Dealing with inaccessible data and finding a needle in a million haystacks

By Jordan Gass-Poore’ Amanda Zamora of ProPublica answers questions during a panel on how to build a thorough data-based investigation with inaccessible, incomprehensible, and indeterminate data. Photo: Travis Hartman. Leading journalism professionals spoke about the search for finding meaning in messy data during Thursday morning’s session “Finding the needles in a million haystacks: How to build…

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IRE announces partnership with Cometdocs

You have probably encountered the problem of the PDF; the data and information are there, but locked in the PDF leaving you unable to filter, sort and work with the data in other ways. This file format can frustrate the savviest of journalists, but there are services available to help. IRE has partnered with Cometdocs.com,…

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Major collection of investigative reporting ‘roadmaps’ now available online

A major new resource for journalists is available online for the first time. IRE contest questionnaires provide road maps to how many of the best investigative projects of the past three decades were done. IRE members can now digitally search more than 15,000 of these valuable guides. Each questionnaire provides detail on how projects, entered…

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IRE announces new Database Library Director

We are pleased to announce that Elizabeth Lucas is joining IRE today as the new director of our National Institute for Computer-Assisted Reporting (NICAR) Database Library. Liz comes to IRE from the Center for Public Integrity, where she analyzed data for investigative projects on political, environmental and health topics. Among the projects she worked on…

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Behind the Story: Firefighters disabling the city’s budget

Photo credit:Elie Gardner/Post-Dispatch Social media can be an individual’s nightmare and a reporter’s goldmine. In “Disability pensions allow some firefighters to collect while working elsewhere,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s reporters used an array of investigative tools to publicize a mismanaged disability pension system that is eating away the city’s funds. But even when firefighters are capable…

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