Graph databases 1: Building a database

  • Event: 2019 CAR Conference
  • Speakers: Leila Haddou of independent journalist; William Lyon of Neo4j
  • Date/Time: Thursday, Mar. 7 at 10:15am
  • Location: Copper Cove - conference level
  • Audio file: No audio file available.

As data journalists, we're used to using relational databases — data organised in rows and columns such as a spreadsheet or SQL — to do our analysis and find stories. Graph databases are incredibly powerful for finding connections and patterns within our databases that would be difficult if not impossible to spot using traditional software. This session will provide a hands-on introduction to graph database Neo4j, showing examples of its use for investigative journalism including the Panama Papers, and teach you how to build your own graph database, importing public datasets to see at a glance the networks involved.

This session is good for: beginners to graph databases.

Speaker Bios

  • Leila Haddou is an investigative reporter and former data journalism editor for The Times and Sunday Times in London. She has previously worked on investigations for the Financial Times and the Guardian and has an avid interest in how technology can aid deep-dive, public interest reporting. @leilahaddou

  • William Lyon is a software developer at Neo4j, the open source graph database. He works on building integrations for Neo4j with other technologies, helping users build graph applications, and also leads the Neo4j Data Journalism Accelerator Program. He holds a masters degree in Computer Science from the University of Montana. You can find him online at or @lyonwj

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