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Journalists from the Center for Public Integrity will facilitate discussions and training sessions addressing how data journalism can confront inequality at the Investigative Reporters & Editors’ 2023 NICAR conference March 2-5 in Nashville.

In addition to the Pulitzer Prize-winning nonprofit news organization’s own journalism confronting inequality, Public Integrity works to build investigative reporting capacity and expertise at local news organizations across the country, with a focus on those serving marginalized communities.

Public Integrity reporters will talk about recent investigations into inequity in access to voting, student homelessness and more.

Jennifer LaFleur

Public Integrity Senior Editor Jennifer LaFleur, a former IRE board member, will do training on using data to uncover inequality. She also will be part of a panel on “Editing the Data-Driven Investigation” with Dianna Hunt of ICT and Andy Lehren of City University of New York.

Public Integrity Editor Mc Nelly Torres, winner of the International Women’s Media Foundation’s 2022 Gwen Ifill Award, will lead a master class on “Managing Investigators … Or How to Lead Journalists Born to Challenge Authority” with Jodie Fleischer of Cox Media Group and Josh Hinkle of KXAN.

McNelly Torres Photo
Mc Nelly Torres

LaFleur and Torres have trained and mentored thousands of reporters and editors in data journalism and the principles of investigative reporting over the course of their careers and in their work with IRE, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and other journalism organizations. 

Public Integrity reporters and data journalists will also share their expertise at NICAR this week.

Amy DiPierro

Amy Di Pierro, a data journalist whose 2022 “Unhoused and Undercounted” investigation led to immediate impact on student homelessness, will speak about “Using Public Data to Uncover the Hidden Costs of the Housing Crisis” with Juan Pablo Garnham of Eviction Lab and Susie Neilson of the San Francisco Chronicle. 

Aaron Mendelson, a Public Integrity reporter whose work led Public Integrity’s “Who Counts?” investigation into inequity in voting access this fall, will speak on a panel with Sandra Fish of the Colorado Sun and Jessica Huseman of Votebeat about how journalists can quantify the impact of new voting legislation and where to find data on how elections are run in their communities.

Aaron Mendelson
Aaron Mendelson, Public Integrity reporter

Janelle O’Dea, who joined Public Integrity last year as a data journalist focused on collaboration with local news organizations, will lead a workshop on how to report on a city’s infrastructure issues through analysis of citizens’ 311 complaints, and how this data can uncover stories about gentrification.

She’ll join Erin Mansfield of USA Today, Jasmine Mithani of The 19th and Lucia Walinchus of Eye on Ohio to talk about what journalists must do “When Data Assumes a Male Population.” They’ll discuss the prevalence of data sets that exclude women and provide tips on identifying and overcoming gender/sex bias in data.

Janelle O’Dea

O’Dea is also leading a session on how attendees of the conference, beloved as a space where data journalists help each other solve problems in a hands-on way, can “retain the NICAR spirit year round.”

News organizations and individual journalists interested in access to future reporting collaborations, training and other resources from Public Integrity can sign up for a journalism resources mailing list here

Founded in 1989, the Center for Public Integrity is one of the oldest nonprofit news organizations in the country and is dedicated to investigating systems and circumstances that contribute to inequality in the United States.

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