Recognized internationally as a photojournalist and documentary photographer, Salgado was born in Aimorés, Brazil and initially pursued a career in economics prior to abandoning this career in 1973 for one in journalistic and documentary photography. Salgado worked in agencies, notably joining Magnum Photos in 1979. He left Magnum in 1997 to open a studio with his wife. Salgado is best known for his images of workers in under developed nations, such as his series of miner from the Serra Peleda mine in Brazil. He has also developed projects based on his concern for the environment; his current project, Genesis, examines people and communities that have not been significantly impacted by modern life. He has been recognized both for his work by the Academy of Arts and Sciences in the United States, and also for his social activism, becoming a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.