ICFJ Knight roundup: Upcoming webinar to help journalists report on water and sanitation issues

by Sara Olstad
Oct 30, 2018 in Data Journalism
People along a river

As part of the Knight International Media Innovators blog, the ICFJ Knight team will round up stories focused on how their fellows are making an impact in the field. Find out more about the fellows' projects by clicking here.

An upcoming webinar on water and sanitation reporting on April 28, the Panama Papers story triggers government probe and more from the Knight Fellows in this week’s roundup.

Using data to improve reporting on water and sanitation

By 2050, at least one in four people will live in a country facing chronic or recurring water shortages, according to United Nations data. A webinar, titled “How journalists can use data to improve reporting on water and sanitation issues,” will feature World Bank experts who will provide tips and information for journalists interested in these issues and how they affect human development. The webinar, which will take place at 10 a.m. April 28, is the latest in a series offered through a partnership between ICFJ, Code for Africa and the World Bank’s Strategic Impact Evaluation Fund (SIEF). Participants can join via this link.

Submit your water and sanitation stories to impactAFRICA

Reporters covering water and sanitation issues in Ghana, Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania and Zambia can submit their work to the impactAFRICA news challenge. Stories can be produced in any format, but must be published between March 30 and June 30. The three winning journalists will receive fully-funded trips to the United States to visit major newsrooms. For more information or to apply, click here.

Panama Papers story triggers government probe in Sierra Leone

A Panama Papers story by the African Network of Centers for Investigative Reporting (ANCIR) revealed the alleged undervaluing of Sierra Leonean diamonds, which may be costing the government tax revenue. The Sierra Leone Ministry of Mines and Mineral Resources announced it will conduct an investigation into the allegations. ANCIR, an ICFJ partner, coordinated newsrooms in 11 African countries to produce a series of stories about the African people and companies named in the Panama Papers. ANCIR was founded by ICFJ Knight Fellow Justin Arenstein, who serves as a director along with ICFJ Knight Fellow Chris Roper.

Leading Indian newspaper launches air quality tool

The Hindustan Times is launching a real-time pollution map that allows users to see air quality measures in Delhi and other Indian cities. The top four most polluted cities in the world are in India, with Delhi topping the list, according to World Health Organization data. Nic Dawes, chief content officer at HT, says the new map aims to provide granular, reliable, real-time data that journalists can use to better inform their reporting. ICFJ Knight Fellow Nasr ul Hadi helped develop the initial strategy for this air pollution tool and with the creation of the HT news apps team that produced it. “Delhi is currently conducting the second phase of an experiment with restricting cars on the road … so there’s huge attention to the air quality numbers right now because of this fairly controversial program,” said Dawes.

Media Party Miami showcases innovation in U.S. and Latin American newsrooms

This month, Media Party Miami brought together leading journalists from Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, Mexico, Venezuela and the United States for sessions that focused on virtual reality, animation and design. “Miami’s diversity is one of its greatest strengths. People from different backgrounds and with different ideas are building a community here unlike anywhere else,” former ICFJ Knight Fellow and event organizer Mariana Santos wrote in a blog post. The two-day event was inspired by recent ICFJ Knight Fellow Mariano Blejman’s Media Party in Buenos Aires.

Check out a video by Fiorella Coto Segnini of Costa Rica, using skills she learned through Chicas Poderosas, a network founded by Santos to bring more women into newsroom technology and leadership roles.

Build your own Wazimap

Code for South Africa has made it easier for others to use its Wazimap tool on their own websites. Wazimap provides easy access to census and elections data and allows users to compare data from different locations. It is based on Census Reporter, a winner of the Knight News Challenge grant. "Since early 2014, Wazimap.co.za has been used by thousands of people across South Africa to understand where they live, go to school and do business,” writes Code4SA’s Greg Kempe in a recent post. “It has become a critical tool for activists, journalists, political parties and many more who need to make informed decisions about their lives and work.”

First data academy class produces stories using new tools and techniques

Ten journalists who comprised the inaugural class of Code for South Africa’s data journalism academy have used their newly acquired skills to produce innovative stories about topics such as the exodus of teachers from public schools and the omission of informal settlements from the national census. The Cape Town-based academy launched its first course on February 1 with two weeks of intensive data journalism training, led by ICFJ Knight Fellow Ray Joseph. During the next 10 weeks, the journalists worked with experienced data reporters, coders and analysts to produce stories that featured innovative tools like Wazimap, Piktochart and Infogram.

Main image CC-licensed by Flickr via Cordelia Persen.