IRE16 Keynote

Coronel: A Golden Age of Global Muckraking at Hand

Ten years ago, when I first moved to New York and gave my first lecture at the Columbia Journalism School, I told students that I believe we are at the dawn of a Golden Age of global muckraking. They were a great class, but they didn’t believe me. But look at where we are now.

Khadija Ismayilova walks out of prison after spending 1-1/2 years behind bars. (Photo: Meydan TV)

Khadija Ismayilova Freed from Azerbaijan Prison

Journalist Khadija Ismayilova was set free after her final appeal hearing today at the Supreme Court of Azerbaijan two days before her 40th birthday. Ismayilova, an award-winning reporter who exposed the corruption of the ruling Aliyev family, has been in prison in Baku since her arrest on Dec. 5, 2014. “There was no crime,” Ismayilova told the press upon her release. “President Aliyev and his clique decided to get rid of any criticism against them.”

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Panama Papers Showcase Power of a Global Movement

The ongoing and spectacular investigation “Panama Papers” represents the culmination of a significant shift in the way journalism is now practiced. The project also represents 40 years of work done by groups of investigative reporters to bring the profession into the 21st Century. “The Panama Papers showcases not so much technological power but the power of the global investigative reporting movement,” says Sheila Coronel of the Columbia Journalism School.

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Are Panama Papers Really a Campaign Against Privacy?

We do agree with Ramon Fonseca about one thing: that “Each person has a right to privacy, whether they are a king or a beggar.” But that’s where our commonality with co-founder of disgraced Panama law firm Mossack Fonseca ends. This scandal isn’t about privacy. If anything, it’s about the need for transparency about how the powerful wield their power.

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Spotlight Wins Oscars for Best Picture, Screenplay

The movie Spotlight, based on the Boston Globe’s investigative reporting into pedophilia inside the Catholic Church, won best picture and best screenplay at the 2016 Academy Awards late Sunday. “We would not be here today without the heroic efforts of our reporters,” declared producer Blye Pagon Faust as she accepted the award. “Not only do they effect global change, but they absolutely show us the necessity of investigative journalism.”

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IRE’s Meyer Awards Honor Best Use of Social Science

A data-driven investigation that exposed the human cost of school re-segregation in central Florida is the first-place winner of the 2015 Philip Meyer Journalism Award. Investigations that explored the growth of diversity in American cities and revealed the small cadre of attorneys who dominate the U.S. Supreme Court docket are also top winners. The Meyer Award, given annually by Investigative Reporters and Editors, recognizes the best use of social science methods in journalism.

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GIJN Welcomes 12 New Members from 11 Countries

The Global Investigative Journalism Network is delighted to welcome to 12 new member organizations this week. Among them are an Indian newsroom famed for its undercover work, a Peruvian data journalism pioneer, a Transylvanian muckraking nonprofit, and the training arm of a top Nigerian investigative daily. We are particularly pleased to welcome for the first time groups from Botswana, in southern Africa; the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan; and Vietnam in Southeast Asia.

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Top Ten #ddj: The Week’s Most Popular Data Journalism Links

What’s the data-driven journalism crowd tweeting? Here are the top links for Jan. 11- 17: Eleven common situations with data (@LocalFocusNL); 2015 in charts (@nytimes); Quartz guide to bad data (@gijn); text document extractor scripts (@pudo); DW Akademie trainees (@dw_akademie); and more.

Photo: Janneke Staaks in Flickr (CC License)

The Quartz Guide to Bad Data

This guide was written to help Quartz staff identify problems with data they report on. After publishing it on GitHub, we heard from folks in many other industries who also found it helpful, so we’re republishing it here for the benefit of all Quartz readers. The most up-to-date version of this guide can always be found on GitHub. An exhaustive reference to problems seen in real-world data along with suggestions on how to resolve them. As a reporter your world is full of data.