Spending Stories to Dive Into Data at the International Journalism Festival

    by Lucy Chambers
    April 4, 2012

    The Spending Stories team’s experience in leading data journalism workshops, such as the one last year on EU spending in Utrecht and EuroHack in Warsaw, has shown that there are still a lot of barriers hindering data journalists from reporting on spending. This month, April 25-29, at the International Journalism Festival in Perugia, we’ll continue our mission to help journalists find, decipher, remix and report on spending data.

    In the Spending Stories workshop, Friedrich Lindenberg and I will be aiming to focus the participants on “following the money” by taking a closer look at EU spending data. In past workshops, we’ve dealt with lobbyist interests, phoenix companies which spring up only to take advantage of grants and funds, wasteful spending, and unfair procurement practices in datasets — and the databases have much more to offer, so we encourage participants to let us know what they are interested in most.


    • Overview: What datasets are out there? Where can you look for more?
    • Interrogating databases: how to extract the maximum amount of data out of tricky databases
    • Tools for spending analysis: how to slice and dice once you have your data

    The School of Data Journalism is a series of panel discussions and workshops on various aspects of data journalism organized by the European Journalism Centre and the Open Knowledge Foundation. It’s hosted at the sixth edition of Italy’s leading journalism event, the International Journalism Festival in Perugia. In these sessions, budding data journalists and newbies alike will learn from experienced data journalists and data gurus about how to get the data you need, how to analyze it, how to get stories from data, and how to present those stories.


    Registration is now closed, and we were overwhelmed with interest. Altogether we had 250 applications for the workshops, most of which have 20 places each. This confirms our view that there is a need, and significant demand, for this kind of hands-on training events.


    Successful applicants will receive confirmations in the coming days. Unfortunately, due to the high number of applicants, we are unable to accommodate everyone who has applied. Some more places may become available if any of the participants are unable to attend.


    If you’re interested to learn about data journalism but haven’t received a place in the workshops, you can still attend the panels, where no registration is required.

    what you’ll learn

    The panels attempt to provide answers to crucial questions for aspiring data journalists, editors and decision-makers in newsrooms:

    • What can aspiring data journalists learn from the successes of the past?
    • How can data journalism save your newsroom?
    • How do you start a data journalism operation?
    • How can you become a data journalist, and what do you need to do?

    If you can’t make it to the festival this year don’t despair — many of the sessions will be recorded, and we will make sure the course materials are available online. You can also get a copy of the Data Journalism Handbook, which will be launched at the festival and which includes many of the themes that will be covered in the School of Data Journalism. If you want to be notified when the handbook comes online, fill in this form and we’ll let you know the minute we push publish.

    Finally, if you’re interested in learning more about data journalism, do keep in touch via the mailing list and Twitter. We’re planning to do further training events on these other topics across Europe and around the world in the coming months. If you’d like us to come to your town or city, let us know.

    For the curious, here’s a bit more information about what will happen in Perugia.

    Tagged: data journalism datasets eu spending international journalism festival perugia spending stories workshop

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