Investigating health care with data, money and people

By Kelsie Schrader Every beat comes with challenges and constraints, but health care presents a particularly complex set of issues. Between cutting through the industry’s jargon, finding individual sources and more, it takes time and knowledge to be a successful health care reporter. Three journalists with experience reporting on health care shared tips and strategies…

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A NICAR newbie goes to Chicago

By David Rodriguez Data journalism is still new to me. Despite that, I decided to dive in head first and attend the recent NICAR conference in Chicago. It was one of my best experiences as a journalist so far. I was reluctant to attend after feeling ignored for being “just an intern” at another event…

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NICAR18 resources available online

IRE is making it easier than ever to continue learning after the CAR Conference in Chicago. In addition to our tipsheets & links page, we’re providing all the data from hands-on classes as well as install guides to help you set up your computer with the software used in the hands-on labs. Here’s a list of…

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Behind the curtain of government data collection

By Alexis Allison  If you Google the ingredients in sausage, you’ll quickly notice that little standardization exists between recipes. The same is true for the care and keeping of government data — whether at the city, county, or federal level.  Partway through the panel dubbed, “Inside the sausage factory: An inside look at government data…

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Sources and tips for covering the gun industry

By Jing Ren Nick Penzenstadler from USA TODAY, Matt Drange from Forbes and Kim Smith at the University of Chicago Crime Lab discussed statistics and documents reporters covering guns should routinely gather at their CAR Conference panel. Because of the nature of her work, Smith’s team has access to many administrative statistics on firearms. She…

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Using data before, during and after natural disasters

By Yue Yu What data sets can reporters get ahead of natural disasters? How can reporters cover disasters as they happen? What kind of follow-up leads should they chase? Matt Dempsey from the Houston Chronicle, Omaya Sosa from Puerto Rico’s Center for Investigative Journalism and Lee Zurik from WVUE-TV in New Orleans broke down the…

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Following money trails in election coverage

By Tyler Wornell  Tracking the flow of money in an election can be a crucial reporting tool for knowing who’s influencing elections and how. Tracking some of that money could prove difficult, though. In Friday’s CAR Conference panel, “Wagging the Dog: Using campaign finance data to cover the midterm election,” Denise Roth Barber from the…

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Breaking the silence with reporting on sexual misconduct

By Dariya Tsyrenzhapova Only one-third of victims of sexual harassment ever report those incidents to the authorities, Bernice Yeung said. Yeung, a journalist with Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting and a member of award-winning teams that produced documentaries “Rape in the Fields” and “Rape on the Night Shift,” spoke as part of a…

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Who’s investigating college sports?

By Virginia Ward A series of small compromises between players and coaches often lead to high-risk operations within sports organizations. Syracuse University professor Jodi Upton, USA Today database editor Christopher Schnaars and Raycom investigative producer Jill Riepenhoff shared their experience investigating college and youth sports.   From major infractions to Title IX investigations, journalists are uncovering…

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