of “the Ebola fighters”, 2017 had “the Silence Breakers” and last year was awarded to “the Guardians”, journalists who had risked their personal safety to break important stories.

A Teenage Winner?

According to 888 Sport, 2019’s winner will almost certainly be an individual. Swedish schoolgirl and climate activist Greta Thunberg is highly fancied to receive the accolade, at odds of 5/4. Second favourite, at 13/2, is Donald Trump, a controversial choice though few would dispute his ability to set the international news agenda. New Zealand premier Jacinda Arden is third favourite at 10/1.

Thunberg’s “school strikes” demanding immediate action on climate change have quickly spread throughout the world. In March over 1.4 million children from 300 cities joined the protest. A charismatic and inspiring figure, Thunberg could find herself winning a rare double this year: she is also favoured to claim this year’s Nobel Peace Prize.