Where Do ProPublica’s Investigative Reporters Find Their Story Ideas?

A reader asked ProPublica Illinois how the media organization finds new story ideas. Reporter Jodi S. Cohen, who was just as curious as the reader, spoke to her colleagues to find out where they got their inspiration. From fleshing out ideas found in other colleagues’ stories to digging into data anomalies, and even paying extra attention to an idle truck parked at an abandoned gas station, their answers show that there are a myriad of ways in which inspiration for your next big story could strike.

How They Did It: Inside a Mega-Collaboration on the US-Mexico Wall

More than 30 journalists set out to film and observe every foot of the border with Mexico, from Texas to California. The result was a fully interactive map with about 20 hours of aerial footage of the border, a seven-chapter story about the journey, 14 additional stories about the consequences of the wall, 14 mini-documentaries and an explanation of the history of the border itself. Here’s how they did it.

This Week’s Top 10 in Data Journalism

What’s the global data journalism community tweeting about this week? Our NodeXL #ddj mapping from February 5 to 11 finds @flowingdata’s tips to visualizing missing or incomplete data, statistics of women’s challenges in journalism by @abraji and @generonumero and a cool income inequality interactive by @EconomicPolicy.